The NBA season will be underway in less than a month with the start of Training Camp starting at the end of September. The Golden State Warriors, after two consecutive trips to the NBA Finals and a season where they won 73 regular season games have pulled off the impossible with a great roster addition. There are many questions that will surround the Warriors all season but with the start of camp, let’s dive into what the Warriors must make clear before their season opener.
Will Zaza Be Able To Defend The Paint?
Pachulia finds himself in a unique situation entering 2016. Will he be asked to do the same as Bogut and if so can he do it? Pachulia is not a defensive player, he can rebound the ball, as he grabbed nine per game last season with the Mavericks, but the team will suffer defensively with him on the floor. The Warriors ranked 19th in points allowed and 25th in shot attempts with a defensive-minded Bogut. The team improved offensively with Durant, but they will need to find a defensive stopper. Maybe Pachulia will focus his energy on that end of the floor knowing that’s his new role. The Warriors score at a high rate but they also shoot 32 three-pointers per game (without Durant), when missed can lead to easy fast breaks for opposing teams.
Which Player Will Suffer The Most From Durant’s Presence?
You know what you get with Curry, 30 points 7 assists and 5 rebounds per, plus top-level PGs are hard to find. Green is a walking double-double, and Durant is one of the best pure shooters the game has. Thompson will net you 22 points, four rebounds, four assists and a little tight defense but with Durant now there his game will suffer, despite what he believes. If I was a betting man I would have to go with Thompson. If we’re talking all-around play then Durant is a far better scorer and rebounder. Thompson is streaky, while Durant has the experience of carrying a team, Klay does not. Green provides more than points, Curry is the leader but Thompson, Thompson will be the odd man out.
Which Young Bench Player Will Step Up?
The Warriors bench has been a strength of theirs over the last two seasons but with Durant’s arrival, some changes were made. The Warriors will no longer have the veteran presence it had with Leandro Barbosa, Marreesee Speights, and Festus Ezeli. The second unit will still feature veterans Andre Iguodala, Shaun Livingston, David West and Anderson Varejao, but a few of the young players must step up as well. Will Patrick McCaw be a resource after Durant takes him under his wing? Will Ian Clark provide more than an occasional three-pointer? With Barbosa gone his name will be called more to provide a spark off the bench. Stever Kerr must get his bench rotation in order as they will be the difference in the season.