Mind of Michael: NBA hierarchy shifts - The Lookout - LCC's Independent Student Newspaper Since 1959
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Mind of Michael: NBA hierarchy shifts

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The Lookout Sports Editor Michael Leek

Michael Leek

By Michael Leek
Sports Editor

As I have been watching the NBA playoffs, a column I wrote earlier in the year about the new face of the NBA kept coming into mind.

Although that may not be settled yet, what I can say is that we have entered a new era of basketball.

The players who dominated the league throughout the 2010s are now being challenged and eliminated in the first round, or are not even making the playoffs.

First, Steph Curry and Klay Thompson of Golden State were eliminated from the play-in round by the Sacramento Kings. Secondly, LeBron James of the L.A. Lakers is on the brink of being eliminated in the first round by Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets. Lastly, Kevin Durant and the Phoenix Suns were just swept by Anthony Edwards and the Minnesota Timberwolves.

It is sad to see the players who I looked up to and watched win for the past decade being eliminated so early in the playoffs. That is just a testament to the talent in the league and the younger teams beginning to outperform the older ones.

When it comes to Durant and the Suns being swept, the Timberwolves were just a better team. Anthony Edwards is a real problem and could soon be the new face of the NBA. The fans love him and I have even seen comparisons to Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan.

On top of that, the Timberwolves have one of the best defenders in the league with Rudy Gobert, and many complimentary pieces that make them a complete team.

The Suns were battling injuries all season, and had a short amount of time with their best players on the court together.

The Nuggets are just a better team than the Lakers. Jokic is a frontrunner for MVP once again and pairing him with Jamal Murray and strong role players make their team complete.

The expectations I used to place on LeBron are not as high as they used to be. His being 39 years old and still playing at such a high level is amazing, but he has to start regressing at some point. He still puts up good numbers, but they aren’t translating to wins like they used to.

Watching the NBA enter a new era has again been sad, but also fascinating. With so much young talent all around the league, the NBA will be in good hands once some of the older superstars start to regress and retire.



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