Stephen A Smith returned to ESPN First Take on Monday. Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob was arguably the most excited out of anybody to see him return for one reason, via ClutchPoints.

 

Before we dive into this, we need to point out that Joe Lacob sleeping with the Larry O’Brien trophy is a baller move.

In the video, Lacob refuses to wake up despite First Take being on TV. However, he changes his tune when it is revealed to him that Stephen A Smith is back on the show.

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“He’s back? Stephen A. is back? He’s the only one that believed in us,” Lacob says, “Welcome back, Stephen A.”

Sure, the acting may not be terrific in this mini-skit. But Joe Lacob is not wrong when he states that Stephen A Smith believed in the Warriors.

The ESPN analyst predicted that Golden State would win the championship ahead of the 2021-2022 season. And he stuck with that narrative through their NBA Finals run.

Stephen A Smith had been away from the show undergoing shoulder surgery. And although Smith can be a lot to handle when watching him on TV, there is no question that First Take isn’t the same without him. So his return was a positive sight to see.

As for Joe Lacob, he has to be proud of his Warriors. The team has won four out of the past eight NBA Finals. They are earning a reputation as one of the best dynasties of all-time. And he clearly did not want Smith’s pre-season prediction to go without recognition.