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Official NBA 2017/18 Season Topic
Topic Started: Sep 27 2017, 04:09 PM (2,392 Views)
* Mitas
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It truly was a Shawshank redemption

Season's just around the corner, with pre-season beginning this weekend. This might be my favourite time of year. Lots of shake-ups in rosters (feels like more than usual) mean that there are a bunch of team who I'm looking forward to watching and seeing how they work in new additions (Rockets, Thunder, Cavs, Celtics, Timberwolves, Nuggets, Hornets). There's also the teams with young players ready to take the next step (namely 76ers and Bucks), as well as good teams who have lost a star (Clippers, Jazz), but still have good players that could fill that void. Then there's the teams that haven't changed too much, but should still be interesting to watch (Spurs, Grizzlies, Wizards, Raptors). Incoming rookies (Lakers & Lonzo, Mavericks and Dennis Smith). Oh, and possibly the greatest team of all time. Can't. Wait.

I'll do some predictions for standings just for fun:

East:

1. Cavaliers
2. Celtics
3. Wizards
4. Raptors
5. Bucks
6. Heat
7. Hornets
8. 76ers
9. Pistons
10. Pacers
11. Magic
12. Nets
13. Hawks
14. Knicks
15. Bulls

Both Cleveland and Boston have made a lot of changes, but I feel like Boston will have a bigger adjustment period, which should be enough to give the Cavs the 1 seed. Wizards, Raptors, Bucks, & Heat will all be close, but I like that order. I think Dwight is a good addition for the Hornets and should be enough to get them back in the Playoffs. Philly aren't that far removed from being terrible, but I mean, if they stay healthy (big if), who else is getting the 8th spot? Pistons will run them close, but everyone else sucks.

West:

1. Warriors
2. Rockets
3. Spurs
4. Thunder
5. Nuggets
6. Timberwolves
7. Grizzlies
8. Jazz
9. Clippers
10. Pelicans
11. Blazers
12. Lakers
13. Mavericks
14. Kings
15. Suns

Warriors are obviously a lock for the top spot. Spurs will probably get number 2 because they're the Spurs and they never seem to fall off, but I feel like they got worse and Houston got a lot better. OKC will be good come April, but I think the period of adjustment working George and Melo in (and reigning in Russ) is enough for the other three to place ahead of them. I like Denver a little better than Minnesota, but it's probably 50/50. The Grizzlies didn't get much worse or better, which should see them near enough the same record since the Clippers and Jazz have basically been replaced by Denver and Minny. The last spot comes down to Clips and Jazz for me, but I think Utah's defence will be enough to give them the nod over LA. It's tough leaving out Portland and New Orleans when they'd make the Playoffs in the East, but that's the West for you.
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"Then you've got the chance to do better next time."
"Next time?"
"Course. Doing better next time. That's what life is."
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Goddess Ultimecia
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Mine goes relatively the same, although my disagreements are entirely about the Western Conference.

I'm not sure if Chris Paul necessarily makes that large of an impact given the D'antoni system. Not implying Chris Paul isn't good, because good god he is. But Harden lead that squad to What was it? Like a third seed or something crazy like that? It's hard for me to imagine Chris Paul making *that* much of an improvement to it that they would rank higher than the Spurs.

Also, I'm going to say that the Pelicans atleast make the 8th Seed, during that last half stretch of the season after they signed Boogie, they were a top 10 defense. I think with this off-season, they likely will only get better, atleast enough to squeak in. Although that does mean that I'm putting the Jazz at 9th.

West:

1.) Warriors
2.) Spurs
3.) Rockets
4.) Thunder
5.) Nuggets
6.) Timberwolves
7.) Grizzlies
8.) Pelicans
9.) Jazz
10.) Clippers
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* Mitas
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It truly was a Shawshank redemption

I think the biggest thing that Paul brings is it means they can stagger minutes to keep one of Paul & Harden on the court as much as possible, maybe even the whole game. That gives them a guy who is elite at running the offense the entire game which will do wonders for their bench. I also really like their other additions. Tucker and Mbah a Moute are solid additions who can defend well and hit the three. I don't think there will be a massive difference between them and the Spurs, but I think there just enough in Houston's additions and San Antonio's stasis/arguable regression to give Houston the edge.

