SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – Stephen Curry (AP, pic below) is far from ready to accept that these Golden State Warriors are done chasing championships together.
Draymond Green and Klay Thompson, too. Same goes for Kevon Looney and Andrew Wiggins.
“I think we understand each other, what we all bring to the table and trust that we’re just gonna compete until the wheels fall off,” the 35-year-old Curry said.
The defending champions’ season ended in a 122-101 loss in Game 6 to the Lakers in Los Angeles on Friday night, the first time the core of Curry, Green and Thompson have been eliminated before the NBA Finals after 19 straight playoff series wins against Western Conference opponents under Steve Kerr.
Golden State also failed to to win at least one road game after doing so in an NBA-record 28 consecutive series.
Sure, the Warriors realise all of the outside speculation that the Curry-led dynasty could be done.
The franchise captured four titles over eight years, reaching the NBA Finals in five straight seasons from 2015-19.
“It’s probably too raw right now for me to think about,” Kerr said.
“The one thing I will say is that Draymond, Klay, Steph, our core guys, they’ve got plenty left. There’s still plenty in the tank there. I thought they all had great seasons.”
Yet the quest for a repeat title began with Green punching Jordan Poole during training camp, then the Warriors worked through that crisis only to struggle on the road and miss key players to injury. The continuity was rarely there.
“Last year we were a little bit more together,” Wiggins said on Saturday.
Golden State needed Curry’s 50-point masterpiece in Game 7 at Sacramento in the first round to beat the Kings and become the first defending champion to rally from a 2-0 deficit.
Then he and Thompson struggled to knock down the key shots against the Lakers. Golden State’s 365 missed three-pointers in the first two rounds are the most in NBA history.
And after going a combined six for 26 from deep in the deciding Game 6, Curry and Thompson became one of only three pairs to each have missed 10 or more threes in the same playoff game.
Now, they will part ways and work to regroup again – and see how the roster might change.