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Golden State Warriors at Brooklyn Nets: Let the Western hegemony continue

The Warriors are 5-1 in games against the Eastern conference, the only loss that otherworldly-befuddling game against the Orlando Globetrotters. The Nets are 3-4 against the Western conference, while 8-2 against their Eastern brethren. So, good news... right?


Tip-off: 4:30PM PST

Where: Barclays Arena, Brooklyn, NY
TV: CSN Bay Area Radio: KNBR 680
Blog Buddy: Nets Daily
SB Nation: Game Page

Sure, why the hell not. We can't hope to understand the Magical beatdown, led by beta-knucklehead Glen Davis, so let's put that behind us. Also worth forgetting: the microwave meltdown in the end of the 4th quarter vs. the Detroit Pistons — we came away with the W so water under the bridge. The way I see it, as fans, let's come into a game with positive energy, knowing full well that the first three-point deficit is going to portent armageddon in the game thread. Let's find that balance early, ok?

Here's some positivity for you: Stephen Curry is healthy, confident, and breathing fire from long distance. Perhaps we expect that last bullet point. But he's also averaging north of 10 assists per game in the last four, with just 2.25 turnovers per game in that same stretch. Mark Jackson clearly has a plan: put the ball in Steph's hands and make good things happen. He's getting teammates involved early and in the third quarter, and shooting open threes when given a bit of firebreathing room.

Here's some more positivity: Curry's bringing Klay Thompson and David Lee along with him. Both players look like they've shaken free of the offseason rust and are hitting shots we and they expect to make. Those questionable shotattempts aren't as questionable when they go in.

And here's another positivity drop: We're 1-0 against the Nets! Boom!

And the hits keep coming! Brook Lopez, who was a bright spot for Brooklyn in the first meeting and not a great matchup for our frontline, is reportedly out for the game. Gerald Wallace has been busted for flopping multiple times, already incurring a fine under the new NBA penal system, and might force himself to play some actual defense. (Wait, that's not a good thing.)

Now I know what you're all saying: "Will you shut the hell up, you're totaling jinxing us!" That's true. I probably am. And while the Warriors are 3 for 3 in games I've recapped, they're 0 for 1 in the game I previewed — that would be the pitiful drubbing we took from the Lakers, one of the ugliest, least entertaining games to date. I'm not even sure I should be permitted to write previews.

So here's the reciprocal negativity: I'm not sure if the Warriors can keep this up. While the team is 11-7, our expected win-loss distribution is 9-9. We're scoring the same number of points as we're giving up. Our offensive and defensive ratings are nearly identical. And we're still missing Andrew Bogut, with no end in site to that debacle. We've won a lot of close games, and while that sounds great on its face (you always want your team to win close games), it's not a great sign if you're looking for reasons you should win the next one. Coin-flip games are exciting, but if you play a season of them, you finish 41-41 outside the playoff pyramid.

This team still needs to get better. So, can they? Without Bogut and Brandon Rush? Where does the improvement come from? Can they get to a next level and sustain it? And does it start tonight against one of the best the Eastern conference has to offer in Brooklyn?

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