My problem with the Pelicans is that outside of Davis, Cousins, and Holiday, they're extremely thin on quality. I mean, their fourth best player is....Rondo? Who sucked last year outside of a handful of games. Again though, I feel like the 7-11 range will be relatively close and are all pretty interchangeable.
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"Then you've got the chance to do better next time."
"Next time?"
"Course. Doing better next time. That's what life is."
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* Mitas
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It truly was a Shawshank redemption

Did anybody watch the Boston/Cleveland game? That Hayward leg break was really bad. You could hear the snap on the audio and then got the close up of the leg at an awkward angle. Really feel awful for Hayward and the Celtics, I felt like they were gonna be pretty decent this year. Hopefully Hayward comes back 100%, like Paul George after his break.

A host of games tonight that I'm looking forward to. Wizards/Sixers, Denver/Utah. Kawhi and Hayward (obviously) are both out, but I'll also check out the Bucks/Celtics and Spurs/Minnesota games.
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"Then you've got the chance to do better next time."
"Next time?"
"Course. Doing better next time. That's what life is."
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Southern Gothic
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Dilly Dilly

That break was sickening. I've seen some bad ones in college games the last few years, but it's been a while since I've seen one like that in NBA. Hopefully the dude is okay. Saw today they are calling it a dislocation, which sounds better than a break but I don't know for sure.

Go Sixers tonight. Please Embiid stay healthy. Trust the process.
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* Mitas
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It truly was a Shawshank redemption

It was a dislocated ankle and a fractured tibia. But yeah, it was brutal. The atmosphere after in the arena after it happened had me feeling a little emotional myself. All the celebration and joy of the new season, crowd really into it, basketball is back and then the break out of nowhere. Sad stuff.
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"Then you've got the chance to do better next time."
"Next time?"
"Course. Doing better next time. That's what life is."
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Southern Gothic
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Dilly Dilly

Sixers did not finish out the game. They looked good though, as did Ben Simmons, who we waited over a year to see. Please no losing record this year.
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* Mitas
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It truly was a Shawshank redemption

Yeah, I watched that game. Philly looked good, hung with one of the better teams in the East. I think if Embiid stays relatively healthy i.e. nothing more than minor injuries, plays 55+ games, then they're a lock for the playoffs. On a related note, John Wall is so good. A beast in transition and such a fun player to watch.
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"Then you've got the chance to do better next time."
"Next time?"
"Course. Doing better next time. That's what life is."
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Southern Gothic
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Dilly Dilly

I got to watch John Wall play in person while he was at Kentucky. A real treat for the eyes.

Sixers have been playing well, but it's an 0-3 start for the season. They look good, and there's plenty of time to recover, I think the team just needs to close out games. Ben Simmons, who was hurt all of last year, is really taking the court for the first time so it will take a few weeks for him to gel. Embiid is my boy though, the injuries are unfortunately just part of taking him. Just have to hope he gets a healthy stretch in there somewhere.

edit: although just having a winning record this year will be a huge step in the right direction.
Edited by Southern Gothic, Oct 22 2017, 04:31 PM.
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Goddess Ultimecia
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A winning season in the East probably guarantees a playoff berth let's be fair lol.
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Southern Gothic
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Dilly Dilly

Lol, well it's been so long since the Sixers have even sniffed a winning season that I'm ignorant of how the rest of the division landscape plays out. Happy to hear it though. I'm just dying for any significant progress this year.
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Goddess Ultimecia
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Yeah, 2017 off-season will go down I think as the great migration of some sort. Pretty much every Eastern all-star shipped out to the west. Jimmy Butler, Paul Milsap, Paul George, Carmelo Anthony, and although he's not exactly an all-star, even Jeff Teague made a move to the West. What we're left with is basically Cleveland, and the Celtics. Gordon Hayward is out for the rest of the year after that terrifying break.

Playoff squad in Chicago got gutted, Pacers lost Paul George, Atlanta lost Milsap and Teague. Basically if you can even hover around .500 you'll probably make it to the playoffs. Hell you might be able to make it with 30 something wins.
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* Mitas
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It truly was a Shawshank redemption

I think hitting .500 would have to be seen as a great season by Philly. Even seeing them as more likely than not to get the 8 seed, health-permitting, I'd still put them down as a game or two under that.
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"Then you've got the chance to do better next time."
"Next time?"
"Course. Doing better next time. That's what life is."
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Southern Gothic
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Dilly Dilly

A thirty win season would be a landmark achievement considering the last five years. :p

Hey, if .500 gets us to the post-season, you won't get any complaints out of me. Next game is on Wednesday I think, so let's see them actually bag the first win of the year before even talking about the good stuff at the end of the road. As Mitas said, health is always an issue with some of these younger guys.
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Southern Gothic
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Dilly Dilly

Sixers grab their first win of the season over the Pistons last night. Also Ben Simmons first triple-double of his career while Embiid snagged thirty points. The road to .500 begins.
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