OAKLAND -- No, the Warriors did not give up a record number of 3-pointers. And Houston did not shoot a ridiculous percentage.

But the Warriors defense still had more holes than Krispy Kreme, leading to a 116-107 loss Tuesday.

"Our defense has been (poor)," Warriors center Andrew Bogut said. "Even before I played in Toronto, I think our defense started to slip a little bit. ... The last 10 games it hasn't been great."

A week before, Houston embarrassed Golden State, running up 140 points and tying an NBA record with 23 3-pointers. The game ended with bad blood as the Warriors, feeling disrespected, started fouling the Rockets to prevent them from breaking the record.

Since that game, the Warriors lost three more and their defense had been unbecoming in each. So Tuesday against Houston, this time at Oracle Arena, the Warriors had a chance to exact revenge and get back on track.

But at the end of the night, they were heading into the All-Star break with a season-worst five-game losing streak.

"You give up 116 points, that's not who we are," coach Mark Jackson said. "When we are at our best, we are defending, rebounding, taking care of the basketball and getting back in transition. Tough loss for us, but ultimately, these are nights that will develop us. I think my team is going to develop toughness and ... an appreciation for how we got it done."


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The Warriors (30-22) certainly could have used some toughness and edge Tuesday. They held the Rockets to 10 of 34 shooting from 3-point range but allowed them to shoot 51 percent overall in the second half. Houston had seven players score in double figures, led by 27 points from guard James Harden, who was playing on an injured left knee and sprained his right ankle against the Warriors.

Rockets point guard Jeremy Lin, a Bay Area native and a former Warrior, had a rough night shooting, going 3 for 11 for 14 points. But he had 10 of the Rockets' 32 assists as they feasted on penetration and cutting for 48 points in the paint and 25 free throws.

"You've got to stop your man," said Bogut, who had six points and 12 rebounds in 27 minutes. "I think we have a great shell, team defense. But at the end of the day, it's your one-on-one battle with the guy you're guarding. You can't just keep hoping for help and funneling to help. Those All-Star players like James Harden are exceptions. But I think we need to take a better onus of saying 'I'm going to stop my man' so we don't have to get into help rotations."

Jackson reluctantly acknowledged the Warriors are fatigued. Forward David Lee, who had 12 points on 3-of-10 shooting with 12 rebounds before fouling out, said he was exhausted. Tuesday's game was the Warriors' 11th in 19 days, including eight on the road.

That is why Jackson encouraged his players to use the All-Star break to get away from the game and recharge. When the Warriors return for Tuesday's game at Utah, they will be beginning a stretch where they play six of eight on the road.

The Warriors sit at No. 6 in the Western Conference, 11/2 games ahead of No. 7 Utah and two games ahead of No. 8 Houston.

"It's a tough feeling to go into the break after you lose five in a row, especially one at homemany," point guard Stephen Curry said after totaling 27 points, six assists and five rebounds. "Maybe its like the Super Bowl where the lights went out. Maybe this week, we can sit back, relax and try to get refocused. Be like the 49ers and make a push. See what happens."

The Warriors led by as many as nine in the first half but trailed 57-56 at halftime. They held Houston to 42.9 percent shooting in the first half, forced nine turnovers and limited the Rockets to nine fast-break points.

In the second half, either the Rockets caught a rhythm or the Warriors regressed. Suddenly, Golden State -- after a half of intense, gritty defense -- was permitting consistent open looks. The Rockets weren't draining 3s as they were last week. This time, they were hurting the Warriors inside.

"We're not where we think we are," Bogut said. "We're not where we think we are. I think we thought we were maybe a little better than we were. ... We were the hunters early on in the season and now we're the hunted. So that's a different mindset for us with other teams coming out trying to kick our (rear) and we're not responding."

  • Warriors backup point guard Jarrett Jack returned to the lineup after missing three straight games with a right-shoulder contusion. Jack was expecting to miss his fourth consecutive game as his shoulder still isn't 100 percent. But he went all out during warm-ups and decided he had sat out long enough.

    "Sometimes, you've got to fight through some stuff," Jack said as he left the court following warm-ups, dripping with sweat and scowling. "Not playing is killing me.".

    Interestingly enough, when Jack was out, Jackson didn't turn much to third-string point guard Charles Jenkins. He has gone more often to rookie shooting guard Kent Bazemore.

    "He plays with an edge, and when he's on the floor he does not look like he does not belong," Jackson said. "He's confident, he's always in attack mode, has the ability to make plays scoring off of other guys and he's a very good defender."

    TUESDAY'S GAME
    Warriors (30-22) at Utah (29-24), 6 p.m. CSNBA

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