It feels like the National Basketball Association has pretty much become Golden State’s league, and the title is just Curry’s to lose unless a team proves otherwise, with the Dubs looking as the most dominant team in basketball since Jordan’s Bulls.
Coaches, fans, analysts and even basketball players are just going nuts and losing their minds about the Warriors and how to beat them, as there’s no way to defeat them on a 7 game series if they feature the best 3 shooters in the game and such good defenders as well.
That’s why today, we’re going to try and use our imagination to see if these random players could actually be good together and beat Golden State, choosing a dozen of players for no particular reason other than chance.
My team is Blue Dragons and I think I have a good enough roster to play against the best teams in the league. If I'm on the Eastern Conference, I'm very sure that I can beat the Boston Celtics or Cleveland Cavaliers, before I play against the Golden State Warriors.
Sit down, buckle up and enjoy as we break down this team and their odds to take home the Larry O’Brien at the end of the season.
PG: Russell Westbrook
The reigning MVP is a top-tier point guard in the Association even though some of his detractors may think otherwise, and his ability to push up-tempo is exactly what a team needs if they try to beat a team that has so many possessions per game like the Dubs do.
Westbrook wants to beat the Warriors more than anyone now that his former buddy and now rival Kevin Durant betrayed him to win a title, and that kind of heart and winning spirit would make him a killer in this team.
SG: Jimmy Butler
Jimmy Butler can be crucial in this matchups with his ability to play lockdown defense in the backcourt, being matched up against Klay Thompson to try and make the Splash Brother lose his touch from deep.
Butler’s not much of a shooter but he can really frustrate defenders with his ability to draw contact and go to the line, so he could be a major piece if he makes some Dubs get into foul trouble in the early going.
SF: Ben Simmons
Ben Simmons is one of the best young players in the league right now and he has the ability to just fill up the stat sheet on a nightly basis, as well as being one of the most talented passers in the Association despite his height and position.
Of course, his lack of jumper and stroke from deep would be a major issue considering neither Butler nor Westbrook are good shooters, but he’d be a major factor against a long and athletic wing like Kevin Durant in the defensive end.
PF: Kyle Kuzma
Kyle Kuzma’s been having a very good rookie season and he’s already taken most of Julius Randle’s minutes, proving that he can score the ball at will and that has a sweet touch from beyond the arc, especially for those corner threes.
Still, Kuzma needs to put a lot of work to improve his rebounding totals, as he averaged merely 3 boards during his first games as a Laker, but the skillset is there to become a very dominant big man in the perimeter.
C: Dwight Howard
And they’d have Dwight Howard down low to try and prevent the Dubs from getting that much second opportunities as they’re used to, as well of trying to lock down Kevin Durant as the team’s rim protector, forcing him to try and share the ball or to keep shooting from beyond the arc.
Howards’ offense is pretty much nonexistent at this point of his career, but if he can outhustle Green and Pachulia, this team may actually have a shot to beat Golden State thanks to his good post defense.
Strengths and Weaknesses
Well, this starting lineup definitely needs some shooting, as besides Kuzma, neither of these players is able to consistently knock down shots from beyond the arc, and that’s not going to get you very far if you intend to beat the Golden State Warriors.
Of course, a defense will be there and they could easily frustrate Golden State’s offense, but it’s going to be really hard to keep up with a team that thrives so much when running the floor and has that many possessions per game.
Westbrook is one of the best passers in the league, but that would take a lot of touches away from Ben Simmons, who’s currently playing as the Sixers’ point guard and needs the ball in his hands to be effective.
Butler, as we said, can be this team’s X-Factor as the best two way player in this squad, but his lack of stroke from downtown would be a huge offensive liability if the team falls behind early in the game.
From The Bench
Bench: Patrick Beverley, JJ Redick, Andre Roberson, Vince Carter, Bam Adebayo, Lauri Markkanen, Joffrey Lauvergne
Well, this is one of the most bizarre second units you’ll ever find, but at least you can be sure that they have several good defenders to try and force the Warriors to miss shots like Andre Roberson, Bam Adebayo and Patrick Beverley.
Beverley can (and has) make Curry go crazy with his pesky and suffocating defense while having JJ Redick in the wings will assure you some much needed touch from distance that they don’t have in the first unit with Simmons, Westbrook or Butler.
If you need some athleticism and smart guys that can always find the open man or get into anybody’s nose if needed, you get Vince Carter, and he’d play his heart out knowing that he finally has a chance to retire as a Champion.
Lauri Markkanen would be great on some all shooters lineup, being paired alongside Kuzma to try and stretch leads or make comebacks thanks to some three-point shooting, and they’d match up nicely against those Warriors “Death lineups”.
Neither Adebayo nor Lauvergne would see much playing time with this lineup, but a couple of big men could be really useful to try and “hack a Green”, as Draymond’s known for being quite inconsistent from beyond the line.
What do you think, is this squad good enough to beat the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals? Or maybe this team is not even good enough to beat the Celtics and the Cavaliers?
I have a good starting lineup with Westbrook, Butler and Simmons, but maybe the biggest weakness is that I have only Dwight Howard on the center position. Maybe I can use Markannen as a center with the small ball lineup Beverly, Westbrook, Butler, Simmons? What are your thoughts?
Credit to our fan who sent us an email with this idea: Michael Brown
If you have any good ideas what we should write, please send use email.