The Warriors’ depression was not destined to last. With Lee back, Williams and Radmanovic producing off the bench, and potential All-Star Monta Ellis playing freer in a familiar system, the Warriors got rolling again, winning nearly two-thirds of their games since Radmanovic’s clutch three.
To make sure everybody knew it was okay to party again, Ellis dusted off the long-dormant locker room stereo system, blasting out songs by Young Jeezy and Rick Ross before every game. Nearly every player knows the words, and several have been seen lip syncing in near unison from their lockers as they get dressed.
SLAMOnline Contributor Irv Soonachan paints a very pretty picture of the Warriors current love-fest. Seeing a bunch of grown men sing Jeezy and Ricky Rose tracks sounds like it came straight out of the Disney film “Remember the Titans.”
Sonnachan captures the struggles the Warriors players faced learning Coach Keith Smart’s new offense and the recent up-tick in play by various players as Smart has made “Smart” adjustments. Players like Dorell Wright, Vladimir Radmanovic, and even Reggie Williams, who many thought would be instant offense off the bench like Vinnie “The Microwave” Johnson, have all finally seemed to find their offense role and skills, again, or for the first time.
But is there really anything to be happy about? The Warriors lost at home against the San Antonio Spurs and in the next few days face a bevvy of playoff bound teams, such as the Denver Nuggets, the New Orleans Hornets, and the Chicago Bulls. The Warriors have been good at home against mediocre talent and home might not be where the heart is in a few weeks. Acie Law, as told through Soonachan, offers a strange premonition:
“A lot of people try not to let it, but it feeds into your lifestyle,” said point guard Acie Law. “You can get depressed when you’re not successful but you know you’re capable of being successful.”
And if the losses do start piling up and they certainly can if you’re the Warriors, what kind of tune will the Warriors be singing then? Bill Wither’s “Ain’t No Sunshine” perhaps?
In a similar post by Zach Smith, Yahoo! Sports contributor, the Warriors exciting play and relatively close loss to the Spurs should be considered an ‘improvement.’
There are good losses, and there are bad losses, and playing tough against the team with the best record in the league is no easy task. I’ve seen games in the past where this would have easily turned into a 20-point rout, so the W’s should definitely be commended for keeping things competitive.
I don’t think you’ll find many people will agree with Smith here. A loss is a loss no matter how you want to talk about it and last night’s Spurs made glaringly obvious some of the defensive issues they are having. David Lee may have had an amazing offensive night, but why did he still have a +/- of -9? And worse yet, Biedrins was a disastrous -18. Is there much to be singing about here? Even from a fan perspective?
It’s hard for me not to worry that this team will self-destruct again and they have in the past. Granted, there is new energy in the building but Soonachan, in my opinion, exposes what maybe a generational shift between those of the Chris Cohan/Don Nelson regime and the new players that perhaps is where the Warriors would want to go in the future:
Smart had hoped that the Warriors’ bevy of new players would speed the team’s adjustment, but in truth many of Nelson’s players remained, including regulars Monta Ellis, Stephen Curry, Reggie Williams, and Andris Biedrins, and to varying degrees they were all struggling to learn new skills. Over the course of the season Smart had already had to simplify his schemes.
With that said, I wonder to what extent this roster will change in the next few months or over the off-season? With Lacob wanting to have his hand in decision making, can we expect this love-fest to continue or will people be singing different songs elsewhere?