Five games. Five games is all it took for the Golden State Warriors to defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA Finals. Five games of Finals play is all it took to bring the most inevitable end to reality. Most fans outside the Warriors fan base are disappointed. Not because the NBA season is over, not because the Warriors won, but because this season was unfulfilling.
Most fans of the association predicted this outcome on July 4, 2016. That is the day Kevin Durant signed with Golden State. A four-time scoring champion, seven-time all-star, former league MVP, had just joined a team that won 73 games. A team that was on the verge of becoming a dynasty, almost assured they would by signing an all-world talent in Durant.
Many questioned why he would sign there. Many believed the Warriors didn’t need him. There is one reason why Durant was pursued (successfully)so hard by Golden State. LeBron James. The Warriors knew they were a great team, but what they had still wasn’t great enough to beat a healthy Cavaliers team. Durant was the piece that would put them over the top. The Warriors knew it, and so did association fans everywhere.
Now, almost a year later, our predictions have come true. The Warriors ran roughshod over the Western Conference in both the regular season and playoffs. (Some of it without Durant, but I digress.) The Trilogy most salivated for materialized and the Warriors ran roughshod over the Cavs in that too. The signing made the season a little less interesting. That’s what happens when you get a spoiler ahead of time.
So now what? The offseason is here and most team are still going to try and build their teams to beat Golden State and Cleveland. They are still the two teams to beat. Many are penciling in the Warriors to win it next year to cement their dynasty. Hard to argue with that. Thing is, will there be any moves of significance that will put a team in position to actually beat them? I can’t say for sure, but this may provide the only excitement of the NBA process. Because if next season is anything like this one, the NBA may have a problem brewing with fan interest. Inevitable endings have a way of doing that.