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The 2001–02 NBA season was the Warriors' 56th season in the National Basketball Association, and 40th in the San Francisco Bay Area. The season saw the Warriors draft Jason Richardson from Michigan State with the fifth overall pick in the 2001 NBA draft. The acquisition of Richardson along with other rookies Troy Murphy, and Gilbert Arenas sought to help with the Warriors struggles the past seasons. Instead, their struggles continued as head coach Dave Cowens was fired and replaced with Brian Winters after an 8–15 start. The Warriors suffered a ten-game losing streak in March and finished last place in the Pacific Division with a 21–61 record. Despite their continuing struggles, Richardson won the Slam Dunk Contest, and was invited to play in the Rookie Game during the All-Star Weekend in Philadelphia. He was also selected to the All-Rookie First Team. Following the season, Larry Hughes signed as a free agent with the Washington Wizards, Winters was fired as coach and Mookie Blaylock retired.
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