Monday, January 28, 2008

Golden State's Big Risk

On paper, the Golden State Warriors aren’t as good as they’ve played in the last nine months. They’re terribly small, young, and led by a few quirky (crazy) characters, including their crusty old coach. If this team sat at the bottom of their division, the aforementioned flaws would be cited as the reasons for their futility.

But basketball is not played on paper, and the Warriors are not bottom feeders. They are winning and once again becoming the team that nobody really wants to play in the post-season. Why? Chemistry. These guys really like each other and they just love how Coach Don Nelson lets them run and be creative on offense. Their speedy guards – Baron Davis and Monta Ellis – are extremely difficult to defend with today’s rules against touching anyone on the perimeter, and they routinely blow by defenders for easy baskets. They have a versatile and underrated wingman – Stephen Jackson – that is the closest thing to Scottie Pippen in the NBA right now. On defense, they are encouraged to trap and go for steals as much as possible, which is risky, but they’re very good at it. This team is for real!

They have their sights set on reaching past the second round of the play-offs this year. But how can they avoid being beaten-up by a bigger, stronger team as they were against the Utah Jazz last year? They need help in the low-post and so they found an unemployed power forward to come in and help. His name is Chris Webber and he may be the missing piece of the Warriors puzzle, or the worst mistake they could possibly make at this time.

At his best, Webber was a creative high-post passer with a reliable mid-range jumper and the size (6’10) the Warriors so desperately crave. But that was the Webber of the last 15 years. Now, he’s old, walks on bad knees, refuses to play in the low-post where he belongs, is a world-class pouter that argues with coaches, has a history of choking when the game is on the line, and once played for the Warriors before being traded after engaging in a chilly relationship with Nelson. I can’t think of anyone this side of Latrell Sprewell (speaking of choking ... ) that could be as dangerous to the friendly atmosphere in this locker room than Chris Webber.

The Warriors have gambled and won numerous times in the past year or two and this move could be the one that changes their fortunes forever. But is seems like this was the wrong move and the results could be disastrous. For the sake of the loyal fans of this long-suffering franchise, I truly hope that they have one more stroke of luck left in them.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous3:53 PM

    very good timing for bob play



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