ESPN analyst Zach Lowe pegs the Golden State Warriors as a “borderline” playoff team, just months after reaching the Finals.
Sadly, the Golden State Warriors are clearly not going to lace the court with a lineup near as talented as the one that started out for the championship-caliber squad last season. While they’ll still be a top team, they no longer have multiple former MVPs on the same team.
When rankings the league by tiers, that mattered for ESPN analyst Zach Lowe. He noted the lack of stardom, the addition of unreliable veterans and the injured Klay Thompson all as reasons why the team will be a “borderline” playoff team.
He didn’t hold back either, questioning if the Warriors will even make it as a top-five seed this season. He puts teams like the Rockets, Jazz, Clippers, and Lakers ahead of them. Even the Nuggets will likely have a better regular season.
There is a silver lining, and that’s that this team will be wildly unpredictable. Here’s an excerpt of what Lowe wrote on Golden State and his overall opinion on the Warriors’ rather unique collection of talent.
"Some projections have Golden State as a playoff lock, and even a 50-plus-win team. I can’t get there. Maybe I’m underestimating the talent and will of Curry and Green — and the possibility Russell keeps growing. But it’s hard to see Golden State winning more games than the Clippers, Lakers, Jazz, Nuggets or Rockets. That slides them into the No. 6 slot, and from there, one bad break has you fighting for your postseason life."
There’s no denying that Lowe has a point.
If Curry misses 20-plus games and the Dubs, which would be easy for the team, drops 15 of them, they may be lucky to get that sixth seed. But, if they stay relevant until Thompson returns, they should be as lethal as the 73-win team that ignited this dynasty for at least a part of the season.
The Warriors added Willie Cauley-Stein, Alec Burks, Glenn Robinson III, Omari Spellman, and three rookies. At least half the roster has changed, and that impact can’t go unnoticed. If those players that Golden State rolled the dice on perform well, this team could shock many.
That’s a big if and not one fans should be comfortable taking.