Speculation is already circulating that the 2017 NBA Finals might feature the return of the Golden State Warriors verses the Cleveland Cavaliers for the third year running. However, the very thought isn’t on the mind of LeBron James at this point in time.
After the Cavs shootaround on Thursday prior to their match up against the Los Angeles Clippers, James spoke candidly about the idea.
“To be completely honest, it’s not,” James said. “It would be selfish of me and foolish of me to think about playing the Warriors in another Finals. It would be disrespectful to my teammates, disrespectful to the rest of the league and disrespectful to the Warriors to even [entertain the thought].”
All this talk is following an Iman Shumpert interview with Complex about wishing to do damage against Stephen Curry, Draymond Green, and the rest of the gang:
“We supposed to hate them, and they supposed to hate us,” Shumpert said. “It’s OK. They supposed to take cheap shots at us. They’re gonna hate us, fam. That’s what sports is. It’s great. I love every bit of it. I’m glad he said that ’cause we gon’ bust they ass, too. You need to type that up: We gon’ bust your ass. Period.”
The thought itself has to be rather appealing since Kevin Durant has been added to the very dangerous mix, a new team the Cavs will face off against on Christmas Day.
“I have zero entitlement on this journey,” James continued. “It’s always a process for me. The Warriors are a great team. They assembled great players in Draymond [Green] and Klay [Thompson] and Steph [Curry] and KD and the rest of those guys, and obviously they have a great coach in Steve Kerr, but it would be foolish of me and disrespectful to myself, to my teammates and to the rest of the competition to just put ourselves in a third matchup with them. And I haven’t even fantasized about it. I haven’t thought about it. It’s too long of a season.”
It was Green who kicked off the smack talk after he spoke to NBA.com’s David Aldridge recently:
“If Cleveland comes out of the East, I want to destroy Cleveland. No ifs, ands and buts about it. But I also know that there’s steps to get to that point. And if and when we get to that point, I want to annihilate them.”
While his teammates and rivals are dead set on trying to get under each other’s skin, LeBron is remaining cool and taking it one game at a time.
“It’s too much work to be done for me to put myself in that mind frame. But they’re a great team. We’re a team that wants to get better every day and become a great team as well. So, we’ll see what happens. But I haven’t even thought about it at all.”