Okay, time for my updated NBA predictions...on some things, I was correct in my first NBA post, but on others, I was way off...here's the West, and the East...without further delay:
Okay, my Grizzlies prediction was WAY off, and I apologize to the citizens and playas from Memphis. Too bad they lost Stoudamire for the season though...this team is 21-10, and I put them just one slot ahead of the Blazers, who are the worst team in basketball. I've heard the Griz are trying to get Watson back - just don't make any rash moves...this is a good team and you don't want to trade away a crucial piece just to be competitive this year, then have a loglam at PG next season.
The Warriors are also much better than I could've predicted...Ike Diogu is playing well, and I've always been a closet Troy Murphy fan. And the rumors that they're in the Ron Artest sweepstakes could make this team even more dangerous. Since I'm a Pacers fan, I'm hoping the deal includes Diogu, Pietrus, or Murphy (O'Neal misses too many games and NEEDS a decent backup)...unfortunately, I'm hearing the name Dunleavy mentioned in the trade talks, and that guy is freakin' poor man's Austin Croshere. And that's being NICE to him.
But my biggest mistake - putting the lowly Houston Rockets in the #2 slot in the West. Oops! I guess I got caught up in all the hype. I thought this could be a breakout year for Yao, but his injury has slowed the team's development. Not only that, but they're in the toughest division in the West. In addition to SA, Dallas, and Memphis, New Orleans' Chris Paul and David West have that team overachieving to no end. And that makes me look foolish, as I picked them to be dead last in the West.
Onto the Eastern Conference:
My poor, poor Pacers. They make me sad sometimes. Ron Artest is not only the best on-the-ball defender in the game, but also creates a mismatch with whoever guards him. Guard him with a SF/SG? Get destroyed in the post with his bulging muscles. Guard him with a PF? Oh, he'll just take you off the dribble or knock down a 3. So you're forced to trade him...I'm hoping we get someone good. There's no way we can get equal value for him, and there are many positions we could upgrade at. Fortunately, with Harrison and Granger (our young guys) playing well, we really just need to fill that swingman spot, and maybe get some backup for O'Neal. But I've been really disappointed by these guys...I think Carlisle can turn it around though.
Also, while Indiana and Detroit are bitter enemies, I love the fact that Flip Saunders is succeeding in Detroit. The Pistons right now are playing better than anyone, I hope they don't fizzle against the Spurs in the Finals this year.
Anyway, I don't feel like analyzing the rest of the East, so let me just say - the Knicks will come back and play better, the Bucks look good, the Heat need to trade Walker, the Cavs will miss Larry Hughes and drop some games that they should win, and the Hawks should trade for a PG (and should've drafted Deron or Chris Paul instead of Marvin - hindsight is 20/20).