Sports | October 17, 2017 1:58 pm

An Inside Look at the Superstar-Heavy NBA on the Eve of the First Games

Bleacher Report goes in-depth with teams who are facing an uphill battle against the Warriors.

Kevin Durant/ Warriors/ NBA Finals
Kevin Durant #35 of the Golden State Warriors dunks the ball against the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 1 of the 2017 NBA Finals. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

No basketball analyst will argue that the Golden State Warriors aren’t the team to beat this season. And after an offseason that saw some high-profile moves, upgrades to teams like the Cleveland Cavaliers, Oklahoma City Thunder, and Boston Celtics, everything will come into focus tonight—and beyond—as the NBA season tips off.

As Bleacher Report notes, those team-changers include eight recent all-stars, an unprecedented shift of power. “It’s as if the basketball gods, angered by a preposterous talent imbalance, shook the NBA like a giant snow globe and reordered the landscape, hoping a new rival might emerge to challenge Steph Curry and Co.,” writes Howard Beck.

The reason for all the changes? For one, the need to compete with (and/or beat) the Warriors. But also, the ability to piece together new potential, Warrior-like dynasties.

RealClearLife collected a few of the best quotes from NBA talent in BR‘s story below.

Paul George – Oklahoma City Thunder – “You can’t just put three stars together and expect it to be instant wins or instant progress, I guess,” George told BR, in regards to his joining the team, along with Carmelo Anthony (reigning MVP Russell Westbrook was already with the team). “You need to have three guys that know how to play with one another, and that’s what it comes down to. At this point, it’s hard for guys to do it alone. You look at what [Westbrook] did. One of the best players, the MVP last year, averaged a triple-double, and yet he had a hard time getting out of the first round. It’s tough. No matter how special you are, just a little help goes a long ways.”

Daryl Morey – Houston Rockets’ General Manager – Of the Warriors, Morey says, “The reality is, they kick our ass. …Getting hit in the face over and over is a good way to be humbled and think about how to beat someone, right?”

DeMarre Caroll – Brooklyn Nets – “We want to be one of the unselfish teams,” Carroll told Bleacher Report. “We don’t have a LeBron James or Kevin Durant walking through the door. We feel like we got to do it collectively.”