Each NBA season brings its share of questions and intrigues. It’s the same thing all the time, a few days before the recovery. Which player will perform? Which coach will be fired? Who am I ? In which shelf? Where squash? For each of the 30 franchises, we have selected the 5 big questions for 2022-23, and the seat of the day is awarded to the Golden State Warriors.
What impact will the incident with Draymond Green have?
The video shocked everyone. In the middle of training, Draymond Green dropped a big potato on Jordan Poole and as the incident was made public, it was multiplied by 100. We spare you the details which led to this altercation (you can find them right here) , but we can still wonder what impact the latter will have on the Warriors this season. Certainly Draymond apologized publicly after taking a step back from the situation, certainly Jordan Poole quickly managed to move on in view of his great performances in pre-season and he even – coincidentally – took a big extension in stride, then the Dubs have already gone through other moments of great tension in the past… but a line has clearly been crossed and in the eyes of coach Steve Kerr, it is even the most serious crisis since he sits on the Golden State bench. Will this episode remain as a bad pre-season memory, or will it hover over the entire Warriors season until it causes additional incidents in the weeks or months to come? The question is legitimate.
When will Stephen Curry finally slow down?
Answer, when he retires.
Will the defending champion have a hangover?
This is the question we ask ourselves for each team that has just won the supreme title. We know it’s already very difficult to reach the top, it’s probably even more difficult to stay there. The Warriors are also very well placed to talk about it since they managed a back-to-back in 2017 and 2018 but also fell in the 2016 and 2019 NBA Finals. This year, Steve Kerr’s men will have a new once a target on their back through their status as the best NBA team and will have to deal with what is called champion syndrome. Well yes, when you come out of the euphoria of a title, it’s not always easy to remotivate yourself for a long regular 82 games. We know many champion teams who have struggled to really move forward to put themselves in the best conditions for a potential back-to-back. The Warriors – who lost some valuable role players during the offseason – will they follow this path or on the contrary will they still show a better face than last year?
Which youngsters should step-up this season?
Without a doubt, the Warriors will first and foremost aim to get in shape in the Playoffs to defend their title. This means that the executives of the group could receive a few RTTs, thus opening up a lot of opportunities for certain youngsters. As we know, the Dubs today have the luxury of always having their hard core made up of Stephen Curry – Klay Thompson – Draymond Green, but also of having very promising boys growing behind them. Jordan Poole is the first name that comes to mind, but Jonathan Kuminga, Moses Moody and James Wiseman most likely have a big card to play this year. They have the talent, they have the potential, and above all profiles that can give an additional dimension to the Golden State collective. We will also keep an eye on rookie Patrick Baldwin Jr., selected at the end of the first round by the Dubs a few months ago and who obviously already has the rating on the San Francisco Bay coast.
A full season of Klay Thompson?
Victim in quick succession of a ruptured knee ligament and then a torn Achilles tendon, Klay Thompson has come a long way. When we saw him with the champion trophy in his hands last June after two white seasons, we were obviously very happy for the Splash Brother, who nevertheless experienced a very long crossing of the desert. But that’s it, all that now seems behind him and for the first time since 2018, Klay was able to prepare during the summer to attack the next season as best as possible. What hope for a rise in power for Thompson compared to last season? Obviously the Warriors will continue to be cautious with their sniper, who has been on the sidelines for several preseason games. It is certain that we will not see Klay playing 82 games with an average of 35 minutes per evening like in the good old days, and there is a good chance that he will be spared on certain back-to-backs. But how many games can he play? What workload can he handle? And above all, can he one day find his best level?