The Golden State Warriors are just two seasons removed from winning their fourth championship of the last decade, but there are plenty of questions for them to answer this season as they look to bounce back from a bit of a down year that saw them land the 6-seed in the West and get bounced in the second round.
On Tuesday they played host to the Suns in the nightcap of the NBA’s opening night festivities on TNT, offering an early measuring stick game for both teams — with both being without a key player. Phoenix was without Bradley Beal, as the newest member of the Suns is dealing with a tweaked back, and the Warriors were without their defensive leader in Draymond Green as he works his way back from an ankle injury. The absence of Green loomed large in the first half, as the Suns got busy on offense in the second quarter to dart out to a 15-point halftime lead.
Despite it being just one half of basketball and the Warriors being down their best defender, Charles Barkley had seen enough of the Warriors to declare them dead, 24 minutes into the season.
“The Warriors are cooked.” – Chuck pic.twitter.com/ywws7cgBQy
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) October 25, 2023
Naturally, the Warriors went on a 25-5 run to open the third quarter and immediately retake the lead over the Suns, and if they end up winning, the postgame show will almost assuredly flashback to laugh at Chuck. If you want to say the Warriors aren’t in the very top tier of contenders in the NBA this season, you wouldn’t find a ton of argument outside the Bay Area, but to call them “cooked” after a half of basketball was maybe Chuck getting out in front of his skis a bit. That said, he’s said this before and seems to just be doubling down on his proclamation from last year that got Draymond Green very mad at him — with TNT almost assuredly calling Dray in after this one, especially if Golden State gets the win.