The Golden State Warriors are off to their best start in franchise history with a 38-8 record, placing them in first in the Western Conference. The “Dubs” have used a combination of stellar offense led by all-stars Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, and a defense backed by Draymond Green and Andrew Bogut.
Coming into the 2014-2015 season Warrior fans were skeptical on how the team would adjust after firing head coach Mark Jackson and replacing him with first year head coach Steve Kerr. SF State students have noticed how well the team is playing and are surprised by the historic start.
“They’ve surprised me,” said SF State alumni David Bituit, 28. “I thought they’d be a good team, but I didn’t think they’d get off to as good a start as they have. I like Steve Kerr as a coach, and I’m happy they didn’t trade Klay in the offseason.”
Before a recent defeat in the hands of the Chicago Bulls, the Warriors were on an incredible 19-game home winning streak. The team was beating opponents by an average of 16 points per game.
Although the Warriors are off to their best start in history, there is skepticism amongst fans on campus. The past two years have finished with playoff losses to the San Antonio Spurs and Los Angeles Clippers, both leaving fans with a bad taste in their mouth. Students believe that the success of the Warriors hinges on the health of the team, and more specifically the starting center Andrew Bogut.
“Bogut’s health is huge,” said Raul Justo, 20, a mechanical engineer major “We lack a good backup center, and without Bogut in the paint there’s no true rim protector. David Lee and Speights are too small to provide that roll, Ezeli is injury prone, and is still developing along with Kuzmic.”
The Warriors start has been noticed league-wide, and many basketball analysts pick them as the favorites to represent the west in the finals. One caveat is that the year the Warriors are the best in the west, the rest of the Western Conference is as strong as it’s ever been. The Dubs could finish first in the conference and face off with last years champion, the San Antonio Spurs, or the Oklahoma City Thunder who is under the leadership of reigning MVP Kevin Durant.
“The way they’re going now, I can see them going all the way,” said SF State student, Mario Caliz, a criminal justice major.
Now at the half way point of the season, the Warriors are heading into February with two home games and nine away games. The Western Conference is tight enough where a couple of back-to-back losses could drop the Warriors into the second or third seed of the playoffs. The consensus in sports is normally not how you start, but how you finish. The way the Warriors finish and go into the playoffs may determine their long term goals of reaching the finals.