Mark Jackson complained after the Golden State Warriors’ 107-100 loss to the Denver Nuggets on Tuesday night that Denver sent “hitmen” at his best player, Steph Curry.
“[They] tried to send ‘hitmen’ on Steph [Curry],” Jackson said after the game.
When asked to elaborate, Jackson did.
“There were some dirty plays earlier. It’s playoff basketball, that’s alright. We owe them. Make no mistake about it: we went up 3-1 playing hard, physical, clean basketball. Not trying to hurt anybody.”
During the first quarter with the Nuggets up 9-5, Curry was running down the lane as the Warriors were about to set up an offensive play. As he was going down the key, Kenneth Faried tried to trip him. Curry has been battling an ankle injury during the series, so one could argue he was being targeted in the foot.
Then in the second quarter, Kosta Koufos fouled Curry twice as he was trying to shoot a shot from the wing. Curry pushed Koufos back in response and pointed at the big man.
About two minutes later, Andrew Bogut stepped in as an enforcer and pushed Faried in the throat, likely as retaliation.
According to Rusty Simmons of the San Francisco Chronicle, the players disagreed on who’s targeting whom.
“They come out of nowhere, trying to throw elbows,” Curry said.
“They play dirty every night. They’ve targeted me,” said Faried.
Memo to Faried: you start it, Golden State will finish.
Game 6 on Thursday should be a fun one. Since it’s in Oakland, I would imagine it would be tougher for Nuggets players to get away with those plays in front of the opposing fans. I also expect the Warriors to close out the series.