The Golden State Warriors were considered as championship contenders prior to the start of the 2013-2014 season. However, soon after the start of the season they didn’t seem to be as dangerous as initially projected. After a not so great first half of the season the Dubs managed to bounce back in the second half of the season and they are now considered as one of the most significant underdogs in this year’s playoffs. But can they really threaten the best teams in the West?
When healthy and when in rhythm, the Golden State Warriors can beat almost any team in the league. However, health has not been on their side as of lately. After David Lee, who missed seven consecutive games due to a complex hamstring injury, center Andrew Bogut now got hurt and he might miss extended time during the playoffs. Health has always been an issue for Golden State and unfortunately, it might doom the Dubs’ chances to make a solid course in the playoffs.
The truth is that as long as Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson sink their three-pointers and stay in a good form the Warriors can continue to have hopes about a solid playoff run. Nonetheless, the Warriors do have some holes in their game and they have also experienced some ups and downs. Consistency plays a big role in the playoffs, when even the smallest detail can make the difference between life and death. The Warriors have not shown that they can achieve those crucial plays that could give them the ticket to the next round.
The Dubs have now secured the sixth spot in the West and they will meet the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round. This will be a very difficult matchup for Golden State. But the Clips certainly are a better matchup than the Oklahoma City Thunder, who the Warriors would face if they fell to the seventh seed. So it should come as a surprise to see the Dubs going no further than the first round in the playoffs this year.
Andrew Bogut’s presence will certainly play a big role in the Warriors’ course. The Australian center is a defensive anchor for the team and he is the best defender against sized big men. Of course, the production of the Splash Brothers but also the outputs of the supporting cast will also play their respective roles. Thankfully, there is a bunch of role players who can fill in for almost any absence the Warriors might have during the postseason. Harrison Barnes, Jordan Crawford and even Jermaine O’Neal have shown that they can be productive when the team needs them. But still, the Warriors should mostly be considered as underdogs rather than contenders this season. No matter if the Warriors co-owner, Joe Lacob, stated that anything but the championship would be a failure, Golden State should most probably have lower, more realistic targets, at least to start the playoffs and hope for the best.
Ron Leyba is the content manager of Fantasy Basketball Money Leagues – premier source of fantasy basketball updates, rankings and rumors. For more of his fantasy basketball updates, follow Fantasy Basketball Money Leagues Google+ account.Follow paulmbanks