PDA

View Full Version : 2009-10 NBA Preview



garnett_21
10-13-2009, 03:39 PM
by Nathan Loewy, aka garnett_21

-----

The 2009-10 NBA season is quickly approaching. With one of the most active offseasons in recent memory, we will look back at some of the major transactions, and speculate what they will mean for the teams in this upcoming season.

This past offseason began after the Los Angeles Lakers won the NBA championship, following a remarkable season, in which they posted a 65-17 record, which was the best record in the western conference, and only second to the Cleveland Cavaliers, who tallied up 66 wins. This was the Lakers fifteenth championship in the teams history, and fourth championship of this decade.

One of the first moves of the offseason came on June 23rd, just days before the 2009 NBA draft. The move is one of, if not the greatest impacting move of the offseason. The San Antonio Spurs sent three players, including long-time Spur Bruce Bowen, to the Milwaukee Bucks for veteran star Richard Jefferson. By adding Jefferson, the Spurs add yet another great offensive threat to complement Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili.

Just one day later, another blockbuster trade was made, and the first and only trade involving a lottery draft pick. The Washington Wizards sent a package of three players, along with the fifth overall draft pick to the Minnesota Timberwolves, in exchange for guards Randy Foye and Mike Miller. The Timberwolves used this draft pick to select controversial guard Ricky Rubio. This transaction has yet to be determined whether it was a good move by the Timberwolves, because Rubio is not going to be in the NBA for at least two seasons, and he may never suit up for the Timberwolves, according to reports.

Draft day saw a bevy of trades, mostly late first round and second round draft picks traded for either cash or future draft selections. But, as is the case in most drafts, we saw some veteran players on the move. Firstly, the New York Knicks traded guard Quentin Richardson to the Memphis Grizzlies for center Darko Milicic. This is not a very notable move, but it would turn out to be later in the offseason. Later in the evening, the Golden State Warriors traded guard Jamal Crawford to the Atlanta Hawks for guards Acie Law and Speedy Claxton. Crawford has been labeled by some as a "locker room cancer", because of his negative attitude, so while the Hawks seemed to get a steal on this deal, it has yet to be seen how he will affect the Hawks locker room. Finally, the Orlando Magic traded guards Rafer Alston and Courtney Lee to the New Jersey Nets for guard Vince Carter. The Magic are clearly looking to improve after their finals loss to the Lakers, but alot of fans seemed to think that Carter will be a distraction to the team, and will prevent them from returning to the finals.

Following draft day, the Cleveland Cavaliers felt that they needed to improve as well, considering they had lost to the Magic in the eastern conference finals, and the Magic had already made an upgrade to their team. So, the Cavaliers traded center Ben Wallace and guard/forward Sasha Pavlovic, along with a draft pick and cash, to the Phoenix Suns for center Shaquille O'Neal. This move was basically a salary dump for the Suns, as they later released both Wallace and Pavlovic, and they have now signed with other teams. On the Cavs side, this move will allow the Cavs to match up more equally against the likes of Dwight Howard of the Magic. Cavs fans hope that this move will propel them to an NBA championship, because there is alot of uncertainty surrounding the future of the team, as superstar Lebron James will be a free agent next summer, and there is alot of speculation that he may not return if the Cavs cannot win a title this year.

Free agent negotiations began on July 1, although players were not permitted to sign any contracts until July 8. A few of the notable players to stay with their current teams were Jason Kidd signing a three year extension with the Mavericks, Mike Bibby signing a three year extension with the Hawks, Andrea Bargnani signing a five year extension with the Raptors, Steve Nash signing a two year extension with the Suns, Brandon Roy signing a multi-year extension with the Blazers, and after a near three month delay, David Lee and Nate Robinson both signed contracts with the Knicks. Notable players that signed with new teams include Ron Artest signing with the Lakers, Rasheed Wallace and Marquis Daniels signing with the Celtics, Trevor Ariza signing with the Rockets, Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva signing with the Pistons, and after a long wait, Allen Iverson with the Grizzlies.

