Blogtable: Will Warriors get 73 wins?

Each week, we’ll ask our stable of scribes across the globe to weigh in on the most important NBA topics of the day — and then give you a chance to step on the scale, too, in the comments below.


BLOGTABLE: Will Warriors win 73 games? | How would you solve the ‘Hack-a’ issue? |
Lasting impression from NBA All-Star 2016?



VIDEOCan the Warriors surpass the Bulls’ mark from 1995-96?

> To top Chicago’s 72 regular-season victories, the Warriors must win 25 of their final 30 games. Will they do it?

David Aldridge, TNT analyst: No. But how about a tie? 

While I normally don’t ascribe to schedule-based predicting, the Warriors have been so consistently dominant so far it’s a little easier than normal to feel comfortable going that route. And I see the Warriors going 24-6 down the stretch. All due respect to Portland, which Golden State plays three times in the last 30 games, but the Warriors are going 3-0 against the Blazers. Two games with Minnesota equal two more wins. Same with Orlando in two games; two more Ws. Since Golden State hasn’t yet lost at home, I feel fairly confident penciling them in for wins vs. Atlanta, Phoenix, New Orleans, New York, Dallas, the Clippers, Philly and Washington. That’s 15 wins. If Chris Bosh is out for at least a while, the Warriors’ Feb. 24 game at Miami looks easier. The Warriors’ March 6 game at the Lakers already is easy. That’s 17.

And that leaves the 13 toughest games on the schedule: three with the Spurs (two in San Antonio), two with the Thunder (home/away), two with the Grizzlies (home/away–in the last week of the season), and six others: two against Utah (home/away), an April 1 home game against Boston and single road games in Atlanta, Dallas and L.A. (Clippers). I just can’t believe an NBA team — even one as good as the Warriors — can go undefeated at home, so I’m going to give the Warriors two home Ls down the stretch — not sure against whom, but for the sake of the exercise let’s say OKC on March 3 and Boston on April 1, while the Warriors beat the Spurs, Thunder and Utah at Oracle. And, Golden State has to have a couple of bad nights sometime down the stretch, so I’ll put them down for road losses March 18 in Dallas and March 30 in Utah. In case you haven’t noticed, San Antonio’s been pretty good at home this season, too, so I think the Spurs beat the Warriors in San Antonio March 19. That leaves the last three games of the season: at Memphis (April 9), at San Antonio (April 10) and vs. Memphis (April 13) in the regular-season finale.

I’ll give the Warriors a win in Memphis to go 71-9, with two games left. But I just can’t see the Spurs not rising up, especially at AT&T Center, with a monster effort to deny Golden State’s shot at history, giving them loss number 10. But the Warriors bounce back to beat the Grizz in game 82 to equal Chicago’s 72-10 record, then go on to defend their championship — setting up decades of bar arguments about which all-time team was better — Stephen Curry’s Warriors or Michael Jordan’s Bulls.

Steve Aschburner, NBA.comNormally we leave the mathematical heavy-lifting on this site to John Schuhmann, who carries slide rules and calculators the way the rest of us tote pens and phones. But most of can look at 48-4 (.923) and figure out that 25-5 (.833) is kinda, sorta “easier.” I get that Golden State has a serious speed bump ahead – three games in the final month with San Antonio – and a mostly West schedule. I also get that its first priority is repeating as NBA champions, so being healthy and relatively fresh for the playoffs is the top objective. But a sizable part of this team’s success, never mind appeal, has been its willingness to embrace these sort of challenges. The winning streak to start the season didn’t drain the Warriors – it propelled them toward this special opportunity and they’re none the worse for it. Besides, the way they compete and throttle many opponents (12.5 points per game differential), they’re getting rest in fourth quarters. So 73-9 looks like the next gold standard.

Fran Blinebury, NBA.com: It all depends on health. The Warriors have embraced the challenge and made it part of their identity. No reason to think they just can’t keep on keeping on.

Scott Howard-Cooper, NBA.com: Yes. And I’m someone who said early that it wouldn’t happen, that the road to 72 is just too long. But the Warriors kept winning at a wild rate, to the point that a 25-5 finish would actually be slowing down. This is a team that wants challenges and that loves the idea of history being another opponent. While the previous statements from coach Steve Kerr and interim coach/assistant coach Luke Walton hold true and Golden State won’t give up the chance to rest players to be ready for the playoffs, if it gets to the final week and the record is right in front of the Warriors, they’re going for it.

Shaun Powell, NBA.com: Yes, they will. It helps that two of their three remaining games against the Spurs will happen in the final week of the season, when San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich will rest his geezers for the playoffs. Anyway, the Warriors are too deep into a groove that refuses to hit a speed bump. Stephen Curry says if they’re close to the record, they’ll go for it, and why not? They may never be in this position again.

John Schuhmann, NBA.com Yes. They should definitely get some guys rest and prioritize May and June, but they can rest players against bad teams and still beat them. They have three more games against the Spurs and two against the Thunder, but they also have 15 games left against teams that are currently .500 or below (and 10 of those are at home). If they use those as their rest days (for one or two guys at a time), they’ll minimize their losses.

Sekou Smith, NBA.com: The Warriors have given us every reason (48 of them to be exact before the All-Star break) to believe they have a 25-5 finish in them. They showed no signs of fatigue and barring a catastrophic injury to one of their key players, they should give great chase to the 72-win mark. I say they do it and have a chance in the final week to perhaps beat the record by a game. They are that good.

Ian Thomsen, NBA.com: They are going to do it. They’ve been the hungriest team all year, and that hunger is going to grow as the 73rd win looms. Health permitting, they are going to break the record – and I’m hoping they push it up to 74 or 75, just to emphasize how good they are and how much they care.

