The Golden State Warriors have lost two games on the trot leading up to this matchup. Coach Steve Kerr will be hopeful that star guard Steph Curry will be available against the New York Knicks. The two-time MVP pulled out moments before tip-off in the Warriors' previous match against the Charlotte Hornets due to illness.
The New York Knicks, seventh in the East, continue to work towards achieving a playoff spot and have won four of their five games. The Knicks beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 103-99 in their last match, with Julius Randle leading the way in scoring for the fifth consecutive game.
Golden State Warriors vs New York Knicks Prediction: Combined starting five
The Golden State Warriors have been shorthanded for the majority of the season. Despite that, Steph Curry has managed to produce MVP-level performances throughout the season and has kept the playoff hopes alive for his side.
Meanwhile, the New York Knicks have been fighting hard for their own playoff aspirations. Coach Tom Thibodeau has made the Knicks a fearless side this season as they continue to play well despite being in a rebuild.
The match between the Golden State Warriors and the New York Knicks seems to be an evenly matched contest at this stage of the season. Both sides will be eager to win this game to stay in the hunt for a playoff spot.
The two sides have some exceptional players in their ranks and one would wonder what a combined 5 team would look like. Let's take a look at the best player in each position from the two teams.
Point Guard - Steph Curry (Golden State Warriors)
Stephen Curry has been a beast this season. The 32-year-old has been the top-scorer in 24 out of the 31 matches that the Warriors have played this season. This stat proves how instrumental he has been for his side as they remain in the hunt for a playoff spot in the stacked Western Conference. Curry would probably be the starting point guard in all combined lineups given his prowess as an exquisite ball handler and a lethal shooter.
The former league MVP is averaging 29.9 points, 6.2 assists and 5.4 rebounds per game.
Shooting Guard - RJ Barrett (New York Knicks)
RJ Barrett has been exceptional for the New York Knicks this season. The number three pick overall in the 2019 draft has in good form leading up to this matchup and will be hoping to continue his good run of form against the Golden State Warriors. The young Knicks' star is averaging 16.6 points, 6.1 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game this season.
Kelly Oubre Jr. was a strong candidate for this position, but RJ Barrett has been the better player overall and edged him out based on season averages.
Small Forward - Andrew Wiggins (Golden State Warriors)
Andrew Wiggins has featured in all 31 games for the Golden State Warriors this season and has easily been the second-best player on the team. He has complemented Steph Curry well on the offensive end, averaging 17.6 points on a phenomenal 47% shooting from the field
Steve Kerr will be banking on Wiggins to be solid offensively against the New York Knicks, who are, statistically, one of the best defensive team in the NBA this season.
Power Forward - Julius Randle (New York Knicks)
Julius Randle has easily been the best player on the New York Knicks team this season. The former Los Angeles Lakers star is averaging 25 points per game in his last ten outings. He has been lethal as well as efficient on the offensive end, shooting 49.7% from the field including 45.8% from beyond the arc.
Randle is averaging a career-high 23.2 points, 5.5 assists and 11.0 rebounds per game this season overall.
Center - Draymond Green (Golden State Warriors)
Draymond Green has adjusted well in his temporary role as the Golden State Warriors continue to play without a traditional center, with Kevon Looney and James Wiseman out injured. Draymond is averaging 10.9 assists, 1.4 blocks and 1.4 steals in his last ten games.
With the likes of Warriors' Wiseman and Knicks' Mitchell Robinson out injured, Green seems like the best option to start as a center in this combined 5 lineup.