Dubs Demise Greatly Exaggerated

 

They are coming out of the woodwork now. You can hear them on the Mothership (ESPN.) You can hear them on Mad Dog Sports Radio. You can hear them on the Sirius-XM NBA channel.  The talking points are in line. The Warriors have never done it before. The Warriors are getting tired. The Warriors shoot too many jump shots to seriously contend. Oklahoma City will beat them in the first round. Blah blah blah blah…….

It’s as if these prognosticators are completely discounting the Warriors season. Are they not watching the games ? Golden State leads the league in field goal percentage offense AND field goal percentage defense.  In laymen’s terms the Dubs have the best offensive and defensive efficiency in the NBA.

These so-called “experts” continue to tout Oklahoma City and Houston. Oklahoma City has the two-men wrecking crew of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. But, Durant has had nagging leg and feet injuries all season and is on the shelf again with a toe issue. It seems for every game he plays he misses two. Most of these experts a la ESPN’s Chris Broussard assume Durant will be healthy. They pick the Thunder in a head-to-head match-up with Golden State with the caveat that the Dubs would win if Durant isn’t healthy.

I contend the Warriors are a better team than Oklahoma City even if Durant is healthy. I give credit to the Thunder for some savvy trade deadline moves. They picked up center Enes Kanter to man the middle, and nice complementary pieces Kyle Singler and DJ Augustin. I still don’t believe those acquisitions give them the same depth as the Warriors. Former All-Stars Andre Iguodala and David Lee are coming of the bench and producing. Shaun Livingston is exactly what the Dubs envisioned when they signed him as a free agent. A defense first point guard with length and ability to take the ball to the basket and hit the mid-range jumper. Festus Ezeli is more than a serviceable back-up center. He is a high energy and is a defensive presence. I believe a healthy Durant makes Oklahoma City formidable but to call them the “favorites’ against the Warriors is being blinded to the Warriors 2014-2015 accomplishments and instead, focusing on the flash of the Thunder’s dynamic duo.

I have no idea where these analysts and experts can say the Rockets are a threat to win the Western Conference. Have you seen Houston play defense ? I know, they don’t.

James Harden is spectacular, but the Warriors have stifled The Beard with the combo of Klay Thompson and Andre Iguodala. The Warriors have played Houston four times this season. The Dubs are 4-0 with three convincing blow-out wins. Three of those  games were all played with Dwight Howard. It doesn’t matter if Howard plays. His impact on a game against the Warriors is negligible. Howard stands around on defense, waits to try to block a shot and on offense does nothing but clog up the middle for Houston’s array of rim attackers. He is a 6’10 non-factor and is clearly the most over-rated player in the game.

I don’t understand how anyone who knows the game can say the Rockets will beat the Warriors in the playoffs. Is it possible ? Sure. Plausible ? Yeah, if you have a wild imagination. If I’m the Warriors I salivate at the thought of playing the Rockets.

The Warriors will have their hands full when they hit the post-season. All bets are off if Andrew Bogut isn’t healthy. The health of Steph Curry and Bogut are imperative to Warriors post-season success. The Dubs face great challenges when the second season begins, especially if they face San Antonio or Memphis.  But, to say they would and should be underdogs if they face Oklahoma City or Houston is laughable.

 

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