I don’t know what impressed me more: the fact the Clippers were able to win another game in this series or the fact the Warriors gave them the game they did, knowing what their plans were heading into game 5.
This coming from Bay Area News Group columnist Marcus Thompson II:
The Warriors were going to go through pre-game warm-ups and take part in the national anthem and starting line-up introductions. They were going to take the floor for the jump ball, dapping up the Clippers players as is customary before games.
Then once the ball was in the air, they were just going to walk off. All 15 of them. Unbelievable.
Knowing what it takes to prepare oneself to compete at a professional level, I don’t know how the Warriors even played this game. Knowing what their plans were, knowing what they were prepared to do had Adam Silver not handed down the punishment he did, how were they focused on playing game 5 at all?
In order to sustain the level of competition it takes to win games you need to manufacture competitive fire. But how do you generate the kind of competitive fire you need in order to give your best when you have collective sympathy for your competitive enemy?
The Clippers were the ones MOST affected by Donald Sterling’s racism and the Warriors are the ones that planned a walk off? That would have been a stunning statement but the fact they gave the Clippers a game at all is equally as stunning to me.
Thompson spoke to Steph Curry about the plan:
“It would have been our only chance to make a statement in front of the biggest audience that we weren’t going to accept anything but the maximum punishment,” Curry said. “We would deal with the consequences later but we were not going to play.”
And this is why I believe this series is far from over. Any team that can prepare to orchestrate a walkout and then compete the way the Warriors did — on the road, in a zoo — is capable of winning 2-games in a row — no matter where the game is played.