Final

Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 2)

Series starts 1/2

Game 1: Friday, January 2nd
Warriors79Final
Wizards97
Game 2: Friday, March 26th
Wizards78Final
Warriors99

Wizards 78

(23-49, 7-28 away)

Warriors 99

(31-40, 23-13 home)

    Coverage: FSBAY

    7:30 PM ET, March 26, 2004

    ORACLE Arena, Oakland, CA

    1 2 3 4 T
    WSH 19 21 15 2378
    GS 27 30 17 2599

    Top Performers

    WSH: E. Thomas 16 Pts, 8 Reb, 1 Blk

    GS: E. Dampier 19 Pts, 21 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Stl, 2 Blk

    Arenas gets rough homecoming in Oakland

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- Gilbert Arenas expected big things from himself in his return to Golden State. Instead, the Warriors got a big win -- and Arenas was left a bit embarrassed.

    Erick Dampier had 19 points and 21 rebounds and the Warriors rolled to their sixth straight victory, beating the Washington Wizards 99-78 Friday night in Arenas' homecoming to the building where he was a fan favorite for the last two years.

    The Warriors made quick work of Arenas, who was hobbled by a sprained ankle and hounded by rookie Mickael Pietrus.

    From nearly the moment he left Golden State for a $65 million free-agent contract with Washington eight months ago, Arenas had an informal checklist in his mind for this game: about 30 shots, 40 points, a bunch of assists and a win.

    He went home empty-handed, scoring 11 points on 3-of-10 shooting while in constant foul trouble. He was booed every time he touched the ball until the Oakland fans lost interest during the second half.

    "You don't think that it would be that rough," Arenas said. "It is extra weight on your shoulders, because you do want to perform well and have your team win. But when it goes bad, it goes bad. You don't know what to do."

    Arenas has been hurt for most of the season, and the Warriors noticed the difference.

    "Gil's just the type of player who goes out there, no matter how bad he's feeling," Richardson said. "The old Gilbert would have had about 30 shots up, maybe 40. He just didn't look healthy."

    Jason Richardson had 16 points and nine rebounds for Golden State, which is on its longest winning streak of the season -- though it follows a nine-game losing streak that probably will keep the Warriors out of the playoffs for the 10th straight season. Still, it might save coach Eric Musselman's job -- and the Warriors' veterans intend to finish strong.

    "We're just putting together some great team effort," said Dampier, who has 40 double-doubles this season. "If we can match (last season's win total), we'd feel like we did get better at the end of the season. That's a goal for us."

    Golden State (31-40) must finish 7-4 to match last season's 38-44 mark.

    Larry Hughes, another former Warriors guard, scored 12 points as the Wizards quickly regressed to miserable form after snapping their five-game road losing streak one night earlier.

    Washington was handed its 10th loss in 13 games, falling behind by 17 in the first half and by 24 in the third quarter. Any motivation from the starting backcourt's return to Oakland wasn't enough to make the Wizards competitive.

    "In this situation, the emotions get carried away and you don't focus on the task at hand like you need to be effective," coach Eddie Jordan said. "There is no excuse, but it is a heck of a thing to deal with. I can see that (Arenas) was affected by it."

    Etan Thomas had 16 points and eight rebounds for Washington.

    Arenas became a star with the Warriors last season, excelling in Musselman's uptempo offense. He averaged 18.3 points, 6.3 assists and 4.7 rebounds and was named the NBA's most improved player.

    But because he was a second-round draft pick, the Warriors were only able to offer the restricted free agent about half the riches dangled by Washington. Arenas denounced Warriors owner Chris Cohan on the way out for his negotiating tactics, though he tempered those comments before his return game.

    Arenas, a fan favorite in Oakland before his defection, didn't mind his reception.

    "They are going to boo you, but if you're doing good, they'll cheer for you," he said. "I just have to wait until I come back next year to score my 40."

    Game notes


    Washington G Steve Blake sat out with a sprained left thumb. ... Golden State has held all six opponents below 90 points during its winning streak -- the Warriors' longest such stretch since the shot clock was added to the game in 1954. ... According to the Warriors, their winning streak is the longest in NBA history directly following a losing streak of nine games or longer.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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    Team Stat Comparison

     
    WSH
    GS
    Points 78 99
    FGM-FGA 25-75 (.333) 39-89 (.438)
    3PM-3PA 1-8 (.125) 2-15 (.133)
    FTM-FTA 27-35 (.771) 19-25 (.760)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 14-43 18-56
    Assists 10 23
    Turnovers 15 9
    Steals 4 5
    Blocks 4 7
    Fast Break Points 2 7
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 20 (0/0) 21 (1/0)

    Top Performers

    Washington
    Golden State
    Etan Thomas Thomas
    Points: 16
    Reb: 8
    Ast: 0
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 1
    Erick Dampier Dampier
    Points: 19
    Reb: 21
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 1
    Blk: 2