Golden State Warriors
The Warriors defeated the Cavaliers 129-120 in Game Five to clinch the series Getty

The Golden State Warriors successfully quashed the bad memories of 2016 as they defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 5 to clinch the NBA championship at the Oracle Arena.

Steve Kerr's team were haunted by their blowing of a 3-1 lead in the finals last year as a LeBron James-inspired Cavaliers fought back to win the series in Oakland in game seven.

This year, however, there were no mistakes as the Warriors beat the Cavs 129-120 to win the series 4-1, only dropping one game throughout the entire playoffs.

The main headliner was Kevin Durant, who infamously joined the Warriors as a free agent from western conference rivals Oklohama City Thunder following last year's finals.

With all the criticism he received for his part in transforming a side that had just won 73 regular-season games into a super-team, Durant excelled throughout the finals, scoring 39 points in game five and ultimately being awarded the finals MVP along with winning his first NBA championship ring.

"It's a team sport you know, and you want to achieve the highest honour in a team sport which is winning the championship and to do it with these guys is amazing and in front of these fans, man," Durant said after being awarded the MVP. "You guys were great tonight, we needed it."

"I'm just so happy to be a part of it and I can't wait to celebrate with my teammates in the locker room."

Stephen Curry, who had a poor showing in the 2016 finals, also put in a good performance with 34 points, 10 assists and six rebounds while James' 41 points were not enough for his hometown team as the 32-year-old suffered his fifth loss in eight finals appearances.

With the two sides headlining the NBA finals for the third year in a row, it would not be a surprise to see a fourth meeting next year. However, with the Warriors looking to build a dynasty, it is hard to look past them again as they are the odds-on favourite to defend their title.

"They're going to be the highest favorite we've ever had going into a season, any team in any sport," Jeff Sherman, NBA oddsmaker at the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook, told ESPN.