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Tyronn Lue would have no problem with Cavaliers vs. Golden State Warriors, Round 3.
“Is it a problem? I don’t think so,” the Cavs coach told reporters after Wednesday’s practice.
It is true that the Cavs and Warriors appear to be on a collision course for their third consecutive Finals matchup. That would be an NBA first. Never before have two teams met three straight seasons for the championship.
Not even the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers teams of the Larry Bird and Magic Johnson eras did it. Nor did the Celtics of Bill Russell and the Lakers of Wilt Chamberlain before them.
Think about that.
LeBron James and the Cavaliers very well could be a part of history yet again. (In the event winning the franchise’s first championship wasn’t enough.)
But hold everything.
Some are saying such dominance is bad for pro basketball. Some don’t like the idea of the same two teams meeting in the Finals year after year after year.
Some say not enough teams have a chance, that the NBA is league without balance, that two teams are stacked, and everyone is just sort of … there.
Of course, some may have a point, considering the Cavs and Warriors are a combined 16-0 in the postseason. They have been utterly dominant. Everyone else is just sort of … there.
Before we go any further, we should mention both teams must win another series. The Cavs meet the winner of Washington-Boston. That series doesn’t start until next week.
The Warriors get either San Antonio or Houston. Like the East, the West finals will also tip off early next week.
But the Cavs will be the heavy favorites in the East. Same for the Warriors in the West.
Same as it ever was.
Is it bad for basketball? Nah, insisted Lue.
“I think a lot of people wanted to see Boston and the Lakers back in the day,” he said. “I think nowadays, a lot of people want to see Golden State-Cavs. And it’s not a problem. Right now, it’s two of the teams playing some of the best basketball.”
Cavs center Tristan Thompson agreed.
“The Warriors, give them a lot of credit, they’re playing hard. We are too,” he told the media. “I don’t think it’s boring. I think both teams are locked in and understand there’s a bigger goal.”
Lue then talked about the ratings game, and when it comes to pro sports (or anything that airs on television), ratings are everything.
Playoff ratings for the NBA this season aren’t great. That part of waiting for Cavs-Warriors is indeed probably bad. But assuming Cavs-Warriors, Part III, eventually happens? The ratings will be sure to flourish.
“Why not want to see it again?” Lue asked. “I don’t see why it would be a problem. Last year had some of the best ratings, I think, in NBA history. I think with the Warriors adding [Kevin] Durant and the way they’re playing, the way we’re playing, it can be even higher.”
Cavs vs. Warriors, Round 3? Yeah, it could happen. Yeah, it should happen. And no, there probably isn’t a thing about it that’s bad for basketball.
Coach Lue believes it and the ratings will surely scream it.
Mostly, though, all Lue and the Cavs really care about is that they make it.