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Thread: Playoffs 2014 - Who's in, Who's out?

  1. #1
    Raptors Republic Starter JordanMariam14's Avatar
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    Default Playoffs 2014 - Who's in, Who's out?

    Say we attempt to make the playoffs next year(which we are) who would be knocked out?

    Currently the 8 teams are:
    Heat
    Knicks
    Bulls
    Pacers
    Hawks
    Celtics
    Nets
    Bucks

    Next year the teams that will forsure make the playoffs -
    Heat
    Knicks
    Bulls
    Pacers
    Nets
    Celtics

    Doubting the C's a bit, but they're right there on the border.

    That leaves 2 spots left, with teams like

    Raptors
    Sixers
    Bucks
    Cavaliers
    Wizards

    fighting for the last spot.

    Who would advance? In reality I think it would be the Sixers, mainly because of Bynum UNLESS he doesn't resign(praying). Also the Raptors, because we are gonna be the bomb. I'm a bit scared on the Wizards tho, they've been looking nice, the Bucks not so much because Jennings might not return, and I know the Raptors/Sixers are better than them, especially our team next year.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
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    I can see the bucks sliding, depending on some off season moves with Brandon and Monta potentially slipping. Wizards looked real good towards the end of the season, and could make a real push with Beal and Wall healthy. A little biased but im hoping raps slip in based on a production offseason ourselves. Atlanta is also an interesting team because letting smith walk wil free up some significant cap space, allowing them to make some moves as well. Will be an interesting summer to say the least.

  3. #3
    Administrator Arsenalist's Avatar
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    Cavs, Raptors in. Celtics, Hawks out. Bucks are intriguing. My reasoning:

    The way I see it, Miami, New York, Indiana, Brooklyn and Chicago are locks to make the playoffs for the next few years. That leaves three spots for Atlanta, Boston, Milwaukee, Philadelphia, Detroit, Cleveland, and Washington. I’m pretending Orlando and Charlotte don’t exist, and rightfully so.

    Of this second tier of playoff contenders, I think Boston will go in a full-scale rebuild with Avery Bradley and Rondo as the core, so let’s kick them out. Let’s also presume that the Josh Smith and Jeff Teague leave, and Al Horford can’t carry the load on his own. That’s done with the Hawks. I’ll go ahead and say that the Wizards are still a couple years and few moves away from being a playoff team, of course this assumes John Wall doesn’t completely explode. In the ring still remain Milwaukee, Philadelphia, Detroit, Cleveland, and Toronto. I say Milwaukee stays ahead of the Raptors on account of a decent back-court, an improving front line, and overall experience. So now we got a battle for two playoff spots between Philly, Detroit, Cleveland, and Toronto.

    I’m contemplating Joe Dumars either wasting his cap space on over-rated free agents, or simply not being able to find anyone to play in Detroit, thus leaving the Pistons marginally better or the same. Now it’s down to two spots and three teams: Philly, Cleveland, and Toronto. I like the core of Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson, Dion Waiters, and Anderson Varejao. They’re going to add someone in the draft this year and Irving will continue to significantly improve. I think they’re better than the Raptors so give them one playoff spot. It’s now a showdown between Philly and Toronto, and I think the Raptors are the better team. Jrue Holiday is a nice piece, but overall, the Raptors have better talent and should’ve finished ahead of Philly this year. They didn’t and will next year. There’s your playoff team.

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    Super Moderator CalgaryRapsFan's Avatar
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    I think Toronto should be very competitive for the playoffs next season, even without making any major moves this offseason. However, it's far too early to properly forecast the 2013-2014 standings. A lot of teams have major question marks surrounding them and until the various dominos fall this offseason, we have no idea what teams like Boston, Atlanta, Milwaukee and Philly (at least) will look like come the start of next season.

  5. #5
    Raptors Republic Superstar Rapstor4Life's Avatar
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    imo Raps, Wizards in Hawks Bucks out. Celtics are too proud to flounder the entire season with Doc leading them to not make the playoffs... Sullinger, Green and a healthy Rondo is a good nucleus. If Celtics dont make the playoffs its a move for the stellar 2014 draft not like rondo will be back right away.

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    Raptors Republic All-Star Letter N's Avatar
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    Is it fucked that I want the Raps to not make it if Colangelo is back?

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    Raptors Republic All-Star Axel's Avatar
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    Heat, Bulls, Pacers - stay at the top. Nothing major is happening here except that D Rose returns.

    Knicks will drop a bit. They overachieved to start this season and half of their roster is close to or over 40, they will lose some games based on depth, but will still compete thanks to Melo, Chandler & Smith.

