After a bit of a hiatus the Golden State Warriors will be returning to NBA playoffs for the first time since the 2006-2007 season, and their chances of advancing rely on big men David Lee and Andrew Bogut.
Bogut missed the majority of last year with the Milwaukee Bucks and the beginning of this season with the Warriors due to injuries, which have led to a minute restriction this season. But when he has played, Bogut’s impact is a noticeable one although his statistics don’t tell the whole story. His only averaging 6.3 points and 7.6 rebounds in about 25 minutes per game, while also giving the Warriors a defensive presence in the paint.
The Warriors are 17-12 is games that Bogut has played in, with Bogut blocking 1.7 shots and playing good positional defense. Bogut may not be in total game shape yet, but having him active at the center position is a definite upgrade over rookie Festus Ezeli at this point.
The real key for the Warriors is All-Star David Lee. Lee leads the Warriors in rebounding and is their second-leading scorer behind Stephen Curry, giving Golden State a player down low to compliment their perimeter game.
Also, an underrated part of Bogut and Lee’s games is there passing ability. Lee averages 3.6 assists per game and Bogut 2.1, and most teams would be psyched to get close to six assists per game out of their starting power forward and center.
The Warriors have become a fan favorite to watch due to Curry’s scoring exploits and their fast-paced style of play, but if they are to be competitive in the postseason it will be because of how effective their guys in the trenches can carry them.