Golden State Warriors are the model

When the Golden State Warriors arrived in Orlando in December 2019, they were a seemingly injured team that had fallen out of contention for the championship.

Klay Thompson had ripped the AFC Champions League at the previous year’s finals (he had yet to break his Achilles and miss another season). Stephen Curry had broken his hand a few weeks ago and will miss most of the remainder of the season.

The team that wore the Golden State jerseys was hardly the franchise that dominated the league for most of the earlier parts of the decade. All that remains is Draymond Green, who appears to have been exposed to the elements in a season that was already lost to the Warriors.

Steve Kerr said even at that early stage of the season that he was looking forward to the challenge of working with and developing a young team.

Players are no longer in their ideal place for warriors. But they are a championship team and an organization. They always had bigger aspirations and the bigger picture in focus. Even when they were struggling and knew they had a long way to go.

Slowly the pieces were built again and the hints were evident in that game.

The lesson for the Warriors isn’t about who played in that game – only two players who played in that game had won a title a few months ago (Draymond Green and Jordan Bull, who shot an impressive 0 for 8). It’s more about how the team has evolved since that moment. It is more about how the culture and organizational structure of the team remains intact despite such a difficult fall from the top.

The Golden State Warriors is the league model as they come back from the depths to become a championship team once again. They are the franchise model for the league.

In the end, Alec Burkes missed a wide-open triple pointer with a chance to win. The Magic kept winning 100-96. It was really a survival, a sign of trouble for the 2020 edition of this team.

But the bottom line is: The Warriors are heroes because everything they do has turned into gold. Like the San Antonio Spurs and the Miami Heat before them, they are successful because of their entire team and the decisions they make. They are entire league models.

The Warriors team that took the floor on December 1 was pessimistic. All a team wants is in this situation. They came late early and rushed to give themselves a chance to win.

This is essential for who the warriors are as a team.

Yes, players matter. Stephen Curry is a super player and one of the greatest players in NBA history. Warriors have always surrounded him with players who match their style, spread the floor with archers, support them with defenders and forge an offensive and defensive spirit that tends to individualize their players.

Once the Warriors gained tournament experience, this confidence seemed to build on itself and permeate every player and aspect of the organization. Everything about that organization screams victory and they seem to have blessed everything they touch.

A former top general who had apparently lost to a stray organization in Minnesota, Andrew Wiggins came to Golden State and accepted a role as defender and groundbreaker. They mined a strong pick late in the first round at the Jordan Bowl to give them a scoring boost. They built a solid foundation that revolves around their stars.

The gap years in which warriors discovered themselves and recovered from injury served the purpose of helping these players gain confidence.

This is a credit to coach Steve Kerr, the culture he has built and how he empowers the players on his team.

Golden State operates a very improvisational and reading-based crime. It’s clearly centered around Carrie. Nobody can separate that from this equation. The Warriors Offensive has been designed to take advantage of his charisma and cleverness as a basketball player.

There is never any separation between the player and his star. It remains the central part of any team’s identity – both from the leadership and work ethic they offer and the way the team creates style of play to emphasize what they are good at.

The Warriors certainly wouldn’t become a championship contender without the crafting and embracing of Stephen Curry – along with coach Mark Jackson’s superb defensive foundations, General Manager Bob Myers’ clever drafting and their front office and how coach Steve Kerr took the team even further. From there to unleash their full potential.

Everything the team touched is perfect.

Everyone questioned the Warriors all season because of their age. But this turned into a rebirth. They were champions and played like that, got everyone in line, and walked in the same direction.

This is ultimately their biggest advantage. Yes, they have talent, but they also constantly work in unison. And when they make mistakes they quickly change directions – the acquisition of D’Angelo Russell proved a luxury but was ultimately crushed by Andrew Wiggins.

To the dismay of the NBA, the Warriors had some good luck, too. They used the previous two years to reclaim their talents, drafting James Wiseman for second and then adding Jonathan Cominga with their choice of wolves in the D’Angelo Russell trade.

Golden State is still very young, and while they may not yet have the star talent to replace Curry when he retires, this team will be competitive for a long time.

But that’s what great organizations can do. They created the next generation while still winning titles. That is why they became the envy of the entire league.

This is why they model the entire league.

Tournaments are actually a stroke of luck. Landing Curry, signing a sweetheart deal due to early injuries and striking during an unprecedented high ceiling, it was all the good fortune that made them the breed of this decade. But luck the team was able to take advantage of it because of the strong organizational structure and the confidence they have.

Magic only hopes to reach this level. And it still starts at the moment for the team. Even in these early stages, magic needs to build the team it wants. They need to build their identity, play style, make organizational and structural decisions to make good choices and shift from bad ones.

Jeff Weltman is busy putting together this. The biggest missing piece remains the lack of a specific star. But the team built some good organizational cultures and the mistakes it made, pivoted quickly.

Of course, magic is still trying to get that winning piece together.

It’s hard to look at the NBA champions and see something associated with a team at the bottom of the rankings. The Magic still has a long way to go to smell the air the warriors breathe.

But they have to start putting the basic building blocks in place. This is what they hope they do.

Everyone wants to become warriors in the end. They are the archetypal franchise in the league – even beyond their star power and burning money.

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