October 25, 2012 at 3:33 pm #47444
Andrew GnerreKey Master
(Behind Miami, obviously.)
Boston and Indiana seem the frontrunners here, but can one of the Atlantic division trio of Brooklyn, NY or Philly sneak up that high? Is Atlanta still good enough? Are the Bulls too stubborn to finish any lower, even without Rose?October 26, 2012 at 10:43 pm #47639
Devin KharpertianKey Master
I like Indiana but generally think they’re a little bit of fool’s gold. The team got ridiculously lucky with health this year and their biggest offseason move was getting older and getting Ian Mahinmi.
I think they’ll be good, but you have to consider that they’ll come back to the mean to some degree. I think they’re in the same echelon as everyone.
Honestly I think one injury to any major player between NY/BK/PHI/BOS/IND could decide who’s 2nd.October 29, 2012 at 3:17 am #47689
I think that the combination of Boston’s depth and the fact that they’re incorporating a lot of new pieces will give them the jolt that they haven’t had during the past few regular seasons.
I think BK could steal it, because it seems like the deciding factors for who comes out on top of this cluster are PG and depth. The Nets depth isn’t even with the Celts, but their PG might be better.
The Knicks are the Knicks, and I’m fully preparing for the Sixers to be a complete letdown.
Nobody will be sleeping on Indiana this year, and with so many teams improving this year their depth doesn’t look quite as deep.October 29, 2012 at 10:22 pm #47714
Miami is the clear first seed in the East, followed by Boston because of their depth and experience playing together as a team. I see the Nets in third, potentially challenging the Celtics for second if some of their older players get injured (as older starters tend to do). Also, they really beefed up their bench, and when you combine that with Deron Williams and some good shooters, better than any team he has previously played with, the result is a serious improvement and contention in the East as well as a gm of the year award for Billy King. The Pacers just don’t have the depth to contend with the top 3 teams I mentioned, and they will seriously regret trading Darren Collison and Dahntay Jones for Ian Mahinmi. In the Joe Johnson deal, the Hawks got Anthony Morrow (who shoots 40% from 3) and they picked up Kyle Korver in free agency, who’s job is dedicated to his deadly 3-shooting ability. They also added Lou Williams and Devin Harris, which will put them in 5th because Derrick Rose won’t be back until March. The Knicks are another team who benefit from Derrick Rose’s injury. Their big offseason moves were adding Rasheed Wallace (who hasn’t played in 3 years) as well as the 38 year-old, injury prone Marcus Camby and the 39 year-old pass-master Jason Kidd coming off a career low 5.5 assists per game to back up Raymond Felton. The hobbled Bulls team will fall to 7th because the East became such a tough conference during the offseason, and because their other big stars (Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer) spend a lot of time on the injured list. The Sixers will scrape by for a playoff spot, because they don’t have enough talent behind the often-injured Andrew Bynum to compete with the rest of the Eastern conference. Of course this is going under the assumption that his injury for the start of the season will not be his only stint on the disabled list. With Bynum healthy for most of the season, I think they could potentially challenge the Hawks for the 5th spot. Look out for the Bucks as a sleeper to potentially knock off the Bulls or Sixers if injuries hit hard.October 31, 2012 at 3:40 pm #47766
I think that Boston does have to get deference here, for all that their core group of guys accomplished. They paced themselves last season with the lockout schedule, but should be better out of the gate this time around. I agree with Devin on Indiana: Darren Collison-Ian Mahinmi is a clear downgrade and now Granger is banged up.
The Nets have a shot at it too, as do the Knicks. I am awarding the spot to Boston by default.November 1, 2012 at 11:48 am #47888
It’s between BK,BOS,IND and mabye NY if Melo and Amare can figure out how to play together.
As Devin said Indiana got lucky with health and are already averaging back out (Granger is out and there is no timetable for his return) and while people continue to compare the Nets to the Hawks I think the Pacers are more apt to that comparison as while Hill is good he is a lot more like Hinrich and Teague than D-Will is. I think the Pacers are a little better than the Hawks were as they don’t really have a Marvin Williams in there starting 5(which is a big plus in my opinion).
Boston I think is overrated a little. While they have a embarresment of riches at the 2 guard they don’t really have a backup for Rondo. I am extremly doubtful that KG will play like he did in last years postseason at anytime this year. I think that he will be back to KG of the first half last years regular season, which no one seems to remember but it was pretty average. With all there 2 guards it is actully not a perfect situation as they have no one who is known for having the abillity to create for others and play backup for Rondo. Bradley is a great defender, Terry, Lee, and Barbosa are all scorers and while I think there is a possibillity Barbosa can play point well some nights i’m not sure how consistent he can be. If I was a celtics fan I would be fearful of Jeff Green because while in he was good in OKC he was never a real standout in his half season with the Celtics. Then there is the real danger alarm THIS IS HIS FIRST SEASON BACK FROM HEART SURGERY no matter how well that went and how safe the procedure is I have no idea how it could affect him. The Celtics are also pretty undersized as Bass and Sullinger are both undersized 4s and Garnett is undersized for a center. I think there only 7 footers are Milicic, Collins, and Melo who all have major flaws. Pierce is still a stud no denying that the only possible knock on him is his age and while I think he is a little bit overated Rondo is still an all-star. With all that said they are my preseason 2 seed but I am very skeptical of it and will change it if they start showing their age.
The Knicks are flawed as Melo and Amare just can’t seem to play together. Both Melo and Amare also can’t play defense at all and Amare dosen’t rebound and Melo is about average mabye a little over average rebounder for his position. They have pills berry dough boy Ray Felton at point and have another high volume shot taker/scorer in J.R Smith at the 2. Tyson Chandler is actully a perfect fit for the Knicks I will admit because he is a great defender and is the polar oppisite of a high volume scorer. I could go on but I really don’t want to at the moment. Bottom line I am extremly skeptical of the Knicks and most of that is not because I am a diehard Nets fan.
Not gonna go into the Nets because I am a Nets fan(although everybody on here should be).
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