Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr has given his thoughts on the simmering narrative about the 2019-20 NBA championship having far less prestige than all the previous titles. The veteran coach fully dismissed the idea, and even implied that it’s actually set in tougher circumstances.
“One thing I feel really strongly about is that a championship under these conditions is going to count. People are going to want to put an asterisk next to it. There’s no asterisk. In my mind, it’s going to be a brutally difficult journey to try and win a title.”
Hall-of-Fame big man and now outspoken NBA analyst Shaquille O’Neal is one of the handful who have been vocal about the cancelling the season. He has also claimed that whoever team wins this year will have an asterisk next to its name.
Though the Warriors are one of eight teams that are already eliminated from playoff contention, Kerr coming to the remaining contenders’ defense was expected. He knows a whole lot about getting discredited of championships, and he may be dying to speak against such beliefs.
The Warriors’ titles in the 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons are both being heavily criticized to this day as many felt that their juggernaut roster was too much for the league.
They infamously signed away superstar Kevin Durant from the Oklahoma City Thunder during the 2016 off-season while also keeping the core of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green intact. At the time of acquisition, Golden State was coming off back-to-back dominating seasons – one record-setting 73-9 campaign and a championship in the season prior.
There’s no debating that the 2019-20 season will shape up as a year unlike any other. It’s been massively hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, which then led to a three-month hiatus that halted everyone’s momentum. As if those weren’t enough, race relations in the country also took an ugly turn.
Dismissive as it may seem, it’s something the league can’t control, so all the league can do now is move forward and assure its players are getting heard in social issues and protected from the underlying health risks.
Hopefully, everyone would ultimately understand that the year’s rollercoaster ride, as unexpected as it may be, is part of the adversity when you’re reaching for that sweet taste of championship glory.
The NBA is set to return on July 31 at the ESPN’s Wide World of Sports complex in Orlando, Florida, with 22 teams being invited to finish the season, six of which are vying for a playoff spot. Commissioner Adam Silver and his team are continuing to get every player on board with the restart plan, and we are sure to get more updates over the next couple of days.