During the offseason, the Golden State Warriors lost two key reserves in Jarrett Jack and Carl Landry.
Jack and Landry served as the backbone of the team last year, as they provided quality minutes and adequacy onto the team’s bench. They helped lead the Warriors to a 47-32 regular season record, as well as a second-round berth in the playoffs.
Although Jack occasionally made questionable decisions on the court, he will be greatly missed. He was a solid Sixth Man of the Year candidate, as he averaged 12.9 points and 5.6 assists per game in 29.7 minutes per game off the bench.
In the playoffs, he elevated his game, as he averaged 17.2 points, 4.7 assists, and 4.4 rebounds per game in 35.5 minutes per game. Although Jack didn’t start games, he finished them, as he asserted himself as a reliable and clutch player in the final minutes of playing time. When Jack entered games off the bench, he ran the offense beautifully, which allowed Stephen Curry to thrive off the ball.
Additionally, Carl Landry, one of the most underrated power forwards in the league, will also be missed. Landry averaged 16.8 and 8.3 rebounds per 36 minutes last season.
He’s a bruiser in the paint who can crash the boards, but he also possesses a soft touch from the mid-range. His deadly jumper provided proper spacing on the floor for his teammates and liberated them to penetrate the defense and score near the basket. Per NBA.com, Landry connected on 43 percent of his shots from the mid-range, which was the second best percentage on the team.
Given the health issues of their big man, Andrew Bogut, the recently acquired Jermaine O’Neal and Marreese Speights will have to step up their games and stay healthy for the Warriors. Otherwise, the team will struggle to rebound.
Golden State also recently added Andre Iguodala to the team to compensate for the loss of Landry and Jack. Iguodala is a star player who could potentially replace Jack’s role on the team as well as provide higher quality defense to the squad. However, replacing Landry will be much more difficult.
O’Neal, one of Landry’s possible replacements, is an older player who is prone to injuries, and Speights doesn’t bring the same physicality that Landry exhibited. Speights can shoot the mid-range jumper, but he will have trouble replacing Landry in nearly every other aspect (such as defense, posting up, and rebounding).
It will be interesting to see if the totality of the team’s transactions will improve the team’s performance overall and push them to the next level in the playoffs.