Just when you thought Niners Live couldn’t come outside the box yet again with our analytical and objective thinking; from a different lens and perspective, of course. We messed around and brought you the “Faithful” a triple-double: Emulating the GSW Blue Print; Strength in Numbers, Culture and Defense.
This Bay Area born and raised native, fan and analyst, will take readers on an interpersonal Yay Area Sports journey where no site on the net has quite taken you before. Oh, and NOT to disappoint or mislead you, this isn’t Star Trek or the Next Generation, this is NINERS LIVE.
Now let’s get down to business and slam dunk this article, shall we? Ok. Lets.
One of the key ingredients to laying down a championship foundation in any sport is Defense, and Defense Wins Championships – just ask the Golden State Warriors who, since 2013, have finished in the top five in defense efficiency as a team via (ESPN.com). Although many have made much of their offensive juggernaut ways and the bombs away three-point shots made routinely from 30 feet plus by Stephen Curry, Klay Thomas and Kevin Durant, and rightfully so. However, the one thing that sometimes gets lost in the shuffle is their ability to defend multiple positions and styles on the court.
How is that possible? Defensive habits were instilled into these players from college, most notably Draymond Green – Michigan hard-nosed player and Thomas, who credited former GSW coach Mark Jackson with making him and his teammates practice defensive drills first, before any other drills as recently discussed on (NBATV.com).
Obviously, Jackson’s attention to defensive detail during practice sessions helped pave the way and lay a foundation early in their careers.
Their early established, Dawg Mentalities, help set the tone first to be a great defensive unit. Secondly, on the court, they have a great unselfish, help the helper team defense mentality and an understanding of all five positions as well as the defensive scheme. And last but not least, during the last few years, their length, size and athleticism has allowed them to defend at a high level. They were constantly in positions where they had the advantage, ala the favorable matchups or mismatches by adapting in-game and on the fly, making the marriage between the defensive scheme and talent on the court that much more efficient defensively, as aforementioned.
Connecting the 49er and GSW Dots
Don’t look now, but the 49ers have been trending slowly, but surely, in this same direction although the numbers and the product on the field haven’t shown that up to this point, it’s been a work in progress and in the making. The 49ers, much like GSW, have been stockpiling their own talent via the draft, in the form/mold of athletic, big, physical, dawg mentality defenders with unique size, length, and versatility that can provide matchup problems while giving the team scheme flexibility. Point in case, the move from a 3/4 to a 4/3 under scheme courtesy of new DC Robert Saleh. Something that was recently discussed prior to the NFL draft on Niners Live when we pleaded for and asked General Manager John Lynch for more “Dawg Mentality” players to help “Strengthen the Numbers” in the cupboard of groceries and he delivered the goods by drafting two stand out prospects in Solomon Thomas and Reuben Foster to name a few.
Adding quality depth equals, “Strength in Numbers.”
Short and sweet. The 49ers have been busy this 2017 offseason via the draft and free agency. And have added a host of quality free agents and prospects while creating a great mix of balance, on paper that is, of still productive veterans that also bring leadership in the locker-room and young promising talent. Much like the GSW, the 49ers plan to rotate their players, in particular, the defensive line/front seven.
What’s the end game? Fresher and stronger in numbers. For a full recap of the 49ers 2017 offseason acquisitions please visit the (team’s website).
How establishing a great “Culture” Breeds Success and Fosters Winning
The GSW have collected a great group of highly talented guys with great character, competitive natures, unselfishness and a strong work ethic. These are tough-minded players with Dawg Mentalities. Another thing that has helped the GSW succeed is that they have a great one-accord business/interpersonal relationship between ownership, front office and coaching staff. If I didn’t know any better, I would think GSW owner Joseph S. Lacob, General Manager Bob Myers, Executive Board member Jerry West and Head coach Steve Kerr were all family because of their cohesiveness, chemistry, and seamless partnership that seems to be always at the forefront of great organizational moves and decision making.
CEO Jed York of the San Francisco 49ers is trying to follow that same blueprint and train. He brought in head coach Kyle Shanahan and GM John Lynch who he feels are made from similar fabric as the GSW regime, hoping to create a culture much like the GSW and place his family-owned, historic franchise on the same winning championship path.
Emulating Greatness is a work in progress
The 49ers are trying to emulate what the GSW is doing from a Strength in Numbers, Culture and Defense aspect/perspective, and quite frankly, it would behoove them to continue that piggyback ride on a sports franchise that has dynasty written all over it and in the making. Have no fear 49er Faithful, the 49ers have accumulated a great group of high-energy, talented, young/veteran and character guys that have room to grow into something special. Such players like; DeForest Buckner, Rashard Robinson, Jimmie Ward, Arik Armstead, Thomas, Foster, Pierre Garcon, Kyle Juszczyk, Elvis Dumervil and the NaVorro Bowman’s of the world to name a few much like the GSW have done.
Also not to go unnoticed as recently discussed on Niners Live; John Lynch: New Culture, New Energy, New Attitude; Equals–New Hope!
Please join us again soon on Niners Live, the home of the faithful fan and analyst from an objective/analytical lens, of course.
As always, keep your eyes wide open, 49er fans. Niners Live will be watching with you. #eyeswideopen and often imitated but never duplicated… Go Niners.
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