OAKLAND – Dwyane Wade knows something about setting up a great team, and the Miami Heat group believes that the addition of DeMarcus Cousins makes the starting star of the Golden State Warriors' five possible to be the best the NBA has ever seen.
"It's as good as it can be in our game, regardless of which team has ever played this game," said Wade. "It's as good as it gets with five starting points. That's why they are what they are, that's why they are champions.
"To be able to add a guy like DeMarcus, that's what big teams do, they add a piece and continue to add some good pieces and they did it."
As they exchanged their jerseys after Sunday's match against Oracle, Stephen Curry asked Dwyane Wade, "Are you sure there are only a few more years left here?"
The Knicks used an image of rookie center Mitchell Robinson playing alongside Kevin Durant of the Golden State in a pitch for season ticket holders, then removed the photo.
In his last match at Oracle Arena, Wade almost helped the Heat to knock out the Warriors before his team lost 120-118. Golden State overcame early a deficit of 26-7 to return to win. Kevin Durant scored 39 points, Klay Thompson added 29 and Steph Curry 25 to help the Warriors (40-15) win their 17th victory in 19 games.
At the beginning of the decade, Wade helped Miami assemble her Big 3 by teaming up with LeBron James and Chris Bosh in South Beach. James' power – leaving Cleveland to form a new super-team – has helped set the trend for superstars to continually seek out other stars to become free agents for the best opportunity to win championships.
But neither Wade nor the rest of the league have seen five stars like Golden State in Durant, Curry, Thompson, Draymond Green and Cousins.
The Cousins returned Jan. 18 from an Achilles tendon injury and played only 10 games. But his presence was felt in the locker room at Golden State and in the Western Conference standings.
Despite his best game since his debut at the Warriors, with 7 points and three rebounds in 26 minutes on Sunday, Cousins scored big in the end with a huge offensive rebound before committing a foul and scoring 5.4 seconds before the end of the match. .
"He practically denied dog days, he really did," explained Golden State coach Steve Kerr. "These last games before the break from the stars, usually from the beginning of January, lasted three to four weeks and everyone was trying to get to the break, we avoided that.
"DeMarcus has arrived and energized our team … he just brings that excitement and energy to every match and he gets better and better and integrates perfectly into the group." More than anything, he energized us. "
Wade, however, think the other teams will find a way to catch up with the Golden State's super-five.
"People always find a way," said Wade. "The super teams go way back, well before the Miami Heat, have Hall of Famers, many Hall of Fame in a team, and the league will continue to attract good talent."
"If you look at what they did at Philly, the trades they added added those guys to the team, etc. This game will be good for a long time, with the talent coming in and the talent that is here now, the game is in good hands. "