The Golden State Warriors dynasty seems to be slowly fading away, as they have an 8-10 record after blowing a big lead and losing, 124-123, to the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday.
To add injury to insult, Gary Payton II, one of their key reserves, suffered an injury during the contest.
Per Shams Charania, he has been diagnosed with a torn right calf and will be out indefinitely.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 29, 2023
This is a sizable blow to a Warriors team that is looking old and vulnerable and badly needs young contributors to revive their prowess.
They won five of their first six games this season and were looking spry, but those good vibes have evaporated.
When Golden State won the NBA championship two seasons ago, it was largely because of the contributions of young players such as Payton, Andrew Wiggins, Kevon Looney, Jordan Poole, Jonathan Kuminga, and Moses Moody.
But Poole was traded this past summer for 38-year-old Chris Paul, making them even older than they already were.
While Stephen Curry continues to play brilliantly, he is 35 years of age, while Klay Thompson and Draymond Green are both 33.
Thompson, of course, suffered a torn ACL and torn Achilles a few years ago, and the five-time All-Star hasn’t been the same since.
Even though he had a decent 2022-23 campaign, he is shooting just 40.4 percent from the field and 36.4 percent from 3-point range so far this season.
Meanwhile, while Paul is averaging 7.3 assists in 26.8 minutes a game, he’s at just 39.9 percent overall shooting and 32.8 percent from downtown.