Moses Moody struggles with the eye in the Warriors loss in the California Classic

Moody reflects on Warriors loss in California Classic appeared first on NBC Sports Bayarea

SAN FRANCISCO — Not five minutes into his 2022 California Classic debut Sunday at the Chase Center, it looked like Moses Moody’s night was going to be cut short. Literally.

Moody suffered a cut over his left eye with 7:22 left in the first quarter of the Warriors’ Summer League contest with the Los Angeles Lakers, a 100-77 loss. With blood pouring down, Moody was forced into the locker room. He received two stitches and returned to the floor with just over eight minutes left in the first half, wearing a black eye patch over his left eye.

What was most disappointing to Moody was a bit of a surprise. His vision was not affected. It was the return of the odious nicknames.

When Moody got a black eye from his elbow early in his start against the Minnesota Timberwolves on March 1, the rookie didn’t stop hearing the jokes from his older teammates. Now, they’re back.

“It sucks because I just got rid of my nicknames after it happened earlier in the year, but it’s all back,” Moody told reporters. “He called me ‘Bar Fight’, ‘Captain Jack.’ They’re all coming back.”

The 20-year-old, who is expected to make a big jump in Year 2 and see a bigger role next season, started as the Warriors’ coordinator and felt out of the game. He started in the second quarter upon his return and finished the first half with nine points and one turnover.

Eleven seconds after his first bucket, Moody took charge on the other side of the floor. That’s one part that makes the Warriors so interested in the No. 14 overall pick in the 2021 draft. He’s already a pro.

Moody doesn’t act like someone who was a teenager two months ago, nor does he present himself as one.

The Warriors starting lineup consisted of Moody, Lester Quiñones, Justinian Jessup, Gui Santos and Selom Mawugbe. Outside of Moody, that’s two second-round draft picks, two undrafted players and none with NBA experience. Unlike what he was used to at the Chase Center, Moody was a victim of his environment.

He went scoreless in the second half, missed all five of his field goal attempts and turned the ball over four times. Moody shot 3-for-11 from the field and 1-4 from deep. His minus-24 was the worst game for either side and lower than any plus-minus he had as a rookie — in the regular season and the playoffs.

“For Moses specifically, I’d say a little bit of that, for sure,” Warriors California Classic coach Seth Cooper said when asked if Moody’s turnovers were more a result of him not getting used to his teammates more than anything else. “The ball handling, the decision making, his reads, his comfort level, everything — the more he’s in those situations where now other teams are trying to take him out and make him unable to catch the ball , that’s something he hasn’t really faced all year being the focus of the team for us offensively. I think it was a little bit of everything, but the more he does it, the more comfortable he will be.

“We’ve all seen him be able to do all the plays. We wouldn’t put him in those situations if we hadn’t seen him do it in practice and know he’s fully capable and confident to do it.”

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Quiñones, the Memphis product the Warriors signed to a two-way contract in the draft, had 19 points and five rebounds. He shot 6-for-13 overall and 3-for-6 on 3-pointers. Last season as a junior for Memphis, Quiñones shot 39 percent from 3-point range.

This is a name to watch going forward, but Moody’s development in his overall game will continue to be near the top of the Warriors’ Summer League to-do list.

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