The Golden State Warriors are off to a strong start in their championship quest with Game 1 of the best-of-seven first round against the San Antonio Spurs at Oracle Arena today. Yet, now, everybody is relishing a new season. The 26-year-old only lasted nine games, however, and hasn’t played for the Spurs since January 13. West was the most consistent, and most productive of Golden State’s many centers, and gave the second unit a completely different feel than the freewheeling Warriors we’re accustomed to seeing.
San Antonio missed a chance to improve their seeding in the postseason as they were clobbered by the Pelicans on the road to close the regular season. They have a great opportunity to do so as the Warriors will not be playing at full strength as a couple of their All-Stars will not take part. Maybe December we’re anxious about Christmas and shopping, and they’ve got these lovely families on the team they got to worry about. Them losing to Houston wouldn’t be a disappointment. But it won’t just be the starting rotations; Popovich has shown that he’s not above playing Hall of Famers Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili as little or as much as the situation calls for.
First, we’ve (potentially) 105 games left in this year’s playoffs and it’s far from certain the finals will be a repeat of the last three finals.
Despite his best efforts, the Thunder need to be more than just Russell Westbrook plus four and the Paul George who averaged in excess of 20 points per game in his final four could prove key in this one.
Somehow at age 37, David West showed marked improvement in almost every facet of his game after consecutive uneven years with San Antonio and Golden State.
The Timberwolves were the last team to scrape into the playoffs, earning their first postseason berth since 2004 and ending the longest drought in the National Basketball Association. They were much stronger defensively with 36 rebounds while the other 24 were on the offensive end.
During the Thunder’s game against Memphis on Wednesday, Davis said point guard Russell Westbrook was “out of his cotton-pickin’ mind” after Westbrook tallied an assist en route to averaging a triple-double for the second consecutive season. The Spurs are 16 in the league by shooting 45.7 percent from the field.
When allowing below 100 points, Golden State is 15-5 and San Antonio is 32-10. The Warriors’ loss to Utah in the finale marked the worst loss in the Steve Kerr era. But they’re fighting and that’s the main thing. And because of those injuries the Warriors have had to change their style of play to a more Spurs-y approach, side-to-side ball movement, weak-side motions, but also a ton of isos.
Aldridge had one of the best seasons of his 12-year career. It would be Golden State. However, Stephen Curry missed 31 games because of nagging lower-leg injuries.
It might be Zaza Pachulia. Take Golden State to cover in a Game 1 rout. They looked more and more like their vintage self. Leonard still is dealing with his quad injury and, the longer this drags on, the less likely it seems that he’s going to suit up. While Curry’s return date is up in the air, he has been ruled out for the first round. Even the champions couldn’t overcome that, dropping six of their final 10 games, but they start against a San Antonio team whose injury problems are every bit as bad, assuming Kawhi Leonard doesn’t return after missing nearly the entire season. Pau Gasol will come off the bench as the Spurs look to match up with the versatility of the Warriors.
Bettors will be curious to see how Golden State performs in this spot after going 7-10 straight up down the stretch and 6-15 ATS dating back to February 28.