Cleat Geeks

Steph Down, Warriors Out?

The Warriors were playing with fire. In a no win situation, they could either play their MVP and risk further injury in a series they could win with their second unit, or sit him and look overly cautious and perhaps scared. Their decision blew up in their face just before halftime Sunday afternoon.

The game was a back and forth battle for the entirety of the first half. Steph looked as rusty as rusty gets. His final line: 2-9 from the field, including 1-7 from downtown, 5 turnovers and a plus minus of zero. Shortly before half Curry fell awkwardly on a wet spot near mid-court. It didn’t look good, and after half Curry’s prognosis only became more bleak.

The fall galvanized the Warriors, as they came out of the locker room on fire. They proceeded to pick the Rockets apart, shot after shot. Klay and Draymond put on a clinic as the Warriors dismantled Houston 41-20 during the 12 minute stanza. All told, the Warriors outscored Houston by 48 points from the land of 3 (21 3fgm to 5 3fgm). A stat that is so glaring it can turn any game one-sided. Apart from that disparity, most of the stats were neck and neck. Another issue that continues to plague the Rockets is that Dwight only got 9 shots. How does Dwight get single digit FGA’s game after game in the play-offs? Assert yourself in the post, Dwight! You are bigger and stronger than everyone on the court! Act like it.

J.B.BickerstaffJB Bickerstaff implored the Rockets to stay in the fight during the break between quarters 3 and 4, but it was all for not. Bickerstaff is likely to be fired the morning after the series concludes, vacating the coaching position that was passed to him unwillingly by Kevin McHale less than a year ago. His team is dysfunction personified, and for them the season can’t end soon enough.

The Warriors should move on Wednesday at the conclusion of Game 5 barring a small miracle from Houston. How far will they go with Curry’s health in question moving forward? They will most likely face the Clippers in round 2, who will pose a much larger threat to the Warriors than the abysmal Rockets squad. The Clippers have been anticipating postseason success since the arrival of Doc Rivers, but for the most part have been a disappointment. They were eliminated by this abomination of a Rockets team just last season. If Curry’s health remains in limbo the Clips will push the Warriors to the brink. I would still pick the Warriors to win the series, but it will be a battle.

Seeing Curry go down, I can’t help but think that their historical season could be in jeopardy. It would be a travesty if the Warriors postseason flames out due to injury. There will be tough tests ahead, in the form of the Spurs or OKC, should the Warriors be fortunate enough to beat the Clips without their MVP.

KevinMcHale2Watching the Rockets I can’t help but to think that Kevin McHale really got a bad deal. He took essentially the same team to a 2 seed and the West Finals. Yet 11 games in to this season he gets canned? One infuriating thing about the league is that the players can get a coach fired over something as simple as personal differences. Newsflash to NBA players: YOU DON’T ALWAYS LIKE YOUR BOSS! Ok, I’ve gone off on a tangent. No more. Rant over.

I sincerely hope for a speedy recovery for Curry. The Warriors can’t count on cashing in 21 3’s every night. If they want to repeat as champs and tie a bow on their masterful 73 win season, they need Curry at or close to 100%. That much can’t be debated.

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