*Sherwood Strauss filling in this week for Rasheed Malek.
Warriors Civilization and its Discontents: Hell’s Stenographers
Never in the history of histories has a team so awful been so well analyzed. The Warriors aren’t even going nowhere fast. This is the mean, the average—let’s all face it, the baseline is stuck at suck. And yet excellent Bay Area writers follow this inept, motionless, crew, like Darrelle Revis covering a drunken sloth.
If the team sucks, coverage should dissipate. Chris “I treat my fans like ah’ ATM card” Cohan has waged a sixteen year war on our attention spans. Any rational being would have reacted to such conditioning by succumbing to apathy. Pavlov’s dogs would have all become Sharks fans, or at least chased Nellie off the bench with righteous fury.
But we refuse to let the NBA dream die. When I say, ‘we,’ I mean the bloggers. We constitute the digital band that plays on in the face of unyielding, inexorable suck. Look at the online GSW writing community—it’s bigger and smarter than Adonal Foyle:
Warriors World (this cool site) • 1984 Watch • Bay Area Sports Guy • Fear The Beard • Warriors @ RealGM • Warriors Works • Woerriors
Impressive, right? For those who don’t troll the dark depths of NBA web nerdom, let me explain that these particular blogs are regularly updated and (usually) pretty intelligent. Also, double-digit blogs is a huge number for such a bad team. This list represents the broad nexus of committed amateurs, united in their hope. Or united in their masochism. Or their need to funnel hatred into something trivial and predictable. Whatever.
But wait, there’s more! The above blogroll was control-copied from the Golden State Worriers, a two-headed monster that reduces NBA abstraction into NBA reality with staggering guile. These guys might be able to cross up Hollinger like AI on MJ, yet they toil away in relative obscurity. The Worriers are always inventing great ways to save the franchise, only to run into that nagging ‘the franchise wouldn’t need saving if it weren’t systemically flawed’ Catch-22.
I singled the Worriers out because they epitomize the bizarre GSW web phenomenon: Writers passionately analyze the actions of those who will most certainly ignore the analysis en route to predictably bad decisions. Warriors fans are Cassandras without a rationale motive.
So how the hell did this happen? I asked Free Darko’s Bethlehem Shoals. Well I sort of did, until he got a bit cranky with my redundant, muddled questioning. Anyway, here’s what Shoals posited:
“I think that, as far as local writers are concerned, it has to do with the Bay’s affinity for technology. And maybe a tendency toward narcissism. But after the 2006-07 team happened, pretty much every NBA fan with half a brain realized that this team was alternately 1) the most ungodly, illogical disaster of a team ever invented, the kind of meltdown that gives off a heat and makes plants grow arms 2) a tremendous collection of characters, and unique players, who were just damn interesting to follow and 3) a team that, when they’re playing well, are as entertaining as anyone other than the Kings.”
I’d thank him more for the quote if I wasn’t half sure Shoals just craved a respite from defending Gilbert Arenas. I agree that 06-07 has a lot to do with this. So are the ghosts of ‘We Believe’ still stoking our imaginations? Are we so narcissistic that we can’t stop congratulating ourselves over that moment? Isn’t it annoying how all of Carrie’s columns in ‘Sex and the City’ consist of her asking questions to herself (not that I’ve ever seen that show)?
I wish there was a non-corny way to say I want the excessive web chatter to continue, no matter its attribution. There isn’t, so instead I’ll spout this: Until plants grow arms, Curry grows three inches, and Maggette grows peripheral vision, let us keep bonding/blogging over the GSW tragedy. At least we can wring creative analysis from this putrid swamp.
I didn’t even get to the beat/paper writers (Tim Kawakami’s hate-hate relationship with the FO, Adam Lauridsen’s eloquent sadness, Geoff Lepper’s web savvy wit, and Marcus Thompson II’s dogged pursuit of the craziest beat ever). I love all you guys, and I don’t care who knows it.
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