The Warriors Blew a 3-1 Lead

The Warriors Blew a 3-1 Lead

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Updated Oct 20, 2020 at 05:25AM EDT by ohmyjosh.

Added Oct 31, 2016 at 04:11PM EDT by Adam.

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The Warriors Blew a 3-1 Lead refers to a series of jokes about how the NBA's Golden State Warriors lost the 2016 NBA Finals to the Cleveland Cavaliers after having three wins against Cleveland's one in the Best-of-Seven series. That season, Golden State set the record for wins in the regular season with 73, and had the league's first-ever unanimous Most Valuable Player in Stephen Curry. Despite needing only one more victory to win the championship, Golden State lost the following three games and the series. This made them the first team in NBA History to blow a 3-1 series lead in the NBA finals. The jokes are a way to troll Warriors supporters who claimed the team was the best in NBA history.


In June of 2016, the Golden State Warriors met the Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA Finals. After winning three of the first four games in the series, Golden State lost the following three games and the championship.

Following The Warriors Game 7 loss on June 19th, "The Warriors Blew a 3-1 Lead" became a popular punchline on Twitter to mock Warriors fans. One of the earlier recorded instances of the joke came on June 29th, when Twitter user @MrJayGomez[1] joked that Brexit was a way to distract the public from remembering the Warriors blew a 3-1 lead.


The jokes continued throughout the summer of 2016 during the NBA offseason. On August 30th, Jacob Rosen created a Storify list[2] in which he compiled dozens of tweets featuring "The Warriors Blew a 3-1 Lead" jokes. On September 13th, Ohio sports blog Waiting For Next Year[3] did the same. Some tweets had a conspiracy theory-esque style to them; for example, user @SportsTalkJoe[4] tweeted:

LL Cool Joe SportsTalkJoe 2: Follow Its 9/13/2016 ts 9/13/201 s 9/13/20 9/13/2 13/ 13 13 flipped around is 31 31 3-1 The Warriors blew a 3-1 lead in the Finals

The joke soon began appearing in relation to stories that sometimes had nothing to do with basketball. For example, on October 9th, during Fox News' coverage of the second 2016 United States Presidential Election Debate, a sign was seen behind a Fox News pundit reminding viewers how the Warriors Blew a 3-1 lead (shown below). It has also been used in relation to football quarterback Robert Griffin III's injury, the Olympics, and Frank Ocean. A user on Etsy[5] sells wristbands with the phrase written on them.

Still from Fox News coverage of 2016 presidential election with a sign in the background reading warriors blew a 3-1 lead

Cleveland Indians

In the 2016 World Series, the Cleveland Indians went up 3 games to 1 against the Chicago Cubs. They went on to lose the series in seven games, leading fans to create images and tweets reveling in the irony that in the first major sporting championship since the 2016 NBA finals in which the Golden State Warriors blew a 3-1 to a Cleveland team, a Cleveland team blew a 3-1 lead.

Bryce Wood @woodymlb4 * Follow The Cleveland Indians blew a 3-1 lead in the World Series dymlb4 WHEN THE3-1LEADJOKES CLEVELAND COME BACKTO HAUNT YOU

Dozens of news outlets covered the karmic retribution to Cleveland, including Oregon Live,[6] Bleacher Report,[7] USA Today,[8] and more.

Various Examples

KEVIN, JOIN ME AND TOGETHER WE CAN BLOWA 3-1 LEAD LIVE the Warriors blew a 3-1 lead BOLT WARRIORS BLEW A 3-1 LEAD IN THE FTNALS HOWIT FEELS TO CHOKE A 31SERIES LEAD The Warriors blew a 3-1 lead in the NBA Finals OLDEN Don't let this distract you from the fact that the Warriors went 73-9 and blew a 3-1 ead in the NBA Finals. 020

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Top Comments


It would be pretty ironic if the Cleveland Indians blew a 3-1 lead this week in the World Series since the meme originated from the Cleveland fanbase.


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