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The Larry O'Brien trophy will make a return to the Bay Area trophy cabinet for the first time in four decades.

This after the Golden State Warriors ended a 40-year wait for the NBA championship by beating Cleveland Cavaliers 105-97 in Game 6.Stephen Curry showed the way with 25 points, eight assists and six rebounds for the Warriors, would-be NBA Finals MVP Andre Iguodala came closer with 25 points and five assists while Draymond Green finished with a triple double, posting 16 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists. In fact, five of the Warriors finished on double figures as they snatched Game 6 to win the Finals 4-2.

Rookie Coach

Four-time MVP, Cavs’ LeBron James led all scorers on the court with 32 points, 18 rebounds and nine assists but still fell 2-4 in his six career finals appearances. 

The win saw Warriors Steve Kerr become the first rookie head coach to win an NBA title since Pat Riley in 1982 while Iguodala is the first NBA player to win the NBA finals MVP award without starting a single game in regular season

It also marks the first time the Finals MVP has shared a team with the regular-season MVP (Curry) since Magic Johnson claimed the Finals honor in 1980 while playing for Los Angeles Lakers with regular-season MVP Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

Warriors coach Steve Kerr said of Iguodala: “It is fitting the MVP award went to Andre. He sacrificed his starting role this year. He did that to make our bench better, to make our team better. He set the tone for everything we accomplished.”

Fourth Title

LeBron, who also claimed game-high six rebounds, said: “We were under-manned. I don’t know any other team in the history of the NBA that got to the finals without two all-stars. We had our playmakers in suits. For a good playoff run, you have to be healthy and little bit lucky. We weren’t healthy and we weren’t lucky.”

The Warriors are one of three original NBA franchises still in existence. The Oakland side were initially based in Philadelphia winning their first NBA title in 1947 and a second one in 1956. They moved to the Bay Area six years later assuming the name San Francisco Warriors until 1971.

They won their third title in 1975 beating the Washington Bullets in the finals with four consecutive victories.

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The Golden State Warriors provided a timely reminder to those who might have forgotten why they are NBA’s best team this season with a commanding display that culminated in a 103-82 thumping of Cleveland Cavaliers.

Beaten 91-96 in Game 3 by a lethal LeBron James-Mathew Dellavedova combination, the Warriors stifled the duo this time round to win by a massive 22-point gap in front of the Cavs home fans at the Quicken Loans Arena, leveling the best-of-seven games series 2-2.

For the umpteenth time this season, the league’s MVP Stephen Curry led the way, scoring 22 points same as Andre Iguodala, arguably the most consistent performer this season.

The Warriors needed the win as history has it that none of the 32 teams who have fallen 3-1 behind in the finals have ever won the title.

Dellavedova was struck down by cramping while LeBron James had a cut on his head in the second quarter after stumbling and falling into a photographer. An increasingly tired LeBron finished with 20 points on 7-of-22 with 12 rebounds and 8 assists in 41 minutes, while team-mate Timofey Mozgov had a game-high 28 points but the Warriors wouldn’t be beaten for a third straight time.

"Tonight we came in with the mentality that we had to win this game," Curry said.

Iguodala, a team-mate of James on the 2012 gold medal US Olympic team, was deployed in place of Andrew Bogut. Iguodala brought steel and versatility in the Warriors’ defense and harassed James from the off limiting the three-time MVP to his series-low 20 points.

"Make him work as hard as possible," Iguodala said of his plan on James. "Make him take tough shots. You look at his strengths, you look at his weaknesses, and you try to take him out of his comfort zone. Sounds easier said than done, but we all have a lot of talent and when we go out there we want to make our stamp on the game."

The Cavs had a strong third-quarter, slicing a 15-point deficit to three. However, Curry scored eight points and Iguodala sunk two three-pointers in the span as the Warriors went 93-77 with less than six minutes to play which proved too much for the Cavaliers to overcome.

Game 5 will be on Sunday at Oracle Arena, the home of the Warriors.

@Steifmaster88

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