Warriors-Hornets Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated March 18, 2013
Golden State Warriors coach Mark Jackson's confidence never wavered as his team battled through a rough stretch, especially on the road. His players are hungry for more success, too. Coming off a blowout victory, visiting Golden State looks to beat the New Orleans Hornets for the third time this season Monday night. The Warriors (38-30) had lost 13 of their last 20 games, including nine of 10 on the road, and were in danger of dropping to seventh place in the Western Conference. But they remained in sixth and extended their lead to 1 1/2 games over Houston by routing the Rockets 108-78 on Sunday to kick off a three-game road trip, a performance Jackson welcomed after the adversity his team faced in recent weeks on the road. "I believe in my guys and I know this team is not going to panic. We are going to stay true to who we are," Jackson said. "You don't start doing things you haven't been doing. That panic. This is a special group. I'm honored to coach these guys." Stephen Curry scored 29 points after going 2 for 13 from the field and scoring eight in a home loss to Chicago on Friday. Despite Golden State's road struggles, Curry is averaging 35.2 points and shooting 53.7 percent from 3-point range over his last five away from home. "We haven't been playing well on the road," Curry said. "This was a big game for us to start off the road trip with and it's a good feeling. Now we have to follow it up (Monday) and not let this win be for nothing." Klay Thompson scored 26 points and hit 6 of 9 from 3-point range. He had shot just 40.1 percent from the field over his previous 10 road contests, including 35.2 percent on 3s. "If we don't take care of business in New Orleans, this means nothing," Thompson said. "Every win from here on out is a big, big game and you have to take wins where you get them and it's not easy." David Lee scored 26 points in a 103-96 home win over New Orleans on Dec. 18, then Thompson netted 29 in a 116-112 victory Jan. 19. The Hornets have lost 10 of 13 and dropped all three games on their road trip after falling 97-95 at Minnesota on Sunday. Greivis Vasquez, who has 26 assists in the two meetings with the Warriors, scored 24 points. New Orleans (22-45), which is tied with Phoenix for the West's worst record, was unable to hold a four-point lead with roughly one minute remaining, much to the dismay of coach Monty Williams. "You can't explain that kind of stuff," he said. The Hornets committed their most turnovers since finishing with 23 in a loss to Minnesota on Feb. 2. ''I mean honestly, we turned the ball over 20 times, they shot more free throws than we did, and we're up four with one minute left,'' Vasquez said. ''So no excuses, we just lost.'' Williams hopes his squad can bounce back against a Warriors team he knows will come out fired up to play, especially since Golden State is fighting for playoff positioning. "They are desperate team," Williams said. "They are looking to win some games. We have to go in and try and make our presence felt right from the jump."
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