The Warriors made it four NBA titles in eight seasons as they defeated the Celtics 103-90 in Game 6 of the NBA Finals at TD Garden Thursday night.
Golden State won the series 4-2; Steph Curry, who had a game-high 34 points, including five threes in Game 6, was named Finals MVP for the first time in his career.
After trailing 14-2 with just over eight minutes left in the first quarter, the Warriors outscored the Celtics 52-25 the rest of the half, including a 21-0 run. The Warriors led by as many as 21 points in the first half and had a 54-39 lead at halftime.
Boston got the lead to as low as eight late in the fourth but could not get any closer.
Curry, who won his fourth NBA title, averaged 31.2 points, 6.0 rebounds, 5.0 assists, and 5.2 3-pt FG per game in this series, and according to StatMuse, he is the first player in NBA history to average 30/5/5 and five threes in a Finals series.
“We’ve got four championships,” Curry said after the win. “This one hits different for sure, just knowing what the last three years have meant, what it’s been like from injuries to changing of the guard in the rosters, Wiggs(Andrew Wiggins) coming through, our young guys carrying the belief that we could get back to this stage and win, even if it didn’t make sense to anybody when we said it, all that stuff matters. And now we got four championships. Me, Dray(Draymond Green), Klay(Thompson), and Andre(Iguodala), we finally got that bad boy. It’s special. It’s special.”
Warriors head coach Steve Kerr says the four championships don’t happen without Curry.
“I’m obviously thrilled for everyone in that room, and a lot of people had a big hand in this, but I think the thing with Steph is, you know, without him, none of this happens,’ Kerr said. “Steph ultimately is why this run has happened. Much like Timmy(Tim Duncan) in San Antonio. So I’m happy for everybody, but I’m thrilled for Steph. To me, this is his crowning achievement in what’s already been an incredible career.”
The Warriors missed the playoffs the last two seasons, so getting back to this spot was difficult for Curry and the rest of the team. After the win, Curry was in tears, and he explained why he was so emotional.
“These last two months of the playoffs, these last three years, this last 48 hours, every bit of it has been an emotional roller coaster on and off the floor,” he said. “And you’re carrying all of that on a daily basis to try to realize a dream and a goal like we did tonight. And you get goosebumps just thinking about, you know, all those snapshots and episodes that we went through to get back here, individually, collectively. And that’s why I said I think this championship hits different. That’s why I have so many emotions, and still will, just because of what it took to get back here.”
Klay Thompson, who also won his fourth NBA title, believes Curry is an all-time great.
“I’m so happy for him to get that Finals MVP,” Thompson said. “Some bozo saying he needed it. I think he’s pretty much established what he can do, but to see him earn that, he’s one of the greatest ever, and we all followed in his lead, and gosh, that was awesome. What a series.”
Draymond Green, who added his fourth NBA title as well and had 12 points, 12 rebounds, and eight assists in Game 6, added on Curry: “Steph Curry, to have the season and the career that he’s had, it is amazing. And to stamp that with a Finals MVP — I know he said it don’t matter, and it doesn’t matter in the sense of like, oh, his legacy is not quite this unless he gets that. Like, that’s garbage. Still, Steph Curry still an all-time great. But to add that to your résumé as a competitor, you want that. For him, well-deserved.”
After winning Finals MVP, Curry’s legacy is complete. Before this series, Curry was an all-time great, but now there are no doubts.