But to many, it feels like one and it looks like one for many reasons.
The Warriors’ 108-85 domination of the Cleveland Cavaliers fashioned out via sweep of the best-of-seven championship series, the first since 2007 when the San Antonio Spurs last did the trick.
It was the Warriors’ second straight counting their similar victory last season. It came, too, with sweet-shooting Stephen Curry shot a record nine three-pointers, in the process eclipsing the previous mark set by then Celtic Ray Allen in 2010.
There were numbers to behold with Curry finishing with 37 points in Game 4 and Kevin Durant triple-doubled his way to his second consecutive Finals MVP in this, Golden State’s 103rd game and 74th win.
The Warriors prevailed in overtime in Game 1, 124-14; Game 2, 122-103; Game 3, 110-102; and Game 4, 108-85.
Coach Steve Kerr and his boys considered the win weirdest, hardest run but with fitting ending.
The Warriors boys gifted Kerr the game he enjoys most and themselves a suffocating beatdown that denied their most serious rival even the barest illusion of hope.
More than anything else, the Warriors somewhat tainted Cav LeBron James rendezvous to greatness in that he might again leave the state and city of his birth.
That this back-to-back is done, the discussion now shifts to where this team fits in the scope of history. The Boston Celtics of the Bill Russell era will always be in a class by themselves, not only because of the unthinkable dominance but because the NBA only had between eight and 14 teams back then. Still, eight titles in a row (1959 to 1966) and 11 of 13 during that span is incredible by any measure.
Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls had their own unquestionable place in the league’s annals, with three-peats from 1991-93 and 1996-98. The Kobe Bryant-Shaquille O’Neal Los Angeles Lakers could have been extended (2000-02), but their internal rivalry that cut the 2000—02 era short.
These Warriors, who were well on their way to this kind of run even before adding Kevin Durant two summers ago, now belong somewhere in that conversation. The sweep is a cherry-on-top achievement, as it’s just the ninth time in NBA history that its happened.
And should James leave his home region again this summer in free agency — a prospect that seems more likely than not as July 1 nears — they will go down as the team that shoved him toward the exits.
But as anyone who has watched this Golden State stretch up close knows, this latest title season was hardly a carbon copy of the two that came before.
The fatigue factor came into play like never before, with players and coaches alike admitting that their minds and bodies were taxed from the annual October-to-June routine.
Kerr had predicted that much from the start, citing his playing days with those Jordan Bulls and remembering how hard it was to keep a championship-caliber edge as time wore on. (Eddie G. Alineafirstname.lastname@example.org)