NBA: 10 Teams That Paid Big Bucks to Their ‘Big 3’ Players

GABRIEL BOUYS/Getty Images

GABRIEL BOUYS/Getty Images

The recent growth trend in the ‘Big 3’ roster format in the NBA stems from the Boston Celtics’ 2008 NBA title when their ‘Big 3’ players — Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen – led them to their first championship since 1986. Ever since the Celtics’ title run, teams around the league have been building on the concept and attempting to form their own version of the ‘Big 3’.

It’s very difficult to build a roster around three players who are playing on league-maximum contracts, but that is what teams are attempting to do. Here is a look at what were the most expensive ‘Big 3’ groups in the NBA prior to the end of the 2015 NBA season.

10.  Memphis Grizzlies

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Big 3:  Zach Randolph, Mike Conley, and Marc Gasol

Combined Salaries: $41,023,904

9.  Los Angeles Lakers

Harry How/Getty Images

Harry How/Getty Images

Big 3: Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash (now retired), and Jordan Hill

Combined Salaries: $42,201,000

8.  Indiana Pacers

Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Big 3: Paul George, Roy Hibbert, and David West

Combined Salaries: $42,836,228

Hibbert and West have since departed the team, leaving Paul George as the lone bright spot from a talented Pacers squad that totally imploded.

7.  Houston Rockets

Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Big 3: Dwight Howard, James Harden, and Trevor Ariza

Combined Salaries: $44,744,204

6.  Miami Heat

Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Big 3: Chris Bosh, Dwayne Wade, and Luol Deng

Combined Salaries: $45,358,861

5.  Cleveland Cavaliers

Jason Miller/Getty Images

Jason Miller/Getty Images

Big 3: LeBron James, Kevin Love, and Anderson Varejao*

Combined Salaries: $46,068,008

*After the 2014-15 season, Kyrie Irving and his mammoth contract extension will replace Varejao

4.  Oklahoma City Thunder

Rob Carr/Getty Images

Rob Carr/Getty Images

Big 3: Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, and Serge Ibaka

Combined Salaries: $47,064,686

3.  Los Angeles Clippers

Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Big 3: Blake Griffin, Chris Paul, and DeAndre Jordan

Combined Salaries: $49,183,299

2.  New York Knicks

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Big 3: Carmelo Anthony, Amar’e Stoudemire*, and Andrea Bargnani

Combined Salaries: $57,369,389
*Stoudimire was traded to the Dallas Mavericks at the trade deadline.

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

1.  Brooklyn Nets

Big 3: Joe Johnson, Deron Williams, and Brook Lopez

Combined Salaries: $58,654,317

While Deron Williams is now with the Dallas Mavericks, the Nets are still on the hook for $27.5 million of the $43 million he had been owed by the club. He signed a two year, $10 million dollar deal with Dallas.

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