One of the interesting pieces of fallout from the NBA putting all of its players in a bubble to finish the season is that all of the greatest basketball players in the world are in one place for a rare time, allowing guys to potentially bond with fellow players that they had not previously.
Could it be then that the next NBA super team might be crafted over the next three months in Orlando? This was a topic of conversation this week on The Jump between Paul Pierce, Kendrick Perkins and Rachel Nichols.
It’s known that the LeBron-Wade-Bosh two-time NBA Champion Miami Heat were crafted after the three players spent time together on Team USA. Kevin Durant’s decision to head to Golden State was born of conversations with Draymond Green, and Durant’s later decision to team up with Kyrie Irving was also the result of a preexisting friendship.
Perk believes a relationship like those forming in the bubble is unlikely because players are social distancing in order to maintain their health. However, the Truth, noting the recent revelation that no one in the bubble has tested positive in the last week, believes all bets are off.
“Listen, there’s going to be a lot of new friendships being bonded down here,” said Pierce. “Guys are going to be around each other more than normal, and at the end of this bubble, there’s going to be a lot of guys that are going to be unhappy with their situation. So, I don’t agree with you on that, Perk… I feel like, because of this situation in the bubble, you will see some super teams come out of this.”
In fact, Paul decided to double down and accept Perk’s challenge of a bet, 100 pushups if Orlando’s bubble forms a super team. We’ll check back in on that at a later date.
But as previously mentioned, the best news out of the bubble this week was the complete absence of a positive COVID-19 test, a great sign for the NBA that they have been able to keep players and staff safe despite the fact that positive tests continue to rise around the country.
“Do we trust this? Absolutely,” exclaimed Pierce. “You have no positive tests? Where’s my plane ticket? Me being out in the public right here; I have a better chance at catching COVID going to the grocery store. You have no positive tests going into the last 10 days of the regular season. I’m confident that this bubble won’t burst.”
Watch the full conversation between host Rachel Nichols, Pierce, and Perkins on The Jump below, and watch The Jump weekdays at 3 p.m. ET on ESPN.