The Golden State Warriors were expected to be the best team in the NBA this season, and after a hiccup or two in the early going they are. The Warriors are generally crushing their opponents now and on pace to be one of the best offensive teams ever.
I wouldn't say there was panic in the streets of Oakland following the Warriors' 117-97 loss at the Lakers on Nov. 4 that dropped the team to 4-2, but there was perhaps some concern that things weren't going to go as swimmingly as possible for this team after adding four-time scoring champion Kevin Durant to the All-Star trio of Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green this offseason.
But since that loss, the Warriors have looked like the super team that was expected. They have scored at least 109 points in each of an 11-game winning streak as of Monday other than in a 104-88 victory in Boston on Nov. 18. The Warriors have been the definition of an unselfish team, having recorded at least 30 assists in 10 straight games before that streak was snapped Saturday against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Golden State had "only" 25 in that 115-102 victory. It's the fourth straight season the Warriors have had at least a 10-game winning streak.
As of Monday, the Warriors are scoring 115.4 points per 100 possessions. Since the NBA began recording turnovers in 1973-74, the best mark in that statistic was 112.7 scored by the 2009-10 Phoenix Suns. The league as a whole has an offensive rating of 103.8, meaning the Warriors' mark is 11.1 percent better than average. No team since 1973-74 has managed to score 10 percent better than league average over a full season. If you are wondering, last year's Warriors team that won an NBA-record 73 regular-season games had a rating of 112.5 and was 8.3 percent better than the league average of 103.9. Since that Lakers loss, the Warriors have a ridiculous 119.9 offensive rating. Curry, Durant and Thompson are all averaging over 20 points a game. The last team to have three 20-point scorers in a full season was the 2007-08 Warriors with Baron Davis, Monta Ellis and Stephen Jackson.
Even if you aren't a Warriors fan, they are really fun to watch. It actually hasn't all translated to wins from a betting perspective on them, however. The Warriors are just 8-8-1 ATS on NBA odds and 10-7 'over/under.' SBR's best sportsbooks keep raising the game lines for this team. Golden State hasn't been a single-digit favorite since Nov. 19 at Milwaukee and didn't cover that one in the second of a back-to-back. The Warriors haven't had a total under 218 since Nov. 9 vs. Dallas.
Neither of those above trends is likely to end until Dec. 7 in a big showdown at the Los Angeles Clippers. The Warriors are at home until them. They were -13.5 on NBA picks for Monday's game vs. Atlanta with a total of 217.5. Golden State will also be a double-digit favorite with a very high betting total Thursday vs. Houston, Saturday vs. Phoenix and next Monday against Indiana. None of those three squads are good defensively, with each giving up at least 105 points per game.
Golden State is a -115 favorite at BetOnline to win the NBA title.