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The Problem with Super Teams

The Problem with Super Teams

With the Brooklyn Nets’ additions of Blake Griffin and LaMarcus Aldridge within the last few weeks, their title odds have become almost certain. Not long after, the Lakers signed All-Star center Andre Drummond.

With the Lakers and Nets stacking their teams, it’s obvious fans will be watching the Nets versus Lakers in the 2021 NBA Finals.

What’s unfortunate is that this era of the NBA will be known for super teams. The era during the 80s and 90s was known as physical and tough. Now, All-Stars want to do is cheat out the rest of the league and find an easy way to win a title.

The Start of Super Teams

The assembling of super teams didn’t start as early as a few years ago. Depending who is talked to, someone could say LeBron James started off the super team era. Someone else could talk about the San Antonio Spurs or Boston Celtics teams.

The Problem with Super Teams
Image Courtesy of Jim Rogash/Getty Images

The 2008 Champion Boston Celtics arguably had a super team. They had the big three of Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen. What pushes them to the super team status was the drafting of Rajon Rondo. What he did for that team and the player he became speaks to that team’s legacy.

The San Antonio Spurs dynasty is similar to Boston’s, just more dominant. The trio of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili echoes through history books. What made them a super team was the addition of Kawhi Leonard. Everyone knows the player that Kawhi became, so there’s no need to explain that. On top of it, LaMarcus Aldridge joined the Spurs in the latter end of his prime, so that just supports the super team argument.

Super Teams in the Modern Era

Over the last several years, super teams have become the norm. The Miami Heat dynasty with LeBron, Chris Bosh, D-Wade and older stars mixed in on that roster started off the 2010s.

The Problem with Super Teams
Image Courtesy of Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images

Then, in 2017, the king of all super teams was assembled in Golden State. Former MVP Kevin Durant joined two-time MVP Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.

Now, as previously mentioned, the Nets and Lakers from this season are next in line on the list.

The continuation of these teams makes fans wonder: Which team is next?

The Problem with Super Teams

Super teams are fun to watch. That’s not even a question. Watching prime James take the court with Dwayne Wade was a treat. Witnessing Durant pull up from deep with Kyrie and James Harden on the court is amazing.

As fun as super teams are, they’re bad for the league. There are many reasons for it. Super teams take away competition, they don’t add “spice”, and everything is predictable.

The Problem with Super Teams
Image Courtesy of ESPN.com

The way they take away competition is obvious. Just look at the Nets. They have 40 combined all-star appearances between five players. When they match-up against teams, it’s evident they’re going to win eight times out of ten.

As for not adding “spice”, that fits in with the perspective of a fan. Watching James Harden and his immaculate one on one skills is a lot more enjoyable to see when he’s the best player on the floor. When there’s so much more superstar power around on one team, it takes away from other players, which makes it hard for fans to appreciate their greatness.

Lastly, predictability adds to not having competition. When the Nets match-up against Orlando or Cleveland, it’s obvious who’s going to win. That leads to more blowouts, and which fan likes to watch a blowout? Close games are a lot more fun to watch.

It’s quite clear what super teams do for the NBA. As fun as they are to watch, they’re just bad for the league. Adam Silver should take more of an initiative to stop them from happening, just like David Stern did in his tenure.

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