Don’t count them out just yet. Golden State for the most part through the NBA finals has looked absolutely abysmal. Injuries have plagued this team for this finals series from the obvious KD yet to play in a game, Klay Thompson having to miss game 3, to even Kevon Looney missing a few games and now playing with some broken cartilage in his ribs. Now this isn’t intended to take anything away from the Raptors. Kawhi is looking like the new big swinging dick of the NBA, he gets more buckets than a Lowes promotional sale, his jumper right now is wetter than a woman swimming with Matthew Mchaanuey, not to mention his numbers through this series have been absolutely unreal averaging 30.75 ppg and 10.25 rbg (board man gets paid). Plus he’s been getting some great help from his role players and bench. Their defensive prowess and scheme has been unparalleled compared to what any other team has been able to manage against GS, when the Warriors are on a run, Nurse really knows how to stop the bleeding (corniest joke I could come up with). But in all seriousness it seems crazy but it still feels like the Warriors have a chance and a decent one at that.
If Durant returns to this series it will set up for one of the greatest returns of all time, other than when Batman comes back to Gotham in the Dark Night Rises. But he’s controlling the narrative in my mind. He doesn’t come back and the Warriors lose, sending a big middle finger to Draymond Green and his mother who said they’ve done it before without him they can do it again, or he returns and leads the Warriors to 3 straight wins and solidifies himself as the top player in the game right now. Either way he is setting himself up pretty well for free agency. The Warriors are more than capable of pulling this series out as bad as people don’t want them too, I for one couldn’t care less but would love to see it go to 7 regardless of the outcome. The offense is just so restricted against a smothering Toronto D without Durant on the floor, Curry dropped 47 in a game and they still lost because of Klay and KD’s absence. Kevin Durant is unmatched offensively and will force Kawhi to guard him and ultimately spend more energy on the defensive side of the floor, and on the flip side of that when Iggy or Draymond isn’t guarding Leonard you can throw KD on him even though Durant isn’t the most physical or elite defender, his wingspan alone is enough to make Kawhi work harder to get his buckets.
The Warriors probably shouldn’t be in this bad of shape right now with Durant out but I think they have gotten too cocky. Steph’s shimmies and Draymond’s mouth and all the pageantry that comes with Golden State is all well and good until you allow a 3-1 deficit in the finals. Letting Klay sit for Game 3 for what apparently wasn’t that big of an injury probably seemed fine and they were ok with splitting at Oracle Arena, but after dropping both games at home they have a serious problem on their hands. They have been able to play when they want to and turn it on when they want in order to win games but I don’t know how much of that they have in them now, 3 straight wins against this Toronto team is a tall order. It’s possible to get it done but it will be absolutely daunting. What if falling to a 3-1 deficit is just they’re way of trying to make them not look so bad for blowing a 3-1 lead to Cleveland? How hilarious would it be if Durant has sat out, and Klay didn’t play that game 3, all so they could control the story line. Lebron wouldn’t be the only player to do it, and what’s the big deal now it happened to them but they did it to Toronto so who cares? This is possibly the greatest PR move of all time. I know that is ridiculous to think but the Warriors have been so dominant over the last 4-5 seasons that it wouldn’t shock me at this point.
However this series plays out I think we can all find some positives in it. If KD comes back and the Warriors still manage to lose we know they are human and the dynasty may be coming to a close, as Durant and Thompson enter free agency this year. If Durant comes back and they win it will be one of the most impressive story archs for a player that this league has seen even in all of its hype chasing and head line news glory that the NBA is. If Durant just doesn’t play and this is a big fuck you on the way out the door, well that would probably not only be the best headline but would make a lot of people happy as well. Whatever the hell comes of the next three games lets just hope it makes for some damn good content because that is really what we’re all here for and that’s what it is all about. Most people are all in on Toronto now so someone had to play devils advocate. Let me know how you feel about the series, and of course tune in to the Bonfire Sports podcast Monday to hear more of my brilliant opinions.