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Thread: The Way Early Pre Season Predictions Thread... who finishes where in the Eastern Conference

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    Default The Way Early Pre Season Predictions Thread... who finishes where in the Eastern Conference

    It’s August… It’s pretty quiet on the western front let alone any front in the NBA at this time of the year. The RR podcasts and articles are starved for content so its likely time to launch the way to early pre season rankings. The order in which the teams appear are my predicted order of finish. As always the slings and arrows of commentary are welcomed.

    Top Tier and the Team(s) to beat.
    The Lebrons. They are still the big dog in the east. As long as LBJ’s name gets put into the starting 5 the road to the ECF runs through Cleveland. Curious they haven’t signed JR Smith and he is gorilla glue on the wing for them. Maybe he buys a shirt with that playoff money and signs in August… still they should post up 58 to 61 wins.

    Next Tier and the Teams that could challenge
    Your Toronto Raptors. Losing Biz will hurt but it’s not call the family to the hospital hurt. More like get out the mercurochrome and grit your teeth a bit. Improvement from Joseph, Powell and JV along with PPat and Sullinger in contract years and a theoretically healthy Carroll will keep the Raps one rung below the Lebrons. 52 to 56 wins.

    The Herd ….and it’s a big Herd.
    The Pacers… Larry Legend dumped his 1st round pick to the Nets for Thad Young and in a three way swap moved out the very solid but slow defensive PG George Hill for the whippet quick Jeff Teague. Larry wants to push the pace and seems to be very willing to live with semi shitty defense of Teague in order to speed up his offense. Paul George is really really good and Young is pant loads better than Solo Hill. Myles Davis Tuner gets a mentor in Big Al Jefferson and the Pacers move from 7 seed to 3th. 46 to 48 wins.

    The Celts… Last I checked you didn’t win anything for having a good farm system or lots n lots of what media guys think are good piece parts. Since Ainge hasn’t been able to trade any of them for anything of significance the GMs of the league don’t share the Medias perspective. Yet the amount of ink and terabytes spent on the theoretically asset laden but yet to win jackshit Celtics might lead you to believe there was some type of trophy for being potentially good. There isn’t. The Celts won 48 games last year. They lost their starting SG and PF but added a replacement all star in 30 year old Al Horford. They sport a very good Isaiah Thomas at PG but they still have a lot of really young unproven guys up and down the roster. Colour me skeptical on this years version of last years Heat. Celts win between 46 and 47 games.

    The Pistons. The men from Motown have a rebounding and putback machine in Andre Drummond at the 5. He still can’t shoot foul shots and will likely wind up sitting at the end of games again but when he is in he is a pantload to handle. They have a soon to be ready for primetime SG in Caldwell-Pope and they get a years worth of Tobias Harris at SF. Reggie Bullock can use a little Ritalin from time to time but he is a PG that is above the median in the east. Stanley Johnson who doesn’t get the ink that Winslow does will likely pass Winslow in production this year for 2nd year guys. The Pistons are getting better. Move up from 8th to 6th and win between 45 and 47 games this year.

    The Hawks… Coach Bud is probably going to change the way the Hawks play as he now has an under the basket centre in Dwight instead of a stretch 5 with Horford. Millsap is in a contract year and is the consummate plug n play pro. Schroeder gets the keys to the offense and will be backed up by.. gasp … Jarret Jack. That’s got to be a bit of a worry. On the wing the Hawks have Kent Bazemore and Kyle Korver but after that they are pretty thin with an assortment of rooks and 2nd year guys. Tim Hardaway Jr. , Taureen Prince and DeAndre Bembrey . Hawks win between 44 and 45 this year.

    The Hornets…. For an offensively challenged team the Buzz remain that way again this year. With the departures of Big Al and Jeremy Lin the Hornets are going to need a lot from Kemba Walker on a nightly basis. Nic Batum will be a steady performer and the Hornets are confident that after a dozen years Marvin Williams finally has hit his stride and will repeat last years performance. They will get a full season of Kidd- Gilchrist which they can really use. Still.. its going to be tough for the Hornets to win more than 43- 44 games this year.

    The Tallest Midgets… fighting for the 8th sport and the right to get killed in the 1st round.

