With the NBA season beginning to bloom, teams are working to start their seasons off right, and see exactly what they’re working with. In the case of the Golden State Warriors, the first few games show that the Bay Area may have a lot to be excited about. Though five games are hardly a gauge of the entire season, if the Warriors keep up their present pace, they will be a serious contender in the Western Conference. Expectations were moderately high for Golden State entering the season after their playoff push last season, and so far, they have lived up to them. After opening their season with a massacre of the rebuilding Lakers and an eleven point loss to the LA Clippers, their extraordinary offense propelled them to a 4-1 record in the first week of the season.
As was apparent from their opening game, the Warriors offense has proved to be an exceptional cornerstone of the team. Fueled by the Splash Brothers, Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, Golden State has scored an average of just under 111 points per game, and given the offensive talent the team boasts, that surge may continue. The further threat of a menacing inside game with offensive juggernaut David Lee and center Andrew Bogut, with forward Andre Iguodala powering both halves of the offense, causes opposing defenses to become spread very thin, and not be able to concentrate on any one of the Warriors’ many threats. Not only has the starting rotation been high powered, with a season three point percentage well over forty percent, but with the return of Harrison Barnes, who scored fourteen points in his season debut against Minnesota, the bench now carries a bit of a punch as well.
Furthermore, the scoring prowess of the team is aided by their respectable defense. The Warriors do not own a top-notch defensive unit, but unlike many teams in the past decade that scored so prolifically, their defensive unit can hold down their side of the court without too many glaring holes. Bogut anchors that side, being able to lock down the area close to the basket, which has freed up the rest of the defense to move about more freely, a trend that also applies when Jermaine O’Neal is on the floor, and the two together make for quite an intimidating unit. This mid level defense combined with a stellar offense has Golden State out scoring opponents by about thirteen points per game, and this impressive display has Bay Area citizens captivated. Season tickets are being put on hold due to the lack of available tickets, and the Oracle Arena is radiating excitement and is being filled when the Warriors go home.
Through one week of the 2013-2014 season, the Golden State Warriors find themselves atop the Pacific Division and firing on all cylinders. Curry, Thompson, and Lee are all averaging over twenty points per game, and the team picking up from last year and being one of the top rebounding teams in the league. The entire team is clicking and each player seems very much in tune with every single one of his teammates, which keeps a beautiful flow going whenever they take the floor. However, none of their victories have come against a top-tier opponent. If the Warriors can keep this high-octane, devastating approach going against a heavyweight opponent, such as Miami, San Antonio, or Indiana, and win, then spotlights may fall upon Oakland and the red hot Warriors.