By Baron Davis
The Golden State Warriors’ “We Believe” era is one of the most savage seasons in all of the NBA’s recent history. The unlikeliest group of NBA greats mercilessly disrupted the status quo and shook the crux of the league to its core. Unseating the number one seed in the first round of playoffs was their crowning moment.
Number eight seeded Golden State Warriors ruthlessly defeated the Dallas Mavericks in a take no prisoners series. The Mavericks were the favorite to win the conference and had all the players to do it. Funded by very present, vocal and often found court-side billionaire Mark Cuban, who thought they couldn’t be beat, the Mavericks held all the cards. But what they didn’t have was heart.
The Golden State Warriors fueled by the “We Believe” campaign lethally reinvigorated the team. Just two months from the end of the season, the Warriors turned into a completely different elite team, finding themselves qualifying for the Western Conference Playoffs, achieving the 8th seed. But in the first round they would need to face-off against the top ranked team in the West — The Dallas Mavericks.
Doomed against great odds, no one thought they would even make a dent, but re-fueled by fans and the whole city chanting “We Believe,” something inside the Warriors snapped and they became the most ruthless players on the court.
From there, the Warriors punished the Dallas Mavericks night after night extending the series to six games, ruining their season and any prospects to move on to the Finals where everyone thought they belonged. It was a last ditch effort, but the Mavericks couldn’t compete with the “We Believe” Warriors team. They succumbed and the Warriors, the whole city, and the nation erupted.
A new sense of confidence, and possibly arrogance, ran through the city, culminating into the nastiest dunk to ever happen in the NBA Playoffs. Every year this dunk is celebrated. Although Golden State didn’t make it out of the second round, they didn’t go quietly. Until this day, the dunk that was felt around the globe is praised and revered as one of the coldest things to ever happen on national television. That dunk, delivered by none other than Baron Davis, will never be forgotten. It’s the crux that became the beacon of the “We Believe” Warriors team that unseated the number one seed and launched the franchise onto the path its on today. The Warriors would not be where they are today, as a franchise, as the crown jewel of the city, without “We Believe.”