This year, they’re 0-2.
Two weeks ago, the Warriors lost an overtime thriller to the Raptors, 131-128. It was as encouraging of a loss as you’ll find: On the road, against a top team, with neither Steph Curry nor Draymond Green playing, and yet it still needed an extra five minutes to be decided.
Last night, the tables were turned. This time Curry and Green were around, but Raptors star Kawhi Leonard was not. This time it was at Oracle Arena.
And this time it was a blowout. The only thing that stayed the same was that it was a loss.
But if you’re worried about what this means in June - when the Warriors and Raptors could very realistically meet in the NBA Finals - don’t be. Because the players certainly aren’t. After the loss, Steph Curry - who had one of his worst games in recent memory - told Chris Haynes of Yahoo! Sports that the two autumn games won’t mean anything if these two teams face off again.
“It’s 0-0 from here,” Curry said. “The sweep doesn’t mean nothing in terms of when the lights are the brightest on the biggest stage in the playoffs. Everything’s different. We’ll remember how tonight was. It’s a tough vibe, but they don’t get any extra points if we were to face them in the Finals.”
Curry is, as usual, right. Golden State has played 22 NBA Finals games in the last four years, and are more than prepared for the moment, should it come a fifth time. And, of course, the teams will look different in June, when the Warriors will hopefully have more health.
That’s not to say that Toronto can’t Golden State in what would promise to be an exhilarating championship match. Just, if it comes to that . . . don’t read too much into last night’s game.