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Warriors put the league on notice: the Tank is on, and it’s going to be fun

With loss to lowly Hornets, Golden State has officially entered a year of suck - but it could actually be entertaining

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Charlotte Hornets v Golden State Warriors

In just 5-10 business days, the Golden State Warriors have packed up all of their title aspirations and mailed them to a secure location to be opened again at a later time.

Off the court, the Warriors coffers are deep - they had $126,086,364 worth of talent sitting out of the action last night - which leaves the team a bit bare when it comes to available players. For perspective, that $126 million or so worth of salary that isn’t suiting up right now would rank 15th in the league. The Charlotte Hornets entire roster this season is salaried at around $124 million.

So no, the Golden State Warriors probably weren’t going to win that game. It may not be a widely popular sentiment just yet, but I don’t think they wanted to win, even if they could have. In a down year, the “Light years” move is to just go ahead and embrace the suck, be as terrible as possible, and get the best asset available to come back next season reloaded and healthy.

With the move to Chase Center in San Francisco the bandwagon has been replaced by a tank. And I am here for it!

Eric PaschALL DAY

Out of the darkness, we saw the emergence of a few key contributors. If this team is really going to tank - and it looks like there’s no way around it - then at least the Warriors franchise has the decency to make it a “great time out.” Even if the prices are still reflecting the Strength in Numbers era.

Eric Paschall gave us all something to be thankful for last night. Just 22 years old, the 41st pick in this year’s draft is catching a lot of appreciative nods from Dub Nation after throwing in a career-high 25 points on just 18 shot attempts. With a little bit of Draymond Green, and a whole lot of Paul Milsap in his game, Paschall is exactly the sort of bullying interior scoring threat that will mesh well with the eventual return of the full Warriors’ roster arsenal.

From Anthony Slater of The Athletic, here is a sequence of four plays against this year’s 12th pick PJ Washington. One of the most important aspects to Golden State coming back stronger and better next season will be finding hidden gems like Paschall.

I don’t know how much to put on the entire Warriors’ fan base, versus just the loudest voices on Twitter, but I think it’s safe to say that many were beginning to question Steve Kerr’s coaching design choices more and more frequently.

Who can really say if a more ball-dominant featured play style would be more effective. Certainly, Curry’s numbers would have been higher had Kerr treated him like James “use the whole possession” Harden, but that’s just not Kerr’s style. But if you are working to develop the roster - especially the young talent that may be more deferential to superstars - it’s hard to argue against Kerr’s ball movement systems as the best way to maximize the widest swath of your roster.

Yes, the team has lost most of it’s old players, and much of it’s old identity - but look at this play and tell me that an isolation dribble play at the top of the key is a better design choice.

The tank is all the way on. Strap in and enjoy it!

Coming into the season, there was a pretty good chance we were going to spend the first year at Chase Center watching a team with playoff aspirations. It wasn’t going all that well, even before the injuries and angst was beginning to build.

With Curry out until at least February, Draymond Green nursing a torn finger ligament, and Kevon Looney still dealing with a vague but worrying nerve issue, the ceiling for this roster is unlikely to be near the playoffs, and the floor is.... well, it’s low enough to get the Warriors to a 1-5 record, tied for worst in the league.

D’Angelo Russell was held out of the last game for a sore ankle, though no one can seem to point to where it got hurt. He will eventually return, and we should hear something back about Looney next week - so help is on the way. But even so, this looks like a team destined to tank.

This isn’t our first time getting dunked on, Warriors fans seem to be embracing it and having fun. At least this time, there’s some light at the end of the tunnel. But make no mistake, the league is going to dunk all over this team’s face this season.

Let’s have fun with it at least. The Warriors will give the fans something to cheer for, as long as we don’t get too judgy about the shortfalls.