Watching Milwaukee cruise to the NBA championship Tuesday night time, Nets followers – whose staff pushed the Bucks more durable than anyone else this postseason, regardless of being decimated by accidents – couldn’t assist however assume two phrases: What if.
As in what if James Harden and Kyrie Irving hadn’t gotten damage. What if Kevin Durant’s toe hadn’t tickled the road on what was oh-so-close to being the successful 3-pointer on the finish of regulation in Recreation 7 of the Japanese Convention semis.
However Durant himself – in Tokyo with Crew USA, going for his third Olympic gold medal – says he doesn’t enable himself these type of ideas.
“Not likely,” Durant mentioned after Crew USA follow in Tokyo, which equated roughly to five am Wednesday morning again in New York. “I imply, you performed (to win). No ethical victories ? You solely need to be final staff standing within the NBA Finals, within the playoffs. So, no.
“I imply, we perceive how good we’re, and our purpose wasn’t simply to push the Bucks: Our purpose was to win it. Sadly we didn’t. However congrats to the Bucks. They’re a tremendous staff who fought via so much these previous few years to get up to now, so nothing however respect for them.”
The Nets had been adequate to stretch Milwaukee to Recreation 7. And that was regardless of Harden straining his hamstring simply :43 into the second-round collection and never returning till Recreation 5, and severely hampered even then. And it was regardless of Irving happening with a sprained ankle after touchdown on Giannis Antetokounmpo.
The Bucks star went on to an NBA Finals MVP efficiency, after Milwaukee swept the Warmth, drilled the Hawks and closed out the Suns in six video games.
And after Antetokounmpo’s mammoth 50-point efficiency in Tuesday’s 105-98 clincher, he appeared to throw some shade at Brooklyn’s Huge Three.
“I wished to get the job finished. However that’s my cussed facet. It’s simple to go someplace and go win a championship with someone else,” mentioned Antetokounmpo. “It’s simple.
“I may go to…I don’t need to put anyone on the spot, however I may go to a superteam and simply do my half and win a championship. However that is the onerous technique to do it, and that is the best way we selected to do it. And we did it. We f–king did it.”
There have been a number of superteams within the league over the previous decade, and LeBron James began the pattern when he bolted Cleveland in 2010 and took his abilities to affix Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami. He took it to an artwork kind when he went to Los Angeles and lured Anthony Davis there final season.
Each of these grasp plans resulted in crowns for King James.
Durant watched and realized, and finally turned synonymous with superteams after he bolted Oklahoma Metropolis in 2016 to affix the Splash Brothers in Golden State that had received the championship a yr earlier than. He earned a pair of rings with the Warriors and sure would’ve received a 3rd if he hadn’t ruptured his Achilles.
Accidents short-circuited the Nets’ push, even when Durant wouldn’t use them as an alibi.
However even on the eve of the Bucks’ coronation, the pundits and oddsmakers had been projecting Durant and his Nets will rule the league subsequent season.
Brooklyn (+225) was put in because the betting favourite by William Hill and BetMGM, with James’ Lakers additionally forward of champion Milwaukee. Apparently, Las Vegas is anticipating to see that What If turn into a actuality.