The Golden State Warriors had an amazing season, and the fans should be happy about it. When they were tragically eliminated from contention by the NBA Finals-bound San Antonio Spurs, it was heartbreaking, but they did beat the higher seeded Denver Nuggets in the first round. It was incredible, considering no one even predicted the Warriors would make the playoffs. When they did make the playoffs, 100% of the analysts for ESPN said the Warriors would lose in the first round. David Lee went down, and the Warriors still won.
It’s the amount of heart, and the great coaching that the Warriors have. This shows that the Warriors are a million times better than their record. In a battle of coaching intellect, Mark Jackson usually comes out victorious. The exception, of course, would be against one of the best coaches in NBA history in Gregg Popovich.
With that being said, not only Warrior fans, but NBA fans cannot wait to see what the Dubs have lined up next. They’re likely to re-sign Jarrett Jack, but may lose Carl Landry. Still, their lineups are good and they have most of their crucial pieces.
Here are three bold predictions for next season.
1. Curry is an All-Star:
Not much of a bold prediction, I know, but still, it’s nice for Stephen Curry to finally be getting some recognition. Sure, he was snubbed in the All-NBA teams, but do you think those kinds of things bother him? After his dazzling performance in MSG with 54 points, followed by a flurry of 35+ point games, Curry has become one of the best shooters in the NBA.
He averaged over 23 points per game after the All-Star break, and led the Warriors to great things. The fact that he wasn’t an All-Star in 2013 was just ridiculous. I’m sure the Western Conference coaches have noticed their mistake, and will atone for it in the 2014 All-Star Game.
2. The Warriors Snag Home Court Advantage:
This year, the Warriors were in the fifth spot for most of the season. Unfortunately, however, there was no way they could keep pace in the standings with the flaming hot Nuggets, who finished third. This pushed every team back one, and that included the Warriors as well. The last three playoff spots were tight, and there was a huge gap between the sixth seeded Warriors and the fifth seeded Grizzlies.
After a great season, teams come back stronger than ever. The Warriors aren’t going to make any drastic changes this summer, but they’re going to get better and better. Now that some of their younger players are more experienced, closing out games won’t be huge problems. The Warriors could finish with a much better record, leading to home court advantage.
3. Klay Thompson Finds His Groove:
In the 2012-2013 season, Thompson didn’t play horribly, but he was very inconsistent. He was able to score around 16 points per game, and really stepped up his defense. Still, if he was more consistent, he would have averaged 20 per game, alongside Curry. Now that he knows how to play the game, and doesn’t take too many stupid shots, the consistency will come to him.
Thompson had what everyone calls a “sophomore slump”. Fortunately for him, it’s going to get easier and easier for him, as he’s now easing into the groove of the NBA and there are players more inexperienced than him. He’ll fit into the Warriors’ rotation nicely.