Rivalries have been a huge part of the NBA almost since its inception. And why not? Rivalries make games more interesting, and most of all rivalries sell. Celtics vs. Lakers alone carried the league through multiple generations, starting when Red Auerbach was lighting victory cigars and the Lakers were based in Minneapolis, running all the way up through Paul Pierce and Kobe Bryant battling it out. It’s not much of a rivalry right now, but give it time.
As great as the Jordan era was for both fans and the league as a whole, it was a time strangely bereft of rivalries. Once Jordan and his Bulls did away with the Pistons via a four-game sweep in 1991, the next decade was mostly Jordan coldly dispatching everyone. Was there a Knicks/Bulls rivalry? Sure, in New York.
But in recent years, rivalries have returned. Cavs vs. Warriors is the most obvious one, but there are plenty more, pitting team against team, city against city, and in some cases, player against player. Here are the 10 best rivalries in the NBA right now.