Latest posts by Sam Amico (see all)
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Random dribbles on the Cavaliers entering Game 2 of the Finals at the Warriors.
1. If you had told me two years ago that a team whose three main weapons were Shaun Livingston, Leandro Barbosa and Andre Iguodala would beat a team whose three main weapons were LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love, I would’ve laughed you out of the gym.
2. But that’s what happened in Game 1.
3. That’s one reason I’m concerned about the Cavaliers and their 1-0 deficit. I can’t help but wonder if the Warriors are just in their heads.
4. I also fear the Warriors are a bad matchup for the Cavs. Granted, at 73-9, the Warriors are a bad matchup for a lot of teams. But remember when the Cavs compiled 66 wins in 2009 and lost to the Magic in the East playoffs? It’s because the Cavs couldn’t beat a “system” team that was in rhythm.
5. That said, I’m not ready to write off the Cavs. I won’t even say Game 2 is a “must-win.” I mean, if the Cavs go down 2-0 … then win both their home games … I think everybody in Cleveland will be feeling pretty good again.
6. Anyway, back to the Warriors.
7. Remember how everyone said you needed a “super team” to win titles? Or maybe they called it “super friends,” I’m not really sure. I just know there sure are a lot of baffoons in the media — because the Warriors are everything you were told a team couldn’t be.
8. Steph Curry was drafted seventh overall out of Davidson. Klay Thompson was chosen 11th overall out of Washington State. Draymond Green was selected 35th, a second-rounder.
9. And while Andrew Bogut was a No. 1 overall pick, no one exactly had high expectations of him when he was traded from the Bucks (with Stephen Jackson) to the Warriors — for Kwame Brown, Monta Ellis and Ekpe Udoh.
10. Yeah, I totally forgot about Kwame, too.
11. And then there are the likes of Livingston, Barbosa and Iguodala, players who weren’t known for winning big games or hitting their big shots. All were considered over-the-hill prior to the start of last season.
12. Also, Steve Kerr is in just his second season as a coach — at any level. At this rate, he’ll be right up there with Red Auerbach, Gregg Popovich and Phil Jackson.
13. So what’s my point: Well, it’s that the Warriors are proof that getting a super-duper star from another team isn’t necessary. Instead, you can be a success by making the most of your draft picks and building a winning culture.
14. Read: Kevin Durant isn’t signing with the Warriors because the Warriors don’t need him. They won’t be spending a ton of money and creating cap space for a guy who they repeatedly beat.
15. As for the Cavs, most people I’ve spoken with from around the league aren’t real high on their chances. Frankly, while I hope those people are wrong, I don’t blame them. The Cavs have not shown they know how to close games against this particular team.
16. Game 2 would be a good place to start. It’s where the Cavs’ Big Three can show the world they’re not done yet. But to win this series, I’m afraid coach Tyronn Lue and the Cavs will have to come up with a little bit of magic. The kind of magic, no doubt, that the Warriors have been riding.