Here we are Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals. As expected it's the Spurs vs Warriors. 2 teams that knew this day was coming since the 1st Game of the regular season. Which saw the Spurs hand the Warriors a lopsided and rare home loss. The series was even more intense in there next matchups throughout the year. You have a Coach in Greg Popavich who has walked this road many times and if there is 1 team and 1 coach he wants to beat its this 1. The Warriors Head Coach Steve Kerr has pretty much duplicated the same message to his team that he learned under Pop as one of his key reserves in the early late 90's and early 2000's. They went on to win a few titles together. This is a war for the West. Everybody will be tuned in for this series. This has a classic feel to it but will it deliver. I think so but in these playoffs anything goes this year.
The Spurs have been a staple of the playoffs for almost 20 years. They have won 5 titles in this time but never Back to Back. Coach Pop has led the way this whole time and has had his good and bad moments but one thing stays the same his team will always play with the proper fundamentals and hustle. The best example of his coaching was in clinching Game 6 against The Rockets. I think everybody including myself had that series going 7 games after a thrilling Game 5 and the Rockets getting Game 6 at home. Well! that angle was deflated 5 minutes into the game as you could see the Spurs came out like they were down 3-2 and they lifted there sense of urgency to get the victory. They pretty much made that game their game 7 they played with the mentality you would've thought the Rockets should've had. Once again the power of Pop overwhelming another rival Coach who fails to make timely adjustments and turned into a pure laugher with a 39 point victory to advance after being crushed on there home floor in game 1 by 40 from these same Rockets. This to me is incredible and this might be Pop's greatest run if they can get past this mountain in Oakland. This will be the 1st time they got this far without the services of Tim Duncan and Tony Parker will the new era step up.
The Warriors came into the season as heavy favorites after signing the prize free agent Kevin Durant. Who showed us with signing this deal that a ring is heavy on his mind. This move made a lot of people mad and confused. I wasn't one of those people. This is an era were the elite players are judged on how many rings they get. The performance is the entertainment but the bottom line is getting rings. To me it doesn't prove your legacy but it's helpful. KD felt a nice rapport with this group and signing with the Warriors was easy because he felt he could have better chemistry with this group even though it puts them at a high advantage over most teams in the league it doesn't matter he signed where he wanted. Yes it makes the Warriors stronger than ever but that doesn't get you a title. They want to get that ring after winning 2 years back and also get revenge for falling short on a 2nd ring last year. This also was the best season for any team ever in the win column in total the Warriors had 88 wins if you include the playoffs. This year they made a commitment to be at there best nightly and even with KD missing time they still stayed atop the NBA standings. This series we will see how the Warriors will respond to this systematic unit that thrives on defense and hustle. The Warriors are on a mission for June but they know nothing is guaranteed in a series against the Spurs.
Game 1 looks to be a toss up. The Warriors should be well rested and anxious to get back to scoring buckets. The Spurs should be feeling good after that monster team effort Thursday night and Leonard will be back in the lineup. This game matters but not as much because it's the opening game and winning it doesn't guarantee clinching the series but it's a good confidence boost as it get you closer to the 4 wins. Please note though those 4 wins are tough to come by regardless how these games look on TV. This afternoon I feel like this will come down to who executes there gameplan better. The Warriors will be a little rusty and I expect the Spurs to keep that momentum going from Thursday night. The Spurs have to score the Warriors will make sure of that. I expect an high scoring game here. I won't pick the winner in this spot but I will scoreboard watch. I will circle the over 212 in this spot. That looks like a layup of a bet in this game. Let's see how it shakes out.