The Golden State Warriors are the new NBA champions, as they outlasted the Boston Celtics in six games.
This is the fourth championship in eight years the Warriors have won, and they had to go through a lot of adversity over the last three years just to have the opportunity to get it done.
They were led by Stephen Curry, who had 34 points, seven rebounds, seven assists, and two steals in the clinching game on Thursday.
It capped a magnificent series for the greatest outside shooter of all time, and it earned him the Finals MVP award, his first.
Stephen Curry’s 2022 NBA Finals Stats:
31.2 PPG (48.2%/43.7%/85.7%)
Game 5 filtered:
34.2 PPG (51.3%/50.0%/88.0%)
Well-deserved Finals MVP 🧑🍳 pic.twitter.com/MBWjrTzutz
— NBA CHAMPIONS 2022 (@Jovinazport) June 17, 2022
It may seem silly to ask this, but did Curry deserve that award?
Yes, Curry deserved the Finals MVP award, and it’s not even a debate.
Curry Just Had One Of The Better Championship Series Of All Time
Coming into this season, Curry was universally acknowledged as the greatest shooter ever and a great player, but his place on the all-time lists of greatest players was in question.
Over the years, critics had accused him of not being clutch and of being soft.
He had won three world titles, but he had arguably not played up to his standards in any of those three Finals series.
But this year’s Finals performance by Curry was nothing short of legendary.
What makes it even more impressive was the fact that he did it against the best defensive team in all of basketball in the Celtics.
In Game 4, with the Warriors down 2-1 in the series and looking outmatched, Curry put his team on his back and dropped a very efficient 43 points to lead the Warriors to a 10-point win.
Curry has never been known as a high-level defender, but in this series, he held his own, and he had at least two steals in all but one contest.
In doing all he did, he validated his first three championships and silenced all of his doubters, and what he did in this series is up there with just about anything Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James have ever done on the same stage.
Steph Should Have Two Finals MVPs Right Now
In 2015, the Warriors won their first championship of the era, and like this year, they overcame a 2-1 deficit by winning three in a row to clinch the title.
In that series, Curry did well, averaging 26 points while hitting 38.5 percent of his 3-pointers, 6.3 assists, and 1.8 steals per game.
That turned the series around, as the bigger and taller Cleveland Cavaliers failed to take advantage of Golden State’s roadrunner lineup.
The voters fell for that narrative, and Iguodala won series MVP honors.
Not only was Curry robbed of the award, but he didn’t get a single vote.
2015 NBA Finals MVP Voting Results.
Andre Iguodala – 7 votes
Lebron James – 4 votes
Stephen Curry received 0 votes for Finals MVP.
— Product of the Slums (@DiorShurn) May 29, 2022
In retrospect, it was one of the most blatant acts of basketball or journalistic malpractice in recent NBA history.
The jury may still be out on whether Curry is one of the 10 greatest NBA players ever, but at worst, he is just outside of it, and it is time for him to get his full due.