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Warriors vs. Clippers: Kevon Looney will start for Golden State

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The Warriors officially open the 2019-20 NBA regular season — and the brand new Chase Center — by facing off with a loaded L.A. Clippers team.

Golden State Warriors v Phoenix Suns Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

After making five straight NBA Finals, winning three titles, and all kinds of other individual accolades, there are entering this season concerned about the state of the Golden State Warriors.

And, hey, I agree — this roster, as currently structured, is not going to contend for five straight Finals. They might have to fight for a playoff spot. They might have a long losing streak ... and one that we can’t easily dismiss in the face of the haters.

Yet in the wake of making a half-decade’s worth of Finals — after full decades of disappointments — I simply don’t have it in me to be pessimistic about a team led by a two-time MVP and elite defensive leader. Strangely, even though I don’t expect this team to even come close to contending for the Finals this year, I’m sort of excited for Steph Curry to prove what he can do without two of the greatest scorers of all-time by his side. Curry will have to put together some truly great performances for this team to comfortably make the playoffs and have a whole string of great performances for the team to advance deep into the postseason.

I’m just excited to see what Curry can do, whatever growing pains or hiccups come with it.

Tonight, we see the first wrinkle that Warriors coach Steve Kerr will roll with this season: starting an opening night lineup that has yet to ever play together, including the return of center Kevon Looney.

Without even looking at the opponent’s lineup for tonight, it’s probably fair to say that there will be significant growing pains tonight. But the fun will be in seeing how the team works through them and how much Curry can do to get the team past the bump in the road.

I too wish that we could keep moving on that championship path, with or without the help of Kevin Durant. But this is what we have and the upside of uncertainty in sports is that it provides the opportunity to be surprised. That’s all I’m hoping for this season.