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Kevin Durant lit the sporting world on fire with his announcement to sign with the Golden State Warriors earlier this week. The Warriors, who were already the favorites to win next season’s NBA Championship, now appear to be mortal locks.
The internet has been abundant with hot takes since Durant jumped ship and joined the team that he was up 3-1 on with Oklahoma City in the Western Conference Finals before a brutal collapse. “If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em,” are apparently words Durant lives by in his quest to win a ring. Golden State won a record 73 regular season games last season but fell a game short of repeating as champs thanks to the efforts of LeBron James.
This Golden State Warriors team was built right out of the Buddy Garrity playbook in Friday Night Lights. I can hear him now whispering in Coach Taylor’s ear in a plea to get him to give coaching in the NBA a shot: “They’re gonna take the best of the Thunder, the best of the Warriors and create a super team, is what they’re gonna do. What’d ya say to that, Eric?”
Fans were upset by this move because they prefer to see superstars separated to battle it out during the playoffs, allowing us to truly find out who the best player on the planet is. Turn on any number of sports networks and odds are you’ll find some talking head saying that parity is dead in the NBA due to a higher salary cap and players joining forces in an effort to form “super teams.” But people seem to forget that seven different teams have won the NBA title in the last 10 seasons. That’s parity.
While I agree that you can narrow down the field each season to, say, four to five teams that have a realistic shot at winning each year, it wasn’t until this season when the Warriors ran amuck on the league that a team of sheer dominance came through. There was something different about that Warriors team, though. They were universally considered a lovable bunch that garnered fans far and wide that hasn’t been seen since the Michael Jordan-led Bulls teams of the 1990s.
That slowly began to change as the Warriors displayed chink in their armor throughout the postseason. We had Ayesha Curry involved in Twitter feuds with anyone that would give her the time of day, Steph Curry being mocked for his all white shoes, Draymond Green hitting anyone within reach in the nuts, Curry throwing his mouthpiece at a fan, and the team as a whole choking away an NBA title. Slowly but surely the Warriors began a trend towards the dark side.
With Golden State now having Durant, Curry, Green and Klay Thompson, the Warriors possess four of the top 15-to-20 (call it whatever you want) players in the NBA. Let’s not forget their bench, which is full of guys who would be starters on more than half of the league’s teams.
Underdogs are great. Everyone loves an underdog. But you can only have an underdog if there is an overwhelming favorite. That’s where the Warriors step in. Golden State has suddenly gone from the darlings of the NBA to what could potentially become the villain for the ages. I would love nothing more than to see them fully embrace their new role as the bad guys of the NBA.
Take the floor to the NWO’s wrestling theme song. Wear black jerseys only for each game to match the Curry IIIs, which will be solid black. Green should be suspended no less than half a dozen times this season for below-the-belt fouls. Curry should throw his mouthpiece at opposing fans after a big three-pointer during every road game. Riley Curry can still sit on Steph’s lap during post-game interviews if she starts cursing like a sailor. And I need Kevin Durant to bring his momma on board as the team’s No. 1 fan in the stands to take on all the haters in person.
Let’s go, Golden State, embrace the dark side to its fullest extent. You’re not the villain that the NBA deserves, but the villain the league needs.
P.S. A day doesn’t go by that I don’t think about what would have been if Eric Taylor stuck around to coach that Super Team in West Dillon. That might go down as the greatest “what if” in all of sports..
Image via YouTube