The confetti rained down as the crowd roared.
Over the past five years, such jubilant celebration for the Warriors was often reserved for playoff series victories and NBA championships.
On this night back in early November, however, Golden State showered its customers with party streamers to celebrate the team’s first regular-season win at Chase Center.
The Warriors soundly defeated the Portland Trail Blazers 127-118, featuring a lineup devoid of stars D’Angelo Russell, Draymond Green, and Steph Curry, all of whom were sidelined with injuries.
Portland, at full-strength going into the game, became the laughingstock of NBA Twitter for the next 48 hours.
It hasn’t gotten better for Portland since, as the Blazers have lost four of their last five games, including another head-scratching loss to the Kings on Tuesday.
Abraham Lincoln once said “When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.”
For Portland’s general manager Neil Olshey, that knot reportedly comes in the form of 10-time NBA All-Star Carmelo Anthony.
Anthony hasn’t played in an NBA game since November of 2018, back when he had a 10-game run with the Houston Rockets to begin last season before the team parted ways with Melo on Nov. 15.
The Trail Blazers are in desperation mode, standing 4-8 in an unquestionably loaded Western Conference and now are dealing with the loss of up-and-coming power forward Zach Collins for multiple months with a shoulder injury.
All those empty gym Instagram workouts seem to have finally paid off for Anthony, whose role and impact remains to be seen with a team that was just four wins away from the NBA Finals in 2018.
While his scoring acumen is unquestioned, his defensive ability -- especially after a full year away from the NBA -- might hurt a team already featuring several liabilities on that end of the court more than it helps.
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However, this likely will be a short-term experiment if Melo doesn’t make a discernible impact immediately. Dec. 15 marks the first day teams can trade players signed during the summer free agency period, so Portland can pursue help on the wing through that avenue if Anthony, whose contract is non-guaranteed, doesn’t produce as advertised.