Archive for August, 2012

NBA Standings Predictions 2012-2013 Southeast Division

i apologize for not being able to get this out before today.  it’s been kinda hectic.  but here are my predictions for this year for this division.  after this i will have the playoff predictions and season awards.

1. Miami Heat (60 wins)

they finally did it.  they won a championship and it was pretty sweet.  lebron james my favorite player in the world, and i’m really happy that he was able to capture his first (of many) rings.  yep i said it, he will go down as one of the greatest, i would say at least top 3.  lebron was the key for the heat last year, and he had an MVP year.  he won the regular season MVP, the finals MVP, and he was the MVP for team USA in the olympics.  he’s really coming into his own as a player, and i’d say he can still improve, which is scary for the rest of the league.  dwyane wade had an up and down year, as there were times where he was hurting more than helping.  you can tell he’s getting a little older, and his body can’t really hold up as much anymore.  there were some rough times in the playoffs for him, like that 2 for whatever he shot against the pacers.  but he’s still a vital part of this team, helping lebron when lebron gets tired.  and then there’s chris bosh, who no one thought was important until he got hurt in the playoffs and they missed his inside presence and spacing on the floor.  these guys were the main players for this team, and they proved that they were winners.  the heat added a couple of important players that i think allows them to repeat this year.  they added ray allen from boston, and rashard lewis.  space is very important, especially with this team, because of the way lebron and wade slash to the hoop.  allen and lewis doesn’t allow teams to double team lebron, and keeps the defense honest.  mike miller might not be able to play, and the rest of the team are role players at best.  but because of the strength of the big 3 as well as allen, they have enough to win the whole thing this year again.  they will definitely win the east, and i expect them to repeat.

starting 5: bosh, james, battier, wade, chalmers

2. Atlanta Hawks (50 wins)

atlanta made a huge trade this past off season, giving up their top player in joe johnson and his huge contract.  oddly enough, that didn’t hurt their chances of making the playoffs and they’ll be in the same position this year as they were last year.  al horford was injured almost the entire season last year, and with him and josh smith healthy, their frontcourt is deadly.  they also added shooters like kyle korver and anthony morrow, which will certainly help.  and hopefully devin harris can resurge his career, after falling off a bit in utah.  their bench is ok, and lou williams will definitely give them a spark.  i think this year is a year where they’re just gonna weather the storm, because they know they have room to sign at least one other superstar next summer.  so they’re hoping they could get dwight howard, who is best friends with josh smith, or someone else to come as well.  but they will do pretty good in this weakened eastern conference this year.

starting 5: horford, smith, korver, morrow, harris

3. Washington Wizards (25 wins)

the wizards had a horrible year last year, and it just seemed like everyone on that team is immature and looking out for themselves.  john wall needs some teammates who will help him along his disappointing career so far, and the wizards have made some strides with that.  they traded for nene last year, and in this past offseason, they got emeka okafor and trevor ariza.  things are looking though, maybe just because all the other teams in this division are so bad.  but that doesn’t mean they will go anywhere in terms of winning a championship.  these years are growing years, although, i don’t know how long people will wait for john wall to mature.

starting 5: okafor, nene, ariza, beal, wall

4. Orlando Magic (15 wins)

the orlando magic for some reason took the worse deal out of all the deals that were available to them and no one knows why.  i was certainly confused and the deal didn’t make any sense for the magic.  they got al harrington, vucevic, and arron affalo, along with a couple of first round draft picks.  and those draft picks aren’t even going to be that high, because the lakers, nuggets, and 76ers will still be good.  so it’s not like they will rebuild like the thunder, which is their goal.  so their best players are glen davis and hedo turkoglu, and aaron affalo.  not a great way to start your franchise again.  the magic and the bobcats can switch places in the standings, just depending on how things turn out for the bobcats this year.  but orlando’s future is looking bleak, and it’s not going to get better anytime soon.  i feel bad for magic fans right now.

