2011-2012 Eastern Conference Preview
EASTERN CONFERENCE PREVIEW-
1. MIAMI HEAT- With the addition of Shane Battier, the Heat take the top spot. Besides having the strongest offense, they have the strongest defensive roster as well. Should cruise through the season and the 1st 2 rounds of the playoffs. Although they are still light at the point guard slot, “Lewhatshisname” and Wade are talented enough to carry the team with a cardboard cutout @ the 1.
2. Chicago Bulls- The only team in the east that can give Miami a hard time, They may not have “his airness” or D-Wade on their squad, But they posess, Derrick Rose, easily the best point guard in the game today. Rumor has it he has been working on his slashing during the offseason though I am not sure if it needed work. If Boozer plays the way he played before he got his fat contract then they should give the Heat a real hard time and possibly come out of the east. With Deng and Noah doing their usual work down low, they will definitely be the most exciting defensive minded team to watch.
3. NEW YORK KNICKS- I didnt want to put them here, but im a realist, and when you have Carmelo Anthony, Amare, and Tyson Chandler as your starting front line, you can’t diasagree that they belong here. Last season gave Amare and Carmelo enough time to learn each others game, Chandler will make them matter on the defensive end. Theyre weak at both guard spots but adding Baron Davis will definitely give them spunk and a dose of nostalgia. With that being said, when your 2 starting guards for the time being are Tony Douglas and Landry Fields, you are not exactly going anywhere.
4. Orlando Magic- With all the uncertainty about whether Howard will go or stay, The Magic are going to have a tough time focusing on this season’s success. Should Howard stay with the Magic, their position may change since Howard is still the best center in the game today. They received Glen “crybaby” Davis for Brandon Bass. Theyre both hardworkers, but i dont think Davis will make a difference. This team will just be lost all season long. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Stan Van Gundy.
5. Boston Celtics- The shortened season definitely benefits an aging Celtics team that did not get better in the offseason. They did get bigger though with the addition of Brandon Bass. Allen, Garnett and Pierce are only getting older, and Rondo has heard his name in trade talks more times than i swore off pasta. The Celtics are capable of going on a roll midseason, but they may want to save their old legs for the post season where like Kevin Garnett stated “Anything is possibleeeeee!!!!”
6. Atlanta Hawks- I’m a little sad to put the Hawks here. However, they did not get better and everyone else only got stronger. The Hawks over the last few years have shown heart and talent, but can Josh Smith really lead this team past the 2nd round? I dont think so. They will definitely be fun to watch as usual, but they will make their usual 1st-2nd round exit with the East being so strong.
7.Indiana Pacers- This is going to surprise alot of people. With the addition of David West, these Pacers can very well jump a few spots as long as West does his thing. Danny Granger is underrated, Roy Hibbert can hold his own and Crazy Tyler Hansborough will help on the boards. This is perhaps the 2nd best front line in the east. Collison and West know each others game so there wont be any issues here in Indy. The only question is… Can they do it all season and into the playoffs… PLAYOFFS? PLAYOFFS?
8. Philadelphia 76ERS- Very talented, they have alot of young guns and veterans Iguodala and Elton Brand should carry them into the playoffs. Thaddeus Young and Jrue Holiday are only getting better. As long as the Sixers dont do anything foolish (like bring back allen iverson @ discounted rate of $100.00 a game) they will
have a strong showing but early exit in the post season.
9.Milwaukee Bucks- I like them, they may even slip into the 7th or 8th seed for the playoffs if they can put together a nice run during the season while the others are slumping. Adding Captain Jack and Shaun Livingston is a plus, and with a healthy Bogut and Jennings they will be a tough beat.
10.New Jersey Nets- This is going to be it for Jersey, I dont believe they will receive an NBA franchise again. Rightfully so! Deron Williams is a top 3 pg, but who else is on this team? Are there any other legitimate players on this team aside from “Hook Lopez”? They should be grateful for having Williams and thats all folks!
11. Charlotte Bobcats- I like this team, but they dont have what it takes to contend for a playoff spot. They traded away Stephen Jackson and Livingston, but they did take Kemba Walker in the draft. Walker will do well and add excitement to this team by scoring in bunches. But Bismack Biyombo? Seriously? If you could find a more talented offensive player in pre- school id be surprised. I mean he is just TERRIBLE! but he does bring defense to the table, and if someone can convince some free agents to come to Charlotte, its Michael Jordan, stay tuned, cause i have a feeling this team will be on the up and up in the near future.
12.Toronto Raptors- This team has not even come to close to relevance since Chris Bosh skipped town for South Beach. (Rightfully so!) There is nothing good about Toronto other than hockey games and beer. If this organization plans on keeping itself in the NBA, they ought to do something fast. They have a few good pieces in Derozan and Bargnani, but lets be honest… They should count their blessings that they are in the eastern conference.
13.Washington Wizards- They are probably the worst exciting team to watch. John Wall can PLAY! and Javale McGee can sure dunk with the best of them. With the whole Gilbert Arenas fiasco in the rear, This team will improve very slowly. BUt they will improve. Rashard Lewis should keep them semi-relevant and they have a loyal fanbase who will support the team however far they go. Their owner is behind the team as well and is looking to do whatever it will take to keep his team out of obscurity.
14.Detroit Pistons- A team that ruled the eastern conference for 3 years under Larry Brown has fallen from grace. Completely out of the picture!!. They have a few good players on their roster but when players dont listen to their own coach and Joe dumars’ future uncertain as well. This team is just.. Clueless, I mean i honestly dont have any positive outlook for this team. Ridiculously fat contracts belonging to Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva buried this team for years to come. Kyle Singler the only bright spot on this team and thats only because of his beach blonde hair.
15.Cleveland Cavaliers- Ok no argument here. This team is just terrible. Theyre heading downhill and about to fade in to nowhere land like they were 10 years ago. Lebron James single handedly destroyed this franchise by leaving for the warmer climate. I would have liked to see Lebron bring them a title. Dan Gilbert would have done anything and everything to buy them a title. But Lebron wanted out and out he went along with the possibility of bringing a title here. The only upside to this team is they used their # 1 pick in this years draft on Kyrie Irving. But it wont be long before Irving skips town for a title contending team.
Stay tuned for my preview of the Western Conference!