Photo: John Locher, Associated Press
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The Golden State Warriors are heading back to the NBA Finals and for the first time since 2015, this didn’t feel inevitable.
Steve Kerr’s group overcame Kevin Durant’s right calf strain that has sidelined him since Game 5 of the Western Conference Semifinals against the Houston Rockets, an injury that led a number of analysts to declare the Warriors’ season over.
ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy said he couldn’t see the Warriors beating the Rockets without the two-time Finals MVP, and TNT’s Charles Barkley even went as far to say the Warriors would not be able to win “any series” without Durant.
Barkley is notorious for a number of anti-Warriors takes that aged poorly, which raises the following question: What have been the absolute worst takes from the past 10 years of Warriors basketball?
It obviously begins with certain draftniks’ evaluations of Stephen Curry leading up to the 2009 NBA Draft, and also includes everyone (including Barkley) who emphatically stated the Warriors would never win a title with their style of play.
The Warriors signing Kevin Durant in the summer of 2016 also added gasoline to the fiery hot-take atmosphere in sports media, but things appeared to mostly die down after Golden State won the NBA Finals in 2017.
In order to qualify for the list of “worst takes,” the opinion/prediction has to have been something that has not only been definitively proven wrong, but also seemed pretty outlandish at the time.
So “Warriors will lose Game 3 to (insert playoff opponent here)” doesn’t count, as do opinions that may be controversial, but haven’t necessarily been proven wrong.
Click through the slideshow above to see the worst of the worst opinions and predictions from the last 10 years of Warriors basketball.
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This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/warriors/article/Warriors-NBA-Finals-Kevin-Durant-Steph-Curry-Green-13867841.php.