No, I’m not talking about the three Thunder players some already identify with that. I’m talking about Chris Paul, Dwight Howard and Kevin Durant. Whoa, what?
Employing the star-studded template of a point guard, wing scorer and big man, imagine this triumvirate: Paul, Kevin Durant and Dwight Howard in Oklahoma City. Collectively, again using Paul’s 2008-09 injury-free season, this group would edge the Miami trio with a total of 78.7 wins.
The scary thing? Depending on how the new collective bargaining agreement shakes out, it could be a viable scenario down the road. Howard and Paul each control their destiny in the summer of 2012, as they have player options for the 2012-13 season. Should the two opt out of their respective contracts with Orlando and New Orleans, the potential is there for a more powerful union than the one we just witnessed.
To be sure, there’s a difference between a plausible scenario and a realistic one. It’s hard to imagine Paul and Howard leaving money on the table to make the trio happen; the owners will try to bargain for a harder, lower salary cap in the imminent meetings with the Player’s Association. A slice in spending power would all but prohibit Paul and Howard joining Durant in Oklahoma City.
Still, we can dream right? Especially when one just became a reality.