There is a lot you need to know.
Who: The Golden State Warriors and the Oklahoma City Thunder.
What: A winner-takes-all chance at the NBA Finals, with LeBron James and the Cavs waiting.
When: 9 p.m.! On TNT! Get ready for three hours of insightful Chris Webber, and three hours of bumbling, prostitute-biting Marv Albert’s droning on about plays that happened five minutes ago. Fun!
Why: WHY? WHY?! Because the Thunder made us all believe (again) then spent the last two games sabotaging themselves right into a game seven on the road against the best regular season team ever. That’s WHY.
How: See: Why
Cool Facts and Tidbits:
- This is the first WCF game seven since the Sacramento Kings lost at home in overtime to the Los Angeles Lakers in 2002.
- The Thunder—AKA the Seattle Supersonics before 2008—have been in two Western Conference Final game sevens before. Both were against Phoenix. They beat the Suns at home in ’79 behind great games from Jack Sikma (33 points), Gus Williams (29 points), and Dennis Johnson (26 points). They lost to the Suns in Phoenix in ’93 because Charles Barkley scored 44 points and grabbed 24 rebounds. I was less than a month old when that game happened, and have never watched a second of it on replay. But by looking at the box score, I am certain the Suns won that game solely because of those monster Barkley numbers. Is this bullet point too long? Here’s a longer one.
- Since Golden State became Golden State in 1972, the Warriors have played in two WCF game sevens, both during the Rick Barry years. The first came during their 1975 championship year, when Jamaal Wilkes’ 23 and Barry’s 22 were enough to defeat the Chicago Bulls, who were in the Western Conference in their early days. The second was the next year, when the Phoenix Suns (yes, more Phoenix) beat the defending champs in Oakland by eight. Before halftime of that game, Barry got punched in the face by a Phoenix player. During intermission, Barry saw no one defended him (he was a notorious a**hole), so for the rest of the game, Barry refused to shoot and they lost the game.
- This is the second game seven in the Thompson-Curry-Green Golden State era. The first came against the Clippers in the first round of the 2014 playoffs.
- This is the third game seven in the Durant-Westbrook OKC era. The first two were against the Grizzlies. Both were wins.
- Thompson’s 11 three-point makes last game are the most ever in a playoff game.
- These two franchises have some of the great historical playoff wildcards: Gary Peyton, Shaun Kemp, Ray Allen, Rashard Lewis, Dennis Johnson, to name a few for Seattle/OKC. Rick Barry, Mitch Richmond, Chris Mullen, Tim Hardaway, Baron Davis, Stephen Jackson, to name a few for the Warriors.
- Super random: Both of these teams have partaken in a #1 vs. #8 upset, which has happened only four times in NBA history. The 63-19 Supersonics were upset by the Denver Nuggets in ’94 (remember famous picture of Dikembe Mutumbo holding up the ball?), while the Warriors shocked the 67-15 Dallas Mavericks in 2007.
- In most simple terms, this has the potential to be an all-timer.
- Image via ESPN