The Warriors, aiming for their fifth consecutive trip to the NBA Finals, have clinched the first step in that process.
After a 137-90 blowout win over the Hornets on Sunday, Golden State clinched its fifth straight Pacific Division crown. In the process, head coach Steve Kerr joined Pat Riley as the only coaches in NBA history to win division titles in each of first five seasons at the helm.
Led by a powerhouse lineup that features former MVP’s Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant, along with near-perennial All-Stars Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and DeMarcus Cousins, the Warriors are poised for another deep postseason run. Cousins, whom the Warriors signed last summer despite suffering a torn Achilles, has slowly been rounding back into All-Star form.
The 2018/19 season, while still having Golden State at the forefront, has been arguably the most challenging for the current core. The back-to-back NBA champions — and winners of three of the past four titles — have faced constant questions on the future of Durant, who may depart in free agency. Despite that, the Warriors’ 52-24 record has the team one game ahead of the Nuggets for the best in the Western Conference.