There are some all-time great superstars in the NBA right now. The likes of Stephen Curry, Kawhi Leonard, LeBron James, and Anthony Davis have all dominated the league and won NBA titles over the past few seasons. James Harden and Luka Doncic have steadily become two of the greatest players in the game today and their excellent offensive skillsets are setting the tone for their teams. All the aforementioned players happen to reside in either California or Texas.
It is time to set up another game that everyone wants to watch, this time by pitting Team California against Team Texas. Team California stars include Golden State’s Stephen Curry, Clippers’ All-Star duo of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, and the Lakers championship duo of LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Team Texas has Doncic and Harden in the backcourt, Kristaps Porzingis at center, and the San Antonio Spurs duo of DeMar DeRozan and LaMarcus Aldridge completing the lineup. Here is how the game plays out.
Stephen Curry vs. Luka Doncic
This matchup will end up being very even. Stephen Curry is the best shooter of all time but Luka Doncic is a much better all-around player. Curry's career average of 24.2 PPG matches well with Luka's 25.5 PPG, although Doncic will grab more boards and get more assists than Curry in this one. Stephen Curry would have the last laugh in the end as his sharpshooting from deep greatly helps Team California win the game.
Paul George vs. James Harden
James Harden is always a handful, and he is one of the best scorers of all-time. This will be the case again as he will put up more points than Paul George in this one. Harden’s playmaking and scoring in the paint will be the main offense for Team Texas, and he will put on a heck of a show to lead all scorers. Paul George will do as good of a job as possible defending Harden, but there is only so much a defender can do. George will have a solid overall game nonetheless and this matchup will be one of the most interesting ones to watch.
Kawhi Leonard vs. DeMar DeRozan
The battle of the Raptors legends will go down in Kawhi’s favor. DeRozan was traded for Kawhi Leonard in Toronto, with Kawhi winning a championship for the franchise. DeRozan acts for revenge to prove his worth, which he does admirably well as he drops 20 points. Kawhi Leonard is one of the best players in the world and his scoring and defense will be key for Team California. Kawhi Leonard plays at his own pace, gets buckets including a buzzer-beater to end the half, and takes turns defending James Harden.
LeBron James vs. LaMarcus Aldridge
The best player in the world, LeBron James often dictates the outcome of games he plays in. This will be the case yet again in the Team California and Team Texas showdown, as The King distributes the ball better than anyone in the world right now. LeBron’s all-around play is special to watch and his leadership will be the reason Team California comes out on top. LaMarcus Aldridge is always deadly from the mid-range and he will make a living with Harden and Doncic finding good shots for him. In the end, LeBron’s impact is too great and he has a massive advantage in this matchup.
Anthony Davis vs. Kristaps Porzingis
This is a very intriguing matchup because Anthony Davis and Kristaps Porzingis have both inside and outside games. Davis is the better player, however, Porzingis won't make it easy on him. Porzingis is long and athletic enough to play solid defense, meaning Davis won’t have a run-of-the-mill type of game. Porzingis will mainly impact the game on the defensive end in this game although he will nail a few threes in the game. Anthony Davis finishes with a double-double and his partnership with LeBron James will ultimately prove to be way too much for the effective duo of James Harden and Porzingis.
Team California has too much talent and it will show in the first quarter. They will get out to an early 8-0 lead in the first quarter, with LeBron and Leonard getting 2 buckets each. After a brief pause in action after a timeout, Team Texas respond with a James Harden 3 which is quickly answered with a deep three by Stephen Curry. The first quarter ends with Team California ahead by a large margin, 33-20.
The second quarter is where Doncic, Harden, and Team Texas come alive. Porzingis plays excellent defense in the post and the backcourt heats up. Doncic and Harden finish with 12 points apiece in the quarter to drag the game back to a level playing field. Team Texas manage to bring the game within 4 points but Kawhi Leonard hits a fadeaway buzzer-beater to end the first-half 63-57.
The second half is all about Team California as LeBron James and Anthony Davis take over the third. James finishes with 5 assists and 5 rebounds in the quarter alone, with all his assists resulting in a Davis bucket. Kawhi and Curry also find their spots, getting a few points on their end as well. DeRozan finds his mid-range shot in the quarter, but Team California leads 90-75 after a dominant offensive showcase that ended with a Curry three with 0.5 seconds left.
The fourth quarter is much of the same, although James Harden and Luka Doncic put up fantastic scoring performances. There is simply too much superstar power on both ends of the court for Team California and it is epitomized with LeBron’s leadership with the ball. The 4th quarter ends with Team Texas falling 125-103. Team Texas let the game run a little too long in the final 2 minutes which allows LeBron and co. to up the score a little bit more. In the end, James Harden leads all scorers with 38 points but LeBron James is the MVP of the game.
Team Californa vs. Team Texas 125-103
MVP: LeBron James (25 Points, 15 Rebounds 17 Assists)