Get ready for two superstar Kevins in the NBA Finals: Garnett and Durant!
If you're a true NBA fan, you wanted to see old school superstars Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett - former Western Conference "power forward" rivals (I put "power forward" in quotes as they're both really centers) square off for one more championship apiece. Moreover, it's always exciting when former championship teams compete against each other - it brings the NBA Finals an extra level of gravitas. Plus, the Celtics and Spurs are two of the few NBA franchises with multiple titles (17 for Boston, 4 for San Antonio).
While many are thrilled that the young (and fun to watch, no doubt) Thunder will be competing for their first NBA Championship as Oklahoma City denizens, I know Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, James Harden, etc. will have multiple bites at the championship apple. I for one wanted Duncan to play for one more.
I'm basically the same age as Duncan and Garnett and spent my formative adult years watching them play. And since they both spent most of their careers in the Western Conference, I've had the privilege of seeing them both play in person countless times. Simply put, they are two of the greatest power forwards to ever walk on an NBA court thanks to their incredible skills, hard work, loyalty and commitment to their teammates. But alas, it wasn't meant to be for Duncan as Durant and his cronies were simply better and it's clear that their time has arrived as could-be NBA Champions.
Garnett, on the other hand, still has the opportunity to return to the NBA Finals. He and his Celtic teammates can best the Miami Heat tonight and march on. From a match up standpoint (and a national TV standpoint), a Thunder versus Heat NBA Finals is probably more compelling: LeBron versus Durant, Wade versus Westbrook, the glitz of South Beach versus the humble midwest, you get the idea. But I'll be doggedly rooting for Garnett to knock off LeBron, just as I doggedly rooted for Dirk Nowitzki to do so last year. It's fun to see the Old School guys - who always played the right way - be rewarded for a career's worth of success.