Sports Metric of the Week: Did the Golden State Warriors Get Lucky?

The Golden State Warriors have emerged from Western Conference bottom-dweller to NBA champions in a rapid ascension to the top of the sport. With the new season underway, the Warriors are off to a blistering 7-0 start by outscoring their opponents by 20+ points per game, including a victory over their in-state rivals, the Los Angeles Clippers, this past Wednesday night.

Some, most notably Clippers’ coach Doc Rivers, have hinted to the fact that the Warriors’ championship run from last year can be attributed to fortune rather than skill. A simple look at both regular season and postseason point differential from the past five NBA champions will show the Warriors accomplishing the most dominant regular season of the 2010’s followed by a seamless playoff run which included just five total losses in four rounds of play.


Ironically, the last team to match the Warriors’ regular season dominance was Doc Rivers’ Boston Celtics team in 2007-2008 which posted a +10.2 regular season points different per game.

The bottom line is every championship team needs luck to reach that pinnacle, although the Warriors’ large point differential in games proves the team’s superiority throughout last year.

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