• Matthew Shear

NBA Stars as Marvel Superheroes

LeBron James – Captain America

LeBron has been the face of the NBA seemingly since he entered the league back in 2003. James has been the NBA Finals the last seven years while winning three of them. He has been a four-time MVP and a 13-time All-Star. The man is a cultural icon. Likewise, Captain America has become one of the defining heroes in the Marvel Universe. One of Marvel’s first super heroes, Captain America debuted in 1941 and has been in continual production since 1964. LBJ has never missed a significant amount of time due to injury. Cap heads up Marvel’s super team, The Avengers, just like LeBron lead the Miami Heat to four straight Finals appearances. Captain America embodies the ideals that are supposed to make this country great, and LeBron James has been extremely active in fighting the injustices so many people in this country face.

Kevin Durant – Iron Man

In Captain America: Civil War, Iron Man and Captain America divide the Avengers and battle it out over the role that superheroes play in our society. Last season Kevin Durant joined the Golden State Warriors and faced the almost equally star-studded Cleveland Cavaliers, led by LeBron James, in the NBA Finals. Iron Man is often depicted as being selfish and conceited, much like Kevin Durant was when he decided to leave the franchise that drafted him to join another perennial championship contender. At the end of the day Tony Stark, and KD, care about doing the right thing. Stark sacrificed himself to save the planet from an alien invasion and Durant is incredibly active in charities around the Bay Area. Don’t let a few preconceived notions about these men fool you.

Giannis Antetokounmpo – Mr. Fantastic

The man has a seven-foot wingspan and can handle the rock like a point guard. Giannis is a nightmare on defense because he can stretch out those arms and get blocks, steals, and boards. Much like Mr. Fantastic leads the Fantastic Four, the Greek Freak finds himself surrounded by a core of young talent. That includes Rookie of the Year Malcolm Brogdon (who is older than Giannis), Jabari Parker, and Thon Maker. Right now, the Milwaukee Bucks’ fantastic four won’t be able to compete with the Avengers (on the court or in the box office), but in the increasingly weak East they have a shot at making some noise and getting better for the future.

Stephen Curry – Hawkeye

Steph Curry has the deadliest shot in the NBA and, like Hawkeye, it seems he never misses. He might not be as big and strong as Captain America or Iron Man, but one of his long-range shots can change the course of a battle for his team. Don’t sleep on his abilities up close either. Hawkeye can spar with the best of them and Curry is one of the most creative finishers in the league right now. Even though Hawkeye fought on Captain America’s team in Civil War, his and Curry’s ability to shoot is vital to the success of any team they are on. They might be outshined by their teammates, but you can always count on these two to consistently contribute to the cause. Curry got his two MVP’s, so maybe we will finally get a stand-alone Hawkeye film.