Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Warriors Turn Fans into Worriers - by Sllaacs

The Warriors are officially out of it. 122 - 116 losers to Shaq and the Suns. The final standings in the Western Conference shouldn't come as a surprise; the Suns are better than the Warriors, so is Denver, Dallas, and Houston. These teams represent the bottom of the playoff seeding and Golden State's most immediate competition for future playoff positions next season and beyond.

An interesting aside during the Warriors loss to Phoenix was the episode between Don Nelson and Baron Davis, with Nelly sitting Boom Dizzle for the entire second half of the game. The most important game of the year and Nelly sits Davis because, according to Nelly; Baron needed a rest. Clearly more than meets the eye and ears here. And this comes after Nelly stated that the Warriors were better off with J-Rich last year, and missed the hell out of him this year. That may be so. No doubt, the Warriors had more talent with J-Rich out on the court last year, but the kid they traded for, (Brandan Wright) looks to have a high upside in the Warriors thin front court. He should make an impact next year. Keeping J-Rich also would probably have stunted the meteoric growth of uber-scorer, Monta Ellis.

Baron Davis has the ability to opt out of his 17 million dollar contract for next year, if he so chooses - and Nelson has been extended by the team, but has remained non-committal regarding his accepting of the contract. In fact 9 of the 14 players on the Warriors roster are up for contract negotiations this off season. These are problems to think about, Warrior Fan.

The most serious problem for the Warriors this year was their bench - or lack thereof - and the fact that Nelson refused to play those guys all year. You have to wonder if Davis and Jackson would have been so fatigued during the final stretch of games if Nelson had used the bench throughout the year. Nelly will tell you straight up though; that if he had used the bench all year, the W's would not have been in the playoff picture this long. That is a matter of opinion, coming from one of the greatest coaches at exploiting match-ups in NBA history. Either way, the Warriors gave us fans a great run during this regular season - but the ending may leave behind a bad taste, and an off-season full of worrying about the roster composition.

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