    Celtics will be a year older, but with a healthy Rondo all bets are off. I think the C's still make the playoffs.

    Hawks have big questions about who is back and who is gone. My guess is even if they lose Josh Smith, they bring in a capable replacement (I think they'll sign Al Jefferson and slide Horford to the PF slot).

    Nets are flawed but will spend the money to bring enough talent in.

    Bucks could have a completely different team next year. My guess is both Ellis and Jennings remain, but they will slip. Ellis and Jennings are both in contract years, which means they will decline while Ilyasova will be the consistent hero of the team that gets dragged down by their poor PG play.

    Sixers played without Bynum all season long. If Bynum re-signs (I expect he will), and he stays healthy (I expect he wont) then they are a play-off team. When Bynum missing half the season, they miss the playoffs.

    Cavs are flirting with Phil Jackson and Mike Brown for a reason. They are close. Irving is the real deal. Varajao is the ideal big for them on a great value contract. Young pieces like Waiters and Thompson should improve. If they can get a good forward or post scorer, they should make the play-offs.

    Wizards improved immensely on defence. If John Wall and Bradley Beal can stay healthy, I could see them making the top 8.

    Pistons have a nice young front court pairing of Drummond and Monroe. They need a guard to play beside Brandon Knight but could make a play for the 8th seed.

    Magic made some nice strides and have some decent young pieces in Tobias Harris, Nikola Vucevic. If they draft a solid guard (Trey Burke), I could see them competing next year but likely landing in the 10th spot.

    Bobcats will never compete.

    Which leaves our beloved Raptors. They have some pieces but need quite a bit. If they can recapture the defence from last season, move Bargnani for something useful, and find some consistency from Lowry, then they should make the playoffs.

    So where does that leave us?
    Heat
    Bulls
    Pacers
    Knicks
    Hawks
    Nets
    Celtics
    Raptors
    ~~
    Cavs
    Wizards
    Bucks
    Magic
    Pistons
    Sixers
    Bobcats
    F*ck Brooklyn

  8. #8
    Raptors Republic All-Star Fully's Avatar
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    Locks barring injuries:

    Miami
    Indiana
    Brooklyn
    New York
    Chicago


    I think Atlanta could really go either way. They'll have cap space this summer to re-sign Smith AND add another impact piece if they can find someone to commit. However there's also a decent chance that Smith bolts for another city and they take a significant step backwards.

    Boston is far from a lock for me. This could be the summer when Ainge finally pulls the trigger and moves KG/Pierce to a contender to kick start the rebuild around Rondo. I would also not be shocked if either one of them retired, especially KG. Even if he keeps them together, I don't think you can automatically pencil them in to the postseason like in previous years. They keep regressing each season and eventually they'll fall off the cliff altogether.

    Milwaukee is in a similar boat as the Hawks. Reddick/Jennings/Ellis are all due new contracts. 2 of them could return, maybe just 1... and there's a chance that all three have new teams come next Fall. All in all if I had to pick one team from this year's crop of playoff squads to drop out, it would be the Bucks.

    Philadelphia will depend on Bynum. If he's healthy and re-signs then I think they're a playoff team. There's talk of them going after Mike Brown too, who happened to be Bynum's coach during his far-and-away best season in LA. I suppose that even without Bynum they could be considered a potential playoff team as a lot of their young core is still trending upward and they weren't far from the 8th spot this season.

    Wizards have an awesome young backcourt but the rest of their core gets a "meh" from me. Ariza/Nene/Okafor all have their best days behind them. They do have a chance to add a top five pick this summer though, and will have a TON of cap room in the summer of 2014. I'd say they're still another year away.

    Detroit is a really intriguing team for me. Tons of young talent - Knight, Drummond, Munroe, Singler, this year's pick - and roughly $30 million in cap room this summer if they amnesty Charlie V. If Dumars finds the right couple of pieces (and not Ben Gordon & the aforementioned Charlie Villanueva like he did 3 seasons ago) to put around his young core, I think their chances of making the playoffs are on par with Toronto.

    Cleveland is still a year away. I wouldn't be surprised if they moved Varajeo around the draft for picks/prospects, which would cause them to take a step back in the short term but should bode well for the summer of 2014 when Waiters/Thompson/Irving/this year's pick will be rounding into form and they'll have a bunch of money to throw around in free agency.

    Charlotte and Orlando: I don't think we will hear from them for at least a couple of seasons.

  9. #9
    Raptors Republic Hall of Famer mcHAPPY's Avatar
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    Quote Letter N wrote: View Post
    Is it fucked that I want the Raps to not make it if Colangelo is back?
    Kind of.

