Warriors And the Cavaliers: In A League Of Their Own
So it looks like the NBA didn’t need drama after all.
Despite the fact that the heavily favored Golden State Warriors were facing the Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA Finals for the third straight year — which had never happened before in the history of the League — some feared the Cavs and Warriors respective dominance was bad for the NBA. That didn’t stop the NBA Finals — resulting in the Warriors winning in five games — from being the most watched Finals since 1998.
Now the score is Warriors 2 Cavaliers 1. According to oddsmakers, it is almost certain that these two teams will square off again come June 2018.
Barring injuries, there is a possibility that the Warriors and the Cavaliers will meet in the Finals for the next few seasons.
Last season Lebron James sat out eight regular season games to get rest for the postseason. The Cavaliers finished second in the Eastern Conference behind only the Boston Celtics.
Despite not having home-court advantage in the Eastern Conference Finals, the Cavaliers easily dispatched the Celtics in five games — beating them by an average of over 25 points a game.
Although the Celtics will improve this off season thanks to owning the number one pick in the NBA Draft it still won’t be nearly enough to unseat James, Kyrie Irving and the Cavaliers. It should be another easy stroll for the Cavaliers to the 2018 NBA Finals.
Meanwhile over in the Western Conference there are rumors that Chris Paul may leave the Clippers. Whether he stays or goes will make no difference. The Warriors will continue their stranglehold on the Western Conference and the rest of the league.
The Clippers defeated the Warriors in seven games in the first round of the 2014 NBA Playoffs — the season before Steve Kerr became the head coach. Ever since, the Warriors have beaten the Clippers 11 of the last 12 games, including the last 10 in a row.
The San Antonio Spurs defeated the Warriors on the opening night of the 2016-17 season. The Warriors came back and swept them in four games in the Conference Finals.
Some may argue that the Spurs have a legitimate shot at unseating the Warriors. The Spurs were up by 21 points in the third quarter of game one of the Western Conference Finals. When Kawhi Leonard sprained his ankle and left the game, he did not play in the remainder of the series. The momentum immediately swung to the Warriors, who rallied to win the game 113-111.
While it is likely that the Spurs would have prevailed in that game had Leonard not got injured it is hard to see what difference he would have made in the remainder of the series as the Warriors won the next three games by an average of over 20 points.
When Kevin Durant signed with the Golden State Warriors, some fans wondered how would Durant, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green be able to coexist. Would there be any growing pains?
They put that notion to rest as they went 67-15 during the regular season. The Warriors seemed to save their best for the postseason by going 16-1 in the playoffs. Durant played career-best basketball, on both ends of the floor, during the playoffs, seemingly scoring at will with ease.
The Oklahoma City Thunder is mostly a one man show with Russell Westbrook. The Houston Rockets have a shooters chance of stealing a game but they don’t pose a real threat to the Warriors. At the end of the season, it will be the Cavaliers and the Warriors for the fourth year in a row, with the Warriors showing no signs of slowing down any time soon.