Entering February, the Golden State Warriors are not where they were expecting to be. Despite a 10-game win streak from the end of December into the New Year, the Warriors currently sit at 29-19 and in the seventh seed in the Western Conference.
However, there are reasons for the Warriors to be optimistic about their future chances. Of the teams competing for the Western Conference, the Warriors have played the most games against the Western Conference with 34, and have played the least games against the Eastern Conference other than the Memphis Grizzlies. Much has been made this year about the futility of the East, and the Warriors should be able to make up some wins in the future as schedules balance out.
The Warriors will get a shot to gain games against the East all throughout February. Because of the All-Star Break, the Warriors will only play 11 games in February, but all but three of these will be against the East. The combined record of these Eastern Conference teams is a mere 267-298 (or .473), despite five of these eight games being against current East playoff teams.
Of the games against the Eastern Conference, there are two that should catch the Warriors’ eye. First, right before the All-Star break, the Warriors will face the defending champion Miami Heat, who will looking for revenge after a 123-114 defeat in Miami just a month ago. The Warriors looked dominant the last time these two teams met, and Miami will be ready with a new game plan for how to stop the Warriors potent offense.
The other game the Warriors should be looking forward to is a rematch against the Brooklyn Nets. Last time these two teams met, the Nets ruined the Warriors chance at a historic 7-0 road trip, and ended the Warriors 10-game win streak. When the Nets come to Oracle on February 22nd, the Warriors will be looking to exact revenge on a surging Nets team who has gathered some momentum in the last month.
While the Warriors only have three games this month against the Western Conference, they will be very important for playoff positioning. Two of the three games are against teams the Warriors are currently looking up at in the Western Conference (Suns and Rockets), and the other game is against a Kings team that always plays the Warriors well and has looked better than their record suggests.
Overall, the month of February should be a month that the Warriors gain some ground in the playoff standings. The combined record of their opponents for the month is 249-267 (.483), and they will play most of the most difficult games at Oracle (the only team with a winning record the Warriors play on the road is Phoenix).
However, the Warriors have struggled against these teams so far this year. They have a combined 6-5 record against their February opponents, so it is important that they take every game seriously and get off to good starts early. But if the Warriors play up to their capability, a great February could be in store.
Summary of February Schedule