    That Liston article has me softening a bit.... although I am fighting it.

    What happens if:

    a) Gay plays to the best of his abilities ie. he is an all star,
    b) what happens if DD and Gay feed off one another as they did down the stretch,
    c) what happens if JV is half as good as the expectations placed upon him,
    d) what happens if Lowry plays the way we all thought,
    e) what happens if Casey returns to defensive form,
    f) what happens if Fields can shoot again,
    g) what happens if he can get anything of value for Bargnani?


    Lots of ifs but (and another one coming) if the Raptors make the playoffs - and if all the above happened -and they went to the 2nd round *gasp* or farther *gasp*gasp* do you still crucify him for the previous 7 years or does he get credit for finally putting the pieces of a winner together?


    Don't kill the messenger! Just asking to get other perspectives.
    "Championships are what we live for, now lets go win them."
    Tim Leiweke

    Basketball has clear winners every night --
    except at the draft, which is all homework, politics and chance.

  10. #10
    Raptors Republic Starter
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    Quote Matt52 wrote: View Post
    Kind of.

    That Liston article has me softening a bit.... although I am fighting it.

    What happens if:

    a) Gay plays to the best of his abilities ie. he is an all star,
    b) what happens if DD and Gay feed off one another as they did down the stretch,
    c) what happens if JV is half as good as the expectations placed upon him,
    d) what happens if Lowry plays the way we all thought,
    e) what happens if Casey returns to defensive form,
    f) what happens if Fields can shoot again,
    g) what happens if he can get anything of value for Bargnani?


    Lots of ifs but (and another one coming) if the Raptors make the playoffs - and if all the above happened -and they went to the 2nd round *gasp* or farther *gasp*gasp* do you still crucify him for the previous 7 years or does he get credit for finally putting the pieces of a winner together?


    Don't kill the messenger! Just asking to get other perspectives.
    No GM is perfect, you can always criticize past transactions. Everyone wanted Danny Ainge's head on a platter not too long ago for wasting Paul Pierce's prime with a shot-chucking Antoine Walker and... not much else. After the Ray Allen trade, Boston was up in arms with pitchforks and fire. Then he did the KG trade and everyone praised him as a genius. Rondo blossomed into one of the best PGs in the league and he became a visionary. Does his championship undo his blunders from 2003-2007*?

    *Some draft-blunders by Danny Ainge: http://greenstreet.weei.com/sports/b...nny-ainge-era/

  11. #11
    Super Moderator CalgaryRapsFan's Avatar
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    Quote Matt52 wrote: View Post
    Kind of.

    That Liston article has me softening a bit.... although I am fighting it.

    What happens if:

    a) Gay plays to the best of his abilities ie. he is an all star,
    b) what happens if DD and Gay feed off one another as they did down the stretch,
    c) what happens if JV is half as good as the expectations placed upon him,
    d) what happens if Lowry plays the way we all thought,
    e) what happens if Casey returns to defensive form,
    f) what happens if Fields can shoot again,
    g) what happens if he can get anything of value for Bargnani?


    Lots of ifs but (and another one coming) if the Raptors make the playoffs - and if all the above happened -and they went to the 2nd round *gasp* or farther *gasp*gasp* do you still crucify him for the previous 7 years or does he get credit for finally putting the pieces of a winner together?


    Don't kill the messenger! Just asking to get other perspectives.
    h) what happens if Ross gets significant playing time and is half as good as the expectations placed upon him


    Although far from perfect, the Raptors do have a very young core that is both talented and full of potential... the key is realizing that individual potential, playing together as a team (ie: goodbye AA & JL), being more efficient offensively, returning to form defensively and minimizing bonehead mistakes.

    Position - Player (age on Nov.1/13 - start of next season)
    1. C - Valanciunas (21)
    2. PF - Johnson (26)
    3. SF - Gay (27)
    4. SG - DeRozan (24)
    5. PG - Lowry (27)
    6. SF - Fields (25)
    7. SG - Ross (22)
    7 players average age: 24.6

    Assuming Gray sticks around by picking up his player option, even he'll only be 28 at the start of next season. Acy isn't really a 'core' player, since he's a 3rd string / 5th big type, but he'll be just 23. For those 9 players, the average age is 24.8.

    That just cries out for some veteran leadership, in the form of another PF (starter or backup), backup PG and 5th wing.
    Last edited by CalgaryRapsFan; Tue Apr 23rd, 2013 at 01:49 PM.

