Is Kevin Durant Just Following The Lebron James Model?
I certainly think so.
Picture this. As a young kid growing up in Brooklyn, New York, my friends and I are choosing teams. Myself, along with my little brother, are by far the best players of the bunch. Automatically, I along with my brother are nominated team captains. Notice the word, “automatically”. Why is it automatic that the two best players play on opposite sides? Competitive balance. The two best players on the same team is called a “slaughter”. No one wants to see that, no one wants to be a part of that, including two young boys just playing on the courts of Brooklyn.
The only true way to ultimately decide who truly is the better player is for us to compete against each other. Being on the same team doesn’t accomplish anything. As competitors, no matter the age of the athlete, we feel a sense of accomplishment when we challenge ourselves that way.
I say all this to illuminate the fact that the day Lebron James decided to join Dwyane Wade in Miami in the summer of 2010, the NBA as we knew it would never be the same. I’m an NBA fan through and through. I still love the NBA now, just as much as I did back in the day. But I’ve gotta say, I feel like I’m in the twilight zone these days. NBA Superstars who are considered in the top two or three players in the league consciously teaming up to “slaughter” the rest of the league are being celebrated like those NBA legends of old who accomplished even more without resorting to these “punk-like” tactics? In Brooklyn that’s called “sucka shit”.
Whenever I bring things like this up, I’m deemed a “hater”. But the reality is, I want others to truly appreciate how difficult it is to win an NBA championship. Not only that, how difficult it is to win many times over. Common sense would say, when two of the top three players in the league team up it means they’re taking a much easier road to the ultimate goal. But someway, somehow, Lebron James is now being celebrated like he is on the same level, or according to some, even better than the GOAT Michael Jordan. Remember what I said, “twilight zone”. With that, with only three rings to his name, he’s now bypassed legends like Magic Johnson(5 rings), Kareem Abdul Jabbar(6 rings), Kobe Bryant(5 rings), Shaquille O’Neal(4 rings) Tim Duncan(5 rings). Really?
In 2010, Kevin Durant condemned the forming of super teams in his now infamous tweet. But a funny thing has happened since; Lebron James is being celebrated because he finally started winning championships by doing “sucka shit”. So apparently, Kevin Durant has had a change of heart. He’s now joined the Golden State Warriors to team up with another, arguably, top three player in Steph Curry. My assertion is that the Golden State Warriors have the potential to be the greatest team of all time and once Durant starts winning championships, he too will celebrated as if he’s greater than Michael Jordan. Twilight Zone.
Adriel “The Natural” is a contributing writer for YourSitch.com