The Golden State Warriors had a historic season; surpassing the great 95-96 Bulls with a record of 73-9. Are they the better team? Is this era weaker? All of this has been argued about over nearly every NBA comment section on the internet. While i tend to stay away from hypothetical’s (both teams are great), there is one thing that stands true: The Warriors MUST win the title to solidify their place as the greatest team ever.
If they fail, they will lose all legitimacy. It will become “the best regular season ever”, rather than “the best team ever”.
After the greatest showing of team dominance in NBA histroy, I don’t think anyone could have predicted the Warriors current predicament: down 2-1 to the Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference Finals.
I could have seen this situation with the Spurs perhaps; I think nearly everyone had predicted a Spurs-Warriors WCF, but the Thunder keep surprising us. Not only did they manhandle the Spurs, but they have held their own against “the greatest team ever”.
Like the Spurs, the Warriors have struggled with the size and athleticism of the Thunder’s big’s, who seem to be immune to the “small ball” tactics.
Steven Adams, the modern day Bill Laimbeer, has a knack for getting in opponents heads, and so far, has not failed to live up to this title. Adams has clearly been getting to Draymond Green who had a +/- of -43 in game 3.
We saw a frustrated Draymond Green give Adams a kick to the groin in the second quarter, as the Thunder led 48-42. To the Thunder’s dismay, Green was allowed to stay in the game, but the “dirty play” sparked a 24-5 run from the Thunder to end the half.
Was the kick intentional?
The league will look into it, and if Green is suspended, this could mean trouble for the Warriors in game 4.
Being down 3-1 is a position that no team wants to be in. Even for the record breaking Warriors, it is a tough situation to overcome, especially against two guys named Russell Westbrook, and Kevin Durant.
It wasn’t just Draymond Green who the Thunder were getting to, however. Steph Curry, who is usually one of the most efficient players in the league, if not the most efficient, had a +/- of -39.
Klay’s was -41…
The Thunder, were the complete opposite. Durant had an incredibly efficient game of 33 points, shooting 10-15 from the field, and 12-12 from the line. Not to be forgotten, Westbrook pitched in 30 points of his own, as well as 12 assists, and 8 rebounds. With production like that, I don’t know if anyone can beat the Thunder.
With the Warriors and Thunder trading blowouts wins, it is hard to give either team an edge in Game 4, but with or without a Green suspension, the momentum is in OKC’s favor.