Magic vs. Bird. Kareem vs. McHale. LeBron vs. Steph?
The Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors, who are a combined 8-0 in this year’s NBA playoffs, appear to be on a collision course to meet in the NBA Finals for the third consecutive season. Some believe their dominance is bad for basketball, but apparently Tyronn Lue is not in that camp.
When asked Wednesday if the overwhelming success of Cleveland and Golden State is a problem, the Cavs coach went for a historical analogy to drive home his point.
“Is it a problem? I don’t think so,” Lue told reporters, via ESPN.com. “I think a lot of people wanted to see Boston and the Lakers back in the day. I think nowadays, a lot of people want to see Golden State-Cavs. And it’s not a problem. It’s two of the teams playing some of the best basketball right now.”
It’s pretty ambitious to compare Cavs-Warriors to the Boston Celtics vs. Los Angeles Lakers rivalry that defined the 1980s. The two storied franchises met in the NBA Finals three times over a four-year span from 1984 to 1987, and either Boston or L.A. won the NBA championship every year from 1980 to 1988, with the exception of the Philadelphia 76ers winning in 1983. The two squads also produced a laundry list of Hall of Famers.
But Lue might have a point. Golden State and Cleveland can become the first teams in NBA history to meet in the NBA Finals in three straight seasons, and both clubs are loaded with transcendent stars, from Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry to LeBron James and Kyrie Irving.
“Why not want to see it again?” Lue added. “I don’t see why it would be a problem. I think last year had some of the best ratings, I think, in NBA history. I think now with them adding Durant and the way they’re playing, the way we’re playing, it can be even higher.”
Thumbnail photo via David Richard/USA TODAY Sports Images