LeBron James, Anthony Davis and the Lakers may be the new kings, but make no mistake, the Warriors are coming.
After a year of sinking to the bottom of the NBA, the Warriors are rested, recharged and proven that their dynasty is not over. While the combination of Steph Curry, Kell Thompson, Dremond Green and Andrew Wiggins should bring the Warriors back into title contention, they may not yet be ready to topple the NBA’s new Kings.
NBA officials told The Ringer Kevin O’Connor what the Warriors needed to find in order to take the crown from James and the Lakers.
O’Connor writes, “Over the past week, several officials from different teams have texted me to say that the Warriors were better off receiving by the Lakers.”
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There is no doubt that Davis presents a matchup issue for every team facing the Lakers, and the Warriors will be no different.
Green has been a good defender in the past, but he leaves Davis four inches. The Warriors’ other bigs who are currently on the roster – Marquis Chris and Kevonne Lunney – didn’t make much resistance against Davis this past season when the Lakers star averaged 25 points per game in two competitions against Golden State.
There is no doubt that the Warriors, who own the No. 2 seed in the 2020 NBA draft, a $ 17.2 million trade exception and will be the tax payer midlevel exception to use this offers, will have to get a season big that Davis could make Work on the offensive end.
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Of course, it goes both ways. Yes, the Warriors must find a way to slow Davis down to knock out the defending Chamber. But the Lakers also won’t have to find a way to scramble Curry. The Lakers’ best perimeter defenders are Kentavius Caldwell-Pope, Avery Bradley (pending free agent) and Alex Caruso, all of whom will have the upper hand against Curry.
When the Lakers and Warriors reunite next season, it will no doubt be a contrast in styles. The Lakers buoyed the teams this season with their size, physicality and team defense and will certainly be the blueprint for next season.
Meanwhile, the Warriors will return and participate once again with their deadly ball-movement offense and relentlessly attacking teams from behind the arc.
The next season’s Warriors are still taking shape. They know they need to grow up. Mark Gasol, Serge Ibka and Dwight Howard can all be options. The Warriors have several options to improve their team that they believe will go back to the top.
James, Davis and the Lakers will be in their own way and the Warriors know. Let the game begin.