OAKLAND — The Golden State Warriors beat the Houston Rockets 104-90 on Wednesday night, and in doing so merely ended a 40-year drought. The Warriors are back in the NBA Finals. It’s a sentence that’s both true now and unimaginable in the very recent past.
“No, no, I did not see this coming,” Warriors general manager Bob Myers conceded to ESPN.com when asked whether he expected this level of success so quickly. “It’s not that I didn’t think it was possible, but I didn’t see this expedited path to where we are. I am surprised.”
Expectations shift and update so quickly in this era that it’s easy to forget how shocking this result is in the grand scheme. Actually, Golden State’s Finals trip is also quite surprising in a smaller frame. This 67-win season was not expected to go this way. This group had a rookie coach and a dearth of deep playoff experience. The Warriors were the punch line of Las Vegas Summer League because they refused to swap Klay Thompson for All-Star Kevin Love. Now they stand as the West’s lone representative, ready to face a Cleveland Cavaliers team that clawed its way to the Finals sans Love’s services.