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Pelicans annihilated early by Warriors in 123-108 loss as New Orleans once again fails to start with requisite energy and focus

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The Pels trailed 39-21 at the end of the first quarter. Yup.

Golden State Warriors v New Orleans Pelicans Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images

Is it over yet? CAN it PLEASE be over yet?

After finding yet another new way to lose, this time in a 123-108 ESPN/Marvel-produced effort with slams and bams and misses and errors, the Pelicans lie gasping for breath, but begging for a merciful ending... like Thanos did, or whatever. I’m not an MCU expert.

The two teams play again Tuesday night.

Stephen Curry had 41 points and eight assists; Draymond Green went for a triple-double: 10 points, 15 rebounds, and 13 assists. Zion Williamson had 32 points and eight rebounds; Brandon Ingram scored 19 points (8-8 FT). New Orleans was down a lot and early, shooting 29 percent in the first quarter with six turnovers. Boom, just like that it was 8-1, then 15-3; soon after, it was 47-27.

Golden State produced consistent, smart defense — no shocker, given Draymond Green’s mind and voice back there. Their offense was hot early, sustained by Curry and Draymond playmaking, and only added to with shots from Juan Toscano-Anderson, Andrew Wiggins and Jordan Poole hurting that much more. Golden State made 17 3s and had 31 assists, while the Pellies went 5 for 25 from 3 and finished with 20 assists/16 turnovers.

Starting center Steven Adams and other offense helpers (Josh Hart, Nickeil Alexander-Walker) were still missing from action, the team’s lack of punch showed when ball movement came in rare glimpses. An advantage gained on offense would take the ball to someone who wouldn’t make a play or shot. Kira Lewis Jr. got a chance early, but didn’t get run in the second half until garbage time. Jaxson Hayes attempted a Magic Johnson-level pass, only to have it intercepted by the Warriors and end in a Curry 3. Zion air-balled a 3 that led to a Draymond 3. That’s how it went.

BUT WE GOT THIS SICK AVENGERS DUNK:

Shots just didn’t fall. James Johnson went 3-of-10 and hasn’t made an outside shot in how long? Lonzo Ball started 0-for-9. Ingram’s playmaking was “meh” and he finished with four assists and two turnovers. Nola trailed by as many as 25.

Time after time, the Pelicans would not only miss a shot or commit a turnover, but the ball still in Warriors’ hands eventually ended in buckets from all over the place.

Defensive attentiveness seemed to be ... lacking. Willy Hernangomez didn’t impact defensive possessions and the Pels may have been burned by a few bad calls. All-Star Brandon Ingram was again caught zoning out again resulting in at least one dunk.

He’s probably just like us: losing focus and ready for it to end. NBA Draft Lottery here we come!

Geaux Ping Pong Balls!

For more Pelicans talk, subscribe to The Bird Calls podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. You can follow this author on Twitter at @Trabeta.