It wasn’t that long ago that the Golden State Warriors were struggling. For fans tuning in during the playoffs, the season was not this great.
Staying healthy all season was like musical chairs with this team. On Klay Thompson’s first game back after missing two and a half seasons, Draymond Green hurt his calf during warmups. After missing 29 games, Steph Curry got injured in Green’s second game back.
Curry and Marcus Smart got tangled while going for a loose ball, and Smart’s dive happened to be where Curry’s left foot was. Curry ended up missing the remainder of the regular season but did return for all of the playoffs.
During this rough stretch, fans were clamoring for the Warriors to make a move. The Dubs held firm and finished the regular season 8-12, literally limping to the playoffs.
Warriors’ owner Joe Lacob sat down with reporters after practice on May 30 and talked about the journey to get back to the Finals.
“I know we—I, [general manager Bob Myers], the organization—took some criticism from some people that we should trade all the draft pieces that we have to get one more great player or whatever,” Lacob admits. “I was very adamant about it, and so was Bob. That was not the path that we were going down.”
Up to the trade deadline this season, there were so many hypothetical trade scenarios thrown out by fans and media. However, it looks like the Warriors brass were never serious about making any drastic moves in dealing with their young players.
Lacob talks about the plan to remain competitive while at the same time developing their young players. When the time comes for the old guard to retire, the Dubs want them to be able to pass the baton over to tomorrow’s generation of players.
“We want to be good for a long time, we want to be great for a long time,” Lacob emphasizes.
Joe Lacob Strives to Keep Pace with Lakers’ Jerry Buss
Anyone that knows Lacob knows him to be pretty ambitious. After all, he is famously known for using ‘light-years ahead’ when comparing his team to the rest of the league. At that point, they had only won one title, so it struck the public as cocky and arrogant when he made these comments.
Well, now over five years later, the team has already won multiple titles, and created a dynasty amongst their core. In retrospect, he seems to know what he’s talking about.
While talking to the media, he mentioned how Jerry Buss made the Finals 16 times with the Lakers in 33 years. Lacob hopes to strive for that same rate of success with the Warriors.
“We’ve now made six in 12 years. So, I love the 50-percent rate. Whether we’ll continue that, I don’t know. But I’m sure as hell gonna try.”
Vegas Has the Warriors as Favorites
Not surprisingly, the Dubs are favorites to beat the Boston Celtics at -150 according to DraftKings Sportsbook. The Celtics are currently underdogs at +130, so there isn’t a heavy favorite.
It’s pretty evenly matched, with the Warriors being slight favorites, perhaps due to their home-court advantage.
Steph Curry is the favorite to win Finals MVP at +110. Jayson Tatum follows at +170. With the Celtics’ ability to play positional defense, it will cause headaches for the Warriors since there will not be too many mismatches the Dubs can focus on.