5 reasons why Golden State Warriors are still the team to beat
The 2017/18 NBA season is right around the corner and teams have completed their preseason engagements and have decided on their rotations to begin their campaigns.The offseason was all about teams trying to get younger while others decided to re-tool their rosters in order to challenge Golden State Warriors better.
Oklahoma City Thunder have added two All-Stars in Paul George and Carmelo Anthony to their roster to go with the reigning regular season MVP, Russell Westbrook. Houston Rockets have added a leader of their own in Chris Paul as they look to the enhanced playmaking duo of Paul and James Harden to combat the Warriors.
In the East, Cleveland Cavaliers have switched a big part of their roster in Kyrie Irving for Isaiah Thomas, a man who had carved out a niche for himself in Boston.
Despite the change, the Cavs have enough firepower and shooting to rival the Warriors but need to develop a defensive identity that can help them go toe-to-toe with the Dubs and would be hoping that Jae Crowders adds just that.
With tipoff just under two days away, here's a look at five reasons why Golden State are primed to win their third NBA Championship in four years:
#5 Retaining their strong core
Following their dismantling of the Cavaliers in the NBA Finals, the Warriors approached the offseason with great urgency and purpose as they worked to retain most of their core.
General Manager Bob Myers had one goal at the beginning of free agency - to ensure the team can compete at the highest level for many years to come. Safe to say, he achieved that in a brilliant manner.
The Warriors brought back key bench players Andre Iguodala, Shaun Livingston and David West, in addition to re-signing Zaza Pachulia.
They also signed two-time MVP Steph Curry to a blockbuster 5-year, $201 million extension, thus securing the franchise's direction for the foreseeable future.
In addition, they signed Finals MVP Kevin Durant to a 2-year, $53 million contract with a player option for the second year. In agreeing that contract, Durant took $9 million less than the maximum, helping Myers bring back the veteran leadership and bench depth.