    The Wizards. It’s the best backcourt in the East. Just ask them. Yes sir we are great, the best.. is anybody still listening to us ? Beal will look to finish a year without getting hurt and Wall will have to hold it together if he doesn’t and odds are he doesn’t. Gortat is a very solid 5 and they get a full year of Markieff Jailbird Morris. Oubre will come along some in his second year and still not sure what Otto Porter is going to be. They barely edge out the Bucks for the 8th spot with 41 or 42 wins.

    The Bucks… The Bucks could catch the Whiz but the Bucks still sport the worst backcourt in the east that’s not Philly. They are pretty good everywhere else. Khris Middleton can light it up from the wing and Antetokounmpo will provide matchup problems where ever he lines up with his combination of size and motor skills. Will this be the year Jabari Parker shows why he was the 2nd overall pick ? Will Greg Monroe find a way to fit in better than last year or be on the block in February. Lots of questions and if some get answered in the affirmative the Bucks could nudge out the Wizards. Bucks get to 500 with 41 wins.

    The Knicks… Carmello is watching the clock tick down on a career in which he really doesn’t have much to show for save for a vault full of money. He is paired with a Derrick Rose who needs the ball as much as he does and is clearly on the downside of a once brilliant career. They are joined by Joakim Noah who wants to show the Chicago front office up so bad he can taste it. Trouble is they are on repaired knees. Ok for beer league not so much for an 82 game NBA season. The Zinger will continue to amaze but there is no core of players who are growing with him. There is no bench. Sasha Vujacic still plays for the Knicks. Uggh. They are going to start well but the odds are very good one of Rose / Melo / Noah gets hurt for an extended period of time and the Knicks miss the playoffs which they are gunning for yet again. 40 or 41 wins.

    The Bulls… Its retro year in both Chi-town and the Big Apple. Teams built for a decade ago. Wade and Rondo are more myth than reality now and neither can shoot. Who gets the ball when they are both on the court? Dragic never saw it when Wade was in Miami so why will Rondo in Chicago and Rondo isn’t the player that Dragic is. Its just a tough fit all around. Gasol is gone and so is Noah. Gibby and the wrong Lopez are the lone dependable bigs up front. Mirotic and Butler and McBuckets will play the wing. Portis will continue to learn on the job. Going to be a tough year in the Windy City. Bulls win maybe 38 games.

    The Heat… It all depends on Chris Bosh and whose lawyers accept the most risk. If Bosh is cleared to play and can indeed play all year and pairs up with Dragic and Whiteside the Heat move from this tier to the herd .. if he doesn’t play then the Heat finish with maybe 34 to 36 wins and get a lottery pick to go along with more cap space than Fort Knox for Pat Reilly to reload in 2017-18.

    The Orlando Magic. Exactly WtF are the Magic doing ? They have traded away solid young talent in Tobias Harris and Victor Olidipo and the rights to Domantas Sabonis in the last 8 months and have Serge Ibaka for a year to show for it. Ibaka is good but can they keep him ? They look really deep at the 5 with Vukevic and Biz and have a development project in Stephen Zimmerman but that’s a lot of money they have tied up in a position that doesn’t have the weight it once held with the advent of small ball. They are young or inexperienced (you pick) at SF with Hezonga and Gordon. Fournier is a very decent SG and they have a jury still out PG in Payton. The eclectic Magicians remain that way again. Lots of pieces that will take some time to grow into something. Thinking 34 to 36 wins.

    Rio de Janeiro Water grouping… Lots of Raw Sewage and Garbage.

    The Sixers…. They have a potentially really good front court with Embiid / Noel / Saric / Okafor and this years saviour Ben Simmons. Simmons will be good but he is a raw rook and summer league aside rooks don’t usually don’t put a team on their backs and make material improvements . Especially in Philly when they have no backcourt. They start TJ McConnell as their starting PG fer Christ sake. Who is going to get the ball to the guys up front ? BC is going to have to fix that sooner than not. This could be a make or break year for Nik Stauskas at SG. Still this version of the now Hinke-less Sixers should be able to beat their 10 wins from last year well before new years eve…. but I don’t think they crack the 30 win mark for the year. Philly wins between 24 and 28 games.

