I write this as the ceremonies haven’t even began to celebrate the newest NBA dynasty. The Warriors, for all their bluster and talent upfront, were vulnerable this year. Their bench was poor. Stephen Curry started to show his age, looking a step slower than years past.
Revisionist history will claim the Warriors were never in any real danger, even as Draymond Green’s decline as a shooter was apparent to us all. History will omit the musical chairs JaVale McGee and Kevon Looney played in the starting lineup, and the obvious complacency in the Warriors play. The competitive fire just wasn’t there all year. The onus was on the Cavaliers to push Golden State against the wall. But bad decision after bad decision ended any possibly of that.
David Griffin and Koby Altman didn’t think like the Warriors or the Celtics and prioritize wings and youth. They splurged on players like Timofey Mozgov, Kyle Korver, Tristan Thompson, Iman Shumpert and J.R Smith at the expense of draft picks and cap space.
All LeBron needed was one good Jeff Green game to get back to the finals. That’s how good he is.
And the Cavs wasted another year of LeBron. The only way he returns next year is if he decides he doesn’t want to baby sit the 76ers, the Rockets cannot fit LeBron into their cap space without sacrificing major pieces and the Lakers poop themselves again. That’s a lot you need to happen to avoid losing the greatest player of our generation for the second time in a decade.
It won’t happen. He’s gone. All that celebrating Altman did after the trades did warrant a trip back to the finals, an aversion of a bigger disaster if they didn’t make it back. It meant nothing to the Warriors. Now they reside in financial Hell. Have no assets. No picks. All they have is Kevin Love who’ll likely assist them in the subsequent rebuild effort.
An utter failure this year has been for the Cavaliers.
See you next year.