The Golden State Warriors fell just shy of reaching the playoffs behind star guard Stephen Curry‘s MVP-level effort. It sends Golden State into unfamiliar territory without championship contention. Before the Warriors embark into the offseason, Curry sent a strong message to the rest of the league.
Stephen Curry nearly leads the Warriors to the playoffs
The Warriors entered the 2020-21 season with much uncertainty due to the revamped roster and Klay Thompson’s torn Achilles tendon.
Despite that, Curry led the charge with his production to guide the team into playoff contention. The 32-year-old put forth an MVP-caliber campaign behind a league-best 32.0 points per game on 48.2% shooting from the floor and 42.1% from beyond the arc, along with 5.8 assists and 5.5 rebounds.
Curry became the oldest player since Michael Jordan to win a single-season scoring title, while his 38 games with at least 30 points are the most since the former Chicago Bulls great. He led the NBA with 337 made 3-pointers behind his league record 5.3 three-point attempts per contest.
His play guided the Warriors to finish in the eighth seed before the play-in tournament. Golden State fell short against the LA Lakers and was eliminated from the playoff picture after losing overtime to the Memphis Grizzlies.
As the Warriors head into the offseason, Curry delivered a stern message to the rest of the league.
Stephen Curry sends a stern message to the rest of the NBA: ‘You don’t want to see us next year’
The Warriors fell just short of reaching the playoffs, but that hasn’t stopped the brewing optimism.
After the disappointing loss to the Grizzlies, Curry aired that encouraging sentiment while sending out a firm message to the rest of the NBA.
“It just didn’t go our way, I don’t how many different ways to say it, it was a special year all things considered,” Curry said via NBC Sports. “And a new experience for me, Draymond and Loon, try to make the most of it. Come back, bottle this up, everybody make the right strides, take advantage of the summer and you don’t want to see us next year.”
The 32-year-old certainly holds much reason for excitement as the Warriors far exceeded expectations. In any other year without the play-in tournament, the team would have clinched a playoff berth.
Beyond that, Curry proved that he’s playing some of the best basketball of his career. Thompson should also be back next season after missing the last two years due to injury. The Warriors will monitor that situation, but the star guard holds an opportunity to return as an elite two-way factor.
The front office has some tough decisions to make ahead with key players. Kelly Oubre could hit free agency, which his situation will provide a clear picture of the team’s sense of direction.
With all that in mind, Curry’s remarks speak to the promising grander picture.
Warriors control their future ahead
With the 2020-21 campaign behind them, the Warriors‘ focus shifts to maximizing Curry’s talent.
The roster is filled with youth, which the team could head in a couple of ways. The front office could use it to facilitate a trade, with big man James Wiseman becoming a central piece in any potential offer.
Golden State can also hold onto their young talent and add veteran pieces. It’s clear that the team needs far more than Thompson’s return to contend for an NBA title.
All that shapes up for what may be an entertaining offseason that may see some seismic moves ahead.