But what always felt inevitable was finally made official late Monday night: the Warriors are National Basketball Association champions again, for the second time in three years, clinching the 2017 title with a 129-120 Game 5 putaway of LeBron James and his powerful Cleveland Cavaliers.
Most believe it was the addition of All-Star forward Kevin Durant that put the Warriors over the top to claim their second title in three years.
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - They are called the Golden State Warriors, but they don't belong to all of California. Two of them are superstars: Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant. The first title came against an aging Lakers team (Magic Johnson would retire a few months afterward due to HIV) while the second three-peat began against the Seattle Supersonics (the best team Jordan ever faced in the finals).
For Curry, it'll be his first dip into these waters.
After playing so many years on a below-standard deal, Curry is expected to re-sign for the super max of five years and $205 million.
So there are no financial or competitive reasons for him to leave the defending champions. It's unique, it's something that you don't want to see end at all.
Would Curry consider taking a paycut?
"You won't get the speech out of me you got last time, I was in a different place", Green said, who told a TV reporter his plastic cup had water in it on Thursday. We tuned in and watched just to see if it might surprise us.
For Durant, it's a bit more complicated. During that meeting, Kerr invited the former president - a noted Chicago Bulls fan - to come and be a fan of the Warriors while presenting him with a customized Golden State jersey with the number 44 (Mr Obama was the 44th President).
Durant was, though, willing to talk about Rihanna. "And I did that from day one, and I just tried to stay with that".
Outside of Kevin Durant, the strength of the Golden State Warriors has been built through the NBA Draft. We'll work something out. I want to be here. Feels weird saying that.
"I'm sad they're moving", said Oakland resident Krin Morelli. "Hopefully we get it done".
Curry had Durant to complement his game this time, to take some pressure off. He hinted he would opt out of a deal that pays him the maximum he can get in order to help Golden State's chances of re-signing players such as Andre Iguodala or Shaun Livingston - two key reserves on both title teams.
In all, he made 14 of 20 shots, including five of eight from beyond the arc.
Now, the Warriors will face a frenzy of free-agent moves this summer to try to keep as many stars and brilliant backups as possible around for another run in 2018.
"I saw the way your mom gripped you up on that court". We'll see what happens. There's obviously a domino effect, guys have decisions to make.
"We had a moment".
Warriors players on buses passed Cahambing and his family twirling T-shirts over their heads and waving to the crowd as blue and yellow confetti rained down.