The Golden State Warriors dominated the Brooklyn Nets 117-99 on Tuesday, Nov. 16. The Warriors moved to 12-2 and have the best record in the league. What was billed as a potential Finals preview was anything but.
Golden State looked like a championship contender and Brooklyn did not.
This was also Nets star Kevin Durant’s chance to beat his former team, again. KD won two championships and two finals MVPs as a member of the Warriors. Many believe he and the Warriors were one snapped Achilles tendon away from a three-peat.
Of course Durant’s good times in the City by the Bay were preceded by an epic seven-game series in the 2016 Western Conference Finals between his first team, the Oklahoma City Thunder, and the Warriors.
OKC led that series 3-1 before Klay Thompson went nuclear in Game 6 and the Dubs won Game 7 on their home floor.
Time has moved on, and after two years near the bottom of the league the Warriors are back.
According to dunksandthrees.com, the Warriors are No. 1 in adjusted defensive rating, No. 6 in adjusted offensive rating, and No. 1 in adjusted net rating.
They have had the easiest schedule in the league thus far. But you can only play the teams in front of you, and the Warriors are beating up on who they are supposed to. All of this early success and Klay Thompson and James Wiseman haven’t played a game yet this season.
Of course, defensive player of the year candidate Draymond Green leads the No. 1 defense, and MVP candidate Steph Curry is looking better than ever. Curry dropped 37 points on Brooklyn, going 12-for-19 from the field and 9-for-14 from three.
Curry made another MVP statement with his game on Tuesday. The Barclays Center crowd was pro-Warriors and Curry for most of the night.
At the start of the season the Los Angeles Lakers joined the Nets as betting favorites to win the NBA Finals. Now the Lakers’ odds have gotten a little longer at +650 and the Warriors are closing in behind them at +750, according to BetMGM.
Like I said last game, you can’t win a championship or anything like that in November,” Curry said. “But you can put yourself in a really good position for the regular season to start thinking about playoff position and all that once you get there and building good chemistry with all the guys that we have suiting up. [It] gives us obviously room to bring Klay [Thompson] and [James] Wise[man] back, when they’re ready, to a very positive environment.
A Nets vs. Warriors NBA Finals is a long way off. Can KD and the Nets need to continue to build an identity and determine what kind of team they are on a roster that was designed to have three highly functioning offensive supernovas.
Right now, with Kyrie Irving AWOL because of the vaccine mandate and James Harden still working himself into shape, this is a team of one elite offensive supernova.
Tuesday night’s game, though early in the season, was a measuring stick for both teams. The Warriors aced their test, the Nets did not.