Five Things Golden State Needs To Do To Make the Playoffs in 2011
For several years running now, the Golden State Warriors have been one of the most entertaining teams to watch in the NBA. Whether it's the run-and-gun offense or the similarly aloof defense that gets fantasy owners excited when one of their players plays AGAINST Golden State, it's going to be a high scoring game.
Do the Warriors have to change their style of play to be successful?
Here are some of the things that they need to accomplish in the regular season in order to get themselves back into the playoffs:
5. Draft Selection Ekpe Udoh recovers fully from surgery
Ekpe Udoh could fill the SF void in Golden State's roster, all he needs to do is recover from his surgery. He is likely to miss several months at the beginning of the season, but if he can come back strong I see him fitting in very well and helping Golden State win some games.
4. Andris Biedrins bounces back from an injury-plagued 2009-2010
Andris Biedrins needs to return to 2008-2009 form, when he posted double-doubles regularly.
He is the solid inside presence they need who fits right in to their style of play, and let's be honest: anything is better than last season...
3. David Lee fits in and flourishes in California atmosphere
Arguably the best white American player in the NBA, David Lee has the right skillset to be a valuable part of next year's Warrior team.
He brings one of the best rebounders in the league, as well as another scoring threat inside and in transition.
If, say, David Lee makes the All-Star team as a Warrior they should have a decent shot at grabbing the 8th playoff seed.
2. Stephen Curry and Monta Ellis bring out the best in eachother
When the Warriors first drafted Davidson sensation Stephen Curry, people started to wonder how he and Monta Ellis would co-exist.
Last season proved that it can happen, and did.
But to do more than "co-exist", they need to go one step further if they want to take their game into the playoffs: they need to bring out the best in eachother.
1. Team devotes themselves to and hones "Warriors" style of play
To answer my question from the beginning: No, I don't think Golden State needs to change their ways to become a successful NBA team.
Look at the Phoenix Suns this past decade.
Granted, Phoenix has found little success in the post-season, where critics have questioned their style of play as a large contributing factor in their shortcomings... I'm only talking about getting Golden State INTO the playoffs.
But no, they don't need to change their philosophy, they just need to be the BEST at what they do. They need to have all of their players buy in to the philosophy and everyone needs to be on the same page.
If all those things happen.... Look out Kobe