Sports

Golden State Warriors are the 2017 NBA Champions – How They Won and Kevin Durant’s Redemption

The Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers in game 5 of the NBA Finals. Although the Cavs played magnificently, they weren’t enough to beat a Warriors team with Kevin Durant. Steph Curry (GS) had 34 points, 10 assists, and 6 rebounds. Kevin Durant (GS) had 39 points, 5 assists, and 7 rebounds. Andre Iguodala (GS) had 20 points, 3 assists, and 3 rebounds. Kyrie Irving (CLE) had 26 points, 6 assists, and 2 rebounds. LeBron James (CLE) had 41 points, 8 assists, and 13 rebounds. J.R. Smith (CLE) had 25 points, 2 blocks, and 3 rebounds.

Cleveland had 113 of their points scored by starters with just 7 points scored by their bench. Golden State had 94 points by their starters and 35 by their bench. The Warriors made 14 of their 38 3-pointers, while the Cavs made 11 of their 24 3-pointers. Durant made the most 3-pointers on the Warriors by making 5 of his 8 3 pointers. Steph was quiet tonight by making just 2 of his 9 3-pointers, which was the same amount of 3-pointers he made in game 4.

The player who was the biggest disappointment for their team tonight was Kevin Love (CLE). By halftime, Love hadn’t scored a single point. Love ended the game with 6 points with his points coming in towards the end of the game. Not only did Love not get a single point before the half and only score 6 points in the game, but Love was in the game for 30 minutes. The player that wasn’t helpful to the Warriors was Zaza Pachulia who scored no points, but only had 10 minutes in the game so he didn’t hurt his teammates as much as Love hurt his.

Although Kyrie injured his leg and back during the game, he played 42 minutes and made 26 points. Unfortunately, Kyrie made 1 3-pointer and only made 9 of his 22 field goals. J.R. Smith was the difference maker for the Cavs to get so close to winning. Smith made the most 3-pointers in the game by making 9 of his 11 3-pointers, while the next highest 3-pointers made on the Cavs was by LeBron with 2 3-pointers.

This win wasn’t an easy one for the Warriors. LeBron, Kyrie, Tristan Thompson (CLE), and J.R. Smith all played like they truly wanted the win. A fight almost broke out between David West (GS) and Tristen Thompson when West and Kyrie both tried to come down with a rebound and West gave Kyrie an aggressive shove to get the ball. To say the least, Tristen didn’t like the shove by West.

Although the officials made bad calls here and there, they remained consistent with how strict they were calling the game. Cavs made 15 of their 23 free throws, while the Warriors made 23 of their 28 free throws. If the Cavs would’ve made all their free throws, they would’ve had the same amount of free throw points as the Warriors.

Kevin Durant had a very long journey to venture before arriving at the moment of winning the NBA championship and receiving the MVP award. In 2012, Kevin Durant on the Oklahoma City Thunder with James Harden and Russell Westbrook, were unable to beat a Miami Heat team with LeBron James and Dwayne Wade for the NBA championship. Not only did Kevin Durant lose to LeBron James in previous years, but Durant lost to Golden State last year to miss out on the championship.

Durant has now achieved the feat of bringing the NBA championship to Golden State in his first year as a Warrior. Ten years after being picked second in the NBA draft, Durant now finds himself being the NBA Finals MVP. There are those discussing the Warriors becoming a dynasty, if they keep their team intact and return to the Finals next year and possibly the year after that. The Warriors should be ready for anything if they return to the finals, as analysts have also favored the Cavs to return to the Finals. These two teams are remarkable and we may not have seen the last of them against one another on basketball’s largest stage.

 

Photo by Marcio Jose

 

Leave a Reply