Mike Dunleavy

NBA playoff parity gives Dunleavy confidence in Warriors' title return

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After watching the NBA playoffs without his Warriors, Mike Dunleavy not only is confident Golden State can return to the tournament next season, but still can compete for a championship.

In speaking to reporters Monday at Chase Center in a pre-2024 NBA Draft press conference, the Warriors general manager explained why watching this year's playoff field battle it out for the Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy gave him confidence in Golden State's chances to do the same next season.

"I think just in terms of the postseason, like how competitive it is in terms of parity. I think you see the last five seasons, you have five different champions," Dunleavy said. "I think that's exciting for the league in the sense of, everybody has a chance in a way, whether it's a play-in team making the Finals or a team like Dallas, 5th seed, making the Finals."

"Everybody has got a chance if you come together at the right time. I don't think there's any overwhelming teams out there. It gives us a chance, a team that didn't make the playoffs last year and ourselves, you know, how far away are we really. At times you say, 'man, we are quite a ways away.' The way things are shaped now, there's a push for parity, I think we can turn things around pretty quickly."

The Boston Celtics, the Eastern Conference's No. 1 seed with the best record in the league, ultimately were crowned champions after defeating the Dallas Mavericks, the Western Conference's No. 5 seed, in five games.

In 2023, it was the one-seed Denver Nuggets who defeated the eight-seed Miami Heat.

While top seeds like Boston and Denver ultimately prevailed in the last two years, lower-seeded teams were in the fight until the very end.

Dunleavy knows that if the Warriors secure a spot in the tournament next season, anything is possible.

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