Without a connection to the band, reunion tours can be difficult. the people on stage are older, they’ve lost some or all of that spark that made them special, and the show doesn’t have the same impact as it used to.
but that’s fine. because the show is for those who are connected. the point of the reunion tour is to sell nostalgia to these great people, to transport them back in time, if only for a few moments.
the warriors will go on a reunion tour this coming season. The top four from the team’s first run to once-unfathomable greatness are back together for one last run. And while I don’t think Andre Iguodala’s return will make the Warriors title contenders, I do think there will be more than just wonderful bursts of nostalgia, moments when Warriors fans will be transported back in time.
And that’s worth a lot more than the veteran’s minimum.
As serious as we are about basketball, it’s still entertainment, and even a cold-hearted naysayer like me finds joy and solace in iguodala’s return to the bay on a one-year deal.
iguodala is not the same player he was during the early part of the warriors’ dynastic career. of course he is not. he missed a step before being traded in the summer of 2019, but he can still contribute big time on the floor. Reports of his passing have been greatly exaggerated.
That said, his impact off the pitch will be even more significant for dubs.
iguodala was already a player-coach in his first spell with the warriors. He accepted the Steve Kerr gospel quickly and had no problem teaching the good news about ball movement and changing defenses to anyone he wanted (and some who were unwilling) to listen to.
During their glory years together, Kerr used to call Iguodala the “babysitter” of the warriors. Every time Steph Curry and Draymond Green got too frantic, every time the Warriors’ defense lost cohesion, Iguodala inserted himself into the game and calmed things down. he was the ultimate operator on the pitch: his overall IQ, his ability to execute points, and his defensive magic were instrumental in the warriors’ rise to giant status. Much of the fabric for the three title banners hanging in the center of the chase is from iguodala.
so while yes it will be great to see curry, green, klay thompson and iguodala back together on the same team, the value of the veteran forward will be more important in mentoring inexperienced players on the warrior roster. there are some impressionable young men who need to hear that good news.
On the court, I imagine Iguodala will be the backup point guard for the Warriors this season. that could change, but given the dubs’ goals of limiting salary and general age, I doubt it will. The future 18-year-old veteran remains in elite form, so the concept of him playing an impressive 20 minutes a night alongside 18- and 20-year-olds isn’t a stretch.
and there will be nights when death’s lineup meets again, albeit this time with andrew wiggins replacing the late harrison barnes.
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(reunion tours always seem to have at least one random guy playing with the band).
And there will be moments with that lineup on the court where the true believers, the people who lived and died with every bounce of the ball during those early playoff seasons and the dynastic ones that followed, will be transported back to 2015.
is a powerful force, nostalgia. And while it’s strange that we’ve reached this point for warriors, the era of “living legends,” when it’s better to look back than forward, it’s easier to embrace nostalgia than fight it. players may not have the same spark they did half a decade ago, except for the seemingly immortal curry, which has somehow improved, and the building they play in is on the wrong side of the bay, but I’m very interested . forward to that first game again together. I’m looking forward to the latest game too.
and when this incredible race comes to an end, I want to see a no. 9 in the rafters next to the championship banners he helped hang.