Owner of the Palace of Wisdom
ok a couple things. I don't think Cleveland's supporting cast is as bad as a lot of people make them out to be, I just think Mike Brown had a horrible system in place. Mo Williams made a name for himself being a driving PG in Milwaukee as both a backup and a starter. In Cleveland they made him a jump shooter. Antawn Jamison has been an 18 and 8 guy his whole career with an occasional 20 10 season, he goes to Cleveland and becomes a jump shooter. Not saying Cleveland won't make the playoffs next year (they could), but a big problem was Mike Brown's offensive philosophy; have LeBron bring the ball down, put Big Z at the high post, and let LeBron go from there. Cleveland had 2 guys last year who are comfortable as spot up shooters; Anthony Parker and Daniel Gibson. While others are ok 3 point shooters, it's not their forte. Another prime example is how Andre Iguodola and the 6ers really started to flourish after AI was traded, they no longer had to be spot up guys (or how Harpring, Salmons, and Stackhouse all developed once they got away from AI). Problem in Philly was A)Letting Andre Miller walk and B)Trying to force a system on the players.
Also gotta agree with Junc, the 90 Bulls were of comparable talent. Scottie Pippen made his first All-Star team that year averaging just under 18 a game. Horace Grant was next averaging just under 13. Bill Cartwright was the 4th leading scorer at just under 10. What really helped the Bulls was A)MJ was still a god B)Pippen was blossuming into a shutdown defender (well... he started getting that title after how he played against Magic in the finals) and C)They had a bunch of role players that knew their roles. Paxson, Armstrong, and Hodges were great spot up shooters and Livingston, Grant, and Cartwright were good low post defenders.
During the 2nd 3-peat the Bulls had MJ and Pippen dominating on offense, and Rodman dominating the boards. BUT they also had the best 6th man in the NBA in Toni Kukoc. A very capable and underrated PG in Ron Harper. One of the greatest 3 point shooters ever in Steve Kerr. And Luc Longley.
Again gotta go with the fist Houston Rockets championship team being carried by The Dream. Hakeem averaged 27 during the regular season. Otis Thorpe was next with 14 so it's not like he had a lot of pressure on him. In fact, that Houston team during the year had Maxwell and Smith also average over 10 points, and Horry just under at 9.9. During the playoffs, Hakeem averaged just under 29 ppg while Vernon Maxwell averaged just under 14. This was the year Hakeem won MVP and DPOY in the same year. For comparison both Jamison and Williams both averaged just under 16 a game, Shaq averaged 12, while Z, Hickson, West, and Varajeo averaged beteen 8 and 10 points a game. During the playoffs again you had 4 guys averaging double digit points.
The first Spurs championship team had 3 guys averaging over 10 ppg. Duncan with 21, Robinson with just under 16, and Elliot with 11. Avery Johnson and Mario Ellie both avered just under 10 but the next highest scorer was Jaren Jackson at just over 6. During the playoffs Duncan shot up to 23, and Avery Johnson to just under 13, but that was a boring series. The 2nd championship team was a more balanced team, but they still relied really heavily on Duncan (winning on a near quadruple double in game 6)