When Kevin Durant joined forces with the Warriors last summer, everyone (including myself) complained that he ruined the competition in the NBA. I sit behind my laptop today to say that we’re all wrong. Since 1980 only 11 different franchises have won a title, not even half of the league. So to say the NBA is not competitive “anymore” is actually bullshit, because there was never really much competition outside of those 11 teams to begin with. All KD did was help create this era’s version of a super team. If you look closely at every decade going back to the 80’s, each had their own version of super teams that dominated the league:
The 80’s were the era in which we saw the Showtime Lakers and Larry Bird’s Celtics go at it in the Finals three times in a four year span. Those teamd were STACKED, and they created some of the most memorable Finals matchups in NBA history. Only two other teams won a title in that decade.
The 90’s was when we all saw the greatest player of all time 3-peat TWICE. Those Bulls teams were their own version of today’s super team, and they probably wouldv’e won more if Jordan didn’t decide to retire and play baseball. Outside of the Bulls, this decade only saw three different champions.
The 2000’s is where we saw Shaq join up with Kobe to win three championships. The Lakers again were dominating another era of NBA basketball. This decade also had the Spurs, who were the only other team to win multiple titles. Besides that, only the Pistons and Heat won a championship in the same decade. We also got a sneak peak at the super-star who would dominate the next era.
And that is LeBron James, who this year made his 7th CONSECUTIVE NBA Finals appearance. Since 2012, LeBron has managed to win titles with two different teams, creating two different super teams. One in Miami with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, and the other in his hometown of Cleveland with Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love. This current decade has shown us the most parity, with four teams that didn’t have LeBron on their roster winning a title.
All that’s happening right now is that we are seeing another shift of power into a new era, and that era belongs to Golden State. Sure, we all knew who was going to meet up in the Finals this year before the playoffs even started. But the ride to get where we are now was great, and now that we’re here we get to see history be made. This is just a repeat of the great matchups Magic and Bird gave us in the 80’s. Two teams who are completely loaded up going at it in the Finals year in and year out. It really doesn’t get more competitive than that. I’d much rather have this than two lesser teams playing eachother. Plus, it’s not like this will last forever. Golden State’s run will have to end eventually, and when it does we’re only going to see more teams load up like they have to create their own version of a super team.
Written By: Nick Cherico (@NickCherico2)