The calendar says 2012. The upcoming schedule says 2012-13. So why, now, this summer, is there such a focus on the Summer of '14?

Because of the Orlando Magic.

And the Los Angeles Lakers.

And because of the Miami Heat.

The NBA long has been about seminal summers. In 2010, it was the free-agency free-for-all of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Amare Stoudemire, Joe Johnson, Carlos Boozer, etc. This summer, it was the culmination of the United States' climb back to definitive Olympic dominance.

And 2014? That's when the Magic can attempt to return to relevance, when the Lakers can re-affirm enduring relevance, and when the Heat's trio of stars faces the first contract decision of their combined South Florida tenure.