Warriors 11 back of Lakers all time streak of 33 wins

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The big story of the NBA season – perhaps the biggest story in all of sports – is Golden State’s dominating start.

Sunday’s 114-98 win at Brooklyn had the Warriors at 22-0 and now two thirds of the way toward the all time NBA winning streak of 33 games set by the 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers. Dating back to the end of last season Golden State won their final 4 regular season games such that their regular season winning streak stands at 26 in a row.

A win in Indiana Tuesday night would tie Golden State with the 2012-13 Miami Heat for the second longest streak in NBA history, albeit Miami’s streak was accomplished in a single season.

Looking forward there is the possibility that when the NBA has its huge Christmas Day five game extravaganza in just over two weeks the middle game of that quintuple-header would have the then 28-0 Warriors host the Cleveland Cavaliers in their first meeting since last season’s NBA finals!

What a Christmas gift that would make for sports fans in general and NBA fans in particular! Especially since a win would make it a record tying 33 in a row dating back to last season.

Although they will be favored in each intervening game, the game at Indiana could be a stiff test and even the game hosting Utah two days before that Christmas contest could be problematic if the Warriors are caught looking ahead.

But one gets the sense the Warriors thrive on the “pressure” that comes with making history and that they are embracing the challenge.

Looking further ahead the Warriors would be in position to set the record of 34 straight wins – over two seasons – in their very next game after facing the Cavs, the following Monday when they host Sacramento.

To set the same season record of 34 straight wins the Warriors would have to wait until Saturday, Jan. 2 when they host Denver. If successful, they could start the season 34-0 with a win two nights later against Charlotte.

As an aside, the Lakers may be fortunate to win even half of that record number of 33 straight wins they set 43 seasons ago. At 3-17 the Lakers are on pace to win either 12 or 13 games over a full 82 game season. My, how mighty have fallen – although the Lakers have enjoyed incredible success in those intervening seasons!

Here’s a look at three games for this weekend.

Golden State Warriors at Boston Celtics (Fri.): Barring an upset on Tuesday at Indiana, the Warriors will seek to start 24-0 with a win here. In seeking a second straight trip to the Playoffs the Celtics have started 11-9 although they started this week having won 4 of 6 and off a tough 3 point loss at San Antonio. Golden State is likely to be favored by from 7 to 10 points.

Boston coach Brad Stevens showed his ability to slow the pace when he led Butler to back to back Final Fours before becoming Boston’s coach and he might employ a similar strategy here. But rather than take the points versus a Warriors team winning by an average of 14.9 points per game, we might best back Boston and their potential game plan via the Total. UNDER.

San Antonio Spurs at Atlanta Hawks (Sat.): Lost in the outstanding start by Golden State has been a very strong beginning by San Antonio, considered by many to be the main threat to the Warriors’ chances of repeating as Western Conference champions. The Spurs have the NBA’s second best record. 17-4, and are outscoring foes by an average of 10 points per game while allowing a league low of just 89.3 ppg. Coach Gregg Popovich was 2-0 against his former assistant and current Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer that included a 19 point win on this court in their second meeting, after winning their first encounter at home by one.

Having a chance to see his former pupil’s approach in that first meeting clearly helped in the second. Atlanta is off to another fine start but steps up in class here. The Spurs did play Friday but might not have needed to exert much energy as they hosted the Lakers. The Hawks are rested but are off back to back games Wednesday at Dallas and Thursday at Oklahoma City. SAN ANTONIO.

Memphis Grizzlies at Miami Heat (Sun.): Two of the league’s better defensive teams square off on South Beach. Miami is second in the NBA in allowing just 92.2 points per game. But the Heat have had an extraordinarily favorable schedule. Through Sunday the Heat had played 13 home games and just 5 road games, somewhat inflating their overall stats. Miami is still a formidable team that will contend in the East. Memphis’ schedule has been more balance and the Grizzlies are 5-5 SU on the road.

Prior to Wednesday’s game at Detroit the Griz had covered 4 of its last 5 on the road, with 3 coming as underdogs, with two outright wins. Memphis won both meetings last season so there is a revenge motive, to whatever extent that exists in the NBA, but there should be enough line value for Memphis to either lose a tight game or garner the outright win. MEMPHIS.

Andy Iskoe, and his Logical Approach, provides his popular and unique handicapping statistics to GamingToday readers and online visitors. He has been a long time GT columnist, contributing weekly in-season columns on baseball, pro basketball and pro football. Email: [email protected]

About the Author

Andy Iskoe

Owner and author of “The Logical Approach,” Andy Iskoe has been a long time GT columnist, contributing weekly in-season columns on baseball, pro basketball and pro football.

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