Even though we won’t see the Golden State Warriors back on the court anytime soon, we are on track for the return of NBA in the coming weeks.
Just last season, the Dubs had two of the top-five players in the league on their roster with Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant. Klay Thompson and Draymond Green were definitely two of the best 25 players in the NBA as well, and the only thing that stopped the Warriors from adding a fourth championship in five years was injuries.
Fast forward to this year and Durant is gone, Curry missed all but five games, and Thompson sat out the entire season. Green looked like he aged 10 years during the 2019-20 season, but I’ll give him a pass due to looking extremely fatigued. The fact Golden State had one of the worst rosters in the league once Curry went down may have resulted in Dray having a lack of motivation as well.
Curry will be back and healthy for the start of the 2020-21 season, but where will he rank among the NBA’s current stable of great players? I don’t think rust will be an issue for him, despite basically missing all of the season. The NBA may still proceed with a bubble for the non-playoff teams, which will give him a chance to get some live game action in.
Looking at next season, this how I would rank my top-five players in the NBA:
- Giannis Antetokounmpo (future Warrior)
- LeBron James
- Stephen Curry
- James Harden
- Kevin Durant
Giannis is still in his prime, and will only get better as he goes on. He will most likely win MVP again this season, making him the first player since Curry to win the award in back-to-back years. LeBron took his game to another level this season after missing the playoffs for just the third time of his career.
I put Curry third because of how he impacts the game. His ability to turn things around for his team on a dime is second-to-none. I would have put Durant higher, but it remains to be seen how he will bounce back from the torn Achilles’ heel he suffered during last year’s finals.
Who do you have as your top-five?
On to some links:
The Dubs are facing an unprecedented layoff before they return to play a real NBA game. Still, head coach Steve Kerr is confident the organization will use the long layoff wisely and rebuild into a championship contender. (h/t NBC Bay Area)
Golden State will have plenty of options with its 2020 first-round pick. The Athletic’s Ethan Strauss looks at the wings who are available at this year, and ranks the top-five.
The Warriors will only be able to use their mid-level exception in free agency, but they may be able to land a proven veteran. Bleacher Report’s Grant Hughes ranked the best free agency fits for each NBA team, and pegs an All-Star big men for the Dubs.
The Dubs have had an amazing run since Joe Lacob took over as majority owner. NBC Bay Area’s Drew Shiller looked back at the five most underrated moves the team has made since Lacob’s tenure began in 2010.