I thought I'd try and peer into a crystal ball and see what the league may look like next year. It's an interesting time in the NBA because a lot of the "Dynasty" teams are on the downside of their peak. I expect that things could start looking very different next season. We are getting a glimpse of what may become this season already. So here's my best guess and I'd love to see some of your best guesses.
1. New York - Addition of Carmello actually makes this team the best in the east (Felton is tremendous in D'Antonio's system!).
2. Miami - Gets a little deeper than the 2010 edition and thus inches closer to the top
3. Orlando - After winning the NBA Championship, stays near the top (hehe)
4. Chicago - Moving upwards in what is now the toughest conference
5. Boston - On their way down the mountain after being on top for a few seasons
6. Atlanta - Loss of Crawford hurts
7. Washington - Moves into the post season
8. Indiana - Just good enough to be an eigth seed, not bad enough to improve their lot in the NBA circle.
9. Philadelphia - Middle of the pack is a bad place to be. Evans is now considered a bust at 2 even after they traded Iggy to Dallas to make room for Evans.
11. New Jersey - I guess having a rich guy and rapper doesn't automatically make you a good NBA team.
12. Charlotte - Jordan will never be a good front office guy and he's to old to unretire.
13. Detroit - Shouldn't have spent all that money in 09.
15. Cavs - So many needs hard to imagine one high draft pick changing their luck like Lebron did a while ago.
1. Oklahoma City - They get better.
2. Utah - They get better.
3. Clippers - Blake will get better and that's scary!
4. San Antonio - Tim Duncan's last year?
5. Dallas - Dallas will keep rearming itself to be in contention. Iggy and Dirk keeps them in the hunt for this season.
6. Golden State - They stay healthy and improve. Fun team to watch.
7. Lakers - All the games Kobe has played finally catches up and he looses a step. Lakers look mortal, especially with Phil gone.
8. Houston - Adelman will get this team in.
9. Sacramento - One season away from sneaking in.
10. New Orleans - Move Paul at tradedeadline and drop off after that.
11. Denver - Rebuilding after Carmello.
12. Suns - Nash's last season?
13. Portland - Health killed this team. Oden gone. Roy will never be the same.
14. Memphis - With Randolph gone the Memphis are back to the bottom.
15. Timberwolves - KAHN!!!!! He drafts another point guard after saying he made a mistake taking Johnson last season.
As far as the Kings go, I see improvement but falling just short of the playoffs. I see Demarcus mentioned as all-star before being snubbed. Tyreke plays like he did as a rookie. And our rookie from the 2011 draft being a ROY candidate after taking a 17 win team and almost getting them into the playoffs. Sounds reasonable and something I can live with after the last 4 seasons!
Your turn to have some fun, what do you guys see?