Former Celtics All Star Discredits Warriors’ Finals Victory in Boston

Steph Curry Golden State Warriors

Getty Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors speaks to the media after defeating the Boston Celtics 103-90 in Game Six to win the 2022 NBA Finals at TD Garden on June 16, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

The Golden State Warriors are reigning champions, but one former Boston Celtics wing says his old team lost the series more than the Dubs won it.

Antoine Walker, a three-time All Star over the first seven years of his NBA career in Boston, didn’t just say the Celtics “gave” the Warriors the fourth title of the franchise’s modern dynasty. Walker also claimed that the Miami Heat, who the Celtics defeated in the Eastern Conference Finals, would have had a better shot at besting Golden State.

Walker made the comments during a Sunday, August 7, appearance on the Locked on Heat Podcast.


Antoine Walker On the Miami Heat's 2006 Championship, Dwyane Wade's Emergence and MoreThree-time All-Star and NBA champion Antoine Walker joins the show to discuss winning the 2006 NBA Finals with the Miami Heat, witnessing Dwyane Wade's emergence as a super star, Shaquille O'Neal cheating body fat tests and much more. Follow & Subscribe to the Locked On Heat podcast on these platforms… 🎧 Apple apple.co/3nBjVGq 🎧 Spotify…2022-08-08T04:00:31Z

 

I think [the Heat] would have had a better shot. I don’t know if they could have scored enough to keep up with the Warriors, but defensively they would have been so stingy.

And that’s where the Heat, and the game plan, would have been a lot different than the Celtics. I hate to take away from Golden State, but if you go back and watch the film, Boston gave Golden State that championship.

Walker was also a member of the Heat for two seasons near the end of his career, including in 2005-06 when he won a championship ring as a significant contributor off the bench. Walker averaged 17.5 points, 7.7 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.2 steals per game over the course of his NBA tenure, per Basketball Reference.

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Warriors’ Superstar Trio Dealt With Doubters Since First NBA Title

Curry, Thompson, Green

Getty(From left to right) Draymond Green, Klay Thompson and Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors celebrate after winning their fourth NBA title in June, 2022.

For the Warriors — particularly the superstar trio of Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green, all of whom are four-time champions — the questions and the lack of credit are nothing new.

Their first NBA Finals victory over LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2014-15 was questioned due to the injuries sustained by Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love, which limited Irving to one game and Love to zero during that series.

Criticism of Curry’s postseason performances began after the Dubs went 73-9, the best regular season record in league history, then lost in the Finals after leading the Cavs 3-1.

Next, Kevin Durant came to town and for the following three years, all bets were off. The Warriors were a bonafide super team unlike any that had come before, which also led to the roster construction being widely branded as simply unfair. The Dubs earned their way to three straight Finals appearances, winning back-to-back titles during the first two seasons. Golden State fell just shy of a three-peat the following year, after Durant and Thompson each suffered injuries in the Finals against the Toronto Raptors.

The collective message these criticisms sent to the Dubs’ Big 3 following that historic five-year run was, in summation: “You didn’t deserve the first title you got, and Durant won you the next two.”


Warriors Heard, Then Silenced Outside Noise During Dynasty Run

Draymond Green

Getty ImagesGolden State Warriors star Draymond Green.

Now come Walker’s comments. And while Curry indirectly admitted that the Warriors hear what the outside world is saying via his post-title locker room exclamation of — “What are they gonna say now?” — the criticisms have never seemed to impact any actual winning in Golden State.

Thompson put his voice behind that sentiment after the Warriors defeated the Celtics in Game 6 of the NBA Finals at TD Garden in Boston.

“I saw it in the beginning of season. People called me crazy,” Thompson said, per The Athletic. “I said championship or bust, because I saw how we came out of the gate, 18-2. And playing just that Warriors brand of basketball that made us so successful, and then knowing I was going to be inserted in that, I knew we had a chance to do something special. And here we are.”

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Buzz Kill
Buzz Kill
1 month ago

Warriors got a long list of haters who claim they aint all that.
So why did they beat you and your boys?
Loser.

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