To see that the Golden State Warriors are back to being the Golden State Warriors that transformed NBA basketball into a more beautiful game, one only needs to close their eyes. That dynastic unit that went to five consecutive NBA Finals and won three of them looked like the next step of evolution, sure, but the real magic was how it sounded. No team in the history of basketball boasted more eruptions per minute. A Stephen Curry three from the parking lot. Two consecutive daggers from Klay Thompson, whose heart rate never seems to elevate over 65 beats per minute. A brilliant extra pass from Draymond Green to find a spark plug off the bench to cap an 11-0 run and send the other sideline to safe harbor of a full timeout.
The roar of a frenzied Bay Area crowd. Incredulous amazement by the play-by-play announcer. This was the soundtrack of so many primetimes and late nights. Those joyous peaks went away for a while but are now once again on full display in the form of a blistering auditory experience.
Fathers of three, including some incapable of sleeping through the night, struggle to see the end of the 10:30 p.m. and even the 9:30 p.m. tips. Nature necessitates falling into the trap of nodding off on the couch, confident the Warriors will only build on their 11-point second-half advantages. It happened again last night for this blogger. And it was oddly comforting to hear Golden State feel like Golden State even with tightly-closed eyelids.
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A familiar refrain explodes on most possessions. The momentum grows to the point of fatality. Sure, these Denver Nuggets find themselves in a uniquely bad matchup with a squad that stretches the floor like none other. But through two games, the roars of the Splash Brothers are as loud as ever. Curry, coming off the bench like some sort of alien Vinnie Johnson, is reminding everyone why he's the greatest shooter of all-time. Thompson is healthy and unencumbered, finally, needing only the slightest opening to deliver his arrows. Jordan Poole has entered the chat, continuing his breakout season with flurries of bucket facilitated by a system addicted to creating open three-pointers. He followed up a 30-point explosion in Game 1 with another 29 on Monday. Nineteen of his 29 attempts have found gold, including 10 of 17 from beyond the arc. Small sample size has burned many times before yet there's reasonable belief the backcourt now has a third scoring option as icing on the cake.
Beautiful music is being made. The volume is being turned up. It's a variation on a previous theme. Perhaps just as crowd-pleasing in the end.