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Some very thoughtful Game 5 adjustments for the Warriors

Fans are debating lineup and rotation changes for the Warriors in advance of Game 5. We are pitching the adjustments that really matter.

2022 NBA Playoffs - Golden State Warriors v Denver Nuggets
Steve Kerr and Mike Brown talking about Nemanja Bjelica getting braids, probably.
Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images

The Golden State Warriors were out-hustled, out-assisted, and most important, outscored in Game Four against the Denver Nuggets. That means it’s time for one of the two things pundits say the NBA playoffs are about: Adjustments. (The other is “matchups,” with honorable mentions to “recognizing the moment” and “wanting it more”)

How do they make changes? There’s some important areas where they can match, counter, and even out-flank the Nuggets at their own game.

Hair: Nemanja Bjelica needs to get either braids or corn rows, then spend most of his time on court grabbing and pushing Monte Morris. Ideally he’d also add green tips or whatever the term is for what Marcus Smart has going on with his hair right now. This is a long shot, but if Belli could also get himself cast in the sequel, “Uncle Drew 2: Drew Legit 2 Quit,” it would be devastating for Aaron Gordon.

Celebrity fans: The Nuggets got a boost by having new Denver Broncos QB Russell Wilson and his wife, Ciara (Grammy Soul Train, and VMA award-winning R&B star) sitting courtside. Who did the Warriors have? Someone who cashed out an early investment in the company that makes Farmville. It’s no contest. Who can the Warriors counter with? San Francisco 49ers quarterback-for-now Jimmy Garoppolo and his love interest, Kiara Mia (two-time AVN Award nominee for Best MILF). Look, it’s important that the Warriors play hard!

Free throws: Steph Curry missed a career-high four free throws in Game Four. In Game 5, he should decide to make them.

Water: Klay Thompson played very well in Denver, but he was a little sloppy with his fouls in Game Four. The reason? He was too far away from the ocean! Being near the South Platte River is OK, but let’s be real about this. It’s a glorified tributary, and frankly gets dominated by the North Platte River when they finally converge. While we’re pretty sure Klay spent most of his days off between games on the water, they should pour a cup of SF Bay water over his head at the beginning of each quarter, to remind him how close to the water the new arena is, and as tribute to Poseidon, the god of the sea who protects and guides Klay in his voyages and his three-point shooting.

Rookies: Jonathan Kuminga should play 14 straight minutes instead of 11 straight minutes. And then sit out the whole second half again, that time of game is completely different.

Apparel: The Nuggets gave out t-shirts that said “5280 Relentless,” bragging about how high above sea level their city is and perhaps psyching the Warriors out when they thought about playing at altitude. The counter? Celebrate San Francisco’s own impressive altitude by giving away “52 Feet Relentless” t-shirts, for the excited crowd to put on over their crisp button-down dress shirts, the official fan uniform of the Chase Center.

Music: One puzzling development in Game Four was Otto Porter Junior’s reluctance to shoot. The man whose three-point shooting earned him the moniker ‘Otto Corner Junior” passed up a few open looks in the previous game, as if he forgot he’s a career 40% shooter from deep. So it’s time to give him subtle hints with the arena music. “Down On The Corner” by Credence. “The Corner” by Common. “Brimful of Asha” by Cornershop (The Warrior Girls can dance to the Fatboy Slim remix). “My Little Corner of the World” by Yo La Tengo. “Losing My Religion” by R.E.M., where Michael Stipe repeatedly sings “That’s me in the corner.” (Sadly, that’s not on their album, Otto-matic for The People.) And when Otto shoots a scalding 2-for-5 from three-point range, you can thank me later.

Siblings: In Game 4, the Warriors let Steph Curry’s brother-in-law, Austin Rivers get five steals, including the biggest one of the game in the final seconds. Time to counter with Steph Curry’s other brother-in-law Damion Lee, who effectively stole the roster spot that should be Austin’s. Too bad, there’s only room for one brother-in-law on this team! Lee is a reminder that there’s no more important steal than stealing someone’s place in the family. And if that’s not enough, Lee can quietly remind Rivers of the time his own father traded him off the Clippers.

Anthem: One time when the Warriors also needed a big playoff win against the Nuggets, they had a very special anthem singer: Desiree Coleman Jackson, Coach Mark Jackson’s wife, who delivered a very unique take on the star spangled banner.

Hey, the Warriors won that game, so maybe it helped! Failing that, make nice with Fergie and let her sing it.

Fan Signs: Someone needs to make a sign to compare with all the beautiful Jokic for MVP signs that Denver fans create. Game 4 had quite a doozy.

And fans have previously made equestrian-themed signs for the horse-loving Jokic.

San Antonio Spurs v Denver Nuggets
A totally normal sign depicting Nikola Jokic as a centaur.
Photo by C. Morgan Engel/Getty Images

We suggest one that reads Most Improved Player Jordan Poole but he’s wearing a mask and snorkel and also he’s half-dolphin for no reason.

Call more lobs: Come on, it will totally surprise Denver this time!