"Spurs, Heat, Lakers, they're all just spokes on a wheel. I'm not going to stop the wheel, I'm going to break the wheel." All hail Steph of House Curry, first of his name, Most Valuable of Players, Drainer of Threes, and Brother of Splashes. And hail to the Warriors, the new rulers of of the NBA. And long may they reign.
Seriously, has there been a more likeable champion in recent memory? An undersized guard who plays like a basketball savant, his trey-bombing brother from another mother, a grit-and-grind dancing bear who wreaks havoc on defense but still put up a triple double in the closeout Game 6, the veteran who sat the bench without complaint then stepped up in the Finals, guarded the King and won the MVP, the blue chip youngster who dunks on everything in creation, a rookie coach who might be the nicest human being ever, and a dude named Festus Ezeli. (By the way for any cretins who didn't pick up on my descriptions they are, in order, Curry, Thompson, Green, Iguodala, Barnes, Kerr, and Festus Ezeli).
This team completely rewrote the script on how the NBA is run. Last year, we all lauded the Spurs for team basketball and for overcoming super teams like the Miami Heat. We idolized Tim Duncan for being an unselfish star and never causing drama in the locker room or the contract negotiating room (or wherever R.C. Buford tells players how much they will be paid and they nod agreeably). And deservedly so, the Spurs are a model franchise. But the Warriors??? Imagine telling your two highest paid, most experienced starters, who happen to be multi-year All-Stars that they've gotta sit the bench. Imagine telling David Lee that he's basically not gonna play at all this season and Andre Iguodala that he's gonna play behind a third-year underachiever who was convinced he was about to be packed off to Minnesota. And not only do they accept the decision; they do it without a peep. That's a whole new level of unselfish.
This kind of character starts at the top. The decision to fire Mark Jackson and bring in Steve Kerr was a controversial one, but is there a person in the Western world who doesn't now realize that it was brilliant? Like Harbaugh for Singleterry brilliant. That coaching cocktail of Lute Olson, Phil Jackson, Greg Popovich, and Lenny Wilkens musta been real good or somethin'...DURRRR! The guy is a winner. And his players knew it. The Dubs bought into Kerr's plan from the beginning and now they are not only one of the greatest champions of the modern era, but they are just getting started.
Yep, that's the deal people. The Golden State Warriors are going to win more championships. Maybe a lot more. They just won 67 games, went 16-5 through the playoffs, won their first title in 40 years, and they still can (and should) get better. Steph Curry and Klay Thompson are under contract until 2017 for absolute bargains. Andrew Bogut's salary decreases down the line. David Lee is going to be amicably traded either to open up serious cap space or to bring in a couple of solid role players to swell the Warriors' already ridiculous depth. Barnes will be extended. They can afford to give Green a max deal when Lee bounces. The cap will be going up shortly to clear more room. And why on earth would anyone want to leave a situation like Golden State anyway?
No, these guys are here to stay. They have depth, youth, stability, and leadership. They're the Seahawks without the cap or the "Marshawn Lynch is getting older" problems. And who's gonna beat them anyway? The Spurs have peaked. The Clippers think Lance Stephenson is a final piece of the puzzle which...uh...he's not. The Thunder don't have the depth. The Grizz can't put enough offense on the board to beat the Dubs. The Rockets played out of their minds these playoffs and still got crushed in the WCF. Next year is gonna be 96 Bulls type stuff if the Dubs play their cards right.
So as we sadly brace for another basketball-less summer, understand this: The Larry O'Brien trophy is headed back to the Bay. And it's gonna be there for a while.