On Wednesday night, the Golden State Warriors look to extend their historic run of victories at home as they aim for a 50th (that’s right, fiftieth!) consecutive win at Oracle Arena.
They face the New York Knicks as they attempt to take one step closer to the immortal total of 73 regular season wins, currently standing at 60-6 with 16 games left.
However, caught up in the pursuit of the best regular season record in history, it seems many people haven't noticed the Warriors can become the first team ever to go an undefeated 41-0 at home.
Article continues below
Golden State’s last regular season home defeat came nearly 14 months ago on the January 27 last year, in a 113-111 overtime loss to the Chicago Bulls.
Since then, the Warriors have lost only two home games, both occurring in last year’s playoffs, before winning all of their 31 games at Oracle so far during the 2015-16 season.
Article continues below
In their own building, Golden State has the support of the most vociferous fans in the NBA, with some league followers even nicknaming the building ‘Roaracle’ due to the immense noise generated by the fans in the Bay Area.
The current home record for the regular season is held by the 1985-86 Boston Celtics, who with legendary players Larry Bird, Kevin McHale and Bill Walton, went 40-1 through their 41 home games.
Golden State fell one game short of that historic mark last year, finishing at 39-2, when they tied the sixth-best regular season record ever at 67-15. But now, they are on course to leapfrog Boston and claim the record for themselves.
What must also be considered is that the San Antonio Spurs also have an outside shot of claiming the record as well, as they need to win their final nine home fixtures to break Boston’s triumph.
But there is a catch, both the Warriors and Spurs face each other three times between now and the season’s end; twice in San Antonio and once in the Bay Area.
It is difficult to expect that all three of those games will be won by the home sides, which means the possibility of one of the two teams, or even both, preventing the other from breaking the record is certainly on the cards.
Golden State has 10 remaining games at the Oracle before the end of the regular season, five left in March, against the Knicks, Los Angeles Clippers, Dallas Mavericks, Philadelphia 76ers and Washington Wizards. Then the final five in April are against Boston, Portland, Minnesota, San Antonio and Memphis.
On the face of it, the most difficult of those fixtures should be the matchups against LA, Boston and San Antonio as they all occupy top four spots in their respective conference’s.
Yet the Warriors have found the most trouble against lower ranked sides at home, with their closest chances of losing coming in games against Brooklyn, Denver and, last week, the Phoenix Suns.
Their greatest escape came in their encounter with the Nets, where Brooklyn center Brook Lopez missed a tip-in just a few feet from the basket as time expired, giving the Warriors a chance to regroup and emerge victorious in overtime.
Portland and Dallas - who both look like contenders to face the Warriors in the first round of the playoffs - will also provide stern opponents, but the chances of Golden State breaking yet another record this season certainly looks favourable.
What will then matter is whether Warriors head coach Steve Kerr opts to rest any of his key players in the final few games of the season if they have the one seed in the Western Conference wrapped up.
Kerr, like the players, has emphasised that records will mean little if they do not come away with an NBA championship.
However, with the possibility of 73 wins and the first ever undefeated regular season at home on the cards, it will be difficult to persuade any player to rest during the final few matches of the season.
The Warriors will certainly back themselves to become the first 41-0 home team, and with the season they have had, who in their right mind would bet against them?