ESPN’s Windhorst clarifies ‘checkbook win’ comment

The Warriors are one win from a fourth NBA title in eight years. Where that win comes from surely doesn’t matter much to them.

As for their last win, ESPN analyst Brian Windhorst said the Game 5 victory to put Golden State on the brink of another championship came from a checkbook.

“You don’t just have to beat the Warriors on the court, you have to beat their checkbook,” Windhorst said Monday night, citing the $340 million in payroll the Warriors are paying after luxury tax. “Nothing away from Andrew Wiggins tonight but this was a checkbook win for the Warriors.”

In a Wednesday morning interview on 95.7 The Game, Windhorst insisted he didn’t intend to deride the Warriors with the comment, though that’s how it was largely taken by Golden State fans.

“I was giving the Warriors a compliment for being able to stick with spending through their rebuild, and that’s why they have the depth on this team,” Windhorst said on the Morning Roast with Bonta Hill and Joe Shasky. “Nobody would argue that Bob Myers and their front office haven’t done a tremendous job, and that Joe Lacob and Peter Guber haven’t done a great job in financing the team, but it is not a level playing field.”

“When you play the Warriors, you gotta deal with a fourth man who’s worth $40 million,” he said later.

Hill and Shasky pushed back:

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