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Preseason trip to China provided glimpse into season’s challenges — for team and fans alike

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Boredom and distraction are going to be constant companions, but the Warriors can handle it.

Golden State Warriors v Minnesota Timberwolves
Stephen Curry goes for the behind-the-back pass against the Timberwolves at Mercedes-Benz Arena on Oct. 8, 2017 in Shanghai, China.
Photo by Zhong Zhi/Getty Images

I know I’m not alone in this, but I’ve been hearing a lot of grumbles around town lately. People are implying that the Warriors are going to be less entertaining this season. Not that they’ll be any less good necessarily, but some of the intrigue is gone. It’s not that much of a stretch to wonder if maybe the team is feeling some of this as well.

We already knew this was a great team, possibly the literal best one ever assembled. Aside from a minimum wage center, every player in our starting lineup is destined for the Hall of Fame when their career is over. This is a team built for the postseason and, unfortunately, that means that the regular season has become something of an afterthought.

But as told by Tim Kawakami of The Athletic, Kevin Durant isn’t going to make excuses or settle for mailing in the early part of the season:

“We don't want to have a slow start and just blame it on us being in China,” Durant said. “No, we want come out, play our basketball and be who we are. We're going to make mistakes, that's just a part of the game, but we don't want to make that stuff a habit.

For the Warriors, this preseason is pretty much like a lazy Monday morning at the office. Sure, you’ve got that meeting at 10:30, but until then it’s time to catch up with coworkers, check the internet, and maybe answer some emails if you get to them. The Warriors are good enough to have this luxury, but wise enough to not take the opportunity to slack off.

Habits can form very quickly, and coach Steve Kerr has made it a team-wide mantra to develop good habits — so this all makes sense. But what about us fans: Will we be able to demonstrate the same diligence, or will we fall prey to the sneaking complacency to draws your eyes to your phone by the end of the third quarter?

After dropping the opening game in China, the Dubs slapped 142 points on the Timberwolves, beating them by 32 points. The question for the team this year isn’t going to be “if” they can beat their opponents on any given night, but “will they?”

We, the fans, will have a similar challenge in staying engaged and appreciative of this amazing team. Let’s not squander it because we are all looking ahead to the post season.