Draymond Green’s four championships with the Golden State Warriors result from his legendary two-way play and his leadership through the highs and lows of the NBA season. This season, the lows seem to be coming more often than the highs, as the Warriors started off their title defense with six straight road losses and are 0-7 away from Chase Center.
The 2022-23 campaign was supposed to be a referendum on the Warriors successfully fulfilling their dual timeline of focusing on winning now while developing for the future after letting several key veterans walk away in free agency. The results early on feature the Warriors playing less than stellar on defense and their bench play struggling to maintain the leads that the starters built.
The unexpected losses come despite Stephen Curry playing up to his usual superstardom. Furthermore, there is no reason to write off the Warriors dynasty just yet. Especially when a defensive anchor like Green plays with all-time great shooters in Curry and Klay Thompson.
During the first 14 games out of the 82 game-season, Green believes the struggles couldn’t come at a better time, but the learning curve (through the wins and losses) must be addressed because of the difficulty in the profession.
“You’d rather have them sooner rather than later,” said Green to The Athletic on the Warrior’s unexpected losses. “But in saying that, to build what we’re trying to build, we do understand that it takes time. —We’ve been in this position before, where we’ve had struggles and things that we needed to work on and that we had to fix.”
Defense ➡️ Offense pic.twitter.com/Ngr6zxOyQh— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) November 15, 2022
Outside of the MVP-caliber play of Curry, the Warriors haven’t played to their’ Strengths in Numbers.’ The team’s leading rebounder, Kevon Looney, is averaging 6.9 rebounds a game, and as a team, they’re the 7th worst in the League in that category. Not to mention, they’re averaging the sixth most turnovers (15.7), and their five-time All-Star in Thompson has struggled to find his shooter’s touch.
Is age starting to be a factor for the Dubs? Head coach Steve Kerr indicated that was a possibility.
“We know this isn’t going forever,” said Kerr. “This could be the last year; maybe next year is the last year. We’re in the final stages. We know that.”
The Warriors are currently four games behind the Western Conference’s top seed. Although the playoff picture isn’t the current thought of the team, Green uses the record of his rival opponents to motivate the group towards reaching the throne they have been accustomed to seeing in four of the last seven years.
“In the West, I was looking at the other day, and it’s like no one has stood out,” said Green. “It’s right there for us. If we get ourselves together, which we will, it’s right there for us.”