CLEVELAND — Soon, the Golden State Warriors will win their second title in three years.
It could be Friday, when the Dubs play Game 4 against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Maybe they wait until they’re back in Oakland to close the deal. But, barring an absolute catastrophe, it’s going to happen.
The only real question left is who wins Finals MVP?
Draymond Green hasn’t played well for his sky-high standards, so he’s out. Klay Thompson was quite bad in Game 1, and that won’t work on a team that started the postseason on a 15-0 tear.
So, it’s down to Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant — the Warriors’ resident MVPs.
Their statistics through the playoffs are nearly identical.
Steph: 28.6 points per game, 6.3 rebounds, 6.3 assists.
KD: 27.2 PPG, 8.3 RPG, 4.2 APG.
The Finals are similar. Curry clocks in with 28.7-9.7-9.0; Durant is at 34.0-10.0-6.0.
They’re both shooting at ridiculous rates (KD has been more efficient). They’re both controlling the ball (Curry has more turnovers, but he handles the ball more often, so that’s misleading). And they both have landmark plays that involve embarrassing LeBron James (Durant at the end of Game 3, Curry has had one in each outing of the series).
Durant has the slight advantage right now, but that could be erased with a huge Game 4 by Curry.
“It just looks like [Durant] understands this is his moment, this is his time,” head coach Steve Kerr said before practice on Thursday. “He’s earned it. He’s been in this league for a long time, and he’s, I think, at the top of his game at the biggest time.”
Meanwhile, Curry has played his role to near perfection. As the Warriors commit both big men on the floor to walling off Tristan Thompson — rendering the Cavs forward mostly useless — the 6-foot-4 guard has gotten in the paint and recorded his best three-game span for rebounding in his career. That allows Golden State to get into transition without needing to slow down for an outlet pass.
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“[Curry] just looks so much healthier than last year — stronger, faster, quicker,” Kerr said.
KD opened the series in Vegas sportsbooks to win Finals MVP as a 7/5 favorite with Steph carrying slightly longer odds at 8/5.
Some things don’t change.
What was Steph doing there?
After Durant hit a back-breaking 3-pointer with less than a minute to play in Game 3, Curry celebrated by squatting over the floor, leading many on the Internet to believe he was pantomiming defecating on the floor of Quicken Loans Arena.
When asked about it on Thursday, Curry said he blacked out during that moment.
“I wish I could have a little bit more control over the reactions in certain situations,” he said through laughter. “I really don’t know what I did last night. Like I saw it, no, I saw it, I just — I don’t know what I was doing.”
He then assured the reporters in attendance that he wasn’t doing what it looked like.
“No Randy Moss or none of that stuff,” he said, referring to when the legendary receiver pretended to moon the crowd in Green Bay.
Cavs fans target DrayMom
Cleveland fans aren’t the friendliest bunch when their team is losing — or winning, to be fair.
During last year’s Finals, they targeted Steve Kerr’s family. This year, a Cavs supporter got into it with Draymond Green’s mom, Mary Babers-Green.
The exchange was posted to Instagram and doesn’t look great for the Clevelander. For his part, Draymond wasn’t too worried about it.
“It happens every year,” Green said. “Fans here are just rude. My mom can hold her own, though, she’s good.”
As she often does, Babers-Green tweeted through it. And her read on the situation is pretty much perfect.
“Everyone apologized so it’s all good!” she posted. “If they would watch the game and enjoy it instead of worshipping it. They would be fine!”