The Golden State Warriors are NBA champions once again, beating the Boston Celtics 103-90 on Thursday night for their fourth title in the last eight seasons.
Stephen Curry scored 34 points and was named Finals MVP as the Warriors claimed the franchise’s seventh championship overall. And this one completed a journey like no other, after a streak of five straight Finals, then a plummet to the bottom of the NBA, and now a return to greatness just two seasons after having the worst record in the league.
“We found a way to do it,” Curry said after the Warriors accepted the championship trophy and celebrated on the court.
Tearful and hoarse with emotion, Curry struggled to speak as he explained what allowed the Warriors to capture their latest crown.
“It’s part of a championship pedigree, our experience,” he said. “We built this over 10 or 11 years. That means a lot when you get to this stage.”
For Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala, it’s a fourth championship. The first three rings came in 2015, 2017 and 2018, when Golden State was dynastic and made five straight trips to the finals.
“Everyone is unique, everyone is special,” coach Steve Kerr said of the multiple titles. “This might have been the most unlikely… It takes a group effort to do it and we had a great group.”
Injuries, including those that sidelined Thompson for 2 1/2 years, and roster changes changed everything. But this season, with Thompson returning midway through, the Warriors finally came back.
Back up, too. The champions, again, denied the Celtics what would have been their record 18th championship, one that would have meant Boston breaking a tie with the Los Angeles Lakers for the most in league history.
Brad Bodkin of CBSSports.com praised Cury and noted that Curry’s fourth ring puts him in an even weirder historical air.
“Curry’s four are one more than Larry Bird and Dwyane Wade, and one less than Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson and Tim Duncan,” he writes. “… Curry has always been the eye of this. Warriors storm that has hit the NBA for the past eight years. … Curry is, quite simply, one of the safest bets for championship contention that has ever existed. … And the thing is, he is far from done.”
Thousands of Warriors fans attended a party at the Chase Center and more watched the game outside the arena on a big screen:
Minutes after the game, the Warriors announced that their first victory parade in San Francisco would take place on Monday.. The team has held its three previous parades in Oakland, which the Warriors called home from 1971 to 2019.
The way back from the warriors
This story for the Warriors ended much differently than their most recent final appearance did against Toronto in 2019, one in which Kevin Durant tore his Achilles tendon in Game 5 and then Thompson tore his ACL in Game 5. which became the Raptors’ title winner in the Game. 6.
The fallout from that loss was exacerbated by Durant’s decision to leave that summer in free agency to join the Brooklyn Nets and Thompson’s own Achilles injury while rehabbing his knee injury.
“It was all worth it,” Thompson said. “It was a dog days, a lot of tears were shed… You knew it was a possibility, but seeing it in real time… It’s crazy.”
He pushed a Golden State team into a rebuild that turned into a reload. The Warriors used their two-year hiatus from the NBA’s biggest stages to reshuffle their roster, adding a previous No. 1 draft pick in Andrew Wiggins, who excelled in his first Finals, along with another rising star in Jordan Poole. .
“This one hits different for sure, knowing what the last three years meant, what it’s been like,” Curry said. “Injuries, the changing of the guard, the rosters, the youngsters… Now, we have four championships. Me, Dray, Klay and Andre.
“I finally got that bad boy,” Curry added, referring to the MVP trophy. “It’s special… Everybody mattered in that process.”
Yes, everything clicked.
For Kerr, it’s a ninth championship overall after winning five as a player. He is the sixth coach to capture four titles, joining Phil Jackson, Red Auerbach, John Kundla, Gregg Popovich and Pat Riley.
It was the third season in a row where things were affected byand while things were getting closer to normal, the images and video of the championship celebration will serve as a reminder forever that the virus was still a problem.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver was unable to be at the game because he remained in the league’s health and safety protocols related to the virus. The redesigned Larry O’Brien Trophy, the golden memento presented to NBA champions, was presented to the Warriors by Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum.