It’s funny that as I sit here typing this article on why fans of the Golden State Warriors have a lot of be thankful for this Thanksgiving, many of those same fans are on the verge of going into panic mode because their team has lost four of their five games and has a record of (God forbid) 9-7.
Really? For a franchise that has made the playoffs a mere two times in the last 19 seasons and has been a perennial laughingstock of the league, a 9-7 start through a fifth of the season is not that bad. Yes, this team has mounted expectations after a terrific season last year, but there is no need to go into full-blown panic mode.
Now I digress. This is Thanksgiving.
Let’s not complain about every bad shot that Klay Thompson hoists up or scream at our TV’s when Mark Jackson doesn’t call a timeout when he should. Let’s not worry about a little skid, or the recent stockpile of injuries, or the controversial potential relocation to San Francisco, or how they’re going to face a tough Thunder team on Friday, or how the Martians are going to land on Earth and take over the world.
Ok, that last one was made up. But out of the 365 days a year that fans spend obsessed with their team, complaining like they have more knowledge of the NBA than Bob Myers, let’s take one day to just be thankful.
Let’s be thankful for Joe Lacob and his ownership group buying the team, and — although at the time many were not — let’s be thankful that he signed off on the Monta Ellis trade that landed the Warriors their first legitimate center in Andrew Bogut for the first time since Robert Parrish in the 70s.
Let’s be thankful that Stephen Curry has developed into a star-in-the-making. I mean, can you name the last Warrior to be featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated? It was Latrell Sprewell in 1997, and that was because of an incident where he choked head coach P.J. Carlesimo during practice. The last time a Warrior was shown on the cover of SI in a positive light? World B. Free in 1980. The Warriors have a franchise player in Curry that is a household name around the league, and they haven’t been able to say that in how many years?
Let’s be thankful for David Lee. Some have called for him to be traded because of his large contract, but Lee is perhaps the most consistent player on the team. Not to mention the fact that he was the first Warrior to make an All-Star team since….um, Latrell Sprewell in 1997 (yes, even in a year where the Warriors had an All-Star, it was the guy who choked his own coach).
Let’s be thankful that Andre Iguodala signed with the Warriors when he could have taken more money to play elsewhere. When’s the last time you heard that? A big-name free agent turning down more money to sign with the freakin’ Warriors? Is this real life? (Quick, name the last time the Warriors signed a top-flight player in free agency. Derek Fisher? Corey Maggette? Kwame Brown? Yikes).
I could go on all day naming the various reasons why Warriors fans should be very thankful, but I’ve got to go stuff myself with a colossal amount of turkey, then go fight until the death for an on-sale flat-screen TV (#Murica).
The point is, Warriors fans have a lot to be thankful for today. Instead of worrying about dropping four of their last five games, they should be glad that their team actually has high expectations, and that people outside of the Bay Area are actually paying attention to the team that, not long ago, was nothing but a laughingstock.