Will Golden State take down LeBron?

Warrior’s Second Chance

Christian Touhey, Video Editor

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Anticipation and turmoil surround the NBA Finals this year as the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers clash for a third year in a row in an epic test of stardom.

Throughout the Bay Area, basketball fans seem confident yet anxious about the matchup. It is no question the arrival of Kevin Durant will provide the Warriors a key advantage in the offensive strategy to take overcome LeBron James. However, flashbacks of the 3-1 lead the Warriors blew last year will remain prevalent.

The rivalry between the Warriors and Cavaliers has only been around for a few years, and was recognized nationwide when the Warriors began advancing in playoffs with an underestimated lineup. Draymond Green and Klay Thompson are two examples of players the Warriors failed to capitalize on seasons before entering the Finals in 2014.

One issue that will stop the Warriors from sweeping the Cavaliers is the lack of centers that Golden State can rely on. The release of Marc Gasol last year upset many fans last year, including Woodside senior Max Fielder. Max has been a fan of the Warriors for over ten years.

“It’s great that we got Kevin Durant but in exchange we lost many of our hometown players,” Fielder added. “Like Harris on Barnes and Marc Gasol, those were two players that carried us through a lot of wins. Steph is great but he isn’t an inside player.”

Kevin Durant’s entry to the Warriors caused upset between Thunder and Golden State fans alike. Fans of Durant’s former team, Oklahoma City, felt betrayed by the contract signing and saw it as an attempt for him to get his first NBA ring.  Kevin Durant was not able to win any NBA titles during his time with the thunder. Wilson Reynolds, Oklahoma City native and Woodside parent, viewed his exit as nothing more than determination.

“I’m not surprised he left, but I’m more shocked that he wasn’t able to win a championship playing alongside Russell Westbrook for all this time,” Reynolds commented. “But if you’re in his situation it makes sense to join a team who can get you a ring.”

The Warriors have began the series by winning the first two home games, identical to last year’s start. Supporters can only hope the team will protect this lead as they begin games in Cleveland, where the fan-base is just as active as in California. Many stars on the Cavaliers assist LeBron James with gameplans, such as Kyrie Irving and new addition Kyle Korver.

Part of what makes the Bay Area unique is it’s outrageous prices, from housing to sporting events alike. An average NBA finals ticket in the Bay Area this year is $638, while in Cleveland the same ticket will cost around $402 (TIME Money). Miles Reines, a Warriors season ticket holder, thinks this price increase in acceptable.

“You’re watching the same game, but the fanbase is totally different,” Reines added. “Going to a Warriors game is like seeing your favorite band live.”

It is up to the Golden State Warriors to prove critics wrong by beating Cleveland in there home town. For Max Fielder, the outcome is already clear.

“Warriors are going to sweep the Cavaliers, Kevin Durant made them into an all-star team.”

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