Golden State Warriors Win 2017 NBA Championship, Twitter Reacts

Warriors fans watch the NBA Finals

Warriors fans watch the NBA Finals

It has been great three-year run, but we feel like we can carry this forward.

But it was Durant, who left Oklahoma City for Oakland at the end of last season, who carried the team. Time and again, with James (21 first half points) and Irving (16 first half points) off to scorching starts, the Warriors' blunders led to Cavs' gift baskets. A fabulous first one with and for Durant.

The Warriors took a 71-60 half-time lead but the Cavaliers trimmed the deficit, Smith sinking a 3-pointer to pull Cleveland within 98-93 entering the fourth quarter. On the court, they're the truest representation of pace-and-space, a rapid deluge of three-pointers and dunks paired with a largely position-less, switch-friendly defense.

But James, in his seventh consecutive playoff series and eighth overall, fell to 3-5 in the championship round.

Durant's 11 points and Golden State's attacking defensive work powered the surge.

Golden State Warriors Win 2017 NBA Championship, Twitter Reacts

Before running into the buzz saw that is the Warriors, the Cavs rolled through the Eastern Conference playoffs, going 12-1 and putting up the best offensive efficiency in the history of the postseason through the first three rounds - even besting the "Showtime" Los Angeles Lakers of the 1980s. There was more than a touch of pay-back Monday night.

Warriors guard Shaun Livingston said in February that he would not visit the White House if the team wins the championship, saying he is not a fan of the president's politics.

Sometimes lost in all the chatter about a possible Warriors' dynasty is the fact that Golden State plays lovely, often unselfish team ball.

"It's encouraging. Quite encouraging", Warriors coach Steve Kerr said.

Through two games of these Finals, the Warriors' margin for error looked to be as wide as the San Francisco Bay. Jordan led the league in scoring and Rodman in rebounding, and their three stars were perhaps the league's best defensive players at their positions, making it almost impossible to score against the Bulls at times. "These guys are so gifted and committed to each other and so unselfish".

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Durant, in accepting the Final's MVP Award, agreed.

"I can't believe we're getting this question already", Lacob said. I came in and tried to help my team. "I need to sit down and figure this thing out", said James. The reigning NBA Coach of the Year returned for Game 2 of the Finals following a six-week absence from the bench. Nobody will have the same 15 players they ended the season with. But in the end, James fell short.

Now, the Warriors will face a frenzy of free-agent moves this summer to try to keep as many stars and brilliant backups as possible around for another run in 2018.

Draymond Green showed respect for the Cavaliers, giving them credit for their championship caliber and determination throughout the season.

"Experience is the best teacher in life, and he's just experiencing and experiencing and experiencing", said James.

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The long-term challenge for the National Basketball Association is how to address the on-going grumblings about a lack of competitive balance.

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