Jackson, Warriors crank up offense to topple SunsNov 27, 2007 - 7:51 AM By Ryan Leong PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
OAKLAND, California (Ticker) -- For one night, it appeared the NBA went back in time to an era when scoring 120 plus-points was the norm as the league's two top offenses, the Golden State Warriors and the Phoenix Suns squared off in a shootout.
Stephen Jackson scored 30 of his season-high 32 points through three quarters and Monta Ellis netted 15 straight points for his team in the fourth as Golden State cooled down Phoenix with a 129-114 victory on Monday.
Ellis finished with a career high-tying 31 points and Baron Davis added 28 points and 10 assists for the Warriors, who have won six of their last seven games.
"I won't say this is a statement game but this was a great win for us to get back to ourselves," Ellis said. "If we start doing the things we were doing at the end of the season last year, we'll win a lot of games no matter who it is. Phoenix is a great team and we came at them. We just started off the game well and then we finished it."
"That was a quality win," Warriors coach Don Nelson said. "We played our best game of the year and if not, it was close. I thought it was a good game and a fun game to coach but it also helps if you score 129 points. About the only team that could beat us if we score 129 would be the Suns but they didn't."
That streak comes on the heels of a 0-6 start, a turnaround that had much to do with the return of Jackson from a season-starting suspension. The 6-8 swingman is averaging 22.2 points over his first six games of the season.
"We're trying to be the Warriors," Jackson said. "We're not trying to be like anybody else, we're trying to play our style of game. We want to have our own identity which is the Warriors' style of basketball and I think just as much as people try to adjust to Phoenix, they're going to try to adjust to us.
"We're just playing our game, trying to keep it where everybody's playing free, everybody has the green light and try to be a more scrappy team on defense and that's our style."
The Suns had been red hot, winning their last eight games but lost for the first time since November 7. Steve Nash led the team with 23 points and 13 assists.
The two teams combined for 46 points with six minutes remaining in a high-scoring first quarter that included a 13-2 run by Golden State.
"There's no excuses, they beat us and they were the better team tonight," Suns forward Grant Hill said. "They just came off a long East Coast trip and at this point of the season everybody's a little fatigued and they just came out with more energy, played harder, and got off to a great start."
The crowd was roaring on its feet after a 3-pointer by Davis prompted Phoenix to take a time out with 2:44 to go in the quarter, trailing 39-28.
Although Hill responded with a 3-pointer, Matt Barnes came back with one of his own, and the Warriors led 45-37 after the opening 12 minutes.
Early in the second quarter, Ellis had a show-stopping layup, giving Golden State a 10-point lead.
After a 3-pointer by Barnes and a three-point play by Kelenna Azubuike, the Warriors led 72-58 with 45 seconds before the half.
However, the Suns scored the final five points leading into the break, slicing the Warriors' lead 72-63 at the intermission.
Golden State pushed its advantage to a 17 points at 99-82 after a 3-pointer by Mickael Pietrus with 3:22 remaining in the third quarter, and went over the century mark less than a minute later.
Yet, Phoenix appeared ready to make a run in the fourth before the 22-year-old Ellis took over, capping his impressive run with a layup to make it 125-110 with 3:36 left.
"It was fun," said Ellis, who made 7-of-8 shots during the span that last just over five minutes. "Me and Baron just keep to running that screen. Coach said, 'Stay with it' and my shot as going so I just kept shooting it."
Al Harrington had 14 points and Azubuike added 11 off the bench for the Warriors, who shot 51.5 percent (52-of-101), including 13-of-28 on 3-pointers.
Amare Stoudemire and Hill scored 17 points apiece for the Suns, who committed an eye-popping 20 turnovers that the Warriors turned into 37 points.
"It's too hard to sit here and say, what went wrong but we had 20 turnovers and they scored off that," Suns forward Shawn Marion said. "When you look at that, if you take away eight or nine of our turnovers, that's less points for them and we lost by 15 points, that could be the difference in the game right there.
"But at the same time, Coach said, 'We've got to take this loss and learn from it.' If we don't learn from it, it won't help us."
GOLDEN STATE 129 FINAL
Nov 27 12:51 AM
GOLDEN STATE 103 END, 3RD QTR
Nov 27 12:19 AM
GOLDEN STATE 72 HALFTIME
Nov 26 11:36 PM
GOLDEN STATE 45 END, 1ST QTR
Nov 26 11:08 PM
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