Monday, April 4, 2016

How to Stop the Warriors (?)

            The Golden State Warriors seem destined to break the 95-96 Chicago Bulls' record for having  the best record in a NBA season. They are nipping at 73 wins and only need four more to reach that plateau. But how in the world can anyone stop them? Let's try and come up with some ways to stopping these Warriors.

  1. Take Stephen Curry's teammates out of the equation: Let's face it. It's pretty much impossible to guard Stephen Curry. If you try to take the paint away from the reigning MVP, he'll just lob up a three... And nail it no matter where he's at. Try to take the perimeter away and he'll drive to the basket. You can only hope for Curry to have an off-night if you want to stop him, so it'd be wise to focus on his teammates. Take Klay Thompson out of the game. Take Draymond Green out of the game. When the Dallas Mavericks beat Golden State on Dec. 30 by a score of 114-91, the Warriors' highest scorer was Ian Clark (3.7 ppg this season) with 21 points. Thompson and Green both shot four of 15 from the field in that game and Curry was absent for that game.
  2. Score, Score, Score: The Warriors might be extravagant scorers, but they do allow over 100 points a game. Get someone who can score on them, especially with Curry defending said player. Kentavius Caldwell-Pope is a good example. The Pistons shooting guard held his own against Curry as he had 20 points against the Warriors on January 16. Detroit won against Golden State 113-95. Pistons center Andre Drummond chipped in 14 points in the win. Another great example is Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard. Lillard had 51 points when the Blazers won 137-105 on February 19, draining nine three-pointers in that game. Getting everyone to score will be the key to keeping up with the Warriors. Speaking of Andre Drummond...
  3. Outrebound: In that Pistons win, Drummond had 21 rebounds. The Celtics outrebound the Warriors on Friday by a count of 57 to 48. The Warriors aren't guaranteed to score every time, so it's a good idea to have someone pull down some boards. On the season, the Pistons are tied for third-best in rebound differential at +3.8. Who's No. 2 on that list? San Antonio, who has a +4.0 differential (The Spurs outrebounded Golden State 59-43 on March 19). Portland comes in at No. 10 on the list at +1.9 and Denver, another team that beat Golden State this year, is No. 9 at +2.2. Oklahoma City is the leader in this category with a +8.3 differential and they've would've beaten Golden State in a couple games if it weren't for them collapsing in the fourth quarter. Outrebounding Golden State might not win you the game outright. However, it'll make matters much easier and take away second-chance points from the Warriors. 
  4. Commit Turnovers: Portland caused Golden State to commit 20 turnovers when they won on February 19. The Boston Celtics created 22 turnovers as they recently ended Golden State's 54-game winning streak at home. Cause the Warriors to lose track of the basketball so that they have fewer chances to score.

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