We love movies featuring the top stars. We love music’s supergroups. But add a top player to a top team in sports and we go 180 degrees and bring out the hate.
The vitriol greeting the Golden State Warriors’ 121-95 victory on Monday night over the Utah Jazz continues that theme. The Warriors swept their second consecutive series for the first time in their history and are certainly the likely choice to face the Cleveland Cavaliers for the NBA title again. Of course both the Warriors and Cavs have one more playoff series to win before they can face each other.
The Warriors’ addition of Kevin Durant as a free agent has been derided as tipping the balance in the sport and continuing the superteam trend LeBron James helped orchestrate in Miami with the Heat, teaming with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh to go to four straight NBA Finals, winning two.
Other complaints (not made by me) about the Warriors include too much shooting of 3-pointers and anything involving Draymond Green. Hey, no one is going to like every player, but you’d love the versatile Green if he was on your team. And, like it or not, 3-pointers are part of the game. The Warriors have a couple of great shooters and many others who are more than competent. Why not stretch the defense and take your makeable shots?
These runs of dominance in the NBA’s two conferences are hardly remarkable. In the last six NBA Finals, there was room for 10 teams. Miami grabbed four, Cleveland two, Golden State two, the San Antonio Spurs two, the Dallas Mavericks one and the Oklahoma City Thunder one. From 2008-2010, the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics met for the championship twice with the Lakers beating the Orlando Magic in that other final. Runs of dominance.
If your argument is that you would like more competitive games and series, fine. But don’t hate the teams that want to be great. Push the others to raise their level of play, to chase great players and restock their rosters.
Post By: Larry Weisman, a longtime sportswriter for USA TODAY, blogs for Twistity.com. Follow him on Twitter @MrLarryWeisman