The Golden State Warriors own the West. The Conference Finals were insane for all 7 games. I’m not saying it was the best basketball I’ve ever seen start to finish, but it may have been the best series.
Short of Steph or LeBron hitting a full court buzzer-beating ring winner in Game 7, lots of freaking luck to the NBA hoping the Finals lives up to it.
And I’m not using a cliché to tie a bow on it. Watching the Warriors ground and pound their way back from down 3-1, it’s easy to reach for the old Rudy T line and preach “Don’t Ever Underestimate The Heart of a Champion.” It was certainly that.
But this comeback was more about – “Don’t Ever Underestimate The Art of the Assassin.”
Golden State is alive, and OKC is in the morgue, because Steph and Klay went into the red. Don’t get it twisted. The Warriors battled. They didn’t trip down 3-1, and facing elimination in Game 6 in one of the league’s most hostile barns. They do have the heart of a champion. But this wasn’t just about some corny soundbite. They won because the two baddest dudes alive from 25-feet started shooting the lights out. And… and they had more heart. More composure and more grit.
To hell with that rap that the Warriors were some crazy overrated, soft, finesse, three point shooting team without nasty; who has had everything gone their way the last couple of seasons.
Facing three straight elimination games, they showed you want the kind of heart they had.
Oh, and on top of that, they do have one of the best snipers the game has ever seen, in Klay and Steph.
Steph may be the best player in the world, but Klay may have been the best player in the series.
Yet, they looked like they were headed for a sure execution going into Game 6 on OKC. Game 6, OKC standing on a cliff, about to shove Golden State off and shock the world.
Then Klay happened. Two nights later Steph happened. And if you want a corny phrase, I’ll rip one right off a bumper sticker. “BLEEP happens.” And it happened fast.
That’s why it’s too hard to beat Golden State 4 times over a couple weeks. Because sooner or later that bleep’s gonna happen, one of those two dudes is going to go nuclear, and there’s nothing you can do about it.
Kevin Durant dropped a little phrase of his own after the loss. Doubt he’s going to trade mark this and slap it on a t-shirt. “We beat them everywhere else, they beat us from the three-point line, and that was the series.”
That’s an MLBers saying after losing the NLCS- We ran the bases better, our bullpen was stronger, and I liked the way we moved the runners over… It’s just that they hit too many damn home runs.
It sounds like a boxer sitting in the hospital with his eyes swollen shut, saying he really felt like he controlled the ring well and worked the body – it’s just that the other guy landed too many right hands to the head.
You don’t win series with loose balls. You can’t get a 3-point rebound. I don’t care if it was Grit Week, even crazy Steven Adams can’t light up the scoreboard with “hustle.”
Right, KD – take away all those 3 pointers the Warriors hit, and OKC probably takes this series. Uh-huh, and if I were 6-4, 21 years old, could throw up 225 40 times and run a 4.4, I’d be in the NFL. In other words, you can’t. So they can take a seat.
But whatever works for you. Whatever it takes to get you through it.
You give the Warriors long enough, they’ll set the nets on fire. You have to chance to put them down, you better step on their throats.
OKC whiffed. And then Steph and Klay barely missed. Incredible series.
But the take that we beat them everywhere but on the scoreboard is one of the worst one’s ever. Bleep happens. Eh, Kev.
This post brought to you by Jim Rome.