So now begins the home stretch. That sprint towards the ending. And if these first two games are an indicative slice of post-All-Star-break life, the Warriors are in for a bumpy ride.
Fasten on those seat belts, affix your aviator sunglasses, button up the leather bomber jacket, and strap in.
Michael Jordan recently encouraged Klay Thompson to go for the Bulls' 72 win record. Stephen Curry says that they want to break it. You know, if it makes sense. You wanna go after the champs? The champs of all time? You better come hard.
So, all that being said—and knowing exactly what is at stake—where do the Warriors stand?
The danger here, obviously, is becoming overly-fixated upon the record. But I believe that Steph, Klay, and Draymond Green (and co) have their hearts and minds on the right track. Here is the upcoming schedule, with the remaining 28 games. The Warriors are now 49-5. Can you envision them going through the rest of the season (including two games vs. the Spurs and two games vs. the Thunder) only losing four more games?
The most important thing is obviously the postseason. As each Warriors player can attest, the 72 win mark means nothing if they don't win the championship. I mean, heck, the Warriors don't want someone coming in and pulling some sort of reverse "We Believe" voodoo on them.
(Quick reminder that the Mavericks were 67-15 heading into the postseason)
Sometimes things can be over-beautiful. You can want something so much that the intensity of your desire burns the filament of the outcome. If you try too hard, you are guaranteed to fail. Or, perhaps, not to fail but to land somewhere unexpected. An outcome is never the exact match to your dreams.
Just ask this kid. He knows a thing or two about loving something so much it tears you up.
How deeply does this team desire to break the Bulls' record? Will they sacrifice their rest? How much do they want it?
And does it matter?
What is a number? According to wikipedia:
73 (seventy-three) is the natural number following 72 and preceding 74. In English, it is the smallest natural number with twelve letters in its spelled out name.
Or another way, for those with the feverish travel bug.
Would it change their lives? Would Steph wake up a different human being, somehow evolved from his present state? Would it mean more than a championship?
And how has the championship changed them?
Even Klay Thompson, NBA champion and three point shootout winner, still gets goosebumps when meeting Michael Jordan. Even with all the national and international attention, you have to remember that this team is comprised of a bunch of young, impressionable guys. Even though they are defending champs, with a historic record, you can't help but feel like they're still coming into their own. Still growing, still searching.
So, I suppose the true test begins now. 28 games left, a bunch of tough matchups. Will they go for the record? Does it matter? Will they rest star players as they prepare for the playoff push?
Balance is the key. Balance in desire and in intention. Balance, with an eagle eye towards the ultimate goal: