Warriors GM Bob Myers is well aware of how difficult it is to win a championship in this league. Nothing is a given, no matter how talented a roster is.
Not only does there have to be near perfect cohesion amongst a collection of skilled individuals, but a team needs to have its fair share of lucky breaks along the way.
It’s not so much rooting for another team’s star player to get hurt, because not only is that morally questionable, but also the antithesis of the competitive spirit. To be the best, you have to beat the best.
It’s about having the good fortunate of avoiding key injuries at crucial moments of the season. The Warriors didn’t have many injuries to contend with in the playoffs in 2015, but did in 2016.
That might have ended up ultimately being the difference between one championship and back-to-back championships.
After last season’s heartbreaking end, anybody involved with the Warriors realizes more than ever to not take anything in the league for granted.
— KNBR (@KNBR) August 31, 2016
While other people are assuming that the Warriors are going to easily coast to at least the NBA Finals, Myers is pumping the brakes a bit.
Not only are there unpredictable moments over the course of an NBA season, but this Warriors lineup is full of new players who haven’t yet gotten to play with each other.
Even though the Warriors have acquired pieces like Kevin Durant, Zaza Pachulia, and David West this offseason that look like improvements on paper over the collective group of players who departed, basketball is heavily dependent on chemistry.
“I think a lot of people think we signed Durant and everything is great, which in reality, that is a really good thing,” said Myers in an interview with KNBR on Wednesday. “But we have a lot of new parts. This is not a team like last year’s team, where we could just hit training camp in stride.”
Myers brings up a great point. They were able to retain a huge percentage of their roster from their championship season, and the chemistry was clearly already championship caliber.
With new pieces this season, there is probably going to be an adjustment period as everybody learns each other’s intricacies on the court.
“It takes time to develop chemistry,” said Myers. “And that doesn’t happen in one day or one week or one month. It’s exciting. I think it’s gonna be a great process to watch unfold.”
The Miami Heat also experienced some growing pains at the beginning of their first season with LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh.
The Heat made at least the NBA Finals each of the 4 years the Big 3 played together, though, so they were never completely impeded from success.
The Western Conference is certainly more difficult now in terms of competitive landscape than the Eastern Conference was from 2010-2014, though, but the Warriors have 4 stars while the Heat only had 3 stars.
Myers is being realistic when he says there may be some turbulence along the way. However, every great team goes through some periods of adversity.
This team has too much talent and great coaching to not be among the final teams remaining at the end of the season, though. If they aren’t, it’ll be absolutely shocking.