The Golden State Warriors have shown thus far that they are a force to be reckoned with. Currently standing at #1 in the Pacific Division as well as #1 in the Western Conference, the Warriors are on a 12-game winning streak and proving to the world that they should not be taken lightly.
- What sticks out to me the most about the Warriors this year is the effect of rookie coach Steve Kerr. Mark Jackson did a great job in forming this team and developing these young players, but Kerr has this team performing at a high level on both sides of the ball. Steve Kerr’s motion style offense is a perfect fit for this fast paced, three-point shooting team but what stands out more is the way he has them playing defense. They are locked in on the defensive end with a 95.1 defense efficiency rating which is ranked #1 in the NBA. Kerr has this team rolling thus far, and I believe he deserves to be in the Coach of the Year discussion.
- The Warriors have been seeing consistent contributions coming from Klay Thompson, Andrew Bogut, Harrison Barnes, and Draymond Green but a lot of the Warriors’ success is due to the MVP season that Steph Curry is having. He’s been on top of his game thus far averaging 23 points, 8 assists and 6 rebounds a game, wreaking havoc for defenders night in and night out. With his quick and crafty dribbling skills along with his quick release, he has the ability to get whatever shot he wants while still getting his teammates involved and making them better. He’s shooting an impressive 49% from the field while maintaining a player efficiency rating of 27.54, which is ranked fifth in the league. Therefore, with great individual play as well as prominent team success, Steph Curry has proven why he is in the running for league MVP and why he’s in the discussion as the league’s top point guard.
- The one thing that concerns me about this Warriors team is the contribution from their bench. There have been many instances this season where the starters for Golden State have been able to establish a lead but the lack of production from the bench has allowed teams back in games. Golden State is currently ranked 18th in bench scoring and anyone who knows basketball knows that to win championships, you must have a solid bench. However, the Warriors are missing a staple on their team in David Lee who is out with a hamstring injury. Lee should be making his return in the upcoming weeks and I’m curious to see whether Coach Kerr starts him or not. I believe it may be in the Warriors best interest to continue to start Green and have Lee come off the bench. Draymond has been a good outlet for Curry and Thompson coming off the pick and roll, whereas Lee can be that spark that can ignite the bench of Golden State and fill that void.
Even though we are still early into the season, I believe the Warriors are a threat in the West. This team has been on the rise for years and this may be their year to finally overcome that barrier. “You live by the three and die by the three” and not many teams have won championships with that style of play but the way this team is playing defense along with what is arguably the best backcourt in league coming at you on offense, the Golden State Warriors are the team to watch out for in the Western Conference!