Are the 2016-17 Warriors the best team in NBA history?
It's a question that never will have a definitive answer because it's subjective and people have different opinions on the matter.
It's practically impossible to compare squads from different eras because the game has evolved so much.
But as The Ringer's Bill Simmons said on his most recent podcast when discussing the 2016-17 Warriors: "I think you can make a case that that's pretty much hands down the best team of all time."
Iguodala locks down Kyrie, Durant plays great defense on LeBron, and then Curry drills the 28 foot pull-up in transition. The 2016-17 Warriors were INSANE pic.twitter.com/egFo5dPlZr— Drew Shiller (@DrewShiller) April 14, 2020
That's a pretty strong stance from a guy who bleeds Boston Celtics green and is partial to the 1985-86 Celtics in particular.
But Simmons does his homework (after all, he did write "The Book of Basketball) and is a student of the history of the game.
"If you're talking statistical résumé, number of good players on the team, style, ability to do all kinds of different looks who they're playing," Simmons said when discussing that Warriors team. "They had (Kevin) Durant -- who is one of the best 15 players ever. They had (Steph) Curry -- who is one of the 25 best players ever. They had Klay (Thompson) and Draymond (Green). They had (Andre) Iguodala -- who is gonna make the Hall of Fame. They finished 83-16 that year ... that's gonna be a tough one to beat.
"The 2017 Warriors are the No. 1 seed in any tournament of the greatest teams ever."
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He makes a great case and you're not going to get any pushback here. So why did Simmons feel compelled to discuss this now?
Well, remember the aforementioned comment about his Boston affinity?
"The reason I bring it up is -- (when) you talk about the 'old-guy thing' -- you get accused of being more protective," Simmons explained. "'(Larry) Bird and Magic (Johnson) -- those are my guys.' I don't care what year it was. I don't care if it was three years ago or 30. I can just judge it from, 'Was I there? How did I feel? What does the research say? What does the math say? What were people saying in the moment?' If you're really gonna argue about this stuff, go back and read what people were saying.
"This Golden State team -- they only played three years ago -- and I think they're weirdly underrated now ... Golden State was just significantly better than (the) Cleveland (Cavaliers) that year and I thought that Cleveland team was really good. They were loaded."
Lastly, Ryen Russillo brought up a very good point for explaining why some people won't ever put the 2016-17 Dubs in the top spot.
"The Warriors are always going to suffer from everybody hating what that team was about because of Durant," he said. "I'm not saying you should hate Durant, but I get how much it sucked when you add it all up."
Yet fans shouldn't let their frustration over KD signing with the Warriors in the summer of 2016 impact their opinion on who they believe is the best team ever, right?
Yes. But that's not how the world works.