Last, I was cheering for the Mavericks, for the whole purpose of trying to get my original finals matchup, Celtics vs. Mavericks, correct. I was happy to see Dallas take a 17 point lead towards the middle of the game, assuming they will close it out. Then, seeing Golden State, without Stephen Curry on the court, outplay the Mavericks towards the beginning of the 4th quarter, was telling myself that “It’s 2-0”. Then I started to think, “are the Splash Brother Warriors back?”
The Warriors had one of the most dominant dynasties in the history of the NBA from 2014 (2015 seasoN)-2019. The Warriors won 3 championships in this stretch (’15, ’17, ’18) and made it to the finals in all 5 years. They had the greatest record in NBA history with 73 wins to just 9 losses and were the Western Conference’s #1 seed 4 of those years. They were able to put together 2 top 20 players of all time (Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant) and 2 other future Hall of Famers (Kkay Thompson and Draymond Green). No one could stop them! The majority of NBA broadcasters and reports say they would have beaten the Toronto Raptors in 2019, if Durant or Thompson didn’t go down with injury.
But after Durant left for the Nets in 2020 and Thompson out for the season, there weren’t many high hopes for the Warriors, despite gaining D’Angelo Russell in free agency. Early in the year, Curry broke his wrist and had to have surgery, which sidelined him for a good portion of the season. Because of no Curry, Green declined and the Warriors had the worst record in the NBA, just 1 season after nearly becoming champions just a season prior. But, Curry only came back for a couple of games before the NBA was shutdown because of the pandemic. And because of the rules of the bubble, the Warriors did not play a game from March of 2020 until December of 2020. It was a low point.
But there was a positive right, Klay Thompson was returning from injury and a newly acquired Andrew Wiggins would fit in perfectly. Well, it came out that Thompson had a season ending injury again, sidelining for over 1 year! Despite this, Golden State made themselves very competitive, with an improved Green and healthy Curry. However, in the end, the Warriors lost the 8-9 play-in game, eliminating them from the playoffs.
This season though, the Warriors completely bounced back. Without Klay for the beginning of the season, the Warriors still were considered one of the best teams in the NBA. Once Klay came back though, the Warriors had the crew back for the first time since 2019. Curry got back to being his old self, Draymond turned into the defensive player he used to be, Andrew Wiggins developed all the way to be an All Star starter and Klay has came back better than ever with 39% 3pt shooting. Other players like Jordan Poole have also made a big difference. Seeing the Warriors win big games in the playoffs and be 2 games out of the playoffs makes you think, are the Splash Brother Warriors back?
Well, yes, especially if they make to the finals or win the championship. But the key component to that happening is if their championship would be because of the big 3, Curry, Klay and Draymond. If it’s because of Jordan Poole and Andrew Wiggins, than the Warriors are back, but not quite the Splash Brothers to the same extent it was previously. The Warriors were so dominant for years because of the 3 and now that they’re back in the Western Conference Finals with the Splash Brothers dominating, yes, the Warriors are back. However, even though I think they won’t win a championship, why bet against a healthy Splash Brothers, who are back to what they used to be!
Wiz Talk with Chase
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