The knockout between the Denver Nuggets and the Golden State Warriors, where the team from the Bay Area are up 2-0, has been the hatching of the squad from San Francisco, which even though they have struggled with injuries throughout the regular season, now they are looking very familiar to that team back in 2015 that attracted with their game.
Steve Kerr has always known how to adapt his roster the right way and providing each player with the best role on the court. The return of Klay Thompson (20.4 points, 3.9 rebounds and 2,8 assists in 32 games) equals to the return of the Big-Three formed by him, Green and Curry and other players like Andrew Wiggins or Jodan Poole who have all added some extra quality to the team.
Curry from the bench:
After his injury, Stephen Curry has played the first two Playoffs games from the bench. It is true that this is a risky decision from coach Kerr, but the depth bench of the Warriors make it possible for his star to not have to put the entire team on his back necessarily. He scored 16 points in the first game against Denver and he finished with 34 in the second one, which is the highest score in Playoffs in 23 minutes of playing time or less since 1975.
The starting five formed by Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Andrew Wiggins and Jordan Poole has only been together on the court 11 minutes, scoring 47 points with a +/- positive of 29, 17/22 on shooting and 7/8 on triples. A really starting five of the death that explodes its movements without the ball of their best shooters and increase the pace of the game to a level that Denver are not managing to reach.
Draymond Green is in charge:
Dominating from defense, Green is the anchor that sustains the squad from San Francisco. We could even say that he even acts as the point guard of the team, as he distributes his teammates so they can look for spaces through their movements without the ball in order to find free shots. No doubt that Draymond is the most irreplaceable player for the Warriors.
In this first round he has in front of him the MVP from last season, Nikola Jokic, who is being overcome by the Warriors’ defense. When the Serbian is defended by Green, he has only collected 9/28 on field goals (32%), 0/8 on triples and three assists. Pure desperation that turned into him being sent off in the second game.
Jordan Poole, way more than improved:
After being drafted in 2019 by the Golden State Warriors as the 28th pick, Poole averaged 8.8 points with a 27.9% on triples in his freshman year. Last season he played with the G-League team, Santa Cruz Warriors, and this year he has scored 30 points in his Playoffs debut, starting for Curry.
The improvement is obvious, as this season he is averaging 18.5 points, 4 assists and 3.4 rebounds with a 36.4% efficiency on triples. Furthermore, his time in the G-League has been useful for him on order to understand better the playing style of his team. He is the youngest of the Splash Brothers. This improvement of Poole does not seem to be enough for the NBA, as they have left him out of the three finalists for the MIP Award.
The ceiling for these Warriors does not seem to be short, even though no team will make things easy in the Playoffs. For now they are in the right track.
Translated by Guillermo Bermejo.
Main image: Twitter @warriors.
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