In what has seemed like a foregone conclusion since the NBA playoffs started in late April, the Golden State Warriors have been crowned your 2017 Western Conference Champions and have earned their third consecutive trip to the NBA Finals. For those who have not been obsessively following the playoffs several nights weekly in sports bars or at their television sets, last night’s 129-115 win over the San Antonio Spurs was the Dubs’ record-breaking 12th consecutive win in a single playoffs. The Warriors have yet to lose a game in this year’s postseason, with an average margin of victory of 16.3 points per game.
The Warriors are now looking at a full nine nine! days rest until the NBA Finals begin June 1. While the championship-chasing mission is far from complete, it is fair and appropriate to simply bask in the glow of winning the the Western Conference Championship Trophy for the next day or two. Someone Photoshop the Warriors and that trophy into a Trump orb parody, stat!
2017 NBA Finals schedule pic.twitter.com/cHBhxA1eIu— Marc J. Spears (@MarcJSpearsESPN) May 23, 2017
The 2017 NBA Finals will begin June 1 at Roaracle Area, and the complete schedule is seen above. According to a statement from Warriors PR, “Single game tickets for Games 1 and 2 of the NBA Finals will go on sale this week [at Warriors.com] with exclusive presale events before going on sale to the general public on Thursday, May 25. The first presale event begins Wednesday, May 24 at 10:00 a.m. exclusively for the team’s season ticket holders, with an additional presale event for the team’s Season Ticket Priority Wait List members beginning on Wednesday, May 24 at 2:00 p.m.” That said, there are already Game 1 tickets available for $555 on StubHub.
No one in NBA history has ever started the playoffs 12-0. pic.twitter.com/CvdNX6uibm— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) May 23, 2017
Last night’s win made significant NBA playoff history because the Warriors are the first team ever to begin the postseason with 12 consecutive wins, fulfilling Moses Malone’s infamous (and unsuccessful) 1983 prediction of a “Fo’ Fo’ Fo’” sweep of three consecutive playoff series. The above graphic is actually slightly incorrect it was the 1989 Lakers that started their playoffs 11-0, not the 1987 Lakers. As with the 2001 Lakers who also rolled into the Finals undefeated, those teams played in an era when the first round was only a five-game series. So it only took 11 wins to make the Finals, whereas in the Moses Malone era, top-seeded teams had a first-round bye and did not play any five-game series and therefore did need four wins per round.
This is all quite complicated, the main takeaway here is that the 2016-17 Warriors are the only team to ever fulfill the “Fo Fo’ Fo” boast originally made 34 years ago.
The Warriors are the super-team to end all super-teams. It's hard to imagine any LeBron-less combination of present-day talent keeping up.— Nathaniel Friedman (@freedarko) May 22, 2017
For you history porn buffs, the pesky Cleveland Cavaliers are still tied for the longest-ever NBA playoff winning streak of 13 games. That streak was snapped Sunday night when the Cavs blew a 21-point lead to Boston. Cleveland is up a mere 2-1 in the Eastern Conference Finals, and they might totally lose!
But a Steph Curry quote after the game says it all. “We all know, obviously, who we're going to play," Curry told the Associated Press. "We'll be watching the Eastern Conference Finals to see how that unfolds. But it will be easy to start this new chapter and really just lock in on what's in front of us."
It behooves us to mention that Warriors head coach Steve Kerr remains sidelined with an incredibly scary-sounding spinal cord fluid leakage condition that serves as a stark reminder that there are bigger things in life than basketball. Assistant coach Mike Brown is filling in during Kerr’s absence, and we don’t know if Kerr will return to the sidelines for the Finals or ever.
“That’s up to Steve, honestly,” team owner Joe Lacob told the Mercury News. “We’ll see how he feels. We’ve got nine days between now and then. I certainly would hope he’d feel better. But if not, we’re prepared to go the way we are. Whatever it takes, our players are ready.”