Draymond Green is expecting the NBA's Western Conference to be hotly contested this season but he does not envy opposition players and coaches who must face the Golden State Warriors.
The 28-year-old, who was drafted by Golden State in 2012, has been a key member of the Warriors' dominant side in recent years, with the team winning three of the last four championships.
The new season gets under way on Tuesday, with Green and his team-mates facing the Oklahoma City Thunder, but the forward is expecting a tough year in a star-studded Western Conference, including LeBron James joining the Los Angeles Lakers.
"I think the entire Western Conference is going to be tough," Green said.
"Obviously the [Houston] Rockets will be really good again - they took us to Game 7 last year. With the Lakers adding LeBron, they're going to be tough. I think Utah [Jazz] will continue to get better. Portland [Trail Blazers] are always tough with Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum.
"Phoenix [Suns] got better, adding Trevor Ariza and it's yet to be seen but pretty high hopes for DeAndre Ayton, and re-signing Devin Booker is important for them.
IT’S OFFICIALLY GAME DAY pic.twitter.com/fr5xum9RjQ— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) October 16, 2018
"San Antonio [Spurs] added DeMar DeRozan and still have everything in place, except for Kawhi Leonard - you know, coach Pop [Gregg Popovich], LaMarcus Aldridge, they're going to be tough. OKC are going to be tough.
"I think there are going to be a lot of tough teams. Night in, night out, you have to bring it in the Western Conference or you could possibly struggle quite a bit. There won't be any surprises."
But the Warriors have improved, too, bringing in DeMarcus Cousins, and Green is not entirely sure how an opponent in the West would go about stopping Golden State.
"I think teams have tried everything, defensively, and we've had a pretty nice amount of success," Green added. "Hopefully we can maintain that.
"In terms of a defensive plan, I'm just thankful that it's not on me to come up with that. We'll leave that to those opposing coaches and those opposing players, see if they can figure it out.
"In the meantime, we will continue to try to get better and try to make it tougher for them to figure out."
13 de diciembre 2018
|Emery: Arsenal could sign defender in January|
|Phillies sign McCutchen to three-year deal|
|O´Neal thinks his Lakers teams could ´easily´ beat Warriors|
|A-League to add two clubs by 2020|
|Curry says he was ´obviously joking´ about moon landing comments|
|Now the beautiful part starts – Ronaldo ready for Champions League knockout stage|
|Bayern have a lot more potential – Lewandowski not satisfied despite top spot|
|Lyon star Fekir shares plaudits for Champions League progression|
|Mourinho not surprised by United´s defeat to Valencia|
|Motivation no issue for Benfica, claims Vitoria|
|Lewandowski finishes Champions League group stage as top scorer|
|Mourinho: We scored two goals and lost 2-1!|
|England have a diamond - Guardiola hails City´s Foden|
|Sterling´s carefree display invites us to love football more than others hate|
12 de diciembre 2018
|Juventus achieved their objective, despite everything going wrong – Allegri|
|Never say never - Schmidt not ruling out All Blacks role|
|Bologna´s winning start ended in BCL|
|Di Francesco critical of Roma performance|
|Shakhtar Donetsk 1 Lyon 1: Fekir fires French side through in Group F|
|Benfica 1 AEK Athens 0: Grimaldo sends hosts out on a high|
|Young Boys 2 Juventus 1: Hoarau double seals famous victory|
|Manchester City 2 Hoffenheim 1: City through as group winners after Sane brace|
|Ajax 3 Bayern Munich 3: Kovac´s men clinch top spot in Amsterdam thriller|
|Valencia 2 Manchester United 1: Jones scores own goal as Red Devils limp through|
|Solari accepts responsibility for Madrid´s heaviest home defeat in Europe|
|WATCH: Rooney backs Rocky ahead of Canelo showdown|
|McLaren to collaborate with Team Bahrain Merida|
|Las Vegas to host 2020 NFL Draft|
|Stade teenager tragically dies after neck injury|
|Cahill may need to leave Chelsea if he wants to play, admits Sarri|
|Viktoria Plzen 2 Roma 1: Chory winner takes hosts into Europa League|
|Real Madrid 0 CSKA Moscow 3: Champions humiliated at Bernabeu|
|Sarri condemns ´disgusting´ Sterling abuse|
|Hansen hails outstanding Ben Smith ahead of Pau switch|
|Foden, Sterling start for Manchester City v Hoffenheim|
|Sky decision will not affect us in 2019, insist Froome and Thomas|
|Al Ain 3 Team Wellington 3 (aet, 4-3 on penalties): Shootout heartbreak for semi-pros in Club World|
|Jackson to remain Ravens´ starting QB despite Flacco return|
|Rams headline 2019 NFL International Series home teams|
|Rams headline International Series home teams for 2019|
|Atlanta want ´exciting football´ from new boss amid Bielsa links|
|Atlanta still yet to receive ´serious´ bid for ´Bale-like´ Almiron|
|Tottenham v Manchester United to be held at Wembley|
|Matip facing six weeks out with fractured collarbone|
|I´ve had quite a lot of calls – Brailsford encouraged by Team Sky interest|
|Afghanistan Football Federation president provisionally banned by FIFA|
|Knee injury rules Huddersfield´s Mooy out of Asian Cup|
|Arnautovic tipped for Man United move by Austria team-mate Sabitzer|
|Arsenal legend Adams to become RFL president|
|My love for football still burns strong – Toure speaks out amid talk of Premier League return|
|Noble contract extended to 2021|
|Split with Sky is an opportunity, says Brailsford|
|Van der Burgh rolls back the years, two more medals for Hosszu|
|Maitland-Niles praises Sterling for speaking out|
|Life is tough for him right now - Celtic striker Griffiths to take time away from football|
|Froome: Team Sky keen to continue with new partner|
|Emery confirms Koscielny to play against Qarabag|
|Llorente keen on Athletic return|
|I love the guy - Pocock backs under-pressure Cheika|
|Fit-again Ozil in line for Arsenal return against Qarabag|
|Raheem Sterling named Premier League Player of the Month|
|Two more Ligue 1 games postponed due to unrest|
|Pace attack among India´s best ever - Arun|
|Premier League has fostered ´excessive aggression´ among fans, says Scudamore|
|Sharks back Flanagan amid NRL investigation|
|Not good for my recovery! Hoddle delights in Spurs´ Champions League heroics|
|Harris backing Starc to fire in Perth|
|No fears over Atleti´s second-place finish for Simeone|
|Clippers buckled under Raptors pressure - Rivers|
|Icardi: Inter deserved to qualify|