With the Warriors losing to the Jazz last night, they failed to clinch a playoff spot, one that they haven’t clinched in six years.
I’m sure fans are checking the standings every day, just to see if that little ‘x’ (which marks a clinched playoff spot) is by the Warriors’ name. It’s getting to be that time of the season where the Warriors will likely make the playoffs, but haven’t clinched yet. It’s just a matter of time that is running out for the other teams.
Last night, the Warriors failed to defend the Jazz big men, took terrible shots, and couldn’t complete a comeback. The playoffs were right in front of them to grab for the first time in the six years, but they let that opportunity slip away.
As many negatives as there are, the Warriors didn’t exactly play terribly, but the shining brilliance of Mo Williams made it tough to mount a comeback.
With 34 seconds left in the game, the Jazz had the ball, ran the clock all the way down, and Williams, with Draymond Green in his mug buried a cold-blooded three pointer. Every single time the Warriors had closed on the Jazz lead, they gave up a quick six points by letting a three pointer hit the bottom of the net.
The one game that is the most important of the season is always the hardest to win. For perennially good teams like the Spurs, it’s just another game, but the Warriors knew that the pressure was on them to perform, and they weren’t able to come through.
Now it seems as if it’s going to be hard to clinch in the next couple of days. It seems as if it’ll be unlikely that the Warriors beat the Timberwolves and the Jazz lose to the Thunder.
I know fans may see that and like the Warriors’ chances of clinching, but the Jazz have already beaten the Thunder at home once this season, and the Timberwolves, like every other bad team, are better than their record suggests. The Warriors have a good shot at clinching on Tuesday, but they’re going to have to hope the Lakers or Jazz lose, and then play their hearts out.
Statistically, the magic number is two, and that means either a loss by the ninth seed or a win by the Warriors makes the number go down. That seems so simple, but when the Warriors failed to capitalize on the perfect opportunity – both in one game – they showed that it’s hard to perform under pressure for them.
It’s going to be a very exciting day on Tuesday, and someone is always going to end up being disappointed.