After the first five games of the season, the Golden State Warriors are yet to hit top gear and it is becoming a concern for members of the team.
The defending champions have started the year 3-2, which to put into perspective, is surprisingly the same record as the Brooklyn Nets.
The Dubs have already lost at home and on the road to the Houston Rockets and Memphis Grizzlies, respectively.
On Wednesday, they managed to grind out a 117-112 victory against the Toronto Raptors at Oracle Arena despite a lacklustre display.
The Raptors gave a good account of themselves before superstars Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant closed the game out for the Warriors with some huge three-pointers down the stretch after they trailed with two minutes to go.
But Golden State's performance was filled with miscues, bad shots, and lack of energy rebounding the ball.
They were also below par on the defensive end by their high standards and Draymond Green didn't mince his words when describing their effort.
“Our defence has been horrible,” he said, according to Mark Medina of the San Jose Mercury News. “Nobody’s communicating.”
“At first, we were fouling a lot. The first four games the fouls were horrific and then tonight we fouled a bit early and then we cut back on that, then we turned the ball over.”
The Warriors now find themselves at the bottom of every defensive category after five games, including opponent points per game (27th), three-point percentage (21st), and field goals made (25th).
The Oakland-based outfit is giving up an average of 113.6 points per game to start the season and their sluggish start can potentially be traced back to a shortened pre-season and a trip to China.
“It feels like we’re still in training camp,” said head coach Steve Kerr. “Just the basic stuff, executing plays that we call, where we’re just in the wrong spot, we don’t get the punch, the force we need out of the plays. Our execution just isn’t quite sharp enough.”
There are many who predicted that the champs will win around 70 games and even possibly surpass their record of 73. But having unexpectedly lost two out of five encounters already, those numbers may seem unlikely at this stage.
It's clear from just a handful of games that teams are prepared to give the Warriors their best shot and the competition against them is much tougher.
But they are still the best team in the league and when they eventually hit peak form on both ends of the floor, they should return to their devastating best.