Why Kent Bazemore Should Start for Golden State Warriors

Peter Casey-US PRESSWIRE

Kent Bazemore as a starter for the Golden State Warriors? Really?

Yeah, really.

Think about it. Here’s what we know about Bazemore: he’s an elite defender with a seven-foot wingspan, crazy athleticism and a proven track record. He was named the nation’s best defensive player in 2011 at Old Dominion. He’s gritty, he’s got something to prove and his NBA career probably depends on his ability to become a defensive stopper because his offensive game simply isn’t that good.

And here’s what we know about the best teams in the NBA: Thabo Sefolosha starts for the Oklahoma City Thunder, Danny Green starts for the San Antonio Spurs and Shane Battier starts for the Miami Heat. There are many other examples, but the trend is notable from just those three. Great teams tend to have an elite wing defender on their roster, and that guy tends to start.

It makes sense. Starting an elite defensive player makes life hell on opposing wing scorers, often throwing off their game for the rest of the contest. It allows teams to insert scoring specialists in place of the elite defender, pitting them against opponents’ second units. And most of all, it helps clearly define roles among the starters, which is something all great teams do.

As for the Warriors, they’ve got a million wing scorers. But they really only have one elite wing defender. Starting Bazemore would allow the Dubs to ease Harrison Barnes into his NBA career as the de facto leader of the team’s second unit. It would also keep Brandon Rush in the slot he so effectively occupied last season as the team’s bench gunner.

And when it comes down to it, shouldn’t the teams like the Warriors—who want to become great—start copying the teams that already are. If you’ve got a great wing defender, you start him. That’s what most of the NBA’s best teams do, and that’s why the Warriors should give Bazemore the job.

Starting Kent Bazemore is:

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Topics: Golden State Warriors, Kent Bazemore

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  • WIL

    SOUNDS CRAZY ENOUGH TO WORK, BUT I WOULDN’T START HIM, I WOULD START HARRISON BARNES AND LET THE FALCON SHOW WHAT HE CAN DO IN THAT REGARD, YOU NEVER KNOW, HE MAY ALL OF THE SUDDEN BECOME AN ELITE DEFENDER THAT YOU DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT!!! AFTER ALL YOU HAVEN’T GIVEN HIM A CHANCE YET!!! BUT STILL GIVE BAZEMORE STARTING MINUTES TO SHARE WITH THE SG (KLAY) AND SF POSITIONS.
    BAZEMORE CAN WRECK HAVOC ON BOTH POSITIONS AND MATCH HIM AGAINST THE BEST PERIMETER, WING OR SG FROM THE OPPOSITE TEAM.
    UNTIL PROVEN OTHERWISE, THE BLACKFALCON, HARRISON BARNES IS THE STARTING SMALL FORWARD, YOU DIDN’T DRAFT A 7TH PICK WITH HIS CALIBER NOT TO START HIM.

  • wil

    Although, on the other hand, starting Bazemore as the SF would definitely make the Warriors one of the elite, for one because, that would make the warrior’s bench the best bench in the league, it would be like having another starting five on the bench. It would throw everybody other team in the league off and would make them crazy, and the Warriors would look so so good. Not only would it make them look so good, it would make literally make them that much better because Bazemore can disrupt the other team’s best perimeter offensive player and would in turn disrupt the other team’s flow of the game. I’m still struggling starting him over Harrison Barnes though, I would start him over Klay Thompson instead. lol. Is a hard decision. But all in all we should be good no matter what, as long as you give Bazemore enough minutes to make an impact.

  • PeteyBrian

    Although Basemore’s very promising, but he’s only an undrafted rookie. It’s not crazy for the W’s to start a defense-minded player with all that offense – it’s just that I’ve not seen enough of his game yet. Plus, Brandon Rush plays excellent defense at the wing – and may start there.

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