Odds are heavily against the Warriors reaching the NBA playoffs
The Golden State Warriors' odds of making the playoffs are falling fast. Steve Kerr's squad is currently 29-29 and sitting in ninth place in the Western Conference standings. This puts the Dubs 1.5 games back of the No. 8-seed in what's shaping up to be a very tight race.
Here are three reasons why the Warriors will be on the outside looking in come late-May.
Western Conference Winner 2020/2021
Mon, August 30 2021, 11:58 PM
Los Angeles Lakers
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Portland Trail Blazers
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Golden State Warriors
1. James Wiseman's injury woes
The second overall pick from the 2020 NBA Draft was starting to come into his own with the Warriors this season. He was averaging 11.5 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 0.9 blocks before going down with a season-ending injury on April 10 against the Houston Rockets.
Wiseman R Meniscus Injury— BBiomechanics (@BBiomechanics) April 12, 2021
To counter act the in air collision while attempting to dunk, the L leg swings upward
Players are often subjected to such free swing leg variation during collisions which directly impacts the forces the stance limb must attenuate @bballbreakdown pic.twitter.com/nYt3QQNUu9
Wiseman's injury adds to the already long list of hurt players for Golden State. Klay Thompson has not played since the 2019 NBA Finals. Eric Paschall injured his hip in early April and is out for at least two weeks. Stephen Curry, Draymond Green, and Kelly Oubre have also missed a combined 26 games this season.
Wiseman's injury has forced the Warriors to go with even smaller lineups, putting more pressure on Green and Kevon Looney to crash the boards and be defensive stoppers in the lane.
2. The Pacific Division is a murderer's row
The Western Conference is tough and very deep. The Pacific Division is about as tough as you can get in basketball. The Phoenix Suns, Los Angeles Clippers, and Los Angeles Lakers are all title contenders. The Warriors have 14 regular season games left, and that includes five games against current playoff teams and three games against the still dangerous New Orleans Pelicans.
Even if things remain the same and the Warriors hold on to the ninth spot in the West, they will need to win back-to-back games to make it into the playoffs. They would need to defeat the San Antonio Spurs and then defeat the loser of the Dallas Mavericks and Memphis Grizzlies.
Will the Warriors reach the playoffs?
3. The rest of the West is rising
Only two of the following five Western Conference teams are going to make the playoffs: Mavericks, Grizzlies, Warriors, Spurs, and Pelicans. The Mavericks have been the coldest of the bunch, but they are completely healthy and the Luka Doncic/Kristaps Porzingis combo can be deadly.
The Memphis Grizzlies are putting all the pieces together at the right time. The Grizzlies are in the top five in the league in rebounds, assists, and steals, and have seven players that average double figure points per game.
The Spurs and Pelicans are feisty teams capable of hanging with anyone. Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram, in particular, are lighting it up and are among the most lethal frontcourt combos in the league.
The odds are stacked against Golden State
Ultimately, the odds are just too stacked against the Warriors to qualify for the playoffs. I like the Mavericks to take home the No. 7-seed and the Grizzlies to win the No. 8-seed through the Play In Tournament. Depth matters, and it will kill the Warriors this season.