LAS VEGAS — Last we glimpsed these , they were hanging around on the corner of Prospect and East 4th in downtown Cleveland, caps on backward and cigar smoke billowing.
Or, if you’re from the Bay Area, maybe you saw them riding down Broadway in downtown Oakland for their stirring championship parade.
Winning a championship is hard, especially if you’re delivering your franchise’s first title in 40 years. Doing it again is even harder, and that’s what the Warriors are focused on now that they’ve had two months to decompress, get away and let it all sink in.
and did some traveling. did almost nothing for a month. yearns for the minimalist approach: the stay-cation.
All the while, the impossibly competitive Western Conference got even more competitive. The Spurs landed , the Clippers kept after he was all but delivered to the Mavericks and the Thunder are a factor again with and both healthy.
During USA Basketball’s minicamp last week in Las Vegas, CBS Sports caught up with all four members of the defending champs who were on hand to find out what they’ve been doing with their summer vacation, what it’s like to have the whole league trying to knock you off your throne and moving on without one of the key members of the franchise’s rise from laughingstock to champion.
What have you done this summer to get away, let the championship sink in and savor the accomplishment?
I took a whole month off, doing nothing — no basketball, no strength training or anything like that. Then, you slowly work your way into it. Obviously, it’s nice to win a championship, but you’ve got to get better individually and as a team going into next year because everybody’s retooling and trying to knock us off our throne. I’m still building. You try to pace yourself as you get ready for training camp.
We had to take some time away from the game. As much as you love basketball, that was about 9-10 months of straight grinding. Just took a little time away, spent some time with my family and friends and just tried to let it all sink in. I’ve been to a few places, obviously the latest being Andre [Iguodala]’s wedding in Cabo, which was amazing. It was good because it was a chance to see all your teammates, but in a different setting — on the beach, enjoying ming for a big performance for Liverpool in tonight’s Carabao Cup clash with Aston Villa.Chirivella says he is determined to make Liverpool’s first team proud as they watch tonight’s Cup tie against Aston Villa from Qatar.”It’s a big night for everyolife. That was good.
It just gives you something together that you can cherish, that you can just look at together and say, ‘Wow. We did that.’ That’s a special thing that whenever you see those guys for the rest of your life, you’ll have that in common. That’s an amazing thing.
Went to the Bahamas to see my family. I took about a month-and-a-half off. After this camp, I’m going to China for one of my shoes, but after that, I’m going to try to take two weeks off, try to reset my mind and try to fight off the urge to pick up a basketball. I want to get to the point where I miss the game again, so I can go into the end of September really trying to get better and focus.
Everywhere you go, you get congratulations. You almost feel like your basketball skills and your career to this point are validated. We’re not satisfied, man. We’re built for this for the next 4-5 years and it’s just been crazy — the notoriety around the entire world of the Warriors at this point is amazing.
I haven’t found that time to decompress. Hopefully, I can find that. I went on a trip to Spain with my family, went to Andre’s wedding, which was amazing. It’s just been non-stop. I’m just looking forward to spending time in Oakland. I haven’t been to my apartment in a while, so a stay-cation. I need it.
The Warriors aren’t favored to repeat. Does that motivate you to protect what you’ve earned and validate it?
It’s kind of funny that we obviously are the champs and you’ve got to think that we’re going to be a better team next year with our experiences that we’ve had, and we’re not the favorites. Obviously there’s been a lot of noise, teams retooling and trying to boost their lineups. Half these teams that haven’t set foot on the floor yet and are heavily favored to knock us off our throne. So we obviously know what’s going on and it’s up to us to keep our momentum that we built.
Hey, we won a championship; that’s valid enough. However, as every year is, the West is going to be tough. With KD [Kevin Durant] being healthy and Russ [Westbrook] being healthy the whole season, that’s a contending ballclub every year with those guys healthy. The Spurs are always good. Always. You add another All-Star to the equation, and that makes them a serious contender. I think the Clippers got better. A lot of teams got better, and that’s the nature of this game. But we’re going to go in with the same mentality we did last year, and that’s with one goal, one mindset — and that’s to win it all. Regardless of who did what, that’s going to always be our goal.
That’s fine. You can’t buy into the media. They’ve got a job to do, and the Spurs and all the teams that made those big moves deserve that hype. It’s exciting for the . We were satisfied with the showing we got, and all we needed was to see that parade. That parade was one of the greatest things I’ve ever seen in my life — a million people at your feet, not worshipping you, but embracing you for what you did for the city. It was unreal.
I think it’s great that those teams got better. We feel like we got better, too, with the experiences that we went through as a team. But that’s just the nature of the business; the teams that make the big moves in the summertime get all the attention.
was such a big part of what you accomplished. What was the most difficult aspect of seeing him go?
He was a part of the Warrior identity and what we built. He and I have been here the longest, seeing the changing tide of the whole organization. And he had a whole lot to do with that rise. I’m so happy he got a ring on his way out and will be able to remember this season. But it’s tough to lose a guy that put so man’s 2-0 win over Borussia Dortmund in their Champions League clash.Martinez and Antonio Candreva decided the result with a goal in either half.He said, “We were coming off the defeat to Barca, having played very well at Camp Nou. We lost to Juve, uch work in and went through so many experiences with us. So I obviously wish him nothing but the best. It’s going to be real awkward not seeing him in our locker room next year.
Man, that’s our brother. To see him go is tough. He was there all three years I’ve been there, and he and Steph were the last guys left from the old ownership. So they’ve seen the changes and they have a certain appreciation for it because they were there in the dog days — and they were there in the glory days. You hate to see anyone leave because you build a bond, and so you hate to see anyone go. But I know D-Lee still has a lot left in the tank, and I think he’s been placed t Jadon Sancho almost two seasons ago to BVB, City are now ready to turn the tables, says BILD.The Premier League giants are making a move for Collins with a package tabled worth €2m. Chelsea are also interested and are offering €1m.Collins joinein a situation where he’ll get the opportunity to show that.
His leadership. How good of a teammate he was — not only how he took a back seat this year, but how he sacrificed a lot. He could’ve been an unhappy camper, but he was the ultimate professional. He stayed ready and made a huge impact in the Finals. I’m so happy he got a ring, man. It took him 10 years and he’s never going to take it for granted.
He was there from the beginning. He went to the Warriors before it was cool, and won 23 games. So he saw all the ups and downs, and even though his role changed, he was a big part of what we accomplished. It was so good to see him get a ring, and wherever we all end up down the road, whenever we see him we’ll remember the experiences — the championship, the parade, the sacrifices — and we’ll always share that together.