There was no sugarcoating it on opening night for the Golden State Warriors — the power in the NBA has shifted.
As the Warriors were humbled during the opening of their brand-new arena, Chase Center, as they lost 141-122 to the Los Angeles Clippers, it became very apparent that Golden State is nowhere near the team that took the court just several months prior.
Although the Warriors are just four months removed from their fifth straight NBA Finals appearance, the only similarities that the 2019-20 version showed with the 2018-19 one was the jerseys that they were wearing.
There weren’t any positives from opening night. No morality victories or anything for Golden State to hang their hats on. They never led during the game and allowed the Clippers to score 46 points in the third quarter.
Kerr reflected on the loss following the game, admitting that this won’t be the last time this happens to the Warriors this season, via ESPN.
“There will be plenty more lumps along the way for this young group, with Kerr noting, “This is not a one off.”
“This is more the reality of the NBA. The last five years we’ve been living in a world that isn’t supposed to exist,” Kerr said.
Even the Warriors’ trademark shot — the 3-pointer — wasn’t falling early on as they missed their first six 3-pointers. Heck, they started out the game in a 14-0 hole.
Charles Barkley Tells Klay Thompson Warriors Won’t Make Playoffs
The most notable thing of the night other than the Clippers establishing their early-season dominance for the second straight game was this: TNT analyst Charles Barkley telling Klay Thompson that his team won’t make it to the postseason this season — to his face.
This was not long after Thompson had actually taken the mic prior to the start of the game to encourage Warriors fans to support the team through its struggles.
Klay Thompson Out For the Entire 2019-20 Season?
Of course, it doesn’t help matters that Thompson is now expected to be out for the entirety of the 2019-20 season, according to Kerr.
It was previously projected that he would return in February — a notion shot down by the Warriors’ head coach, via NBA.com.
“Generally an ACL for a basketball player is a full year recovery,” Kerr said. “And if it’s a full year for Klay, that puts him out for the season. We’ve kind of left the door open in case the rehab goes perfectly and the doctors say he can go. The reality is on April 1, that’s the nine-month mark, he got his surgery on July 1. April 1 is nine months post-op for an ACL … it’s unlikely that he’s going to play this year.”
With the Warriors featuring nine players who are 23 years or younger on their roster, maybe Barkley is right after all — Golden State will face an uphill battle just to make it to the playoffs this season.