Our writers give their thoughts on who will be holding Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy at the end of June…. the Golden State Warriors or the Toronto Raptors?
Tom: During the regular season series between Golden State and Toronto, we saw two very different games. One OT thriller which included a 51-point barrage by Kevin Durant (and one of the craziest clutch shots I’ve ever seen) despite Toronto coming away with the win. The other was a 20-point blowout win for Toronto despite Kawhi Leonard missing the game.
Experience is a big issue for Toronto. Despite Kawhi already having multiple trips to the finals, a championship and a Finals MVP under his belt, the only other player on the team with Finals experience is Danny Green who has been almost unplayable in the last few games. The pure star power that Golden State possesses and the players they still have to come back I think will outweigh anything that Toronto can throw at Golden State.
Toronto’s classic Game 1 woes and the almost Everest-like challenge that is winning in Oakland will ultimately result in another Larry O’Brien trophy added to the Golden State collection.
Warriors in 6.
Harry: This series will go as expected, Warriors in Six and Steph Curry will finally get that Delicious finals MVP.
I was being generous with two wins for the Raptors, because they swept the regular series against the Warriors and because of Kawhi. Kawhi Leonard will have at least one huge game and will his team to a win and the Toronto crowd will win one game by themselves, with a bit of help from coach Drake on the side.
In all seriousness, the best chance of Raptors victory is to take both home games before Kevin Durant comes back. If Pascal regains his confidence, Danny Green hits a three and the rest of the raptors continue their great play, the Raptors may just pull this off (even if they do, Kawhi still leaves to Clippers…Sorry). The Raptors will have to keep the Warriors under 110 points per game if they want any chance of winning. The Raptors will also have a more solid bench and should have the best player in the series in Kawhi but lack experience in the Playoffs.
BUT let us not discount Steph Curry as the potential best player of the series and PLEASE LET HIM WIN FINALS MVP. I beg of you NBA world. If Andre Iguodala stays healthy and Draymond Greens keeps on controlling the plays of the Warriors, combined with the fantastic output of their bench on both ends, the Warriors may be able to sneak another ring even if Kevin Durant doesn’t return. I just don’t think that the Raptors have the offensive power to outscore the Warriors.
If KD comes back and Boogie Cousins comes off the bench, its all over for the Raptors.
Either way, I’m just damn excited it’s not the Cavs v Warriors for the 21st straight year.
James: Warriors in 5, and I feel that’s being generous.
This is the perfect storm for the Warriors, not only are they coming off a sweep of the valiant Portland Trailblazers, they have 9 days rest before the big dance, and now people are starting to think the Raptors might just have a chance. As if going for a 3-Peat and attempting to get Demarcus Cousins a ring wasn’t enough motivation, now people are saying they’re the underdogs? The Warriors are more talented, better coached and with more finals experience than the entire Raptors franchise outside of Kawhi Leonard, and now, they just might be even more motivated.
For those interested we cover this a lot more in-depth on the Podcast: Coast to Coast, so give it a listen!