No one likes losing, but the Golden State Warriors seem to have taken it pretty well.
Records tumbled, praise was heaped on them from all angles and they even got a bit of a mention over here in the UK.
The Warriors tend to get overlooked by the British press, who only really cover the Lakers and Celtics, and maybe the Bulls, Knicks and LeBron James (not really the Cavs or before that the Heat, just the man himself). Maybe it’ll get to that stage too with Steph Curry we’ll see, Golden State would probably have to grab a ‘three-peat’ to get that kind of recognition and have kids on this side of the pond buy their merchandise, but then again that’s not beyond this team.
Anyway, having managed 24 wins to kick off the season with they crashed to a first loss in Milwaukee over the weekend that I doubt anybody saw coming, and it was a 108-95 defeat they couldn’t really complain about either.
When big streaks come to an end often a bit of a dip in form follows but Golden State are making all the right noises.
Here’s what Draymond Green had to say, via ESPN.
“I think probably the last seven or eight games, I think we’ve stopped getting better.
“We just know how to win, and so our playing and knowing how to win has just gotten us through. But our playing and knowing how to win won’t get us another NBA championship.”
I don’t really buy into that myself, for one I’m not sure I agree that over the last seven or eight games they’ve not been impressing – they’ve looked fine to me. Sure, it could be hard to concentrate on what needs improving when everyone’s licking your balls but that’s what coaches are for, keeping everyone grounded and focused and away from any media hype. And analysing what needs improving, obviously.
As for ‘knowing how to win’ won’t get them another Championship… well, that’s just ridiculous. Grinding out results when not at your best is a big part of being a great champion, think Floyd Mayweather Jr or Chelsea (not right now), but maybe the Warriors want to do it a different way.
How this loss will impact on them remains to be seen but you’d expect them to bounce back in their next game against Phoenix Suns, although the manner of the win could and will be analysed.
The big tests come a little further down the line, a rematch against the Bucks (this time at home) is the first one I’ll look out for, and then there’s the visit of Cleveland later in December. Then we’ll see if this loss actually does help Golden State step up another level. I’m sceptical but I’d love to be proved very wrong in this case – they’re one hell of a team to watch and worth losing sleep for if, like me, you’re watching on from Europe.