There is certainly no love lost between the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers. The two franchises have become bitter rivals following their final battles over the last two years, and the bad blood shows no sign of relenting.
The record currently stands at 1-1 with Golden State winning the title in 2015 before the Cavaliers enacted revenge with their epic comeback from 3-1 down last season. The third instalment is expected to take place in 2017.
Both franchises sit atop their conferences and there doesn't appear much the rest of the NBA can do to stop the two teams going at it again.
Golden State star Draymond Green recently said he wants to 'annihilate' the Cavs if they meet in the showpiece event once again, and Cavaliers swingman Iman Shumpert hit back in a recent interview with Karizza Sanchez and Complex magazine.
He said: “He should [want to]. We supposed to hate them, and they supposed to hate us. It’s OK. They supposed to take cheap shots at us. They’re gonna hate us, fam. That’s what sports is. It’s great. I love every bit of it. I’m glad he said that ’cause we gon’ bust they ass, too. You need to type that up: We gon bust your ass. Period.”
The first meeting between the two organisations since game seven of the finals takes place on Christmas Day in Ohio. Neither team will want to lose. It may be a regular season encounter but there is so much more than a win on the line.