By Justin Batiste
Carmelo Anthony and Russell Westbrook have been highly criticized for not being able to win because of their style of play. What if the two are able to make this work along with Paul George?
Will the Oklahoma City Thunder be able to pull this off? Can two ball dominant players come together to play as one–that’s the bigger question.
Throughout Carmelo Anthony’s career, he’s been regarded as a player that needs the ball in his hands in order for him to be effective–Westbrook as well. Paul George not so much but it will be an adjustment for George to play with two other superstars. George is used to the offense going through him. Now he is playing with two others in Anthony and Russell Westbrook that are used to the same thing.
Anthony and Westbrook have been said to be two of the hardest players to play with but what if the two can come together and make a playoff run with Paul George. This would change the whole notion that ball dominant players can’t coexist.
The Thunder have a chance to prove something. If Westbrook and Anthony can this work, no one will question the idea of combining ball dominant players again.
Realistically, the Thunder have the best chance of beating the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference playoffs this year. As of now, on paper, the Thunder are the second-best team in West. But the Thunder still have to prove it on the court.
Each player’s individual numbers will go down but if they can put personal stats aside, this Thunder team can be scary. Talent wise OKC has the most talent to match up with Golden State, but it’s going to take more than just talent to beat this Warriors team–the Thunder know this. It’s the unselfishness of Golden State that makes them great and OKC has to match that.
It’s all up to Westbrook and Anthony and how bad to they want to win.
Westbrook now has players around him to substitute for Kevin Durant, and Anthony now has a team good enough to make it to the Finals.
No more excuses for the two. Two of the most criticized players in the NBA have a chance to change everyone’s opinion on ball-dominant players. This year will make for an interesting one. Get your League Pass ready.