Golden State Warriors Prediction: The 2019-20 NBA season will test Curry, Warriors future

The Golden State Warriors have carved out one of the greatest dynasties in the history of the NBA, reaching the Finals for five seasons in a row, winning the NBA Championship three times. However, their reign at the top of the sport was ended by the Toronto Raptors, suffering a 4-2 defeat at the hands of Kawhi Leonard and company. Steve Kerr’s men were outstanding, putting their bodies on the line to compete for a third crown on the bounce.

Both Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson were struck down with serious injuries, leaving Steph Curry and Draymond Green to carry the future and fortunes of the team. Not even brilliant performances from Curry were enough to stave off the Raptors, who claimed their first NBA title. Game five of the Finals was Durant’s last as a Warrior as he suffered a torn Achilles before making the decision to leave the team. He joined the Brooklyn Nets in a trade deal, having won the NBA Championship twice in his three years in the Bay Area along with two Finals MVP awards. Now the Warriors are playing the underdogs with Curry, Green, Kevon Looney and the leftovers trying to silence their critics.

Curry vs. The World

Durant’s departure along with Thompson’s torn ACL will leave Curry once again to carry the weight of expectation for the start of the campaign. Unlike previous seasons, Golden State are no longer the favorites to win the Western Conference in the betting tips. No doubt, the talking heads are already counting the Warriors out.

There’s good reason for that though, the Los Angeles Clippers made their intentions known to dethrone Kerr’s men by signing Leonard as well as trading for Paul George. Doc Rivers got a lot out of a limited team last season and with the influx of talent, they have the ability to become the dominant force in the NBA.

James Harden will be joined by Russell Westbrook at the Houston Rockets, handing Mike D’Antoni’s men a devastating one-two punch that Chris Paul could not become in his two years at the club. Don’t forget LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers bolstered by the arrival of six-time All-Star Anthony Davis. All three teams will be a huge factor in the playoff race, while even the Denver Nuggets are a team on the rise with their stars Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray.

In the arms race, Golden State managed to pick up D’Angelo Russell to the team, although it leaves them with a surplus of guards on the court with Curry and Thompson (when fit) the preferred two options at the position it gives the Warriors much-needed fire power.

Green remains one of the most self-motivated and best defensive players in the league, but there has to be more from the surrounding players on the roster, such as Looney and Jacob Evans. Curry was incredible when his teammates went down around him in the Finals, although he got worn down over the course of the campaign. Russell has to alleviate the pressure on his teammate with Thompson expected to be sidelined for a significant portion of the season.

With the balance of power now spread across the Western Conference, Kerr’s men cannot afford to carry players anymore. They need to produce outstanding basketball across the court rather than being reliant on their stars. The next campaign will be a test of Kerr and his coaching staff’s ability to get the most out of his key players while bringing through the next crop of talent to fill holes on the court without taking a step back.

 

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