With the latest championship in the bag, many consider the Golden State Warriors cemented their dynasty status. Bill Simmons, passionate about rankings and NBA history, doesn’t share that point of view. His take on the Warriors not being a dynasty provoked Daryl Morey to fire off a tweet Simmons’ way.
The Warriors are a dynasty
There are different definitions of the word dynasty in basketball terms. There are certain biases attached to it, depending on who you ask. But a common denominator should be teams that won several titles, made the Finals, or at least deep playoff runs over a given period of time. Some teams enjoyed consecutive playoff appearances but never won a ring. Meanwhile, others had several postseason successes but only ended up with a title or two. Given these, there are only a few that would technically qualify.
Michael Jordan led Chicago Bulls (8 years, 6 titles), Magic Johnson led L.A. Lakers (9 finals appearances, 5 titles), and Bill Russell’s Boston Celtics (13 years, 11 titles) come to mind. There were a lot of great teams that had prolonged success for years. But the question remains: why do we have to question if the Stephen Curry era in GSW is a dynasty?
Golden State won 4 titles in 8 years. If the critics claim Kevin Durant gave them a lift, that could also be said of all other dynasties in the past. Also, adding KD didn’t guarantee a championship for the city. It all can be credited to the system of Steve Kerr and the selflessness of the players to integrate Durant’s talent into the already loaded lineup of the Warriors.
Also, just two years ago, the Warriors were at the bottom of the standings. Klay Thompson was hurt and Draymond Green missed some games. But with everyone healthy this season, the Warriors were back to their winning ways.
We all think dynasties are super-dominating teams that won titles in consecutive years. With how the players and basketball have evolved, the competition is now fiercer. With all the advancements in technology, analytics, and player training with proper nutrition, you could say winning a title now is more challenging compared to the 80s and 90s.
In 2012, Bill Simmons wrote a lengthy piece about dynasties in the NBA. He coined the word “dynaster” - a combination of dynasty and contender to describe teams that enjoyed postseason success and won some championships but never really became a dynasty. For Simmons, the Tim Duncan-led San Antonio Spurs (4 titles, 9 years) and Kobe-Shaq era Lakers (3 titles, 5 years) were not dynasties but dynaster. In his books, the Warriors are categorized as a dynaster.
Daryl Morey’s response
Simmons cited his Grantland article and claimed he doesn’t think the Golden State Warriors are a dynasty. Daryl Morey, whose team faced GSW several times in the playoffs, thought otherwise.
In case you were wondering, “says” is Stephen A. Smith, used in the tweet as the symbol for outlandish hot takes. For Daryl, Simmons’ comment was surely made to elicit a response. As mentioned, the definition of a dynasty changes depending on who you ask. But more than the label, it was all about appreciation.
Seeing a team as a dynasty means appreciating what the group is doing or has done. Dynasty or not, it shouldn’t take away the fact that the front office, coaching staff, and the players deserve recognition for their work. They’ve been enjoying success for almost a decade now. It’s time to tip our hats to them.