The two-time defeating champions Golden State Warriors are three years removed from the biggest collapse in NBA Finals history. In the 2016 NBA Finals, the Warriors would win the first two games by 48 points combined as the series shifted back to Cleveland. The Cavaliers would respond by beating the Warriors by 30 points in game three heading into game four. After game four the Warriors would take a commanding 3-1 lead heading into game five at home. It would be costly because the Warriors would lose Draymond Green due to receiving a one-game suspension. Many who have looked back at that series and circle Green’s suspension as the turning point of the series.
After, the announcement that Green would not play in game five, the Warriors would not win another game in the series. LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers would go on to win the next three games and bring a championship to Cleveland for the first time in 50 years.
In the off-season, the Warriors would go out and recruited Kevin Durant during free agency. Right after they just beat Durant, Russell Westbrook, and the Thunder, who were also up 3-1 on them in the Western Conference Finals.
On April 20th, 2019, after the Philadephia 76ers, the beat the Brooklyn Nets 112-108, Sixers’ center Joel Embiid took a jab at the 2016 Warriors, who were in the same position, but collapsed in the Finals.
“It feels great to be up three-one we definitely don’t want to be in the situation like the Warrior two years ago. I’m just kidding,” said Embiid.
It was three years ago, but who is counting.
— Rob Perez (@WorldWideWob) April 20, 2019
The stakes are not as high in the first round as the finals, but Embiid, who is the NBA’s trolling Hall of Fame is trying to make everyone aware that they need to finish the series off. If the Sixers and Warriors meet in the Finals this year, Embeiid’s comments are something that media will not let either side forget. Both the Sixers and the Warriors are looking to close out their series in game five at home on Monday and Tuesday.