THE NBA HAS NEVER HAD SO MUCH YOUNG TALENT
For those of you who follow a team that’s in the rebuilding phase, or who root for players just coming into the League, or who (like me) look forward to the day when your city gets it own team (again), know this much: However far ahead you’re looking into the future of the NBA, David Stern has his eyes fixed well beyond that.
With that in mind, The Don has to appreciate what his league could look like around the time NBA Live 2016 hits shelves. I’m not talking about expansion teams in Europe or rule changes that would allow somebody like T-Mac to average 40 points a night easy; I’m talking about how after the current torch-bearers like Kobe, Garnett, Duncan, Nash and Shaq have stepped away, the NBA will remain in the capable hands of the deepest collection of talent we may have ever seen.
LaMarcus Aldridge, Carmelo Anthony, Leandro Barbosa, Andrea Bargnani, Jerryd Bayless, Michael Beasley, Andris Biedrins, Andray Blatche, Andrew Bogut, Chris Bosh, Corey Brewer, Ronnie Brewer, Aaron Brooks, Andrew Bynum, Mike Conley, Luol Deng, Kevin Durant, Monta Ellis, Jordan Farmar, Ray Felton, Rudy Fernandez, Randy Foye, Danilo Gallinari, Rudy Gay, Daniel Gibson, Ben Gordon, Eric Gordon, Danny Granger, Jeff Green, Donte Greene, Devin Harris, Al Horford, Dwight Howard, Andre Iguodala, LeBron James, Al Jefferson, Amir Johnson, David Lee, Kevin Love, Kyle Lowry, Kevin Martin, Jason Maxiell, O.J. Mayo, Rashad McCants, Paul Millsap, Joakim Noah, Greg Oden, Chris Paul, Kendrick Perkins, Rajon Rondo, Derrick Rose, Brandon Roy, J.R. Smith, Josh Smith, Amare Stoudemire, Rodney Stuckey, Tyrus Thomas, Al Thornton, Russell Westbrook, Deron Williams, Louis Williams, Marvin Williams, Brandan Wright, Julian Wright, Nick Young, Yi Jianlian … on Opening Night of the ’08-09 season, each were age 25 or younger.
From East to West, Chicago to China, championship contenders to Lottery regulars, superstars to glue guys, point guards to centers, scorers to creators to defensive walls, they are the future. And the future looks good.
Who will be the standard-bearers among the NBA’s current crop of young talent?
The New “Best Season Ever”
1. Chris Paul will win MVP…
2. …but Paul Pierce will prove he’s the best player in the world
3. The Clippers are alive
4. Ron Artest will get some MVP votes
5. Vince Carter will give a damn
6. The return of rivalries