Originally Posted by maldoror
I must be getting old if the Bulls of the 90s and Lakers of the 80s are not part of the modern era. I just don't agree with that. The modern era started when the ABA merged with the NBA and all team accomplishments after 1976 should be considered modern era, while the Celtics titles from the 60's and early 70's were not modern era.
It all depends how you segment eras. Some do it by major developments or rule changes that affect the structure of the game (the merger, the shot clock era), some by the more emergent developments in the league (the Bird/Magic era, the Jordan era). If we're going by the latter method, the 'modern era' doesn't really have a strong label, although I've definitely seen the 'Bryant/Duncan' era as the label more commonly than anything else (except perhaps the Duncan/O'Neal era). With Duncan and Bryant combining for 9 of the 14 championships since Jordan, I think that's a fair label, although with time (barring another Spurs or Lakers championship in the next couple years), history will call 1999-2010 the 'Duncan/Bryant' era, and 2011-2022 or so the 'LeBron' era.