PreThoughtsNew, darker clouds are gathering over the heads of the '09-'10 Warriors. For while this has been a crappy team for awhile now, it's been a pretty chipper crappy team: the players seemed to be keeping their spirits up and enjoying one another's company. In the last several games, those improbably happy vibes have been less evident. Monta's eyes are glazing over a little more than usual... Maggette looks grumpy... even Curry seems listless. The needle on the season barometer may have finally pushed past "bad" into "bad and not happy about it".
Things don't figure to get better this afternoon, when the Warriors take on a Thunder team with the 11th-best point-differential in the league. Stylistically, they're a pretty close match for the Bobcats: they defend, crash the offensive boards and get to the line. Interestingly, their solid rebounding totals are mainly due to their perimeter guys -- Westbrook, Harden, Sefalosha and Durant all rebound extremely well for their positions -- so smallball would be an even worse idea than usual today. The Warriors will need a big game from Biedrins here, and who knows if Nellie will even give him the chance to have one. (Another thing the Warriors could use: a heavy-minute outing from Jeff Green, the only NBA starter with a plus-minus worse than Monta's.)
Warrior To Watch: Stephen Curry, who posted a nine-assist/one-turnover game up in our mugs on Friday. Can he have similar playmaking success today?
Thunderer To Watch: Kevin Durant, natch. Already a legitimate All-Star, he needs only to become an effective passer to reach the very top tier; on the season, his passing numbers are worse than Corey Maggette's. It'll be interesting to see his decision-making process on the rare occasions when the Warriors bottle him up today.