This photo of Devin Harris’ apparently lifeless body pretty much says it all.
It’s taken two days for it to start to sink in. On Sunday, the Warriors — that’s the Golden State Warriors, my favorite basketball team and possibly yours — faced the #1-seeded Dallas Mavericks in Game 1 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals. The Mavs, who went to the NBA Finals last year and won 67 games this year, were playing in front of a rabid home crowd. The Warriors, meanwhile, were happy just to be in the playoffs for the first time since 1994.
Then a funny thing happened. After a slow first half that ended 38-38, the W’s surged ahead in the third quarter behind 19 cold-blooded points from Baron “Boom Dizzle” Davis. And in the fourth, instead of pulling an el collapso like the playoff novices they are, the Warriors kept control of the game. One memorable sequence featured Jason Richardson losing the ball to Dallas’s Devin Harris, then racing downcourt to swat Harris’ layup attempt off the backboard. Harris lay sprawled on the floor, clinging to Richardson like a baby koala, as the Dallas bench whined for a foul. Meanwhile, the ball found its way to Warrior Matt Barnes, who drained an unlikely, soul-crushing 3-pointer from the corner.
There was no more drama after that. The Mavs failed to mount a comeback, throwing up brick after brick as owner Mark Cuban sat looking alternately forlorn and enraged. My friends and I watched in a stunned silence; we Warriors fans are simply not accustomed to this kind of success. It’s a shock to the system, but given half a chance I think we could get used to it.