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2019 NBA Finals Diaries: Oracle Arena's last hurrah (PHOTOS)


PhilBoxing.com




OAKLAND -- It was 4:30 am Wednesday (5:30 pm Wednesday night in the Philippines) when the piercing tone of my Android phone awoke me from a deep comatose.

An irascible 51-year old, I deem my sleeping habits so scared that any manner of interruption on my nightly beauty rest ritual is not just frowned upon but is often handled with some threat of bodily harm.

But I actually looked forward to this early morning jolt, joyfully hopped in the shower, and gathered my belongings for another NBA Finals coverage.

At 8:36 am Chicago time when Southwest flight 1302 departed from Midway Airport. Four hours and 15 minutes later, most of which I spent drifting in and out of consciousness while reading John Grisham's book Ford County Stories, the mammoth 737-800 landed at Oakland International Airport.

As the metal bird was about to make its final descent, the pilot went on the public address system to welcome his passengers to northern California and appraise them of the local weather before cheerfully erupting "Go Warriors!!"



NBA Finals appearances are nothing new to the Warriors. This is their fifth straight trip and are attempting to win it for the fourth time in five years, including what would be three straight, assuming they get past these ruthless Toronto Raptors led by the indomitable Kawhi Leonard.

But this 2019 NBA Finals is exceedingly bittersweet for DubNation because this is their team's final season playing at the Oracle Arena, ending 47 years of memories, both good and bad.



Beginning next season, the Warriors will be moving to downtown San Francisco where they will play at Chase Center, a spanking new $500 million dollar arena in the Mission Bay neighborhood.

Beating the Raptors and ushering another parade in downtown Oakland is the greatest send off imaginable. A defeat, however, would be a gigantic letdown, the kind that would induce tears from heaven.

After a Game 3 loss, 123-109, Game 4 this Friday (Saturday morning RP time) could quite possibly be Golden State's final 48 minutes at the Oracle. Another loss catapults the Raptors to a 3-1 series lead plus the perfect set-up to close things out with Game 5 at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto.

What once appeared as a dreamy coronation has quickly and sadly turned into a nightmarish tribulation.



Photos: The author with PhilBoxing.com NBA writer Ponciano Melo Jr. Steph Curry addresses the media after scoring 47 points in a disappointing Game 3 defeat. The Oracle Arena turns into a sea of yellow as free shirts await fans at their purchased seats (photos by Ponciano Melo @PhilBoxing.com)


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Homer D. Sayson.


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