After making it to the NBA Finals for five straight seasons, the Golden State Warriors dynasty looked over following the departure of Kevin Durant. Adding Klay Thompson's injury to it, things didn't look good for the Dubs.
It greatly impacted their performances in 2020 and 2021, as the Warriors missed the playoffs for back-to-back years. Those seasons created a narrative that the Warriors are done and dusted.
But by now, we're sure that the Warriors dynasty is not over yet. The Warriors had a sensational regular season and postseason run as they won the 2022 NBA Championship.
During their championship run, the Warriors got past several teams. The list included Ja Morant and the Memphis Grizzlies. Since drafting Morant, the Grizzlies' fortunes have changed.
They are playing like one of the best teams in the Western Conference. This led a lot of fans to believe the Grizzlies might defeat the Warriors in the second round of the 2022 playoffs. Well, that didn't happen, but it was an entertaining series for fans.
The league took note of it and rewarded fans with a Christmas Day matchup between the two sides. Obviously, it feels like the NBA is pushing towards a rivalry between the Warriors and the Grizzlies.
Even if that was the case, Warriors veteran Andre Iguodala quickly disregarded the rivalry between the two teams.
“Ja loves the lights, and I think you gonna see high-flying action that night. Like I said before, we talked about the motivation that Memphis has coming into the game where they got Draymond’s quotes all over the weight room. I think the Warriors’ squad will be ready, too! It don’t matter what happen in that game. It ain’t no rivalry. Just like the Clippers-Warriors, they can talk about that as rivalry. Got rid of them boys."
The Warriors have a lot of experience on their side, and it's not easy to get past a team of that caliber. The Grizzlies experienced that first-hand during the 2022 NBA playoffs.
Despite that, the NBA has decided to give the two teams a Christmas Day match. If the Grizzlies end up winning against the Dubs, it might reignite the sparks of a rivalry between them.