* * *
Your thoughts on the Warriors after two games with DeMarcus Cousins in the lineup?
* * *
Steve Aschburner: This shiny new toy is enough to propel the Warriors to another NBA title. Cousins doesn’t have to carry Golden State, though two victories by 18 and 19 points and per-36 numbers of 22 points, 15 rebounds and eight assists suggest he could do that as his minutes ramp up. All he has to do is fit in and, in the team’s embrace of him and his talents, provide a rallying point for the other Warriors. This is something different, a basketball challenge that can crowd out other possible, less helpful distractions. The only potential downside I could see would be a physical setback for Cousins once the Warriors really began to rely on him. But heck, that would provide a different sort of rallying point. This is all going to work out precisely the way the “light years ahead” organization scripted it. Good for them, bad for everybody else.
Shaun Powell: My thought is the same as it was before the season started: that the Warriors from a personnel standpoint have never been scarier in the Steve Kerr era. Which says a lot. With five All-Stars, four of whom are career 20-point scorers, you can't double team anyone. They don't even need DeMarcus Cousins and yet Cousins (so far) is showing no sign of an injury slowdown. Assuming everyone stays on the same page from here, well, we know how this will end.
John Schuhmann: I don't know if the Warriors could be happier with the Cousins addition thus far. He has looked more mobile than expected and he certainly hasn't upset the champs' rhythm as they've run their winning streak to eight games. The team's five-All-Star starting lineup has outscored its opponents 55-20 in its 18 minutes and has recorded assists on 22 of its 23 field goals (with only four turnovers). We'll learn more with every game and the Celtics will be a great test for Cousins defensively on Saturday, but so far, so good.
Sekou Smith: My preliminary thoughts and concerns about the Warriors folding Cousins into their mix were allayed after watching how well the big man fit in with his All-Star teammates in those first two games. They were already the favorites to win it all again, but Boogie's addition had the potential to derail things. But I just don't see it happening. He's been around the Warriors long enough to know that you dive into the culture and embrace that whole strength in numbers thing and it tends to work out for all involved. I'm going to enjoy seeing how all of the Warriors' stars handle yet another All-Star needing his touches. I want to see just how far you can stretch the fabric of this team before something (or someone) breaks.