BOSTON - Former Louisville men's basketball standout Damion Lee is now an NBA Champion.
Matched up against the Boston Celtics in the NBA Finals, his Golden State Warriors overcame an 2-1 series deficit, culminating in a 103-90 win Thursday night, clinching the best-of-seven series in six games after firing off three consecutive wins.
This marks the second year in a row that a former Cardinal has won an NBA championship after Jordan Nwora won last season with the Milwaukee Bucks. It is Golden State’s fourth title in eight years, with Stephen Curry securing his first Finals MVP after averaging 30.6 points, 5.8 rebounds and 4.6 assists in the series.
The 6-foot-5, 210-pound shooting guard saw the court just once in the series, being inserted during garbage time of the Warriors' 104-94 game five win. He attempted one three pointer in 1:19 of playing time, but did not make it.
Lee did play in 11 games during the Western Conference Playoffs, but had a limited role. He averaged only 10.4 minutes per game, putting up 2.9 points, 2.4 rebounds and 0.6 assists in the process. Though he did set a playoff-high 10 points in game five of the Western Conference semifinals against the Memphis Grizzlies.
The Baltimore native saw a lot more action during the 2021-22 regular season. He averaged 7.4 points, 3.2 rebounds and 1.0 assists per game over 63 appearances and five starts. He also shot 44.1 percent from the field and 33.7 percent on threes.
Lee was one of five former Cardinals to make it to the 2022 NBA Playoffs, and had the deepest playoff run. Donovan Mitchell's Utah Jazz, Gorgui Dieng's Atlanta Hawks and David Johnson's Toronto Raptors were all eliminated in the first round, while Jordan Nwora's Milwaukee Bucks were eliminated in the Western Conference semifinals.
(Photo of Damion Lee: Stephen Lew - USA TODAY Sports)
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