Tom Haberstroh Talks Warriors' Threats, DeMarcus Cousins, LeBron's Lakers

OAKLAND -- There are many princes of analytics in the world of sports, and one of the most renown within the NBA is Tom Haberstroh, who recently joined NBC Sports as its national NBA insider.

Haberstroh has a full decade of experience following and commenting on the NBA and its trends, everything from complex statistical analysis to the diet and nutrition patterns of players.

We spent a few minutes -- OK, a lot of minutes -- talking about the state of the league. Lakers fans won't like what Haberstroh says about the latest edition of their team.

Here are a few snippets from this week's episode of The Warriors Insider Podcast with Haberstroh:

On the biggest threat to the Warriors -- "In the West, it's got to be Utah. Houston, the window opened and closed that fast."

On the biggest Eastern Conference threat -- "In the East, I know a lot of people talk about Boston. But Toronto, with Kawhi Leonard and a Moreyball offense . . ."

On DeMarcus Cousins -- "When the average fan or the casual fan thinks about DeMarcus Cousins, they think a lumbering center who's slow up and down the floor. That's true, to some degree. But he's a guard. He averaged close to six assists last year. He's shooting 3s. He was leading the Pelicans in 3-point makes for the majority of the season.

On Cousins' recovery -- "I think people are sleeping on DeMarcus Cousins and how ready he'll be, and how soon he'll be back. I keep going back to the data. What is the evidence out there? I studied all of it. If you average it out, the average sideline timetable is sometime around nine months. That would put it somewhere around Thanksgiving."

On Stephen Curry's offensive ceiling -- "I've learned not to put a lid on that guy."

On the LeBron James and the Lakers -- "This is going to be a 40ish-win team. And they better hope Jimmy Butler gets traded out of the conference because they're going to be fighting for a playoff spot."

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