Warriors

Warriors

There are no sports being played in the United States due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, but there are more than enough bombastic takes to keep you entertained.

Take ESPN's Michael Wilbon, who told colleague Zach Lowe on "The Lowe Post" podcast that anyone who thinks the dynastic Warriors of the mid-to-late 2010s would "kill" the second Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bulls squad to threepeat should "shut the eff up."

"The first thing when I tell people to shut up is, 'Just stop,' " Wilbon told Lowe. "Nobody's gonna kill Michael Jordan's team ever. Now, you've got Jordan, (Dennis) Rodman, (Scottie) Pippen, (Ron) Harper. What, they couldn't guard every position? ... The Bulls didn't switch because they didn't have to. It wasn't played that way then. You got on your man, and you stayed (on) his butt. When you have those four guys out there, I'm sorry, who's gonna guard them? Who's gonna guard Michael and Scottie?"

Perhaps Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala, who each have made multiple NBA All-Defensive teams, would've guarded Jordan and Pippen. But as NBC Sports Bay Area's Monte Poole noted in a piece comparing the 1995-96 Bulls and 2016-17 Warriors earlier this month, perhaps a bigger question is who would a 34-year-old Rodman and a post-knee-surgery Harper have guarded? 

[RELATED: What would fans name Warriors' 'Last Dance' documentary?]

 

The exercise, however fun, probably doesn't warrant a profane rebuttal to people who disagree with Wilbon's back-in-my-day opining. Absent the invention of time travel, we'll never truly know which team was better, outside of simulations in "NBA 2K20." The sport is fundamentally different now than it was in 1996. Plus, as Warriors coach (and mid-90s Bulls reserve guard) Steve Kerr sarcastically put it in 2017, "[it's] weird how human evolution goes in reverse in sports."

“They would all kill us," Kerr said (H/T Bay Area News Group) of a litany of NBA greats claiming their team could beat the Warriors. "The game gets worse as time goes on. Players are less talented than they used to be. The guys in the ’50s would’ve destroyed everybody. ... Players get weaker, smaller, less skilled. I don’t know. I can’t explain it.”

Wilbon, or anyone else draped in nostalgia of their favorite sports eras, will always find a way. 

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]