The Golden State Warriors have dominated the NBA in recent seasons with the Bay Area team winning three championships in the last four seasons. The only time they were beaten was by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2016.
In 2017, the Warriors added Kevin Durant to their lineup and they have been pretty much untouchable especially in the playoffs and the NBA Finals. The former Oklahoma City Thunder small forward has played a key role in them vanquishing the Cavaliers 4-1 in the 2017 and then 4-0 in 2018.
The reigning champions have now added a fifth NBA All-Star to their lineup in DeMarcus Cousins and they are again being tipped to dominate the Western Conference and pick up their third straight NBA title.
However, Kyrie Irving, who was part of the Cavaliers team that beat them in 2016, currently with the Boston Celtics is plotting to end their dominance in the upcoming campaign.
The Celtics point guard paid tribute to the Stephen Curry-led Warriors and admits going up against them in three straight finals while with the Cavaliers has developed sort of a rivalry.
The Boston franchise will have to clear the Eastern Conference Finals before having a shot at the Warriors — that is if they make it to the Finals for the fifth straight year — and Irving is hoping the “special unit” can be beaten by “special individuals” which the Celtics do possess in Irving, Gordon Hayward and 20-year-old Jayson Tatum.
“Going against them for three straight years, you develop that sort of competitive rivalry,” Irving said, as quoted by the Express. “But the respect is there. Obviously, they’ve been the victor two out of three times. You give respect where it’s due.”
“They’re a special unit. But sometimes special units can be beat by special individuals,” the five-time NBA All-Star added.
The Celtics and the Warriors began their 2018-19 NBA campaign on Tuesday night and both teams started off with wins. The former dominated the Philadelphia 76ers to win 105-87, while the latter faced off against Thunder and managed a 108-100 victory but their opponents were without their star player Russell Westbrook.
Irving did not have the best start to the campaign managing just seven points, but that showed the depth the Celtics possess as they won by 18 points despite their two All-Stars — the other being Hayward — combining for just 17 points.
Meanwhile, the Warriors had four All-Stars on court with their fifth — Cousins — still nursing an Achilles injury. Despite that they did not dominate the game, but that is as per coach Steve Kerr’s prediction, who revealed prior to the game his team will start the season slow before building up pace in the latter stages of the campaign.