Do the Golden State Warriors have any chance to make a surprise playoff run?

What are the chances that the Golden State Warriors make a surprisingly deep playoff run?

San Antonio Spurs v Golden State Warriors
San Antonio Spurs v Golden State Warriors / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages
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The Golden State Warriors' dynasty is likely on its last legs; do they have one more surprising run in them? We explore that possibility.

While there have been many pleasant surprises in the Western Conference this season, one of the surprises on the opposite side of the spectrum has certainly centered around the Golden State Warriors. After winning an NBA Championship just two years ago, the Warriors have regressed each of the last two years in a way that would point to the end of a dynasty. Last season, they struggled with inconsistency all throughout the regular season and lost in the second round of the playoffs to the Los Angeles Lakers.

This season, they've been on an even worse trajectory. With just 18 games left in the regular season, the Warriors are 34-30 and will need a near-perfect finish to the season to avoid having to win their way into the playoffs via the Play-In Tournament.

As the 10th seed in the Western Conference standings, the Warriors aren't in a desirable position, especially when you consider in the four-year history of the Play-In Tournament, a 10th seed has never qualified for the playoffs. But heading into the last month of the season, this will be one of the biggest talking points in the Association.

How the Golden State Warriors can make one more magical run in the playoffs

The Warriors are certainly going to have their work cut out for them heading into the postseason, especially if they want to make an unlikely run in the playoffs. However, there is a potential path for the Warriors to make at least some noise in the Western Conference postseason.

Every possible scenario in which the Warriors make an unlikely run in the playoffs includes avoiding the Denver Nuggets in the first round. Unfortunately, that may not be possible if the Warriors finish as the 9th or 10th seed. If they finish in one of those spots, they can only earn the 8th seed via the Play-In Tournament. And if the Nuggets finish as the No. 1 seed, the Warriors have no other options.

However, if the Warriors can avoid the Nuggets and draw the Minnesota Timberwolves or Oklahoma City Thunder in round one, they may have a shot to pull off an upset. The Warriors would still be against the 8-ball but they'd at least have a puncher's shot against one of the more inexperienced teams rather than the defending champs.

But even if given a fair shot to pull off a first-round upset, there's no guarantee that the Warriors would be consistent enough to pull off the upset. The end of the dynasty may be here. This year's playoff run, or appearance, could very well be their last grasp.

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