Andre Iguodala came up huge for the Warriors to win the title

ESPN proudly announced Tuesday the 2017 NBA Finals between Golden State and Cleveland on ABC was the most-watched NBA Finals since 1998, according to Nielsen.

Maybe Thompson or Curry would have hit those shots if Durant never came to Golden State; maybe the Warriors would have won the title without him; maybe Durant didn't actually alter National Basketball Association history in any meaningful way.

The Warriors won the 2015 National Basketball Association championship but failed to repeat past year after blowing a 3-1 finals lead to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Cavaliers forward LeBron James had a game-high 41 points and guard Kyrie Irving hit tough shots all night, but defensive breakdowns by Cleveland led to easy baskets late in the game for the Warriors, igniting a deafening crowd. They could become beatable if the rest of the roster fails to fill roles, but the play of their four All-Stars will make them advance deep into the playoffs. "And I did that from day one, and I just tried to stay with that". "I have no reason to look back at what I could have done or what I shouldn't have done or what I could have done better for the team". "I don't believe we're a super team here".

On Monday night at Oracle Arena, Durant had 39 points-the difference-maker in the Finals as teammate Draymond Green had predicted-and walked off as Finals MVP.

"Golden State (was) the best team this year", James said.

"There was never any question in my mind that this was going to work", Warriors coach Steve Kerr said of the addition of Durant to a Curry-led core that already was good enough to make consecutive Finals.

"He's had an awesome career, but he just took it to the next level", coach Steve Kerr said.

Some reports have suggested James, the best player on the planet, may head to California to join the Lakers or Clippers in 2018, likely bringing talented players along in an effort to topple the Warriors if the Cavaliers fall short again next year. The Warriors won a league-record 14 consecutive games during this year's playoffs and went 16-1 overall in the postseason.

It also created lofty expectations for Durant, with many onlookers saying his move would be a failure if the Warriors did not go on to win a title in their first season together. While James hasn't seen a dropoff in play yet, it's growing clear that he needs more help to get over the hump and beat the Warriors.

Related Articles

  • Oil slips on worries Middle East rift could undermine OPEC cuts

    OPEC and other producers including Russian Federation have pledged to cut output by about 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd). In addition, OPEC is allowing Iran to continue to increase its production levels up to 3.797 million barrels per day.

    Messi and Barca congratulate NBA champions Warriors

    Warriors coach Steve Kerr sees Durant as that missing piece to turning a formidable club into a historic juggernaut. The Indiana Pacers' Paul George has one year left on his contract and has been speculated as a possible target.
    GJM shutdown: Rallies for separate state, police on high alert

    GJM shutdown: Rallies for separate state, police on high alert

    GJM general secretary Roshan Giri has sought Centre's intervention in the political turmoil in the state. This was in the run-up to the 2014 Lok Sabha polls in which Ahluwalia was a candidate.
  • LeBron James' finals triple double history doesn't ease loss

    The first-time title victor scored 39 points as point guard Stephen Curry posted 34 at the Oracle Arena in Oakland. Boston has the No. 1 pick in the draft to add to a team that went to the Eastern Conference finals this season.
    Extradition case: Vijay Mallya takes on media for 'hate campaign'

    Extradition case: Vijay Mallya takes on media for 'hate campaign'

    That ruling can be challenged in a higher court before being passed to the Home Secretary (interior minister) for approval. Vijay Mallya is the former owner of the Royal Challengers Bangalore team that plays in the India Premier League (IPL).

    MP: Curfew lifted from Mandsaur, prohibitory orders to continue

    The CM further said his Government was pro-farmer and recalled efforts underway to make farming a profitable business in MP. Chouhan blamed the plight of farmers on the Centre, and announced a fast against the Manmohan Singh government.
  • Tom Cotton Grills Jeff Sessions On Spy Novels

    This isn't good enough for Rhode, however, because Sessions can't prove he was unaware of the president's reason for firing Comey. But he denied meeting Kislyak a third time, at an April 27, 2016 reception for Trump at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington.
    Sessions to answer questions in public about Russian Federation  dealings

    Sessions to answer questions in public about Russian Federation dealings

    Sessions said his decision to accept the intelligence committee's invitation to appear was due in part to Comey's testimony . He will be asked about meetings with the Russians and if the president tried to influence the investigation.

    Los Angeles Angels vs. New York Yankees

    But he followed that up by permitting seven runs and nine hits in 5 2/3 innings of a 10-4 loss at Baltimore on May 31. Luis Avilan (1-1) pitched a scoreless inning for the win, and Kenley Jansen got three outs for his 200th career save.
  • Panama shuns down Taiwan, toasts to diplomatic ties with China

    Panama shuns down Taiwan, toasts to diplomatic ties with China

    They signed the joint communique in which Panama has recognised One China, meaning that Taiwan is part of the Chinese mainland. Tsai tweeted late Tuesday that Taiwan would close its diplomatic mission in Panama "in (a) dignified manner".

    Virginia gubernatorial primary: Northam wins, awaits GOP victor

    Although Stewart came up short, his showing in the primary creates a new challenge for Gillespie in the general election. However, Gillespie started to widen his lead as more Northern Virginia precincts started to report.
    Growing frenzy outside court as Cosby deliberations wear on

    Growing frenzy outside court as Cosby deliberations wear on

    Constand initially settled the case with a civil suit in 2006, having waited a year to report the alleged assault to the police. The 79-year-old entertainer did not take the stand at his trial, but prosecutors used his deposition testimony as evidence.