There is major frustration among “small market teams” in the NBA concerning their superstar players. Narratives are constantly being pushed in order to sway star players to bigger markets like Los Angeles, New York, etc. Throughout all of the 2018-2019 season, the question was: Which LA team will Kawhi Leonard end up with in the offseason? The question this year is the following; Where will Giannis Antetokounmpo land in free agency? Those two narratives were being forced upon us while both teams were in the thick of title contention and were enjoying amazing seasons. The Milwaukee Bucks have a league-best record of 39-6 and the talk is about Giannis leaving. Ridiculous!
When Zion Williamson got drafted, there was an immediate report saying he did not want to play in New Orleans. There were even talks of him returning to college for another year just to avoid being drafted by the Pelicans. Zion, upon being drafted, debunked that theory by showing his excitement to be in NOLA. He’s yet to play an NBA game though. That just goes to show that there is a lack of credibility and substance to these reports. Not every superstar player dreams of playing for the New York Knicks. Judging by their recent track record, no one dreams of that because they are bottom-feeders year after year.
I wonder what the players must think of this. Speculation is so quick to form without any of these guys voicing their intentions. There is no sense of loyalty in the NBA anymore. Players are finding out that they’re being traded via Twitter. Don’t get me wrong, everyone loves a good Woj Bomb but there are better ways teams can handle trading a player. Stars are leaving the teams that drafted them, even leaving money on the table. Trade requests left and right. If Giannis leaves Milwaukee in the summer of 2021, who’s to blame? The Bucks will probably be the obvious answer due to their lack of surrounding Antetokounmpo with the necessary talent to get over the hump. If he were to leave, we can pronounce loyalty in the NBA dead.
Feature Photo Credit: clutchpoints.com
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