The Warriors won the 2015 NBA Title. Here are my thoughts:
- Steph Curry is a miracle worker. We can talk about the phenomenal job Steve Kerr and the coaching staff has done, or the pieces GM Bob Myers has acquired in recent years (Iguodala and Livingston, namely). None of those folks come to the Bay without Steph being here–he’s the glue to the whole operation, his ability the attraction, his (now grossly underpriced) contract the logistical lube that prevents chafing from the salary cap and luxury tax.
- The Warriors are a basketball purist’s fantasy. The internal development of the squad–Warriors draftees Curry, Klay Thompson, Harrison Barnes, and Draymond Green form 80% of the starting lineup, with Bogut completing his 3rd full season with Golden State–is remarkable on its own. Toss in the persistent, boundless fluidity of the offensive sets, and the ceaseless help-and-recover attitude on the defensive end, and somewhere Gregg Popovich must be smiling.
- That said, the Warriors had the right dose of Popovich this postseason, applied only indirectly. Kerr’s witticisms, wryness with the media, and general brilliance evoked his mentor without a true cameo; the path to the championship thankfully didn’t require bivouacks in the wasteland of San Antonio. That challenge should come next year–it will be brutal, savage, and compelling beyond words.
- Cleveland will get their title, simply because as N grows large, the limit approaches 1. The East will continue to grow weaker, and the Cavaliers will remain the one competency among a bay of pigs and Tyler Zellers. They’ll win one, surely: LeBron is a chessboxer in a checkers tournament, and he still has some haymakers left.
- The last bullet point was obligatory, the requisite throwaway in any post revolving around the black hole of Cleveland sports. Every line spent breathlessly bemoaning the fate of the Cleveland sports fan shortchanges the malaise the Golden State Warriors had (until very recently) brought upon the Bay Area. This was a franchise whose only true moment of glee, from 40 years prior, had to be delivered via Rick Barry. Involuntary breakouts of legitimacy were snuffed out immediately, via trades or draft choices or mopeds. The fact that a dominant, historically great squad such as the 2015 Warriors could be assembled is, given the team’s history, either a testament to a changing of the guard or an incredible series of ass-backward falls in the roster construction phase.
- Regardless, we’re here now, in a brave new Warriors world, where the wells of success spring proudly. I’ve been a fan for seven years–it feels like eons. To the lifetimers, I don’t know how you did it, but you did. So step outside, take a deep breath, and drink it all in–it’s as sweet as you imagined.