The Cavaliers and the Warriors have had glorious battles in the last decade. Iman Shumpert explains how those playoff series changed basketball as he saw it.
Iman Shumpert has had many wars with the Golden State Warriors during his time in the NBA. The swingman had his best time with Cleveland Cavaliers, where he was able to win a championship against the Warriors.
The 6’4″ guard has seen basketball change up close, and was a major part of it, as he was one of the two Cavs guards who were majorly responsible to take on the Splash Brothers. And Shumpert doesn’t have many fond memories from that time.
It wasn’t the one championship, he won, that he has vivid memories from. It was the ones that he lost. Shumpert believes that was really what changed basketball, wars that Warriors won against them.
ABC’s Dancing With The Stars champion who last played in the NBA for the Brooklyn Nets in the 2020-21 season recently made an appearance on the “The Bootleg Kev” podcast.
Iman Shumpert discusses how Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson changed basketball
Iman Shumpert talked about how he and the Cleveland Cavaliers had witnessed the change that was about to happen in the NBA and how little they could do to stop it from happening.
“It was two different styles, We kind of knew that whoever wins the most of this little war we got going, whoever wins the most chips, basketball is heading to that style.”
And man did it not change for good. The Warriors defeated the Cavaliers thrice in four years to lift 3 Larry O’Briens between 2015-18. And now NBA is played entirely different than how it was played until 2014.
Every team focuses much more on shooting than the post-up plays. Shumpert continued:
“We knew it meant more because we knew the kids are either going to continue to want to go to the post and want to shoot fadeaways, or they are going to think this s#*t is okay, this shooting that s#*t from half-court s#*t.”
Shumpert said he was okay with Curry launching threes from insane distances until they started going in. He talked about how it changed basketball totally.
“Once this little dude started making it, Tyronn Lue was looking at the drawing board like, ‘Y’all going to get out there? What we going to do? You shocked he making it now?’ It got to that point.”
“When I think about it now, I’m just like, they keep saying basketball changed, like they ruined it. But I’m like, you ruined the version that I like.”
Indeed that “little dude” changed basketball forever, becoming the greatest shooter of all time in the process.