Coming up short in a heroic and relentless quest for a third straight NBA title may be a disappointment for the Golden State Warriors, but it pales in comparison to the the ramifications of the devastating and potentially career altering injuries sustained by Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson in their valiant efforts to fight for another title.
Whether KD or Klay return or not, the Golden State Warriors now face a potential regular season-long hangover from these NBA Finals by virtue of not having Klay or KD for most, if not all of the next regular season while potentially having significant resources tied up in maximum contracts that put the Warriors in a compromised position for the 2019-2020 season.
Maxing two players who will be injured entire first year of contract while you enter a brand new 100% privately financed arena is... not easy— sam esfandiari (@samesfandiari) June 14, 2019
What a difference a week makes. Prior to Game Five on Monday, there was optimism that the Warriors might be able to win another title with Kevin Durant’s return, but by Friday morning after Klay’s injury there was talk of needing to rebuild, letting Stephen Curry and Draymond Green sit out a year for load management or even tanking for an entire season for better draft position.
Give Steph the year off. I would honestly consider it.— Brian Witt (@Wittnessed) June 14, 2019
As always, the betting markets responded to the Warriors’ unfortunate turn of events. Even prior to Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals, the Warriors were still the odds on favorites to win the 2019-2020 NBA Championship.
2019-20 NBA Championship— Jeff Sherman (@golfodds) June 14, 2019
Tor, Bos 10/1
Hou, Phi 12/1
Den, NY 20/1
Bkn, Utah, Por 30/1
Dal, SA 50/1
Ind, Orl, Atl, Chi, Sac, Mem 100/1
Det, Cha, Mia, Wsh, Cle, Min, Phx 300/1
But after the Klay’s devastating injury, Golden State’s title odds dropped precipitously.
2019-20 NBA Championship winner updated— Jeff Sherman (@golfodds) June 14, 2019
Mil, LAC 6/1
Bos, Phi 12/1
Den, OKC 16/1
Bkn, Utah, Por 25/1
Ind, Orl, NO 60/1
Atl, Mem 80/1
Chi, Sac, Phx 100/1
Det, Cha, Mia, Wsh, Cle, Min 200/1
And as one might anticipate, the Warriors regular season win total for 2019-2020 was posted at over/under 46.5. The last time the Warriors won less than 47 games was the 2011-2012 season.
While Stephen Curry and Draymond Green warned everyone not to count them out next year, realistic expectations should anticipate a let down next season. But if we’ve learned anything about the heart of these Warriors, it’s that they will always give their all and if they do, who knows what might happen.