starting 5: ayon, davis, tukoglu, affalo, nelson

5. Charlotte Bobcats (15 wins)

the bobcats were the worst team last year, and that might change this year, but they’ll still be in the bottom 5.  their plan of tanking and getting the number 1 pick backfired when they didn’t get it, but they did get michael kidd-gilchrist.  kemba walker hasn’t really panned out the way he was supposed to, at least not last year.  so i guess they are going to try and build around draft picks, although that’s an awfully long process.  they still have tyrus thomas, who is a headache sometimes on and off the court, but a good player nonetheless.  they also have ben gordon, and ramon sessions, who did poorly with the lakers last season.  they will obviously hit some rough patches, but i think it will be good for michael kidd-gilchrist and kemba walker, and hopefully they will learn from it and this will motivate them to get better.

starting 5: haywood, biyombo, kidd-gilchrist, gordon, sessions

NBA 2K13 All-Star Weekend

this mode with all these features are only available through pre-ordering it, so i would suggest you get on that.  i’m about to do that right now.

Adidas Presents: The Return of Derrick Rose

Adidas is tracking derrick rose and his process of returning to the NBA after he injured and tore is ACL last season in the playoffs.  all chicago fans are waiting for him to play again, and this is a good video just showing what he went through.

Paul George insane 360 under the legs dunk

crazy dunk by a good player.  i hope he can improve this season.

NBA Standings Predictions 2012-2013 Central Division

1. Indiana Pacers

things are looking up…

the indiana pacers had a good run last year, with them making the playoffs and forcing the heat to 6 games.  they are a very balanced team that is very deep.  i felt like they were trying to prove that they weren’t just a team who makes the playoffs and can’t really go far, and won’t back down from anything.  at first, it was pretty cool, until it got too much and they started challenging everything the heat were doing.  their leader was danny granger, who had a reputation as a soft player, but kept getting in lebron’s face about every little thing, small or big.  it was pretty annoying, and in my opinion, they should just play.  it’s not like the heat were doing anything dirty. but this offseason, they accomplished their main priority, which was retaining roy hibbert.  he was key last season, and when he does well, the whole team does well.  he has the size advantage over many, and he also can shoot and defend.  david west and danny granger also bring leadership, and together with hibbert, they have one of the better front courts in the league.  paul george also blossomed last year, although he kind of disappeared in the playoffs.  but he is a young version of andre iguodala, he just needs to work on a few things to improve.  he’s not at andre’s level yet, and it might take a while to get there.  darren collison, who brought a spark off the bench, is gone, but replace by DJ augustin.  he’s a nice addition, and hopefully he could fit in with the rest of the team.  with their bench, they’re primed to take on miami, although i still think that they won’t.  they will be in the middle of the east when the playoffs come, and i see them finishing in the second round (again). starting 5: hibbert, west, granger, george, hill 2. Chicago Bulls

this dude needs to come back

chicago’s season came to an abrupt end with derrick rose went down and they lost in the first round to the 76ers.  derrick rose is expected to miss the majority of the season, and everyone is hoping that he will return back at full strength.  he’s a very physical player who depends on his athletic ability to play.  if he doesn’t have that, then it might be hard for him to have an impact this season.  he missed a big chunk of time last year, and the bulls did well during his absence.   but still, they need rose in order to go far in the playoffs.  they’re aren’t the same team without him. the rest of the roster is still pretty good, with the overpaid boozer and joakim noah in the front court and richard hamilton with newly added kirk hinrich in the back.  luol deng just played in the olympics and played almost every single minute for his team.  so he’s pretty tired, not really getting a chance to rest at all.  i know they will still do well in the season, but come playoff time, i don’t expect them to really get anywhere.  it all depends on rose.  their bench is still decent with nate robinson coming aboard and taj gibson still here.  but they need a go-to scorer who will be able to just take over games with rose recovering.  until then, they won’t be contenders. starting 5: noah, boozer, deng, hamilton, hinrich 3. Milwaukee Bucks when you have two small guards that are both undersized and they’re your starting backcourt, that’s not good.  you thought i was talking about the warriors?  i was actually talking about the bucks, who acquired monta ellis last season.  brandon jennings is still the starting point guard, ellis is starting at the 2, but they both need the ball to be effective.  i don’t know how well that worked last season, but i know they didn’t make the playoffs.  i don’t expect them to make the playoffs this year either, although they have some decent pieces.  andrew bogut was a good big man, but an injuried big man.  he missed tons of games and because of that, the bucks’ defense suffered.  so they went and got samuel dalembert when houston was having a fire sale.  they still have drew gooden, and mike dunleavy, who hasn’t really been the same since getting injured while in indiana.  but they’re stacked in the frontcourt, i just hope none of their guards get injured.  they only have 1 backup each for ellis and jennings, so i’m assuming they’re going to carry the load.  coach scott skiles is a strict coach, but it seems like he can’t get his players to do anything really.  but they should do decently well. starting 5: dalembert, gooden, dunleavy, ellis, jennings 4. Cleveland Cavaliers last season was horrible, but there was one bright spot on the team: kyrie irving.  he won the rookie of the year with a year that was just as good as lebron’s rookie year.  and that’s impressive.  he won the rookie game MVP, and he was just phenomenal.  “uncle drew” irving led the team in scoring and assists last season.  he is recovering from a broken hand but he seems poised to follow his rookie year with an equally impressive 2nd year.  this team has some hope, and they some good pieces around irving like tristan thompson and anderson varejao.  they need a couple of more players, and they lost antawn jamison to the lakers, so this year will still be a rough year, but i think this is all part of the learning process.  but it all starts with irving.  they have a very good coach in byron scott, who last took the nets to the finals, and under his guidance, the cavs will make steps in the right direction.

