Is the Era of the Super Team Soon to be a Thing of the Past?
League executives, agents and players are starting to wonder if we are seeing the end of the super-team era, in which three superstars or more join forces to compete for titles. The model perhaps launched in 2007 by the Celtics when Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen joined Paul Pierce, before evolving into LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh taking their talents to Miami in 2010, and culminating in Kevin Durant joining Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala in 2016.
Stars like Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving have been rumoured all year to wanting to “have their own” team and pursuing more individualistic challenges. Kawhi Leonard has moreover shown that a ‘superteam’ isn’t required to compete for a title. One superstar surrounded by the right pieces is more than capable of winning it all.
“We will likely see the league trending back to one-star, two-star teams with a more prominent role. Perhaps the talent is more spread out around the NBA. Certainly that’s the wish of Adam Silver who wants parity, who wants star players in smaller markets to keep teams profitable,” said NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski.
I would argue that in addition to Adam Silver wanting it, fans want more balance too! Three-peats and four-peats are cool but I would much rather prefer a competitive NBA with multiple teams having realistic shots of competing for NBA titles.
As mentioned, this summer may be pivotal. If multiple superstars decide a) stay with their teams (Kawhi Leonard, Klay Thompson, Kemba Walker) and other superstars join teams on their own (Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant, Jimmy Butler), then the NBA landscape next year may be more balanced and competitive than it has been in a long time.