The Golden State Warriors remind me so much of the San Francisco 49ers of the 80’s and 90’s, it’s startling.
Both teams, obviously based in the Bay Area, won multiple championships thanks to undeniable star power. And now both teams are on the cusp of sharing a similar streak: most consecutive road wins of all-time.
The Warriors tied a franchise-record with 14 straight road wins Wednesday night against the Chicago Bulls. The Dubs stand two short of the 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers, who hold the NBA record with 16 straight road wins.
The milestone would be impressive when you consider the number of games Stephen Curry has missed during the streak (9), but what’s eerily similar is how much the road prowess of the Warriors remind me of those dynamic 49ers teams.
From 1988-1990 — led by Bill Walsh, Joe Montana, Jerry Rice and Ronnie Lott — the 49ers ran off 18 straight road wins, which still stands as the longest road streak in NFL history.
They went on the road in style, living in five-star hotels like rock stars due to the extravagant and generous ways of Hall of Fame owner Edward J. DeBartolo Jr. He made life comfortable for a team that continuously broke the will of its opponents.
Now it’s difficult to compare teams from different sports when you consider the number of road games each team plays a season, but it’s the way that these teams win on the road . The Warriors of today and the 49ers of yesteryear cherish silencing raucous home crowds with the “us against the world” mentality.
And like those great 49ers teams, the Warriors relish taking their act on the road — it shakes them from being so complacent, which we’ve seen a lot this season from the defending NBA champs.
As I watched the Warriors outlast the Bulls without Draymond Green, Andre Iguodala and Jordan Bell — who severely sprained his left ankle on the first possession of the game — the uniqueness of this roster stood out. I realized that we’re watching the best team in the world at the height of its powers, and that led me down memory lane of those great 49ers teams.
Just think about the cast of characters both of these iconic teams had:
Joe Montana, who conducted the west coast offense as if his name was Anton Coppola, quarterbacked with so much coolness, similar to how Curry calmly breaks defenders down with his handles before devastating them with jaw-dropping 25-foot 3-pointers.
Klay Thompson, who’s arguably having the best season of his career, is the forgotten Splash Brother. His performances are reminiscent of John Taylor, who quietly went about his business despite having the ability to turn five-yard quick slants into highlight-reel touchdowns.
Both teams could easily let the grind of traveling and living out of suitcases result in a flat-effort in front of fans that have one opportunity a year to witness their greatness in-person.
The resemblance is uncanny.
Bonta Hill of 95.7 The Game can be heard from 12-3 on the Greg Papa Show. Born and bred in San Francisco, he is a sports junkie who loves to sit in the lab (home), eats breakfast food for dinner, and has a newfound love for tequila. Follow at your own risk on Twitter @BontaHill.Bill WalshGolden State WarriorsSan Francisco 49ersStephen Curry