OAKLAND –The Warriors appear ready for anything. And why not? They already have played in four consecutive NBA Finals, and won three of them.
Therefore, the Warriors appear prepared to face the Toronto Raptors in the NBA Finals with Game 1 beginning on Thursday. Are they ready, though, for hip-hop artist and Toronto Raptors fan, Drake?
“I’m not worried about Drake.” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “I called him on his cell phone earlier….”
Kerr stopped in midsentence. Cue the laughter. Maybe even cue the groan for Kerr reciting one of Drake’s songs.
“My daughter’s rolling her eyes right now,” Kerr predicted. “She’s like, ‘Dad, no more dad jokes, please! So, sorry.”
Kerr could not resist, though. Drake received both attention and criticism for rubbing the shoulders of Raptors coach Nick Nurse during the Eastern Conference Finals against the Milwaukee Bucks. What’s stopping Drake from doing the same to Kerr?
“It’s been entertaining,” Stephen Curry said. “I know it’s a tricky situation with him being right there on the court, but at the end of the day, he’s having fun. You can’t hate on nobody having fun. Well, I guess in this life everybody hates on people having fun. So it’s par for the course on that one.”
Klay Thompson subscribes. You can too for just 11 cents a day for 11 months + receive a free Warriors Championship book. Sign me up!
It’s par for the course for Drake to have a looming presence at Raptors games. The Warriors know first hand.
The Raptors hosted so-called “Drake Night” when the Warriors played them on Nov. 16, 2016. After the Warriors won, Durant said in his post-game interview that he “don’t give a damn about no damn Drake night.”
The Warriors did not care last season, either, in another road win. Drake laughed at Durant for missing an open dunk, but he responded with a two-handed dunk on the next possession. Drake laughed at Curry for missing a pair of foul shots in the final minute, but Curry answered back when he spit a pair of foul shots afterwards.
This season, Durant accommodated Drake’s request for his jersey. And why not? Despite his apparent Raptors allegiances, Drake tattooed the numbers for both Curry (No. 30) and Durant (No. 35).
“He’s always a character and our guys are always talking trash with him,” Kerr said. “It’s fun, and the NBA kind of embraces the pop culture dynamic of the league and the stars and the celebrities who are out there. We got E-40 ready for them too. So we’re in good shape.”
The Warriors also feel they are in good shape dealing with Drake’s antics. After all, they don’t have respect for his game.
“Drake can’t shoot. Nor can he pass,” Draymond Green said. “Have you seen Drake play basketball? I saw a couple of highlights. They weren’t so high. So I really don’t care.”
WARRIORS HQ PODCAST: Be sure to visit our podcast page at mercurynews.com. You can also get notified of new episodes on iTunes, Google Play Music, Spotify, Stitcher and SoundCloud.* * *
Follow Bay Area News Group Warriors beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.