Warriors set up for a Celtics-like title run

By Steve Sell
June 13, 2017

If you’re an NBA fan, you better get used to it.

Unless greed comes into play.

The Golden State Warriors won their second NBA championship in the last three years on Monday by taking out the Cleveland Cavaliers in five games. And to be honest, if Draymond Green had not had an idiot attack and got himself suspended for Game 5 last year the Warriors would have three rings in a row.

The Warriors could very well become a dynasty on par with the Boston Celtics of the 1960s with Bill Russell, Sam Jones, K.C. Jones and John Havlicek. They also carry themselves with a winners’ swagger as they’re a supremely confident team, almost to the point of annoying arrogance.

The core group of the Warriors is young — Steph Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green. Durant is already on the record as saying he’ll take less money if it means keeping the team together. 

I find that attitude refreshing. I just wonder if the other three players feel the same way. At some point every player wants to be paid top dollar and with the salary cap there’s simply not enough money to go around to keep the core four happy and still pay the other players on the team.

If I had to venture a player that might upset the apple cart and seek greener pastures, it’s Thompson. A renowned shooter, Thompson saw his touches decreased when Durant came on the board this season. Durant’s presence puts the Warriors in the talk of being the greatest team of all time, along with Michael’s Bulls, Larry’s Celtics and Magic’s Lakers.

It amazes me the Warriors are this overwhelming without really needing a center. Zaza Pachulia starts with the quintessential quartet, but you could put about any 6-10 stiff out there and the team wouldn’t miss a beat. In fact, the Warriors probably would have been better served starting David West, but they liked the energy he brought off the bench.

It didn’t surprise me that Golden State won the title. In fact, I predicted on the nose it would be over in 5. LeBron James is simply too good to allow a sweep.

But now you have to wonder about the challengers to the Warriors in what is a watered-down NBA. The Cavaliers have been in the Finals the last three years, but LeBron is getting long in the tooth and being in the Finals seven straight years is taxing his body. He simply doesn’t have enough help other than Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love. I’m sure the Cavaliers see Golden State’s galaxy of stars and feel like they need to go out and add another All-Star, say a Carmelo Anthony — who is wasting his career with the woebegone New York Knicks.

The other teams? The Spurs have exhausted every drop of success they can and are facing a rebuild. Oklahoma City is Russell Westbrook and not much else. Utah is, well, Utah. The LA Clippers have proven that their longtime cast can only take them so far. The Eastern Conference is a joke other than Cleveland.

The Warriors will win it again next year. You can take that to the bank. Unless some of the Golden State players decide to break it.