⁇ Warriors-Nuggets Series Coverage
⁇ 2022 NBA Playoff Schedule
The Golden State Warriors (53-29) and Denver Nuggets (48-34) enter their first-round match with different conditions.
Although Stephen Curry, Clay Thompson and Tremond Green only played 11 minutes together, the Warriors have enjoyed mixed success relying on their two stars and a few young and old players due to injuries to each other. Knuckets center Nicola Jogic has emerged as a strong contender to defend his Kia MVP trophy, but Jamal Murray (left knee) and Michael Porter Jr. (spinal surgery) have had mixed success with their supporting cast to alleviate the long gap. .
All of this sets up an interesting first-round match. The Warriors returned to the playoffs for the first time in three years with four star players triggering their descent (including Andre Igudola). But the warriors did not dominate as they had in their dynastic years. The Nuggets did not look as dangerous as they did after overcoming a 3-1 playoff series deficit for both Utah Jazz and LA Clippers and advancing to the 2020 Western Conference Finals. Nevertheless, consumption has shown that you underestimate your risk.
Three things to look for
When will the curry return? The Warriors plan to evaluate Carrie occasionally on Monday after missing the last 11 games due to a sprain in Carrie’s left leg. Coach Steve Kerr recently said that “there is a chance” that Curry will play in Game 1, “that he has a chance not to play”. The Warriors had allowed Carrie to complete personal work on the court last week, but Ker did not provide further details on how Carrie progressed in that job. Theoretically, the Warriors would be there for a whole week to increase Carrie’s workload to two-on-two, three-on-three and full-court screams. However, it is not clear whether the curry will need more time to rust.
2. Can the Nuggets relieve the burden of the jockey? The Nuggets did not share much clarity on whether Murray and / or Porter Jr. could be integrated in a timely manner for the playoffs. To post Kia MVP type shows, the Nuggets have to rely on the jockey. The Warriors do not have many center options due to James Wiseman’s right knee injury and the organization’s decision to prioritize level diversity. It lowers the jockey’s pressure on Aaron Gordon, Will Barton, Monte Morris, Jeff Green and Bones Highland. They have all reached double digits in points this season due to Jogik’s consecutive doubles teams and his excellent pass. But the Warriors adopted another “strength in numbers” identity, which helped the team absorb what Charry, Thompson and Green did not have in common. The Warriors are also positive that the combination of Green and Kevon Looney in the center spot will make up for their lack of size.
3. How will the Warriors play with their three stars? In theory, when Curry, Thompson and Green won three NBA titles in five years, they could grab the right spot from where they left off. But the Warriors have only three other players who have played with them beyond one game. The rest of the list is not yet fully experienced as to what to play with all three players. That dynamic could reduce the pressure to produce as much as Jordan Poole and Andrew Wiggins did during the Warriors’ previous injuries. But when flying in high-stakes games they may encounter difficulties in adjusting to the relatively reduced role.
Number to know
16.3 – Outperformed rivals by 8.4 points per 100 possessions with Nicola Jogi. That difference (16.3 per 100) was the largest of the 261 players who played at least 1,000 minutes for a team. This difference was large in offense (12.3 out of 100), but also significant in defense (4.1 out of 100), especially when you consider that the jockey was generally on the field against the opponents’ best attacking players.
The difference was even greater (22.6 points per 100 possessions) in the Nuggets’ four games against the Warriors, beating Golden State Den by 19 points (121.2 points per 100) in 56 minutes off Jokik’s ground. But those jockey-off-the-floor minutes broke for the Warriors in 27 minutes plus-21 in 27 minutes with Curry (who played three of four games) on the court and Minus-2 with Curry off the court in 29 minutes. For the entire season, Curry had the ninth biggest on-off difference (12.1 points per 100 possessions) out of 261 players who played at least 1,000 minutes. Also in 89 minutes two MVPs were on the ground, scoring Warriors 192, Knights 192.
– John Schuhman
Unlike their five finals, the Warriors will not just wind up without many setbacks in the first round. The Knights have beaten the Warriors in three of the four regular season matches, and Jogik can dominate against anyone. Curry in this series may need some stainless games from his game. However, the Warriors will only lose the series if one of their three stars is a disaster. Otherwise, Golden State has more talent and depth than Denver. Warriors in the 6th.
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Mark Medina is a Senior Writer / Analyst at NBA.com. You can email him here, find his archive here and follow him On Twitter.
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