Staff Writer: Ryan Ward
There only a few NBA franchises in the league today that have that kind of superstar lure to them that have the power to entice some of the best and most popular players around the league regardless of how well the team has done in the previous seasons. Matter what they do matter what changes they make the New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Lakers will never lose their so-called sex appeal which drives the best players to want to play at the Staples Center and Madison Square Garden.
Ever since Hall of Fame center Patrick Ewing was traded from the New York Knicks, the dominance of one of the best teams in the conference started to dwindle and basically wither and die. The Knicks did have some moderate success after Patrick Ewing with players like Larry Johnson, Latrell Sprewell, Alan Houston and Marcus Camby leading the way, but the success didn’t last long as the team started to fall apart and every single one of us players either retired or moved onto another team via trade or free agency.
Now the New York Knicks are considered one of the worst teams in the NBA and basically a lost cause, but with new head coach Mike D’Antoni running things and a lot of money at their disposal in the upcoming free agent market this summer, the New York Knicks have a chance to turn it around and become that Eastern conference superpower they once were.
Over the last decade or so, the Los Angeles Lakers have been arguably one of the best teams if not the best team in the Western Conference as they have dominated the competition in two different eras of basketball. One was the Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal connection which was most likely one of the best duos ever to play the game and resulted in three straight NBA championships in the other was a team led by Kobe Bryant himself and Spanish import forward Pau Gasol who have just one their first championship together.
As of right now, the defending NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers have a team intact that can compete for an NBA title for at least the next five years or so this makes a lot of people believe that they won’t dip too much into the upcoming talent packed free agent market.
Even though it has been said that the Lakers probably won’t try and sign a big name free agent like Chris bosh, Dwyane Wade or Amare Stoudemire, they might be going after mega free agent LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Obviously this is a major stretch and most likely a complete falsehood, but it is surprising enough that all these big name free agents are electing to become free agents instead of signing with their current team in an effort to win an NBA title where they are now. This is pretty impressive unprecedented hasn’t been done in recent memory if ever and it seems as though anything can happen this summer with big names going virtually anywhere and playing virtually alongside any other superstar.
The one big possibility is that Dwyane Wade and LeBron James will play alongside each other either with the Miami Heat, which is Wade’s current team, or the New York Knicks which as I said before has the most money deal with this summer include sign both of these players to max deals for the long-term.
Another intriguing part of this summer is the fact that Kobe Bryant has filled not sign an extension with the Los Angeles Lakers and could very well become a free agent himself this summer. With that being said, the possibility of LeBron James taking his place and Kobe going to somewhere like New York could be something that would happen.
In all likelihood though, the Cleveland Cavaliers sink their claws into LeBron James and signed him for an enormous amount of money and Kobe Bryant would do the same with the Los Angeles Lakers.