Former NBA Draft pick Chris Webber believes that a Finals rematch between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers is inevitable as both sides head into Game 2 of their respective divisional finals, 1-0 ahead.
The Cavaliers stole home court advantage from the Boston Celtics as LeBron James led the reigning NBA champions to a 117-104 victory, while the Warriors took their opener against the San Antonio Spurs 136-100 in Oakland.
Both victories were certainly statements and Webber, now an NBA on TNT analyst thinks that a third straight meeting between the two sides in the Finals is more than a possibility, because of the star quality both sides have.
“It’s the greatness of LeBron, I don’t know what we could do about it except to really just enjoy it,” Webber said.
“When Magic [Johnson] and some other guys did it, we maybe talked about parity instead of enjoying it and we’ll never see a guy like Magic Johnson again. We can change divisions, or try to do a bunch of things, but when you have great players like Curry and Durant on the same team, or a guy like LeBron, there’s not much you can do. I love that we get to see this – a guy learn to win under Pat Riley and come home and show his team how to win. I just think it’s the greatness of the players that we have.”
James led the Cavaliers with 38 points, nine rebounds and seven assists, supported by a 32-point, 12-rebound double-double by Kevin Love in their win over the Celtics. Stephen Curry paced a balanced Warriors attack wth 29 points in their blowout over the Spurs.
Some people have considered the Warriors as “villains” especially in the off-season when Kevin Durant moved to California from the Oklahoma City Thunder but Webber’s co-analyst Kenny Smith admits that it’s a common trait in the league.
“When you go to the team that beat you, people aren’t going to like it. Ray Allen wasn’t liked by the Boston Celtics [when he went to Miami] and Kevin Durant was a better player at that stage than Ray Allen was when he went to Golden State. It left them open to [have the villain label].
“LeBron, in his case, he came home, so the story is more compassionate. He had the same backlash when he went to Miami, but no-one’s ever going to question someone coming home… [The Warriors] put that on themselves and Kevin Durant knew the expectation that would happen… It is different than what great players in the past have done.”