One year ago, the Sharks GM, Dan Wilson was home after a quick exit from the playoffs and he was dreaming of ways to blow up his underachieving "Tiborones" and acquiring the pieces that it would take for the City of San Jose to life Lord Stanley's Cup over it's collective head.
One year ago, the Golden State Warriors, the only basketball team in the Bay Area, NO Sacramento does not count YET, although in 30 years it probably will, as some count Fairfield and Vacaville as in the Bay, was in complete disarray. Their star players wanted out and their alcoholic coach was signed to an extension.
All of these things have changed, in 365 days, well, except for the alcoholic coach still threatening to coach again this season.
The Sharks are one step away from reaching heights that they have never seen. Although the franchise is still one of the youngest in any major sport, it seems like with all of the talent and fan support that has been in San Jose that they would have at least tasted the Stanley Cup Finals. Alas, they have not, and now stare an 0-2 deficit and two games in Chicago in the face. This will be quite a challenge, but, don't count these guys out. That would be a mistake. (I am only listing the Sharks in order to make a point about how Bay Area Sports have turned around in one year, anyone who actually has in depth knowledge of this please feel free to add it and I will link it here)
Now onto a team which I am a Decade long Season Ticket Holder for, the Golden State Warriors.
Don't laugh Warrior fans, BUT, I believe that this team has MOST of the pieces it will need to make the playoffs next year. Losing Kelenna Azabuike, Brandon Wright, Beidrens, Turiaf and Randolph for long stretches last season absolutely killed this team. That was all of your up front power/rebounding and in the paint scoring. Without that, the team was left to play the Ultimate Nellie Ball.
The reason that I am thinking that this team can challenge for the Playoffs is that Steph Curry matured into a real point guard in this league and EVERY team in the NBA that doesn't run the Point Forward in L.A. is built around an outstanding point guard.
Having a real point guard to team up with a pure scorer like Montay Ellis in the background is a great place to start. Then you add in length and rebounding ability and some bigs that can spread the floor and you have a shot to beat anybody. All they need now is two thugs in the front court rotation and they could be special.
Needless to say, as a Warrior fan, I am much happier at this point of the year than I was last year, even if Nellie shnockered. Heck, maybe he'll go back to the jovial drunk that he was in 2006!!!