Golden State Warriors: Can the Dubs win the wide open Western Conference?

Golden State Warriors Stephen Curry (Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports)
Golden State Warriors Stephen Curry (Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports) /

Will the Golden State Warriors take a hold stranglehold of the wide-open Western Conference? 

The Golden State Warriors have a commanding 3-1 series lead against the Denver Nuggets. Game 5 shifts the series back home for the Warriors. Nikola Jokic and the Nuggets were able to steal Game 4, but winning this series is almost nearly impossible.

Devin Booker is out for 2-3 weeks, after suffering a Grade 1 hamstring strain in Game 2 vs. the Pelicans. New Orleans tied the series up 2-2, with a 118-103 victory. The Suns look extremely beatable without Devin Booker, and the Warriors are shaping themselves back into championship form.

Will the Suns be able to make it out of the first round without Booker, or are the Warriors heating up for another run at an NBA title?

The Golden State Warriors are back in full effect after the team missed the playoffs two seasons in a row. Playoff experience is a huge advantage in the postseason. Head coach Steve Kerr, along with Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green all have championship DNA.

Kerr and the Warriors Big 3, won championships in 2015, 2017, and 2018. They made the NBA Finals five consecutive seasons. Golden State knows what it takes to be the last team standing, and they have the team to do it again.

It’s no surprise that the Warriors are loaded on offense, with Curry’s 27.5 points per game, and Thompson’s 24.5 points per game in the postseason. One player who took a big jump in year three was Jordan Poole.

Poole is another 20 points per game scorer in the playoffs for the Warriors, with 24.3 points per game. Steph Curry was injured before the playoffs and head coach Steve Kerr gave Poole the chance to start, while Curry came off the bench.

He’s been a bright spot for the team all season long. Poole played in 76 of the 82 games, starting in 51 of them. His playstyle fits perfectly into the Warriors’ game plan. He has the ability to make tough contested shots, drive to the basket with his explosive 6-foot-four-frame, and scores efficiently and often.

Golden State is doing this all without their second overall pick in the 2020 NBA draft, James Wiseman. He was ruled out for the rest of the season in late March, after not playing any regular-season games in 2021-22.

Arguably the most important piece to the Warriors’ past and present success in the playoffs, is 2016-17 NBA Defensive Player of the Year, Draymond Green. His effort level and desire to win are unmatched. At 6-foot-7, he’s not the biggest power forward in the NBA, but he will play suffocating defense that will make you want to quit.

In the first-round series vs the Nuggets, Draymond leads the team in assists (7.8) and blocks (1.3).

With Booker out for 2-3 weeks and the Suns struggling without him, the Warriors are in a prime position to make the Western Conference Finals once again. Golden State needs one more win to get to the second round, and I expect that to happen in Game 5.

The Warriors want as much rest before the next series as they possibly can. Their next opponent will be the winner of the Timberwolves vs. Grizzlies series, which looks like it will go to all seven games. That gives Golden State some time to relax and conserve energy for the games.

Next. NBA: 7 overreactions from the first full week of the playoffs. dark

If Phoenix can’t figure it out soon, their chance to avenge a loss in the NBA Finals last season will be over. Who will the Warriors be taking on in round two, and do you think Golden State will be fighting for another Larry O’Brien trophy in June?