That Warriors of the Golden State have looked absolutely unflappable in the last two games.
Despite struggling with multiple injuries throughout the regular season, the Warriors have produced two dominant performances in back-to-back wins against the Nikola Jokić-led Nuggets.
They have scored points in both wins from a number of contributors while nearly bringing their opponent’s offense to a halt. The result was a comfortable 123-107 win on Saturday night. Monday night brought more of the same imbalance en route to a 126-106 win.
Monday night’s win was a stark reminder of the team’s generous attacking skills. Golden State fired on all cylinders as a number of potent bucket getters unleashed their talent on the main stage.
Flashy third-grader Jordan Poole shone in his playoff debut with a memorable 30-point blast followed by an impressive 29-point loss in Game 2. Meanwhile, Klay Thompson reminded the basketball world exactly who he was by scoring five of them sunk his 10 3-point attempts en route to 19 points in his first postseason appearance in nearly two years. Thompson followed with a 21-point loss in Game 2.
Andrew Wiggins looked reliable with averages of 14.5 points and 8.5 boards in Golden State’s first two tilts, while Draymond Green’s name was, as usual, all over the stat sheet as the brilliant orchestrator behind the Warriors’ offensive forge.
But perhaps the most notable performance came from Stephen Curry, coming off the bench. Curry made his first appearance in the game in almost a month after suffering an ankle injury against Boston in March, and despite the legendary lore his name carries, he expressed no problem minimizing his role given the team’s success.
Curry looked rusty again in his opening moments but still dropped 16 points on 5-for-13 shooting from the field, including a 3-for-6 from deep in Game 1. Game 2 was a whole different story. Curry made it look “stepless” as he put any health concerns in the rearview mirror with a classic 34-point outing and pocketed five of his 10 3-balls.
And when Steve Kerr introduced his new “Death Lineup” consisting of Curry, Thompson, Poole, Wiggins and Green, the nuggets inevitably came to an end. The five didn’t play much together, but their merger was a fast-paced firestorm of run-and-gun tactics that Denver had no answers for.
Colin Cowherd wholeheartedly endorses this Warriors team, even comparing it to another pro sports team in the NFL.
Here’s a clue: it’s the one who just lifted the Lombardi trophy as Super Bowl champion.
“They are the LA Rams of the NBA,” Cowherd said Monday on The Herd.
“Really smart general manager. Really smart coach. Great culture. They always seem to find money that nobody else has. They design and develop really well. And they make all the odd and old players fit. This team gives you the full range their culture .
“Let’s start with Andrew Wiggins. He was a great underachiever. He joins the Warriors and just fielded his first all-star team. He’s become hyper-efficient, one of the most efficient players in the league. He fits perfectly. How about old Draymond Green? … To me he seems to be the best defensive player in the league. He has restored his brand.”
Cowherd didn’t stop there.
“How about Jordan Poole? Classic Warriors, 28th pick, he wasn’t a one-and-done guy, nobody ever thought he’d be a lottery player and he’s emerging as one of the brightest young stars in the league. And there’s Klay Thompson: two nasty injuries, two years missed, hard work, coming back, and he loves Jordan Poole, and Steph is the icing on the cake.
“The great thing about a thoughtful culture is how many different personalities can fit? The Rams can get Jalen Ramsey, a guy like Dante Fowler who we thought was a bust, Odell Beckham Jr., a quarterback [Matthew Stafford] from a loser culture. Everything works for the Rams. The same goes for the Warriors: the veteran, the injured, the rising star, the draft and developer, all working.”
The Warriors’ victory in Game 1 shows they are the Rams of the NBA I THE HERD
Colin Cowherd explains what makes the Warriors successful, from the front office to the roster, and explains why they are “the Rams of the NBA.”
Chris Broussard was also impressed with the Warriors’ opening show, adding that they could beat Denver without a healthy Steph Curry.
“If they get healthy, they get dangerous,” Broussard said in First Things First. “Steph is obviously not himself yet, but with the rise of Jordan Poole, they can beat Denver without a very healthy Steph. Poole scoring 30 points is nothing he can’t do again. He has averaged 18.5 this year. He can create space at any time, he has to. And Klay is getting rounder.
“You will no doubt be tough.”
Expectations are high for this Warriors team, but to fully live up to Cowherd’s comparison, they need to glean a missing memento from their current resume: another NBA championship.
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