The Greatest Warriors of all-time
The Golden State Warriors have cemented themselves among the NBA’s best franchises over the past half-decade or so. After not winning a title since 1975 before 2015, the Dubs are now tied with the Chicago Bulls for the third most titles in the league, behind only the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics.
With this in mind, it should come as no surprise that some of the greatest of all time have suited up for the Warriors.
5. Chris Mullin
The definition of a well-rounded basketball player, Chris Mullin starred as a member of the Golden State Warriors from the late 80s to the mid-90s. Mullin made the All-Star team five times during his 13 seasons in the Bay Area and was selected to an All-NBA team four times.
Playing alongside Tim Hardaway and Mitch Richmond for a handful of seasons, Run TMC was a formidable trio, though they did not have much postseason success, a fact that has seemed to taint Mullin’s legacy.
Despite not being able to deliver a championship to Golden State, Mullin should be regarded as a Warriors legend because of his impressive shooting and scoring ability (20.1 points per game for his career as a Warrior), along with his unique basketball IQ and feel for the game. He was never one to jump out of the gym, the lefty outsmarted his opponents instead.
4. Kevin Durant
One of the greatest offensive players to ever lace them up, Kevin Durant’s career as a Warrior is filled with impressive accomplishments. In three years with Golden State, Durant was an All-Star each season, and he led the Dubs to consecutive titles over LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2017 and 2018.
Durant was named Finals MVP both years, and statistically had one of the greatest Finals of any player ever in 2017, as he averaged 35.2 points, 8.2 rebounds, and 5.4 assists for the five-game series.
Unfortunately for Warriors fans, Durant left the team in free agency this past summer to join the Brooklyn Nets with star point guard Kyrie Irving, though he will be fondly remembered for what he accomplished during his brief time with the organization.
3. Rick Barry
Rick Barry, who played in the 60s and 70s, is a case of a player who was a victim of his era. An eight-time All-Star and a champion in his eight seasons with the Golden State and previously named San Fransisco Warriors, Barry’s skillset was unheralded at the time. He could seemingly shoot the ball from anywhere on the court, and from the charity stripe, he was as efficient as anyone in league history.
Barry shot 89.3 percent from the line for his career, and that is thanks to his strange yet highly effective shooting mechanics. Unlike most, he shot his free throws underhanded, and it obviously worked well for the forward, as he is seventh all-time in free throw percentage. With his elite perimeter shooting ability, it is fun to imagine how he would light up the scoreboard in today’s pace and space style of play.
2. Wilt Chamberlain
Wilt Chamberlain was drafted by the Philadelphia Warriors in 1960, and as soon as he stepped on the court it was clear that he was unlike anything the league had ever seen. Chamberlain stood at a massive 7’1″, yet he possessed the quickness and leaping ability of a guard.
“Wilt the Stilt” spent nearly six seasons as a member of the Warriors, and he never averaged less than 36.9 points per game. During the best year of his career, 1961-62, he scored 50.4 points and grabbed 25.7 boards in 48.5 minutes per night, which is higher than the 48 minutes in an NBA game that does not go into overtime.
Chamberlain was unable to win a title as a Warrior, in large part to the Boston Celtics led by Bill Russell, but the historic numbers that he put up will likely never be eclipsed.
1. Stephen Curry
Stephen Curry is not only the greatest shooter but also the greatest Warrior ever. Since being drafted seventh overall by Golden State in the 2009 NBA Draft, he has won two MVPs, three championships, and has been named to the All-Star team six times.
The former scoring champion is well on his way to finishing his career with the most 3-point field goals made by a single player in NBA history. Unlike the others on this list, Curry will certainly have the chance to add even more to his legacy.
This season may end in disappointment, though once he and Klay Thompson recover from their injuries, the Warriors will no longer be among the league’s worst. Couple that with a high lottery pick coming this spring along with with the chance at snagging Giannis Antetokounpo in free agency this summer, and a new dynasty in Golden State is not out of the realm of possibility.