I have nothing against Chris Paul, I like watching him play as one of the best point guards in the league, but I am really hoping against him getting his wish. The leading rumor has Paul going to New York by forcing a trade there. This was apparently something he, Amare Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony had discussed. This crap needs to stop. For this sport, for all sports, it just needs to stop.
The NBA has done well for years with a simple winning formula, get a star, get him a decent running mate, fill in the pieces. That worked for Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen, that worked with Shaq and Kobe Bryant, that worked with the Spurs, that formula again worked for the Lakers with Kobe and Pau Gasol. This possibly new trend that starts with Lebron James and Chris Bosh joining Dwayne Wade in Miami needs to be squashed, now.
Superteams Bad For NBA
It is already bad enough to have two of the leagues top three players on one team, but add in another top ten player in Chris Bosh and you have three top ten players on one team, that is not great for the NBA but in one unique case it will be interesting. However, this cannot start a trend where players continue to do this. It was one thing if Lebron, Wade and Bosh waited until they were all free agents, it is their choice and freedom to do so, but Chris Paul is trying to force a trade and possibly pick his destination.
This is bad and here is why:
1. Inmates Running Asylum: The trend of NBA players running the asylum has been going on for years but somebody needs to put their foot down. If Paul wants to be traded, New Orleans should send a message and send him to Sacramento for Tyreke Evans and/or Demarcus Cousins. The message would be this “Chris Paul, you want out of New Orleans, fine, have fun in Sacramento.” I am sure there are trade clauses preventing this, but the league really needs a way to squash this.
2. Not Enough To Go Around: There are only so many true difference makers, most casual sports fans can name these guys off the top of their head and at most there are 15 or so of these guys in the league, Kobe, Lebron, Wade, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Carmelo Anthony, Rajon Rondo, Dwight Howard, Chris Bosh, Brandon Roy, Dirk Nowitzki, Steve Nash, Amare Stoudemire and maybe a few more, but very few. There are 30 teams in the NBA, you cannot have 6 of your best players on two teams. Too many teams will become irrelevant. Denver without Carmelo, New Orleans without Paul, Cleveland without Lebron and Toronto without Bosh. With those players gone from their respective teams would you ever watch one of their games?
3. Bad Message: I am not going to go, “We can’t do this because of the kids” because I fricking hate it when people in our society constantly bring up “the kids” as any excuse to outlaw something. I think this sends a bad message to kids, adults, athletes, everybody. If you bitch and moan enough you get exactly what you want. I think if Paul gets traded, he goes to Siberia, or in NBA terms, send him to any crappy team. Why give him exactly what he wants when you do not even benefit? It was one thing for Cleveland to bend over backwards for Lebron when they were trying to keep him but why try to keep a player happy that wants out?
What Can Be Done
On the surface, maybe not much. Unless David Stern can come down with some new rule to somehow control this I am not sure there is any way to deny players from playing together if they all agree to take less to make it work. We always complain that athletes do not care about winning, we cannot also complain if they take less to win.
Since I do not think there is any great way to prevent this from happening again, and again, I think the NBA seriously needs to consider contraction. And not just cut out a couple of teams, I am talking 5-6 teams at least. If the league just started this as a rumor, a threat to the players, I would think the pressure from the union and players across the league would help stop this. If you take out 6 teams, that is at least 70 NBA players out of a job. That threat could wake these players up.
If the threat did not work, and players still want to join up than the league needs the contraction just so the other teams have a fighting chance against the superteams. You take out 6 teams and spread out their top players and everybody gets better. Hopefully the superteams would have not cap room to bid on these players so some of the middle-tier teams could get multiple additions and really strengthen the overall league.
Bad For Bucks
There is already one superteam in the East that Milwaukee has to deal with, the Miami Heat. That is fine, it gives everyone a villain, someone to want to take down. But if New York also built a superteam that would be two in the East, not good for the Bucks or the rest of the East.
1. The Bucks are not building a superteam, Milwaukee will not attract 3 of the NBAs top 20 players. We have Bogut and Jennings and we are happy to build around them.
2. Two superteams would be tough to deal with in playoffs. Essentially each contender in the East would have to go through both teams to make it to the finals, good luck.
3. What next? Chicago builds one, Orlando adds a superstar with Howard. These two teams are already really good, it would not take a ton to make them insanely good. The four top teams in the entire league could then be in the East and a very good Milwaukee team does not even get a first round playoff series home court advantage.
I hate the possibility of another superteam. I think it is bad for fans, sports, kids, the NBA, basically everybody but the individual players that get their way and I would argue that getting your way all the time is not good in the long run even if you think it is what you want.
Topics: Amare Stoudemire, Carmelo Anthony, Chicago Bulls, Chris Bosh, Denver Nuggets, Dwight Howard, Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, Miami Heat, Michael Jordan, New Orleans Hornets, New York Knicks, Orlando Magic, Rajon Rondo, Sacramento Kings, Scottie Pippen, Tyreke Evans