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The Golden State Warriors advanced to the second round of the playoffs after a 4-1 series win against the Denver Nuggets. The Warriors got off to a hot start in this series thanks to 3rd year guard Jordan Poole who rose to the postseason expectations. However, with the return of Stephen Curry to the starting lineup, head coach Steve Kerr is faced with a tough decision: does Jordan Poole return to the bench?
According to this week’s SB Nations Reacts survey, Warriors fans believe Poole should come off the bench.
Despite Poole’s excellent play as a starter, there are a few reasons why he should come off the bench. One big reason is to protect Draymond Green who is essential to Golden State’s postseason success. Starting Poole would most likely mean starting Green at center. Although Green has shown he is more than capable of holding his own against the elite big men of the league (just ask Nikola Jokic), it would still be smart to protect him, whether it be from injury or even foul trouble. This is especially true considering he missed 30 games due to a back injury just 2 months ago.
Another reason has to do more with game theory and strategy. With Poole coming off the bench, the Warriors do not have to start games with their new death lineup. Because of this, the lineup of Curry, Poole, Klay Thompson, Andrew Wiggins, and Green is optimized as they get to prey on fatigued starters or opposing second units.
Many will argue that Poole has played too well to go back to the bench. For most teams that would be the case. However, if the best player in franchise history was willing to come off the bench for 4 straight PLAYOFF GAMES, then nobody is too good to come off the bench. Curry set a very important tone that everyone must be willing to sacrifice their own pride if it’s for the benefit of the team.
What do you think? Will the Warriors continue to start Poole? Or will they have him come off the bench? Let us know down below.