The Scouting Report: Golden State Warriors

(AP Photo/Don Ryan)

(AP Photo/Don Ryan)

Projected starting line-up: Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Andre Iguodala, David Lee, Andrew Bogut

Like the Blazers, we know the Warriors very well by now.

Stephen Curry is capable of bringing you back from 18 down.

LaMarcus Aldridge spearheaded a comeback of his own against the Warriors back in November and both teams also faced each other in the preseason. ]

And whenever Andrew Bogut is involved things might get a little chippy.

Although they have Curry, one of the best offensive forces in the game, Golden State hangs their hat on their defense as their offense has been very inconsistent at times.

Bogut and Iguodala anchor the defense and Klay Thompson is also a very good defender, using his big frame to bother wings on the perimeter.

Since the two teams met last at the Moda Center last month, the Warriors bench has undergone some major changes. Assistant coach Brian Scalabrine was re-assigned to the Santa Cruz Warriors of the D-League and then they straight-up fired assistant Darren Erman fort a violation of company policy.

Their owner Joe Lacob has also said some very odd things with regards to head coach Mark Jackson, leading to a lot of speculation about Jackson’s job status despite the fact he’s led the Warriors to consecutive playoff births for the first time in over 20 years.

One of the biggest issues some critics have with Jackson is the structure of his offense. The Warriors love to exploit match-ups, mostly in the post and it’s perplexing why they don’t put their dynamic offensive talent on the move.

They’ll post up Thompson or Barnes on smaller guards and it usually leads to midrange jump shots because teams won’t double-team them. Sometimes it works but it’s hard not to wonder how good their offense would be if it was designed more like the Blazers offense, focusing on movement and making the right play.

Either way, the Warriors could still be a menace in the playoffs and taking advantage of match-ups is something done more frequently when the games get tighter and the value of each possession goes up.

Odd as it is, many pundits feel that the Warriors are more of a threat to the top Western Conference teams than the Blazers. The reasons aren’t that hard to see.

They have experience winning in the playoffs and Curry can take over games in the blink of an eye. Also, even though their offense isn’t as good as many think it should be, their elite defense can keep them in games when they don’t play well.

Tonight’s game will likely determine who gets the fifth seed in the West so expect the intensity high.

Erik Gundersen

Erik Gundersen

Erik Gundersen is the Trail Blazers beat reporter for The Columbian. He's a graduate of the Allen School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Oregon in addition earning a degree in Spanish. He's covered the NBA for four seasons. You can also occasionally find his work on's NBA section for their TrueCities series. He also fist-bumped with Kanye West once. Follow @BlazerBanter on twitter for more Blazers and NBA news.

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