In addition to all of the free agent signings, there were a number of trades made. While most of these were smaller transactions, involving draft picks and/or cash, there were also a few blockbuster, or near blockbuster deals. Topping the list of notable trades were Hedo Turkoglu going from the Magic to the Raptors and Shawn Marion going from the Raptors to the Mavericks as part of a four team trade, and Emeka Okafor going from the Bobcats to the Hornets in exchange for Tyson Chandler.

There was another group of deals that were made, and while they were not blockbusters, they were newsworthy. First, as stated earlier in this article, Quentin Richardson was traded from the New York Knicks to the Memphis Grizzlies for Darko Milicic on June 25. Just three short weeks later, Quentin was on the move again, this time to the Los Angeles Clippers in exchange for Zach Randolph. Only three days later, he was dealt again, this time to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for three players. Finally, only three-and-a-half weeks later, Quentin was on the move, yet again, to the Miami Heat in exchange for Mark Blount. In a matter of only 50 days, Quentin was a member of five different teams, and had been traded four times!

Over the summer, there were three notable suspensions handed down by the league office. Jason Richardson of the Phoenix Suns was suspended for the first two games of the season, without pay, for pleading guilty to driving under the influence. Then, JR Smith of the Denver Nuggets was suspended for the first seven games of the season, without pay, for pleading guilty to reckless driving. Lastly, and possibly the most notable suspension, Rashard Lewis of the Orlando Magic was suspended for the first ten games of the season for violating the league's anti-drug policy. Reports said that he had taken a supplement to help him heal an injury, and unbeknownst to him, that had a banned substance in it.

So what does all of this mean for the 2009-10 NBA season? I think that the main teams that were competing for the title last season will still be competing this season - that would be the Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics, Cleveland Cavaliers and Orlando Magic - but, there will also be a newcomer from last year's contenders, but definitely not a newcomer to contending - the San Antonio Spurs. All five of these teams have had significant acquisitions that will make any of them worthy of winning the 2009-10 NBA championship. But, the suspension of Rashard Lewis could be the downfall of the Magic - yes, they have added Vince Carter, but losing a player of Lewis' caliber for 1/8th of the season is not something to take lightly.

The second tier of teams, or the other playoff teams, who will most likely not contend for the championship, in the Western Conference will most likely be the Denver Nuggets, Dallas Mavericks, Portland Trail Blazers, New Orleans Hornets, Phoenix Suns, and my surprise pick, the Minnesota Timberwolves. In the Eastern Conference, we should see the Miami Heat, Washington Wizards, Chicago Bulls, Atlanta Hawks, and my surprise pick, the Charlotte Bobcats. That leaves the Houston Rockets, Memphis Grizzlies, Oklahoma City Thunder, Utah Jazz, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers, and Sacramento Kings in the west, and the New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks, Philadelphia 76ers, Toronto Raptors, Detroit Pistons, Indiana Pacers, and the Milwaukee Bucks in the east to be the lottery teams.

I believe the Los Angeles Lakers and the San Antonio Spurs will be in the Western Conference Finals, and the Boston Celtics and the Cleveland Cavaliers meeting in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Lakers will emerge victorious from the west, and the Celtics will be the champions in the east. In the NBA Finals, the Los Angeles Lakers will fall to the Boston Celtics in a very close seven game series, with the final game being decided by no more than 6 points. For the last of my predicitions, the most valuable player will be Chris Paul of the New Orleans Hornets, and the rookie of the year will be Johnny Flynn of the Minnesota Timberwolves.

So after all the moves of the 2009 offseason, this is what you can look forward to for the upcoming NBA season! How it will turn out is yet to be seen, but hopefully this will give you some insight on what is sure to be an exciting season.

jonnyweb
10-16-2009, 02:58 PM
very well written!

ISO NJ 30 G
10-18-2009, 08:29 PM
2009-10 NBA Preview

by Nathan Loewy aka garnett_21


The 2009-10 NBA season is quickly approaching. With one of the most active offseasons in recent memory, we will look back at some of the major transactions and speculate what they will mean for the teams in this upcoming season.

