The Warriors have finally managed their scheduled as best they could without David Lee, which turned out to be a 1-7 slide. Anyone questioning how important the trade for David Lee was (raising hand) and paying him top dollar need look no further for answers. Anthony Randolph who? The Warriors began the week 7-5 and finished 8-9.
Last week the Warriors finished #10 in the SBNation NBA Power Rankings and this week they face competition that SBNation has ranked far above where the Warriors are.
The Warriors played 5 games in the last week. Even though they lost 4 out of those 5, they finished strong with the return of David Lee beating the Minnesota Timberwolves Saturday night. Lets look back at the matchups and what they say about the Warriors ranking. Without Lee, it is hard to assess necessarily how good or bad the Warriors are at this point of the season. But even without him, any quality playoff-bound team should find ways to win without one of their "stars."
Warriors 89, #3 Lakers 117 (Sunday, November 21st): A match-up against the best shows how far the Warriors have to go, with or without David Lee. Pau Gasol didn't miss a shot and his "perfect game" sums up the Lakers execution on both ends of the floor: Perfection.
Warriors 89, #7 Denver 106 (Monday, November 22nd): The game was closer than the score indicates and Jeremy Lin registered a block on Al Harrington. Is Lin proving that is more athletic than people originally thought?
Warriors 101, #12 Rockets 111 (Wednesday, November 24th): The Warriors non-existent defense made the Rockets look more like 10-3 versus 3-10.
Warriors 111, #11 Grizzlies 116 (Friday, November 26th): Andris Biedrins goes for 28 points and 21 rebounds, but the Warriors still lose. On the bright side, the Warriors finally found ways to score.
Warriors 104, #14 Timberwolves 94 (Saturday, November 27th): Warriors finally end their slide, Dorell Wright finds his groove back (career high 30 points and 9 3-pointers) with David Lee back in the lineup.
The upcoming week doesn't look any easier with Lee back in the lineup as they face arguably the best team on the west coast in the #2 San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday, the surprisingly decent Phoenix Suns, and the emerging #6 Oklahoma City Thunder with exciting PG Russell Westbrook playing "Robin" to Kevin Durant's "Batman." Without Lee in the lineup as well as other defensive-oriented guys in Louis Amundson and Ekpe Udoh, it's challenging to assess how good or bad the Warriors are relative to the rest of the NBA. Losing to the Spurs (at home) and the Thunder on the road wouldn't be devastating, but the #9 Suns is a must-win game -- regardless of who's injured -- if the Warriors plan to move up in the SBNation rankings and avoid being in the bottom 3rd again.