Wow. That is simply all that can be said about the Warriors this year. They have been destroying their competition with the most exciting offense we have ever seen. You have Draymond Green getting triple doubles with ease, Klay Thompson recording back to back 40 point games, and then their is Steph Curry, the man who keeps it all going. The Warriors have been breaking records all year long and they are looking to make history. If they go all the way to the end with another chip they could be considered the greatest team of all time and whether you agree with that statement or not it is undeniably going to be debatable if they make the final push. 16 more wins. That is all they need to cement every person in the organization’s legacy.
I have never quite seen such a well oiled machine quite like the Warriors. Everything they do seems so effortless. Steph can pull up from damn near half court effortlessly, Bogut reads defenses and seems to do everything right so effortlessly, Klay Thompson comes off a screen and drains jumpers effortlessly, and hell Draymond can get triple doubles like it is an everyday thing. All of it is beautiful to see and it shows in the numbers. The Warriors are 1st in offensive efficiency, 2 point %, and 3 point %. (I separated the two because they are 2nd in the league in field goal percentage due to the amount of threes they take it lowers their overall field goal percentage and is not an accurate measure of how efficient they are.) Out of the 8 5-man lineups they have had play at least 70 minutes, 7 of them have an offensive efficiency of at least 107.9. Which means pretty much their worst lineup is still the 5th best offense in the league as the mark of 107.9 would rank right above the Raptors who are 5th with an offensive efficiency 107.0. Their best lineup is the makeup of Curry-Thompson-Iguadala-Barnes-Green with a ridiculous 50.3 net rating and is shooting an effective field goal percentage (Which accounts for the value of the 3 ball) of 74.3%. That is pretty insane to think about and the key for all teams they face going forward is an answer to that lineup.
It will be hard for teams to deal with them even if they can find a way to slow down their small ball lineup. All of the teams besides the Spurs have close to 0 chance of matching up the small ball lineup with one of their own. That means teams will have to use more traditional lineups with two big men, but even then that would be pretty difficult. Their lineup of Curry-Thompson-Barnes-Green-Bogut with traditional bigs still has a net efficiency of 12.9 which would be tied for the best net efficiency in the whole league. The depth this team has is their greatest asset. Then there is the fact they have a guy who can do this.
Steph Curry is the catalyst of the team and players like Oscar Robertson claim teams need to play him full court and double team him more often. He claimed coaches do not know what they are doing. Well Oscar here is what happens when you double Curry.
And here is what happens when you play him fullcourt.
But yes coaches have no clue what they are doing. Steph does an extremely good job at reading the double teams and it seems like every time doubling Steph turns into a wide open 3 or easy layup. If there is any strategy I am positive will no work on Steph it is definitely doubling him. With all of that in mind if the record alone did not already show that they are the biggest threat in the league then the numbers will. The only team that seems like they have a chance of stopping them will be the San Antonio Spurs. If anyone else was to do so it would be one of the greatest upsets in the history of sports.
In this first round the Warriors will face a Rockets team that has been in disarray, but cannot be overlooked. James Harden and Dwight Howard are still on the team. Dwight Howard may not be what Rocket fans hoped for, but he has a history of stepping up his game in the playoffs and James Harden’s threat as a scorer should always be mentioned. With all of that being said I have the Warriors winning that series in 5, because I do not see the Rockets matching up well at all and Harden with sheer will wins a single game for his team.
All stats are accurate as of 3/31/2016 from nba.com/stats
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