WELCOME TO BASKETBALL SEASON!!!
Ready or not, it’s here! BASKETBALL SEASON IS NOW AMONG US! The upcoming NBA season will be very anticipated for so many reasons in both the western and eastern conferences. With that being said, let’s now go into detail!
Since the Golden State Warriors are the reigning champions, I will start with them giving them the respect of it. Steve Kerr, along with the Splash Brothers, are on pace for a repeat title run without losing any key pieces from last season. I wouldn’t call David Lee a key piece as he wasn’t able to stay healthy during the season although he did contribute in the playoffs and the NBA Finals. Stephen Curry will also be on pace for a repeat MVP season. BUT both the Golden State Warriors as a whole and Stephen Curry will both have major challenges to overcome in order to repeat as the Western Conference has done nothing, but RELOADED, RELOADED and RELOADED!!!
My hometown and home city Oklahoma City Thunder have been in the news for many reasons. Of course, the main topic has been Kevin Durant’s upcoming free agency. But the main concern or concerns are staying healthy and on the first year coach Billy Donovan coming from the college ranks. It wasn’t long ago when Billy Donovan had accepted a job with the Orlando Magic, but later decided to go back to the University of Florida. But living here in Oklahoma City, the feeling is that of a pressure season with this upcoming season being labeled a ‘make-or-break’ season for the Oklahoma City Thunder. And there’s also a vibe of confidence that if the Thunder can stay healthy, the Thunder will pose a threat to the championship. I spotted the newlywed Russell Westbrook at a car dealership and he looks confident and healthy as I have ever seen him in person. I guess getting married does have that affect! 🙂
Now onto the Los Angeles Clippers and yes the Lakers! Yes, I combined them…might as well as they are in the same city and share the same building. It’s totally unbelievable that Kobe Bryant is about to enter his 20th season! Yes, these 20 years have flown by and it seems like yesterday when he was drafted by the Charlotte Hornets and traded to the Lakers on draft day for Vlade Divac. The youth movement with the Lakers is in full effect as it will be interesting how their last two lottery picks, Julius Randle and DeAngelo Russell, will learn from the Black Mamba! For the Clip show now, all that can be said is WOW, WOW and WOW!! The DeAndre Jordan saga from the offseason is something that a person would see once in a lifetime. One can only imagine the reception the he will get on November 11th when the Clippers play in Dallas. This will be a ‘MUST SEE TV’ event, just like LeBron’s first return to Cleveland while in Miami and his first return to Miami last season after returning back to Cleveland. The Clippers should be in the tops in the west with basically only losing Matt Barnes, but in return gaining Lance Stephenson, Josh Smith and the TRUTH himself Paul Pierce returning home.
We must not forget about the San Antonio Spurs! They unfortunately last season had to endure a playoff matchup with the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round that should’ve been a semifinal or beyond matchup. They were eliminated due to a very circus bank shot from Chris Paul. But they made some splashes in the offseason by keeping their core intact for another run and with adding the biggest free agent acquisition LaMarcus Aldridge and the ageless David West for the veterans’ minimum. That’s a definite upgrade from the departing Tiago Splitter and Aron Baynes, who made his showing in the NBA after being posterized by Blake Griffin in the playoffs. So Pop, let’s see how ‘NASTY’ this team will be!
Let’s get started with the defending conference from last season, the Cleveland Cavaliers! It must be said that if they were at full strength during the playoffs, Kyrie Irving’s statement would’ve been true with them beating the Golden State Warriors in last year’s finals. LeBron James couldn’t do it on his own and the Matthew Dellavedova’s claim to fame lasted shorter than Jeremy Lin’s! The verdict is still out on Tristan Thompson as contract talks are in failing status. So with no major additions to their title run, it’s all of the health of the BIG 3!
Moving to the Chicago Bulls! It’s again another season depending on health. It’s not just Derrick Rose, but also on new coach coming from his alma mater Iowa State Fred Hoiberg coming off of open heart surgery. This is one team that the success of it is dependent on the health of Derrick Rose. With that being said, the jury is still out if he will ever return to his pre-injury and MVP self.
Another note of interest in the eastern conference are the Miami Heat. Three focuses going to this year are of course the health of their best two players Dewayne Wade and Chris Bosh and their lottery pick Justice Winslow. Justice had a very impressive showing in the summer leagues both in Orlando and in Las Vegas. It is evident in how good our God is for Chris Bosh. That was a very scary situation dealing with those blood clots in his lungs. So whether a person loves or hates him, he must be respected from here on out and will be an inspiration to others.
So as the NBA season is among us, there will be many stories and storylines. But all in all, it all comes down to health and who is clicking at the right time. It was very evident for the Golden State Warriors last season.