The Lakers and Celtics rivalry could be now officially renewed
LeBron James signing with the Los Angeles Lakers means a couple different things for the Boston Celtics.
For starters it means that the Celtics are now the overwhelming favorites in the Eastern Conference. Boston was one game away from the NBA Finals without their two best players and if they return healthy, the rest of the east stands little to no chance of stopping them.
They have one of the best coaches in the NBA, one of the best starting lineups and the depth to compete with anybody. Yet as exciting as all of this is, James signing with the Lakers means something else as well.
It signals the revival of the greatest and most storied rivalry in NBA history. The Lakers and the Celtics. It is a rivalry that has quite literally spanned 50 years. Dating back to the days of Bill Russell and Wilt Chamberlain in 1960s, the rivalry has been renewed several times now. It continued into the 1970s until Magic Johnson and Larry Bird came around and battled it out throughout the 1980s and although it went into slump during the 1990s, it returned again. The Kobe Bryant-led Lakers battled against the Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen-led Celtics in the late 2000s which led to more championships on both sides.
As those legends aged out of the game, the rivalry was put on hold for a few years until the two teams would rebuild enough to meet again. All of the sudden, this rivalry could be officially be back.
It is not secret that the Celtics have a history with LeBron James. It is also no secret that James and Kyrie Irving have their history together as well. We now find ourselves realizing that these two will play against each other on the two most storied franchises in the sport. Irving reportedly wanted to be traded from the Cleveland Cavaliers to play elsewhere in order to escape the shadow of playing under LeBron. James has now left Cleveland to play for the Lakers and has his eyes set on bringing a championship back to Los Angeles.
Whether it be Russell versus Chamberlain, Magic versus Bird or Pierce versus Kobe, the rivalry has always centered around two specific players. Kyrie versus LeBron could officially be that matchup that everybody will want to talk about.
Obviously, talk is cheap. Fans can dream all they want about a potential Celtics versus Lakers NBA Finals matchup but at the end of the day, the teams have to get there first. Regardless, the potential for a rivalry renewal is there and that in itself is very exciting for fans for NBA fans everywhere.