starting 5:  varejao, thompson, casspi, gibson, irving

5. Detroit Pistons

the pistons have been in a rut for the past few years, with joe dumars making some head turning signings like that guy up there.  but it is what it is, and they have to try and make the best of it.  the only one who is from the 2004 title is tayshaun prince.  everyone else is new, and they have a few decent players like greg monroe and brandon knight.  rodney stuckey is an experiment that didn’t pan out like it was supposed to.  and so they’re stuck with stuckey, charlie villenueva, and veterans like corey maggette.  i think it’s pretty hard to have hope, especially with a locker room that is supposedly as bad as detroit’s.  the coach cannot control his team, and it’s been like this for awhile.  hopefully brandon knight brings some excitement and some basketball back to detroit.

starting 5: monroe, jerebko, prince, stuckey, knight

Video: Legends

here’s a video honoring MJ, magic, and larry, and what they did for the game.  i wish i was alive for all their games.  that would have been amazing to watch.  enjoy.

NBA Standings Predictions 2012-2013 Atlantic Division

this division just became one of the most competitive divisions out there.  let’s see who will stand on top.

1. Boston Celtics (52 wins)

the big 3

this summer was a heartbreak summer for the celtics, with them losing ray allen, who was part of the big 3.  they did make a nice recovery though, signing courtney lee and jason terry to replace allen.  no one expected allen to leave, but there was tension in the locker room between him and rajon rondo.  and with doc rivers giving the ball to rondo all the time, allen just couldn’t take it.  it must have been pretty bad if he left for miami, which gave him half of what boston was offering.  i don’t think he’ll get the ball more in miami, but i think he’s a loyal guy, one who reacts to how others treat him.  he was the center of many trade rumors over the past few years, and he didn’t like that either.  but now the celtics only have rondo, garnett, and paul pierce as their big 3.

they also brought back brandon bass, which is a great thing.  he was a key component in their run last year, and they have a loaded backcourt, with terry, lee, and avery bradley, who should come back in the middle of the season.  they’re a little thin in the front court, and garnett is getting older.  he just signed for 3 more years, but i don’t know how long he will last.  this year, i see them leading the atlantic division, but they probably won’t win a title.  and even though they might win the division, they are still vulnerable to lost to the knicks or the nets.  but they can also amaze us again and surpass all expectations as well.

starting 5: garnett, bass, pierce, lee, rondo

2. Brooklyn Nets (50 wins)

the second best backcourt in the league

the nets are on the cusp of something exciting and hopefully good.  hopefully their spending spree paid off.  they resigned deron williams, one of the best point guards in the league, and they traded for joe johnson and his massive contract.  although it’s a lot of money to pay one guy, i think it’s worth it.  they didn’t get dwight, but they still have a decent front court.  with brook lopez, kris kardashian humphries, and gerald wallace, they have the ability to make some noise in the east.  they also have marshon brooks, a shooter who was good enough to be one of the main pieces for a dwight howard trade.  they did overpay for wallace, though.  i think they could have spent a little less on him.  but because of their willingness to spend, i’m sure they will reap the benefits of it.  deron williams and joe johnson can be a deadly and lethal 1-2 punch.  and brook lopez is a good offensive center.  i think they have better pieces than new york.  and i think their jerseys are going to look better than new york also.