This past offseason began after the Los Angeles Lakers won the NBA championship, following a remarkable season in which they posted a 65-17 record. It was the best record in the Western Conference, and second only to the Cleveland Cavaliers, which tallied 66 wins. This was the Lakers’ 15th championship in the team history, and fourth championship of this decade.

One of the first moves of the offseason came on June 23rd, just days before the 2009 NBA draft. The move is one of the greatest, if not the greatest, impacting move of the offseason. The San Antonio Spurs sent three players, including longtime Spur Bruce Bowen, to the Milwaukee Bucks for veteran star Richard Jefferson. By adding Jefferson, the Spurs add yet another great offensive threat to complement Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili.

Just one day later, another blockbuster trade was made, the first and only trade this offseason involving a lottery draft pick. The Washington Wizards sent a package of three players, along with the fifth overall draft pick, to the Minnesota Timberwolves, in exchange for guards Randy Foye and Mike Miller. The Timberwolves used this draft pick to select controversial guard Ricky Rubio. It is yet to be determined whether this transaction was a good move by the Timberwolves, because Rubio is not going to be in the NBA for at least two seasons, and he may never suit up for the Timberwolves, according to reports.

Draft day saw a bevy of trades, mostly late first-round and second-round draft picks traded for either cash or future draft selections. But, as is the case in most drafts, we saw some veteran players on the move. Firstly, the New York Knicks traded guard Quentin Richardson to the Memphis Grizzlies for center Darko Milicic. This is not a very notable move on its own, but it would turn out to be later in the offseason. Later in the evening, the Golden State Warriors traded guard Jamal Crawford to the Atlanta Hawks for guards Acie Law IV and Speedy Claxton. Crawford has been labeled by some as a “locker room cancer,” because of his negative attitude. So while the Hawks seemed to get a steal on this deal, it is yet to be seen how he will affect the Hawks locker room. Finally, the Orlando Magic traded guards Rafer Alston and Courtney Lee to the New Jersey Nets for guard Vince Carter. The Magic are clearly looking to improve after their NBA Finals loss to the Lakers, but a lot of fans seem to think Carter will be a distraction to the team and will prevent them from returning to the finals.

Following draft day, the Cleveland Cavaliers felt they needed to improve as well, considering they had lost to the Magic in the Eastern Conference Finals and the Magic had already made an upgrade to their team. So, the Cavaliers traded center Ben Wallace and guard/forward Sasha Pavlovic, along with a draft pick and cash, to the Phoenix Suns for center Shaquille O'Neal. This move was basically a salary dump for the Suns, as they later released both Wallace and Pavlovic, and they have now signed with other teams. On the Cavs side, this move will allow them to match up more equally against the likes of Dwight Howard of the Magic. Cavs fans hope that this move will propel them to an NBA championship, because there is a lot of uncertainty surrounding the future of the team, as superstar Lebron James will be a free agent next summer. And there is a lot of speculation that he may not return if the Cavs cannot win a title this year.

Free agent negotiations began on July 1, although players were not permitted to sign any contracts until July 8. A few of the notable players to stay with their current teams were Jason Kidd signing a three-year extension with the Mavericks, Mike Bibby signing a three-year extension with the Hawks, Andrea Bargnani signing a five-year extension with the Raptors, Steve Nash signing a two-year extension with the Suns, Brandon Roy signing a multi-year extension with the Blazers, and after a near three-month delay, David Lee and Nate Robinson both signed contracts with the Knicks. Notable players that signed with new teams include Ron Artest signing with the Lakers, Rasheed Wallace and Marquis Daniels signing with the Celtics, Trevor Ariza signing with the Rockets, Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva signing with the Pistons, and after a long wait, Allen Iverson joining the Grizzlies.

In addition to all the free agent signings, there were a number of trades made around the same time. While most of these were smaller transactions, involving draft picks and/or cash, there were also a few blockbuster, or near-blockbuster, deals. Topping the list of notable trades: Hedo Turkoglu going from the Magic to the Raptors and Shawn Marion going from the Raptors to the Mavericks as part of a four team trade; and Emeka Okafor going from the Bobcats to the Hornets in exchange for Tyson Chandler.

