The SB Nation gate keepers to the Power Rankings hierarchies have not been so kind to the Golden State Warriors, whom sit at #22 just like they did last week. The Warriors closed out the last week with a solid comeback victory against the sliding New Orleans Hornets (#9) -- not that anyone noticed given how low their attendance has been -- winning 110-103. They followed it up with a dominating win at home over the lowly Cleveland Cavaliers (#30), which the Warriors were almost quite cavalier in the third quarter with their 20+ point lead diminishing to 8 at one point after some poor attempts at showboating. This week also featured more of Vladimir Radmanovic's rise from the dead. Here's proof:
For that alone, the Warriors should be ranked higher! I'm just being facetious. Following that win, the Warriors finished off their week Sunday with a disappointing 105-91 loss to the Clippers (#21), which the Warriors "bigs" -- particular Andris Biedrins (-13) and David Lee (-13) -- made Clippers C DeAndre Jordan (+18) and budding PF Blake Griffin (+17) look about as dominating of twin towers as a young Hakeem Olajuwan and Ralph Sampson...defensively at least. Maybe that's why the Clippers are one step ahead of the Warriors in spite of having a slightly worse record.
So did SB Nation get it right this week? I would agree. The Warriors have not been able to beat a handful of the teams head of them that are right outside of playoff contention. Granted, the Warriors have played 23 of their 38 games on the road. Since December 1st, 11 of their 19 games have been against above .500 teams and 9 of those games were against legitimate playoff contenders. All 9 of those legitimate contenders games were on the road, too. I'll let you decide.
Will it get any better this week? Well, in the long run, the Warriors play 14 of their next 18 at home through the end of February. In the next week, the Warriors play all 4 games at home with 3 of them against sub-.500 teams. My assumption is that the Los Angeles Lakers (#5) this Wednesday and the Clippers on Friday will demolish the Warriors. Their front line are matchups that are just too skilled if not too aggressive for the not so imposing Lee and Biedrins tandem. Ekpe Udoh has been great at altering shots but is still is still learning the ropes as a rookie. The following two games, the New Jersey Nets (#25) and then then the Indiana Pacers (#18), should be or better be winnable games, unless the Nets happen to pull off the unimaginable 13 player trade AT minimum (excluding draft picks that will also be packaged) headlining Carmelo Anthony before Next Monday. Then the Warriors are absolutely screwed. Barring the freakish trade, I suspect the Warriors will go 2-2 and probably end up staying put.
In light of the difficulty of games the Warriors have played as of late, how would you rate the Warriors current position? And where do you see them going next week?