starting 5: lopez, humphries, wallace, johnson, williams

3. New York Knicks (48 wins)

last year was the year of linsanity.  this year will be totally different, as they shipped lin to houston.  now, their success depends all on amare stoudemire and carmelo anthony.  and that’s probably why i have them in 3rd place in this division.  carmelo anthony excelled during the olympics.  many people were talking about new york getting better this year because of his play and his improvement.  but here’s the difference between the olympics was that he was playing with great players, and he was on a team where all he had to do was shoot the ball and worry about nothing else.  he didn’t have to worry about leading his team, because lebron and kobe did that.  he didn’t have to worry about passing because cp3 and deron williams did that.  so that’s why he played so well.

in new york, it’s a different story.  he has to be the leader, he has to play unselfishly, he has to switch up his game, and he has to jell with everyone on the team, even if they’re not playing well.  that’s a tall order for someone who has never really been a leader.  as much as he would like to be, he’s not.  that’s why he couldn’t make it work with jeremy lin.  and that’s why i don’t really have high hopes for the knicks.

amare worked with hakeen olajuwon this past summer, and i hope that it adds a lot to his game.  for the past few seasons, he’s been a step slow.  so hopefully this rejuvenates him a bit, even after he injured his own hand.  this offseason was supposed to be a good one, but instead, it turned out to be an ok one.  they snatched jason kidd from dallas and signed marcus camby back.  so they got a bunch older, but didn’t do what everyone expected and resign jeremy lin.  i know it was a lot of money to get him back, but i think they should have done it.  they instead got raymond felton, who has been out of shape for the past two seasons, to make up for it.  and they got kurt thomas,another veteran who’s 40.  so i don’t know where they’re going with this, but i don’t think this will get them past miami, or even brooklyn.  maybe they’ll prove me wrong.

starting 5: chandler, stoudemire, anthony, smith, felton

4. Philedelphia 76ers (43 wins)

the 76ers made a surprising trade of the summer and ended up with the second best center in the league.  how they did that, i have no idea.  but give credit to the GM, he made the right move and helped this franchise get better.  they have the most dominant big man in the east, and they gave up just iguodala for it.  that’s pretty good, i would say.  and the trade doesn’t really hurt them because they have people like thaddeus young and even turner, as well as nick young.  spencer hawes now moves to the power forward spot, giving them two dominant and tall big guys who can control the paint.  they are going to be tough to score on, and their defense will improve in the paint.  it might take a hit on the perimeter, but that’s ok.  one move i didn’t get was getting backup kwame brown.  he’s the most useless player on the planet, but somehow, he still gets money and he still “plays.”  that’s amazing.

this club is solidly built, with jrue holiday at the point, evan turner at small forward, nick young backing up shooting guard, and jason richardson, who brings leadership.  but the one thing that concerns me the most is bynum.  i don’t feel that he’s ready to lead a team.  if you watched the press conference they had, he talked more about himself and how he’s excited to be the first option on offense, rather than talking about the team.  he’s a me-first guy, always have been that way, and needs to mature some more.  also, physically, he needs to stay healthy.  this past season was the first time he was able to stay on the floor for more than half the season, and that won’t cut it if that happens again.  there’s a lot of risk involved with bynum, so hopefully he continues to take care of himself the way he should.

starting 5: bynum, hawes, turner, richardson, holiday

5. Toronto Raptors (20 wins)

their main goal was to acquire steve nash this summer.  that didn’t pan out, but they got kyle lowry.  i guess that’s a decent replacement.  they also acquired landry fields, who looked lost in new york last season.  i honestly don’t see any positive to this team the way it’s constructed right now, and if your leader is andrea bargnani, then that’s not a good look.  linus kleiza is a solid player, as well as demar derozan.  but other than that, this team needs alot of work.  they need even more work, with the way this division is constructed.  there will be a huge gap between them and the rest of the division.

starting 5: valuncianus, bargnani, derozan, ross, lowry