Typically, when the dust settles on the first two rounds of the NBA playoffs, several of the usual suspects are left standing.
Not this year.
For the first time since 2010, the NBA finals will not include LeBron or Steph Curry. And that’s just fine with me.
LeBron is out. So is AD. And Steph, Durant, Harden, Embiid and Westbrook.
The question is: Is this good for the league. I say absolutely.
Instead of the same-old-same-old, new rivalries are being developed while a group of young stars work to write their legacy on a grand stage.
Two of the four teams remaining were lottery teams one year ago. The Hawks won just 20 games, while the Phoenix Suns finished with an 8-game winning streak…and still finished below .500.
One year later, championship hopes remain intact.
Phoenix Suns sharp-shooter Devin Booker is 24. Atlanta’s most gifted player is 22. Heck, Giannis is still just 26.
The NBA’s final four may look different than what you expected at the beginning of the season, but don’t confuse the look and feel with being any less compelling.