The End of an Era: Why the Golden State Warriors Must Rebuild

The Golden State Warriors are finished. In the play-in tournament they lost hopelessly to the Sacramento Kings. The dynasty is now over at the latest. But the Warriors have to initiate the end of an era themselves. A comment.

Von Kai Esser

Looking downwards, hands on hips. Stephen Curry stands panting in the middle of the celebrating Golden 1 Center in Sacramento.

The Golden State Warriors didn’t just lose a simple basketball game. They got a beating in the still relatively new play-in tournament against weakened Sacramento Kings. The “Dubs”, the former dominant force in the West, lost 94:118. Oh, the entire NBA!

After Golden State was only just able to save itself into the postseason, it has now ended after one of the worst performances of the season before it really began. A sign for the entire franchise: This era of success, this era of titles, is now over.

After the 2019/20 bubble season, the club’s dynasty was already on the rocks. The Warriors finished last in the West, but picked themselves up again and won the title in 2022 with the familiar faces of Curry, Green, Thompson and Co.

The most important thing about the NBA

However, it was the Splash Brothers’ last hurray for Curry and Thompson. The latter in particular was the symbol of the failure against the Kings. Ten throws, six of them from beyond the three-point line, not a single hit, not a single point.

It was a bit reminiscent of Tom Brady, whose time with the New England Patriots ended with a pick six against the Tennessee Titans in January 2020. You knew that was it just by watching it.

After Triumph 2022: No more straws to grasp

Of course, pretty much the same thing could have been written after the pandemic season. “Warriors at the end”, “Klay has to go after his serious injury”, everything would have been true. There was a revival back then.

But is it happening again this time? Hardly likely. Also because the signs are different. In 2021, Andre Iguodala came to San Francisco for his personal Last Dance and was an integral part of the 2022 title, when the Boston Celtics were unable to counter the physical Warriors with their speed and technique.

Also: Curry is now 35 years old. Curry may not be an exception like LeBron James, who at 39 is still one of the best in this league. Thompson is also turning 35, and Draymond Green recently turned 34.

The core of the team that carried Golden State so efficiently for so long is simply no longer able to do the same due to the ravages of time. The fact that the Warriors were able to squeeze a whopping four titles and two more finals from this era deserves the utmost credit to head coach Steve Kerr and the management.

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Also curry! Warriors don’t need a change, but a turning point

But that management now has to bite the bullet and make a cut. What the Warriors need is a shakeup. Or as the Americans say: a rebuild. The word “upheaval” is still too weak. What is needed in the Sunshine State is a real personnel change.

Thompson’s departure is almost a done deal. Klay will become a free agent and an extension with the Warriors is out of the question and would not make sense in any scenario. After his serious cruciate ligament injury, he was never really the same Splash Brother he used to be. With Chris Paul, no thought should be given to staying.

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Draymond Green will also need to be tested if the Warriors look for a fresh start. His individual qualities as a physical defender are undisputed and he undoubtedly makes his team better.

However, not only does he not really fit into a modern NBA team as someone who doesn’t like taking shots from beyond the three-point line, his numerous outbursts and resulting suspensions also endanger the team’s success and integrity. He missed 27 games in the current season, most of them suspended.

Curry also needs to be questioned

Finally: Yes, Steph Curry also needs to be questioned. Not because he no longer has the quality or because he doesn’t care about the team – the opposite is the case. The last time Green was thrown out, he even cried. A sign of solidarity with the franchise and the fans. A highlight reel of him from this season would still be several minutes long.

However, you have to ask the question: Does it still make sense? Shouldn’t Curry have the chance to reach the finals again with a contender? Or will he remain loyal to the sinking ship as captain? There would still be good value in a trade for both Draymond and Steph.

Of course, the four-time champion himself should have the final say in such a matter. You owe that to arguably the greatest player in franchise history.

Podziemski and Co.: The beginning has been made

Steve Kerr’s team, who should also be given the option to stay, wouldn’t even have to start from scratch. This season, rookie Brandin Podziemski has repeatedly shown good ideas that can be built on.

Andrew Wiggins and Jason Kuminga are certainly not blind either. Logically, it’s not the crème de la crème of the NBA, but the fans in San Francisco will probably have to say goodbye to that in the coming years anyway. Either way.

No matter whether they remain (wrongly) loyal to their stars or initiate the much-needed new beginning in the coming offseason.

2024-04-19 06:52:00
#NBA #Golden #State #Warriors #golden #era


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