  12. #12
    Raptors Republic All-Star Primer's Avatar
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    Locks:
    Heat
    Bulls
    Pacers
    Knicks

    Likely:
    Nets

    Too many ????:
    Hawks
    Celtics
    Bucks

    No fucking chance in hell Phil Jackson goes to coach Cleveland. Mike Brown sounds about right, and I think he's a terrible coach so I hope he ends up there (or coaching someone in the East, the guys whole rep is built on having Lebron win games for him).

    I expect the Hawks to land a big FA or two and actually get better. They're gonna go hard after Howard, and then focus on Al Jefferson and Monta Ellis (they could sign both) if they don't get Howard. They could also resign Josh Smith, or get something for him in a S&T. They will also likely bring back Korver on a cheap deal, so they'll Have Horford, Lou Williams, John Jenkins, and a resigned Teague and Korver. That's already a playoff team. Add in Jefferson and Ellis and they are a contender. Basically, way too early to tell with ATL. They also have 2 first round draft picks so they are poised to make huge moves.

    Celtics are a lock if KG and Pierce come back and Rondo isn't dealt. Those are all huge if's (maybe not the Rondo part).If they get bounced in the first round I could easily see KG calling it a day and retiring. The guy has nothing left to prove and he knows that team can't win it all again. His desire (and $9M) may bring him back another year though.

    I personally don't think the Wiz, Cavs, or Pistons getting better than the Raps this offseason.
    The Wizards bench is fucking abysmal, and so is the entire team outside of Wall, Beal, and Nene (and to a lesser extent Okafor). The Wiz went 2-7 in April, supposedly when all the other teams weren't playing to win anymore (thats how we discount all the Raps April wins right?), including a nice 6 game losing streak to close the season (I know they had injuries but Wall was playing 35+ mins a game). Not sure if anyone's noticed but Nene hasn't played anywhere close to a full season the past 2 years, and I expect that trend to continue. Wall and Beal will be fantasy studs but the team will be in the standings cellar.

    Detroit just sucks. You can only say they have a great front court so many times before you have to look at their win loss record, which is abysmal. They're a shitty team with some decent big men, which doesn't get you into the playoffs.

    The Bucks will be our main competition, but only if they can bring back both Ellis and Jennings. I expect them to lose one of those guys so thats where the Raps slide in.

    My super early predicition:
    Heat
    Bulls
    Pacers
    Knicks
    Hawks
    Nets
    Raps
    Bucks/Celtics (depends on who brings their players back)

  13. #13
    Raptors Republic All-Star Fully's Avatar
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    Quote Matt52 wrote: View Post
    Kind of.

    That Liston article has me softening a bit.... although I am fighting it.

    What happens if:

    a) Gay plays to the best of his abilities ie. he is an all star,
    b) what happens if DD and Gay feed off one another as they did down the stretch,
    c) what happens if JV is half as good as the expectations placed upon him,
    d) what happens if Lowry plays the way we all thought,
    e) what happens if Casey returns to defensive form,
    f) what happens if Fields can shoot again,
    g) what happens if he can get anything of value for Bargnani?


    Lots of ifs but (and another one coming) if the Raptors make the playoffs - and if all the above happened -and they went to the 2nd round *gasp* or farther *gasp*gasp* do you still crucify him for the previous 7 years or does he get credit for finally putting the pieces of a winner together?
    .
    I think you identified the problem quite nicely actually. If all the stars align for the Raptors over the next 12 months then they're likely a 7-8 seed in an overall lousy Eastern Conference. When the end result of a 5-year playoff drought/rebuild is that you need EVERYTHING to go your way just to sneak into a playoff spot... well, you've probably gone wrong.

    Throw in the fact that this is a luxury tax team right now and it becomes difficult to see how the team gets over that next hump (or into the playoffs at all if they fall short again next year).

    BC has now set himself up over the past week - and rather shrewdly I must admit - where squeaking into the playoffs next season will be celebrated as a major accomplishment. It's not. He really does just keep lowering the bar of expectations until they get to the level of his results.
    Last edited by Fully; Tue Apr 23rd, 2013 at 02:12 PM.

  14. #14
    Raptors Republic Hall of Famer mcHAPPY's Avatar
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    Quote Fully wrote: View Post
    I think you identified the problem quite nicely actually. If all the stars align for the Raptors over the next 12 months then they're likely a 7-8 seed in an overall lousy Eastern Conference. When the end result of a 5-year playoff drought/rebuild is that you need EVERYTHING to go your way just to sneak into a playoff spot... well, you've probably gone wrong.

