NBA Teams | Warriors, Lakers, and Celtics are mong the team who have the most to be grateful for 2022
It’s Thanksgiving, and there are a lot of NBA teams that have a lot to be grateful for (the Nets are not one of them, which is saying a lot for a team that has Kevin Durant). But we’re going to split the difference here. Every team with a superstar is grateful for that superstar, but I’ve tried to limit it down to the five teams with the most to be grateful for, as well as what they are grateful for. Here we go.
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Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors
The Warriors had no clue what they were receiving when five teams passed on Curry in the 2009 draft, including the Timberwolves twice. Curry has altered the Golden State Warriors club in ways that would have been unthinkable even a decade ago, when Curry first became an All-Star. There are four championships. Six appearances in the Finals. A 73-win season set an NBA Teams record. The franchise is worth billions of dollars. None of this would be possible without Curry, whose rare combination of talent and humility appears just once in a generation as the face of a franchise.
For numerous reasons, I would argue that there isn’t a single other player in the world who would’ve led last year’s Warriors to a championship, and Curry is the reason an aged and imperfect Warriors NBA Teams is still regarded a viable contender this season. You have a chance if you have Curry, and the Warriors are really grateful to have him.
Location of the Los Angeles Lakers
With the way things are going now, the Lakers would be a laughingstock in Minneapolis, Memphis, Salt Lake City, or pretty much anyplace other than Los Angeles. You may argue that they are in any case. However, since they occupy prime NBA Teams real estate, they have such a large margin for error that they can virtually screw everything up and still have a fairly clear route out of the darkness and into the light of championship contention.
You might argue that the Lakers are most grateful for having LeBron James, but the only reason they have LeBron is because they live in Los Angeles. They only have Anthony Davis because they have LeBron. And the only reason they’ve won a championship in the past decade is because they have both of those men at NBA Teams.
Since that championship (or, should I say, bubble title), this series has done almost nothing to make itself appealing to gamers with choices. Aside from the location and the famous brand on their breast, they’ve made one catastrophic mistake after another, allowing Rob Pelinka to run about in a So-Cal sandbox with virtually no understanding what he’s doing at the NBA Teams. Pelinka is similar to a trust-fund child. He can mess up repeatedly, in ways that would bury almost any other GM, and yet come out ahead by a few fundamental moves of competency.
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks
Every team in the NBA Teams league that has a superstar player is grateful for that individual. Damian Lillard has been a blessing in Portland over the last ten years. Nikola Jokic in Denver, Jayson Tatum in Boston, Ja Morant in Memphis, Joel Embiid in Philadelphia, Donovan Mitchell in Cleveland, Devin Booker in Phoenix, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander in Oklahoma City, Jimmy Butler in Miami, and Kawhi Leonard and Paul George with the Clippers; Brooklyn would be a dumpster fire if Kevin Durant was not there.
However, none of those players have delivered a title to their present team. Except for Tatum, none of them have made it to the Finals. In contrast the NBA Teams, Antetokounmpo has propelled Milwaukee to the top of the basketball world. He could have gone in the summer of 2021, immediately after the Bucks won the title, like Leonard did with the Raptors, but Giannis signed a five-year agreement in the midst of a season.
Giannis might have at the very least listened to what other teams had to say throughout the summer. The dance has been completed. I’ve been wooed. But his ego didn’t need such a boost. He didn’t want to be a nuisance for a Bucks team aiming to win a championship, which they achieved a little more than six months after he quietly extended his contract. Aside from Stephen Curry, no other player in the NBA means more to his team than Antetokounmpo does to the Bucks.
Danny Ainge, Boston Celtics
Ainge is now doing his thing in Utah, but the Celtics will be beholden to him for a long time; he is the primary reason they will be able to contend for championships for the next decade at the NBA Teams. Ainge’s transactions with the Nets, which got the Celtics Jaylen Brown, and the Sixers, which landed them Jayson Tatum, have given Boston probably the finest pair in the game, and they are just now entering their prime.
For years, Ainge was under pressure to move Brown specifically. He never followed through. He let that combo develop while also picking Robert Williams and Grant Williams to join them. Marcus Smart was selected by Ainge at the NBA Teams. Al Horford was brought in. He hired Brad Stevens, who was a great coach and is now a great general manager. He hired Joe Mazzulla, who seems to remain the coach for the foreseeable future.
Everything that has led to the Celtics’ lengthy run of contention can be attributed to Ainge. He put everything together at the NBA Teams. He wasn’t always popular with Celtics supporters who wanted more aggressive moves, but his tenacity and reluctance to accept any shortsighted deal is what has Boston in this position. This squad was designed to last by Ainge. Boston should be grateful.