Damian Lillard, LeBron James and the NBA’s need for stars on bad teams
It’s no secret that the current version of the NBA has struggled to make sense of its regular season. The star players who miss games from night to night, and the matches we were anticipating because they could be previews of the post-season period are suddenly up for debate. There are only two things that are really rocking the NBA on social media anymore: Notable House of Highlight clips and individual performances.
That’s why it’s no exaggeration to say the NBA needs great players to actively take on bad organizations. Super teams are great for the knockout round because of the polarizing nature of dynasties. However, from late October to mid-AprilWe needed the biggest names in the game to be placed in positions to perform like superstars.
Ask yourself: Would the NBA want to see Damian Lillard win a title or make January relevant by scoring 40 or more points in six of 11 games, including a burger 50 and 60?
If Kobe Bryant had played on a super team all his career, he would never have scored 81
Steph Curry has had four games with more than 40 points this year, and that’s because he doesn’t have to have the same sense of urgency as Lillard, or even LeBron James for the past two seasons, has had to practice. in January and February.
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The Trail Blazers and Lakers have been in a trailing position more or less all year, and their stars have had to play like it. The same goes for Luka Dončić this year, and Nikola Jokić during Jamal Murray’s absence.
Remember the Warriors season after Kevin Durant left and Klay Thompson had to sit out to rehab a torn ACL? The media was absolutely giddy at the prospect of Curry having to go full “Kobe playing with Smush Parker,” and were devastated when an injury robbed them of that.
The argument against super teams is that we want to see KD and LeBron rev the engine as high as it’ll go.
And only once we’ve learned that everything they have isn’t good enough do we acquiesce to stars seeking other stars to win titles. (Which is where we’re at with Lillard right now.)
The NBA isn’t completely inept, and that’s why scoring is easier
This season has seen a plethora of huge 40-, 50-, 60-, and even 71-point outings from big names. It’s obviously easier than (almost) ever to score in the NBA, and we haven’t reached that juncture where it’s become bad for the game like the spike of no-hitters in baseball.
And we probably will never hit that juncture because watching our favorite players put up massive numbers never gets old. Defense not sold out arenabut LeBron will break Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time scoring record.
The league wants the game to be as wide as possible during the regular season as fans are still surprised to see “Dončić: 60, 21, 10” pop up on their feed or scroll through a banner . Who knows how long it will take until we’re all numb with oddball scores, but that’s a problem for future NBA fans.
Right now, fans are content to sit back and enjoy personal achievements because we’ve been programmed to believe they’re cool. However, with that feeling gone, I can’t help but wonder what changes the NBA will make next to try to please the fans.