On Friday, CSN Bay Area’s Matt Steinmetz opined that the Golden State Warriors could win anywhere from 32 to 48 games in the 2012-13 season. Couldn’t narrow that down a little, Matt? But before you stick it to Steinmetz for being so noncommittal (which was my first inclination, too), consider the notion that he might actually be right to toss out such a broad prediction.
With a roster full of question marks, the range of possible realities for this Warriors season is truly vast. On the injury front alone, there are a lot of ways things could go very wrong for Golden State. If Andrew Bogut and/or Stephen Curry aren’t healthy for the bulk of this season, all playoff bets are off and the Warriors are probably lottery-bound again.
But if they stay on the floor, it’s entirely possible that the team approaches Steinmetz’s high total of 48 wins.
There are lots of questions about how all the new talent will fit together this year, as well. Without Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry for the second half of last year, the Warriors were a rudderless ship. Now, the offense has some new toys in a healthy Curry and Bogut, the bruising Carl Landry and rookie Harrison Barnes. All that’s great, but how will these guys fit together?
The fallback option in years past was to simply run and gun. But now, the Warriors have the tools to play a more legitimate offensive style. Can the shooters space the floor so Bogut can operate down low? Will he be able to be an effective passer if he’s doubled? Where will Harrison Barnes operate if Klay Thompson and Steph Curry are in the spots he likes?
Questions abound. If everything meshes, the sky’s the limit for this offense. But until we get a few weeks into the season, it’ll be hard to tell how well these guys will play together.
So, with all the uncertainty surrounding the Warriors this year, I’ll do Steinmetz one better. My prediction for the Warriors’ win total this season: somewhere between 0 and 82.