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The Golden State Warriors' Family Tree: Visualizing franchise history

Burton History Trees is in the process of putting together a series of "family trees" for each NBA team and has shared a preview of their tree for the Golden State Warriors.

If you've tried to email me about something relevant to this site in the past and I've been slow getting back to you, part of it is because my inbox is filled with a rather steady stream of PR pitches from folks that leaves me with an unmanageable number of emails at the end of the day.

But this might seriously be the coolest thing I've gotten all year, for whatever that's worth (and no, I have not been paid to say that).

Burton History Trees is working on a project to put together "family trees" for every NBA team and they've shared the one they've done for the Golden State Warriors:

From Burton History Trees.

The trees are an interesting way to visualize the franchise's history in a quick snapshot of how the most significant figures rank against each other. You can read more about the full methodology on their website -- and see the specific key designed for the Warriors tree by clicking here (.pdf) or on the snapshot below-- but in short it assigns significance to a player's career based on the number of games length of time they played for the franchise.

Warriors family tree key screen grab

That means it's about the only place in the world where someone might legitimately begin to compare the careers of Andris Biedrins, Stephen Curry, and Monta Ellis. So it's not perfect, but it's a good starting point for discussion.

If I were to make suggestions - and I wasn't asked - the first thing I thought about was how much more interesting it would be to do the same thing with something alone the lines of Win Shares/48 where you could actually visualize the value of individual players to their respective franchises. That would at least help to rectify the Biedrins-Curry Dilemma, though it would still fail to fully capture Chris Gatling's true value to Warriors' history.

May game always recognize game.

Thank you for giving me that moment to cherish, Chris - you'll always be one of the best all-time in my imagination.

Happy New Year's.

For far more on Burton's project, check out the (non-Chris Gatling) video above.

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