Lang Whitaker, NBA.com’s All Ball blogThey will. As Draymond Green mentioned to Sekou Smith and I last weekend in Toronto while taping the Hang Time Podcast, winning 25 of 30 “sounds doable.” Actually, I wonder if they’ll get to 73 wins, then rest guys the last few games of the regular season. Or, considering how much those guys get to sit out fourth quarters now, maybe they’ll go all-out the rest of the way and finish with like 76 wins?

23 Comments

  1. pen says:

    welp they just got destroyed by Lillard…. so much for that 3-0 record against Portland.

  2. DOUBY MEZIER says:

    Play off started already for the warriors

  3. baller33 says:

    My instinct with their remaining schedule is they will tie with 72, but Powell made a good point that the Spurs may likely be resting some starters during those last 2 games. So, maybe they’ll get to 73 after all.

  4. Trey says:

    I could see them getting to 72-9 and losing on a last second buzzer beater in the 82nd game…

  5. Keith Mullings says:

    Great teams don’t hit speed bumps, they find different challenges to keep themselves motivated. History is in the sight line they will accept the challenge and have fun doing so. No other team in the last 30 years has played the game with such flair, offensive efficiency, and joy. Their admiration, and respect for each other is evident in the way they play the game. The only obstacle to the record is injury to Steph, Draymond, or Klay. Can you say 75-7?

  6. OldCelt says:

    ” … and Boston on April 1 … ”
    They’ll truly be april fools if they do. Well played DA, well played😉

  7. taekayo says:

    Though 25-5 seems doable for GSW, I think they would still come short to beating the Bulls’ record. Never mind the meetings with SA and OKC, but the whole league would be in a very competitive mode this point on because of playoff positioning. There would be those teams that would try to tank their games as soon as they’re mathematically out of the race, but young teams like Minny would rather compete with their “nothing to lose” attitude. Then there are the top 6-10 teams that would try to win every game they can to be in the playoffs and at the same time avoid a first round meet with GSW, SA or Cavs. Remember that teams like the Bucks, Mavs, Nuggets and Pistons are those who have given GSW their losses, and not the top teams.

  8. jdub455 says:

    yep, barring injuries, they can do it…

  9. Harris says:

    Can’t say GSW is a better team than 95-96 Bulls even if they beat the 72-W record as they are against different opponents. 72-W is a great achievement and GSW is a fabulous team nonetheless.

    I tend to agree that 95-96 Bulls will beat today’s GSW in a 7-game series.

  10. johnnytc1 says:

    they most likely will get it. I wish they were playing the cav’s every night then they for sure would get it. They wouldn’t loose another game.

  11. kevin durant says:

    im on my way

  12. They will do it. With no problem.

  13. frank reyes says:

    The only thing that can stop the Warriors from breaking the record is: INJURIES. Period.

  14. lbj says:

    76 wins will not win you the title, Steph Curry. You need to team up with our King LeBron James blah blah blah.

  15. mattrinc says:

    By looking at their schedule I would say achieving 73-75 wins is more probably than it seems. If they go over February 2016 road trip and win all (even OKC Thunder in their arena) then I’m certain for the season’s record.

    What is unpredictable is Warriors’ fatigue that was more than present in their losses before All-Star Game. Nevertheless – they are again heading Chicago Bulls:

    http://tap.si/gsw-chase-73/gsw-chase-73.php

    so my final word is that the record will be matched or improved by 1 or 2 wins.

  16. Ernani says:

    They dont have Michael Jordan. The Warriors win by early of the game but not in crunch time. I think they will be tested during tied score and seconds left. That is where Michael Jordan. Im sorry the warriors have scorers but hey have to prove to me they can win games during tied score at seconds left. That will define their Superstar and the Warriors record overall.

    • Leon says:

      See Philly, Clippers, Thunder, Rockets. The team has been just as good in Crunch time. You can’t win “early in the game”. The fact that they are able to sustain 20+ point leads for more than 2 quarters on its on is unfathomable. Its riddiculous to say that just because their bench is better than most teams that they don’t play well in the clutch. It riddiculous to say that because they dominate teams and don’t put themselves in a postion to lose they don’t play well in the clutch. Any team can blow out a team once or twice in a season. The warriors have done so at least 14 times this season and are so effective others teams prepare to be down by 20. That’s insane. This isn’t just a high scoring team, Denver led the league in points 5 years ago scoring about as much as the Warriors this season. They still didn’t have 12.1 point differential per game. They were ONLY scorers. They were not clutch. This team is something much different. This team is very much clutch.

  17. Ted G says:

    If this Golden State team played the Jordan Bulls. The Bulls would destroy Golden State in a 7 game series.

    • Kevin says:

      Yeah, because a bunch of contested midrange jumpers and the triangle offense would do really well in today’s NBA.

      Please…

  18. TTKIN says:

    So David Aldridge doesnt think GS can go undefeated at home (cuz no NBA team can) but is basically saying the Spurs will? If GS doesnt win in SA, then who is going to beat them?

  19. Jesse says:

    The Warriors will open with a road trip including the Clippers, Trail Blazers, and the Thunder. I could see them losing one or two of those games but would not bet on it. In my opinion the Clippers have the best shot at home where they seem to be able to keep things close with them. People seem to forget the Clippers beat the Spurs in an epic first round series last year and although San Antonio looks better their dominance in the regular season is always present. But come postseason the Clippers will be ready for the challenge and I see them as a title contender along with the other three “superpowers” in the West.

    • robotphood says:

      I think the clippers proved they are still a 2nd tier team last season when they blew a 3-1 lead to the rockets. This season has been a bit of a mess compared to last. They clearly aren’t better while the other west contenders are.