There was another group of deals made, and while they were not blockbusters, they were newsworthy. First, as stated earlier, Quentin Richardson was traded from the New York Knicks to the Memphis Grizzlies for Darko Milicic on June 25. Just three short weeks later, Quentin was on the move again, this time to the Los Angeles Clippers for Zach Randolph. Only three days later, he was dealt again, this time to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for three players. Finally, only three-and-a-half weeks later, Quentin was on the move, yet again, to the Miami Heat in exchange for Mark Blount. In only 50 days, Quentin was a member of five different teams, and had been traded four times!

Over the summer, there were three notable suspensions handed down by the league office. Jason Richardson of the Phoenix Suns was suspended for the first two games of the season, without pay, for pleading guilty to driving under the influence. Then, JR Smith of the Denver Nuggets was suspended for the first seven games of the season, without pay, for pleading guilty to reckless driving. Lastly, and possibly the most notable suspension, Rashard Lewis of the Orlando Magic was suspended for the first ten games of the season for violating the league’s anti-drug policy. Reports said he had taken a supplement to help him heal an injury and, unbeknownst to him, contained a banned substance.

So what does all of this mean for the 2009-10 NBA season? I think the main teams that were competing for the title last season will still be competing this season – the Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics, Cleveland Cavaliers and Orlando Magic – but there will also be a newcomer from last year's contenders, but definitely not a newcomer to contending – the San Antonio Spurs. All five of these teams have had significant acquisitions that will make any of them worthy of winning the 2009-10 NBA championship. But the suspension of Rashard Lewis could be the downfall of the Magic. Yes, they added Vince Carter, but losing a player of Lewis’ caliber for 1/8th of the season is not something to take lightly.

The second tier of teams, the other playoff teams that will most likely not contend for the championship, in the Western Conference most likely will be the Denver Nuggets, Dallas Mavericks, Portland Trail Blazers, New Orleans Hornets, Phoenix Suns and, my surprise pick, the Minnesota Timberwolves. In the Eastern Conference, we should see the Miami Heat, Washington Wizards, Chicago Bulls, Atlanta Hawks and, my surprise pick, the Charlotte Bobcats. That leaves the Houston Rockets, Memphis Grizzlies, Oklahoma City Thunder, Utah Jazz, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers and Sacramento Kings in the West, and the New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks, Philadelphia 76ers, Toronto Raptors, Detroit Pistons, Indiana Pacers and the Milwaukee Bucks in the East to be the lottery teams.

I believe the Los Angeles Lakers and the San Antonio Spurs will be in the Western Conference Finals, and the Boston Celtics and the Cleveland Cavaliers will meet in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Lakers will emerge victorious from the West, and the Celtics will be the champions in the East. In the NBA Finals, the Los Angeles Lakers will fall to the Boston Celtics in a very close seven-game series, with the final game being decided by no more than six points. For the last of my predicitions, the Most Valuable Player will be Chris Paul of the New Orleans Hornets, and the Rookie of the Year will be Johnny Flynn of the Minnesota Timberwolves.

So after all the moves of the 2009 offseason, this is what you can look forward to for the upcoming NBA season! How it will turn out is yet to be seen, but hopefully this will give you some insight on what is sure to be an exciting season.

ISO NJ 30 G
10-18-2009, 08:37 PM
Articles link: http://www.sportscardforum.com/articles/2009/10/2009-10-nba-preview/
Digg: http://digg.com/basketball/2009_10_NBA_Preview_Sports_Card_Forum_Articles
Propeller: http://www.propeller.com/story/2009/10/18/2009-10-nba-preview-sports-card-forum-articles/
Buzz: http://buzz.yahoo.com/article/1:04336a8f0df176e64b208827a806c85d:9c22709666ae01a a4d1cb79356c1a2a8/2009-10-NBA-Preview?usc=1