Three nights before the start of the NBA Finals, he randomly tweeted it out and confirmed what I—and I suspect a lot of other people had—subconsciously been thinking for a while.
I hate them. I don't know when it happened but I hate them.— Myles Brown (@mdotbrown) May 31, 2016
Myles, of course, is Complex Sports’ friend Myles Brown—read his Bomani Jones profile if you haven’t—and “them” are the Golden State Warriors. He tweeted that out as the Western Conference Finals wound down, as the NBA's greatest regular season team was about to officially climb out of a 3-1 hole against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Like Myles, I can’t pinpoint when my sentiment toward the Warriors switched from “God, I love watching them do their thing” to “God, I can’t stand them and want them to lose.” I just know that there were plenty of factors converging to create a perfect storm of hatred:
The winning, the dominating; the obnoxious Golden State front-running fans who you know were nowhere to be found just a few years ago; their ultra cocky owner Jacob Lacob, who once said “We're light-years ahead of probably every other team in structure, in planning, in how we're going to go about things." How could you not turn on them? It’s fun to root for the up and coming squad, like the Warriors were last year. But then they morphed into the NBA’s version of the (real life) Vikings—pillaging city after city and robbing fan bases of victories and, more importantly, hope that they could ever be vanquished in the postseason. The wins came too easy—just like the threes. Arrogance soon followed, on display during games—celebrating threes before they go in, stuntin' incessantly—and later at the press conferences.
I think a lot of it had to do with personalities on the court. Some of the players who once were viewed as these could-do-no-wrong darlings of the NBA showed off different sides. Or at least I finally noticed the warts. Draymond Green’s antics—namely his karate kicks to the groin—and constant whining had suddenly grown tired. At some point, I realized Steph Curry was a mean-mugging, baby-faced assassin who would taunt an opponent as quickly as he launched a 35-foot 3-pointer. Off the court, he’s Saint Steph, but on the court the narrative that he’s some humble superstar who displays the best virtues of the modern day competitor is a steaming pile of trash.
Before July 4, the Warriors were already a great team, stocked with superstar players, owned by an obnoxiously rich man who said something incredibly condescending. They were arrogant right up until LeBron James’ chase-down block, adamant that they were the best, did things the best, and couldn’t be defeated. They made it so easy to hate them.
I just know that adding KD—another good guy, from all accounts—makes Golden State a team that already had a Low-key villainous vibe to it exponentially more dislikeable.
Then on Independence Day, they added Oklahoma City star Kevin Durant—and fuel to the fire.
The best team got absurdly better in the most flagrant way imaginable. They threw money, rings, and The Logo at him, basically saying “If you don’t win a championship, you’re going to be miserable the rest of your life and we’re your best opportunity.” The rich got richer. A three-headed monster just sprouted a fourth. If you didn’t already hate the Warriors, how could you not now?
I honestly have no idea, unless, of course, you’re a Warriors fan. I just know that adding KD—another good guy, from all accounts—makes Golden State a team that already had a low-key villainous vibe to it exponentially more dislikeable. Really, Warriors? You guys had to go and poach KD from Oklahoma City, the team you battled for seven games in a great Western Conference Finals; the team that probably presented your only true competition in the West? Really, KD? You couldn’t beat ‘em so you joined ‘em? Those guys?
It’s all just incredibly lame.
There’s really no other way I can describe it. And I’ll throw in this disclaimer that none of us should begrudge an athlete for exercising their right to go after better opportunities—just as most of us wouldn’t with a respected co-worker. Do you and go where you feel you need to be, because the last person I want to sound like are the tools killing KD for his lack of loyalty. Given a similar situation you know they would do the exact same thing.
Just don’t begrudge me for hating the Warriors, who were already eminently hate-able before they recruited Durant. Now they are the Ivan Drago of the NBA—roided-up and coming for cats’ heads. I know I won’t be the only one rooting for Rocky to land the knockout next season.