    Throw in the fact that this is a luxury tax team right now and it becomes difficult to see how the team gets over that next hump (or into the playoffs at all if they fall short again next year).

    BC has now set himself up over the past week - and rather shrewdly I must admit - where squeaking into the playoffs next season will be celebrated as a major accomplishment. It's not. He really does just keep lowering the bar of expectations until they get to the level of his results.
    I disagree on that.

    If all the stars align the Raptors ceiling is much higher, in my opinion.

    It is probably a moot point because I can't see all the stars aligning to begin with.
    "Championships are what we live for, now lets go win them."
    Tim Leiweke

    Basketball has clear winners every night --
    except at the draft, which is all homework, politics and chance.

  15. #15
    Raptors Republic All-Star Letter N's Avatar
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    Yes, if all the stars align and the Raps become the 4th or 5th seed, win a round and not embarrass themselves in the 2nd round then yes, I'll admit that for all his individual failings he was able to make it all work in the end.

    If all that happens then I can just sit back and pray we don't trade our draft picks for money and give away Ross to make room for Marcus Banks.

  16. #16
    Raptors Republic All-Star ebrian's Avatar
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    Quote Matt52 wrote: View Post
    I disagree on that.

    If all the stars align the Raptors ceiling is much higher, in my opinion.

    It is probably a moot point because I can't see all the stars aligning to begin with.
    I'm with Fully on this. Mind you this is based on where I think Rudy Gay can be, not in the realm of magical wonderland where Rudy Gay played out of his mind and became better than LeBron James. In this realm, on this earth, if the stars aligned and every player on this roster played to the best of his capability, based on scouting reports and what we've seen so far in their respective careers -- if they played that well and never got hurt -- I think we're a 7th seed.

    Which, I suppose, gives you a neat picture of where I think they'll place next year because stars don't align themselves in the real world.
    your pal,
    ebrian

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    Raptors Republic Hall of Famer mcHAPPY's Avatar
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    Quote ebrian wrote: View Post
    I'm with Fully on this. Mind you this is based on where I think Rudy Gay can be, not in the realm of magical wonderland where Rudy Gay played out of his mind and became better than LeBron James. In this realm, on this earth, if the stars aligned and every player on this roster played to the best of his capability, based on scouting reports and what we've seen so far in their respective careers -- if they played that well and never got hurt -- I think we're a 7th seed.

    Which, I suppose, gives you a neat picture of where I think they'll place next year because stars don't align themselves in the real world.
    Fair enough.

    But in my world where all the stars align you have 2 near all-stars starting in your back court, an all-star at SF, an all-star at C, a JR Smith-esque Ross off the bench, krazy glue in Amir and Fields (who can now shoot 3's again), a GOOD veteran back up PG, and another PF who contributes.

    My stars aligning probably needs another galaxy to actually happen but we are talking about guys coming near maxing out their potential.... or at least I am.
    "Championships are what we live for, now lets go win them."
    Tim Leiweke

    Basketball has clear winners every night --
    except at the draft, which is all homework, politics and chance.

  19. #18
    Raptors Republic Superstar planetmars's Avatar
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    This team is essentially the Indiana Pacers without mental toughness. They need a David West type Veteran and a nutso like Psycho T off the bench.

    If they had that, and everyone played as close to their maximum capabilities then I could see the Raptors becoming a 5th/6th seed.. however I am treading carefully going into next season so will be expecting a 9th place finish.

  20. #19
    Raptors Republic All-Star
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    How Christopher Bosh, awkward above average NBA forward, saved the world and brought a championship to Miami:

    http://deadspin.com/this-chris-bosh-...rugs-478109116

  21. #20
    Raptors Republic All-Star slaw's Avatar
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    Barring catastophic injuries, the top five: Heat, Knicks, Pacers, Nets and Bulls are locks. Atlanta is a curious case but the Hawks have a bunch of assets and a veteran GM who seems to have learned some lessons from past failures. Who knows with the Celts but, assuming KG is back and Rondo is healthy, I see them getting in.

    It's going to be tough for the Raps. Cleveland should be improved with Irving in his third year. Washington played pretty good ball once healthy and I think they could be a sleeper next year. Philly is a different team if Bynum is back. The only hope I see is JV making a big step in year 2 and showing he's going to be an elite centre. If that happens, I can see them squeaking in. Barring that, I don't see it. Derozan, Lowry and Gay have plateaued as players. I'd be shocked if their numbers moved much next year. Amir is about as good as can be expected. There isn't anything else worth mentioning. Without capspace or any quality trade chips (unless you're moving key guys) I just don't feel very confident with this roster heading into next year.

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