The Lake Show getting QB's Finest is the latest move in an arms race between the five title contenders. But true Basketball fans already knew that there were five contenders: LA, Cleveland, Boston, San Antonio, and
Some of you may be thinking that there's always a team that exceeds expectations, much like Denver did last year and Golden State did two years ago. Well, that's respectable for those franchises and it does provide some impulse to the regular season. That aspect combined with other splendid individual surprises like Mr. Durant, Harris, and Granger of a year ago; and we'll briefly talk about those subplots during the 30 x 82.
When this offseason was approaching, there was chatter going around about how moves will be made based on financial logic. And while revenue remains the root of all NBA evil franchises' respective decisions, it's still and always will be in terms of value. In the case of Ron-Ron to LA, the Lakers got a better, tougher player for the mid-level exception, letting Ariza—a journeyman with these under his belt (note the different jerseys)—go when he would've cost more than that. Jefferson to the Spurs is another example of how the Spurs stay among the elite while other franchises fluctuate between success and rebuilding. The Shaq-uisition is a frontcourt upgrade for a team that won 66 games.
When the dust settles, and people have stopped dunking on Hasheem Thabeet; and Steph Curry has stopped torturing Knicks fans with three after three on the opposite coast; and Brandon Jennings does whatever Brandon Jennings does, those five teams will be atop the standings. They will be the ones we care about and want to see for seven-game series. All it took was one team to make a power move, and the rest of the top-tier franchises attempted to trump each other. It's not about money. It's about who was bold enough to take that chance and force the other teams to respond in kind. Five teams did, and the other 25 are just playing to be "best of the rest."