The NBA regular season was exciting and had some impressive feats. Russell Westbrook averaged a triple double, only done previously by Oscar Robinson in 1962 and carried his team due to the loss of Kevin Durant (Remember that name). Devin Booker put up 70 points against the Boston Celtic, and still somehow found a way to lose. In a single game, 50 or more points was scored by one player 15 times, and by 10 different players. Not one of those players was the best player in the NBA Lebron James or the best shooter in the NBA Steph Curry. But the NBA playoffs seemed just to be waiting forever to see the inevitable.
The Warriors and Cavaliers were set to match up in the NBA Finals for the third straight year and everyone knew from the get-go. The Warriors dominated their path to the Finals, going 16-0 through the postseason, after finishing the regular season 14-1. (In part because Klay Thompson signed a toaster?) The Cavs played nearly as well and went 16-1, which is one combined loss for both teams in the NBA Finals.
The Warriors, unlike the Cavs, continued the success in the Playoffs and won the best of 7 series in five games, due in manly to the Finals MVP Kevin Durant, and the lack of the Cavs players scoring, excluding Kyrie Irving and Lebron James.
Kevin Durant, “The Snake” left the Oklahoma City Thunder after blowing a three one lead in the first round of the Western Conference Playoffs against the 73-9 Warriors, and joined, the 73-9 Warriors who just came off another blown three one lead in the NBA Finals, creating possibly the NBA’s greatest super team. Which created the question, can this team win two, three, even four straight Championships? Only Dub Nation fans want to see that, so how do we stop the Golden State Warriors?
- Salary Cap.
A decreased salary cap would force the Warriors to lose one All-Star, as long as he wanted a max dollar contract. However, that would not go over well and would force an NBA player’s lockout, losing most or all of an NBA season like in 2011. However, go back to 2014. Adam Silver, the NBA Commissioner, just signed a contract with ESPN to show the NBA games on the ESPN channels and ABC. Silver’s plan was to slowly add to the salary cap to keep from great teams adding another great player. In 2015 this was proposed to the NBA Players Union, and declined by several different players including Vice-President of the Union Lebron James. The players pushed one quick salary cap growth, and it was a large growth, up 24.1 million dollars from the 2015-2016 season to the 2016-2017 season, giving the Warriors the money needed to sign NBA All-Star Kevin Durant. If Silver’s proposed idea was accepted the Warriors would not have been able to successfully create the cap space to add Kevin Durant.
- Injuries/ Missing Games
The Golden State Warriors will only continue success if they stay healthy and on the floor. However, only one player on the Warriors roster is injury prone, the best player, Kevin Durant. Since 2014 Durant has had 11 injuries from sore toes to foot fractures. However, this isn’t the only way for players to miss games. If you recall the 2016 NBA Finals, Draymond Green got suspended for punching Lebron after being stepped over in game 4, then being out game 5, gave the Cavs all the momentum needed to come back from three one deficit.
- More Super Teams
This isn’t want NBA fans want to hear but it would help stop the Warriors from going back to back to back to back. The Cavs already have the best player in the NBA and one of the best guards in the NBA, add Carmelo Anthony and the Cavs have a team that can potentially beat the Warriors. The Eastern Conference 2016-2017 first seed Boston Celtics are one or two players away from being a solid championship competitor. The Celtics need a small forward to go with Isaiah Thomas and Al Horford. Gordon Hayward could fill that role and play with his college coach at Butler Brad Stevens to create another Championship Caliber team.
Obviously one team winning several Finals consecutively isn’t good for the NBA, but if you use a different perspective it isn’t bad for the NBA. These Finals averaged 20.4 million viewers per game. That is the highest number of viewers per game since the 1998 NBA Finals which had Michael Jordan winning Finals MVP and beating the Utah Jazz in six games. So maybe the Warriors super team isn’t bad for the NBA, but it probably is.