Warriors Win Championship.
After a final score of 129-120 the Golden State Warriors have won the NBA Finals series 4 games to 1. The Warriors lost only one game all postseason after Cleveland put on a historic performance. After winning 73 games in an 82 game series the Golden State Warriors tasted bitter defeat after being up 3 to 1. That is all an afterthought as they hold the Larry O’Brien championship high in the sky. Every single member of that team worked hard for their title and earned the ring.
And all it took was: The first unanimous MVP, arguably greatest shooter ever Steph Curry. A shooter not far behind in All-Star Klay Thompson. Perennial DPOY candidate Draymond Green. One of the top benches in the league. A team including Steve Kerr, Mike Brown, Steve Nash and many more in coaching and development. Oh wait! Golden State also added the second best player in the world and most versatile scorer in the NBA Kevin Durant in a fluke cap increase that let them sign him. (And don’t forget all the tired, forgotten, ring chasers.)
Kevin Durant is a Champion.
The Finals MVP went to Kevin Durant. Kevin had an amazing and dominant playoff run that continued in the Finals. He absolutely stuffed the statsheet: 35.2 pts, 8.4 rebs, 5.4 asts, 1 stl, and 1 blk on 55.6/47.4/92.7 Kevin Durant was indomitable. Steph shot the lights out, Dray played great defense and the rest of the team played their heart out. But Kevin Durant was the greatest player on the Golden State squad. But he wasn’t the best man on the court. Oh! And he’s a coward.
Kevin Durant a soft, whiny, conceited, zero-guts, sell out, coward. He had a chance to be the man after going up 3-1 against the greatest single season team of all time. His Thunder were up 3-1 against the Warriors and he personally choked away three straight games. Kevin Durant did what was best for him. He picked a team that would give him his best opportunity for success financial and professional. And he had the audacity to say he was taking the hardest road.
The primary mandate I had for myself in making this decision was to have it based on the potential for my growth as a player — as that has always steered me in the right direction. But I am also at a point in my life where it is of equal importance to find an opportunity that encourages my evolution as a man…
Hated by Many. Loved by Few.
He knew the scrutiny that he would be facing. He knew exactly what everyone would think of him. That he was giving up. Kevin knew everyone would tell him he didn’t want to win it. That he wanted to be given everything. That was something he knew would happen. He would lose respect from every city in the NBA. Every city but one: Oakland. They welcomed him with open arms. A city that always packed the house, even before the success. A fandom that embraced the hatred from so many others. Holding three fingers in the air as their Golden State Warriors buried teams in a deluge of threes. Playing unselfish offense and swarming defense. The Warriors fans suffered through years of heartache, false hope, and defeat. Boo-hoo. So has every other city in the NBA.
A King Defeated. But Not Dethroned.
Lebron James has once again been defeated in the NBA Finals. Despite having eight trips to the Finals he has lost more than he has won. But don’t you dare place a single shred of blame on this man. For the next several months there will be debate on whether he was the real MVP. (Sorry Mrs. Durant.) And the fact is, he probably was. Probably. It’s hard to beat what KD did, but Lebron did about as much as possible to do it.
Lebron James 33.6 ppg, 12 rpg, 10 apg, 1.4 spg, 1 bpg, shooting 56.4%/38.7/64.9
Kevin Durant 35.2 pts, 8.4 rebs, 5.4 apg, 1 spg, 1 bpg shooting 55.6/47.4/92.7
Kevin was more efficient from 3 and the line and scored more. Lebron rebounded more, assisted more, defended more, and actually lead his team. The King did not rest on the shoulders of three all stars. He had two, but Kyrie disappeared in the fourth. And Love never showed up. The only true help that came to Lebron in as the sun set and wolves came out was J.R. Smith. Despite struggling through the finals J.R. feasted from 3 shooting 7/8 and had 25 points. But it was the King who came to defend the land. 41 points, 8 rebound, 3 assists, 2 steals, 1 block. Lebron could never rest, and when he did all that he worked for crumbled.
Winners are Bought. Not Made.
Golden State built their core with Steph Curry, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson. The end of their bench was also drafted with the likes of James Micahel Macadoo, Ian Clark, and Patrick McCaw. As for David West, Shaun Livingston, Zaza Pachulia, and Kevin Durant? Bought. Money and ring chasing talks. The Warriors never did anything illegal. In fact, they have very little money invested in the team. 14th this year and 29th next year. They drafted smart, developed well, and hit the jackpot in free agency.
And the Cavaliers are just as guilty. Lebron has, for the most part, hand picked this team and even the coach. A team with shooters, defenders, all-stars and more. A team that paid over $127 million in salary this year. And will spend over $141 million next year. They tried to do the exact same thing as the Warriors. But aside from Kyrie Irving and arguably Tristan Thompson, they have developed little. Wiggins was traded for Kevin Love. Anthony Bennet is the worst first overall pick in NBA history. Dion Waiters and Jae Crowder, other prominent players drafted by the Cavs were also traded.
The Horrors Ahead.
Nothing really. The Warriors are set for the next several years. All of their core players are young. Even if they have to gut their bench look at their starting lineup. Possibly the greatest shooter ever. Possibly the second greatest shooter ever. The second best player in the world and most versatile scorer there is. One of the premier defenders in the NBA today. Baring injury, trades, team meltdown, or the apocalypse there’s little to do. Aside from just building more super teams. Diluting talent and concentrating it into fewer and fewer teams. Regular season games will matter even less. Teams will just tank and pray like the 76ers or Lakers were/are. Basketball has lost its mystique it would seem. You can have three all-stars, legendary shooters, great leadership and arguably one of the top two players of ALL TIME. It doesn’t matter.
Nothing left to do besides wait it out I guess. At least, that’s what this salty Kings fan has to say. Here’s hoping Buddy Hield works out.