The Golden State Warriors lost a bit of their fire on Tuesday night following a narrow 104-96 defeat at the hands of a surging Phoenix Suns side. This was only the third loss of the season for the Dubs who have won 18 out of their first 21 games of the campaign.

To say that the Warriors have had a strong start to the new season would be a huge understatement. If you really think about it, it’s actually quite astounding how the Dubs have been able to turn things around so quickly following two brutal years for the franchise.

After a majestic five-year NBA Finals run that included no less than three titles, the Dubs came crashing down during the 2019-20 season. They were literally the worst team in the league that year. They followed that horrific campaign with another down year last season. Golden State failed to make it to the playoffs for the second year running, which by their high standards, was an absolute disappointment.

Be that as it may, Dubs head coach Steve Kerr actually sees the silver lining in his team’s struggles over the past couple of years. According to the 56-year-old shot-caller, this was actually what the Warriors needed after their infamous burnout:

“I think the value is that there’s a rebirth,” Kerr said, via Sam Amick of The Athletic. “There’s a kind of an energy that exists now that, frankly, we didn’t have the last year we went to the Finals because it was so exhausting — that whole five-year run. So that final year, we were running on fumes. When you go in the tank like we did the last couple of years, and you’re struggling and trying to find your way and then you find it again, the energy naturally returns because you’re just so happy to be winning again.”

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Kerr then went on to pinpoint one specific turning point that changed everything for the Warriors:

“So I think in some ways, these last two years were good for us to recharge the batteries,” Kerr continued. “And I think it started last year at the end of the season. I thought that was a crucial time for us, winning 15 of our last 20 (games). Even though we didn’t get into the playoffs, getting into the play-in (tournament), playing the way we did (was big). People probably forget this, but we were number one in the league in defense for those last 20 games. We were number seven on offense over the last 20.

“So we kind of found our identity again, and our confidence. And I think that fed right into this year. So it’s no coincidence that we’re playing well again.”

As Kerr said, the Warriors did not find success during the play-in tournament last season. They fell to LeBron James and his then-defending champs Los Angeles Lakers followed by a gutting loss to the Memphis Grizzlies for the eighth and final spot in the West. Nevertheless, they were able to build on some momentum leading up to this season.

Right now, the Warriors are back to their best again. They’re one of, if not the best team in the league at the moment. The scary part about all this is that Klay Thompson and James Wiseman are still on the shelf. Both players are expected to return in the near future and all signs are pointing to the Dubs chasing their fourth title this term.