    The Nyets… Fans of the New Jersey Brooklyn Nets must wish Billy King gets buried beside Jimmy Hoffa in the New Jersey Meadowlands swamp. Sean Marks has his work cut out for him. He has the right Lopez but not much else. Luis Scola joins Jeremy Lin and Grevis Vasquez as FA signings to go along with the rookie out of Michigan with the twice surgically repaired feet Caris Levert and second year man Rondae Holllis Jefferson. The Nets look to be the guys sweeping up behind the elephants once the parade is over. 20 to 24 wins. Vaya Con Dios boys.
    Last edited by Demographic Shift; Tue Aug 2nd, 2016 at 11:23 PM.

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    Interesting classifications you have. I agree with everything your saying as far as which teams will be in each class. Even though the cav's are favorite for first someone from the heard is going to be within 5 games or lower the lebron's because pushing himself for the highest possible win total is just not in there leaders makeup. Playoff success is. Each member has question mark's I believe the raptors will compensate for biz's loss through internal growth but in doing so they cannot afford to loss JV or DC for the amount of time they did last year.
    As far as boston does Al Horford really move the needle? He has always been part of a strong cast of very good but not elite players in milshap,teague,milsap and korver and DC in the past. Boston still needs to move assets such as picks or youngsters now on the roster for another player of least Al's quality.

    As far as the Pacers unless injured we all no how valuable paul George is. Ellis though is clearly regressing. The Pacers are banking that a change of scenery will get Teague back to his former level. That may be a good bet as I believe this can happen because he is not breaking down physically and I think he had some issues with the hawk's organization. Picking up Al Jefferson puzzles me since they want to play fast. Myle's Turner has a very high potential.
    Last edited by rightsideup; Wed Aug 3rd, 2016 at 12:25 AM.

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    Im usually the one that starts this thread

    1. Raptors (61-21)
    2. Cavaliers (59-23)
    3. Celtics (54-28)
    4. Pacers (51-31)
    5. Hawks (47-35)
    6. Pistons (45-37)
    7. Hornets (42-40)
    8. Knicks (41-41)
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    1. Cavaliers- A team coming off a ring with no real roster changes, but who really knows what will happen with Lue coaching full time & with injuries?

    2. Raptors- Got better in the frontcourt but lack a true backup SF (Expect Norman Powell & Ross to battle for minutes there), have an ability to go small in various ways (CoJo, Powell, Carroll, etc.), best backcourt not named either Curry/Thompson or Lillard/McCollum. If Valanciunas sees the ball more and either Sullinger, Poeltl or Patterson prove to be a capable starting PF in this league, expect the Raptors to win 60 & possible another ECF appearance.

    3. Pacers- Not sure how Teague & Ellis work together, but George, Young & Jefferson are a great frontcourt that will battle & drive Indy to a 3rd seed but a 1st round exit.

    4. Boston- Crowder will get serious contention for either MIP or DPOTY this year, Horford gives them a nice All-star to pair with Thomas & the bench keeps getting stronger. Watch out for them come playoffs.

    5. Pistons- Young team that finally has a starting 5 & a stronger bench to boot. If Jon Leuer can luck himself into minutes, he may be a contender for Sixth Man ala Ryan Anderson. The big puzzle piece is Reggie Jackson and whether or not he can play consistant, along with Drummonds FT's.

    6. Hawks- Lost a vet big, added a vet big, got better at SF via the draft but still no-one to play SG outside of Korver. Korver tends to have hot & cold years.... for all we know, Killer may slay his way into another ASG. But Bud kniows this team is all about the retool right now.

    7. Hornets- Lost depth & gave a bunch of money to a guy who had a career year. YAY! If MKG comes back and plays well with Kemba & Batum, they will contend.

    8. Bucks- This a team that's young, but we all saw how well Giannis at PG worked for them. A full year of him there plus off-season training will only make them stronger. Hopefully Greg Monroe figures it out or we might see John henson kick some ass this year.

    Well, that's my 8.
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    love the tiering lol Safe to say, Cavs are #1 and Philly & BKN are battling in the toilet bowl. Everything else in-between could be a crap-shoot..I think the Heat & Hornets regress while the Bulls & Knicks do just enough to compete for the last 2 playoff spots...

    1. Cleveland Cavaliers
    2. Toronto Raptors
    3. Boston Celtics
    4. Indiana Pacers
    5. Detroit Pistons
    6. Atlanta Hawks
    7. Chicago Bulls
    8. New York Knicks
    _________________________
    9. Washington Wizards
    10. Milwaukee Bucks
    11. Miami Heat
    12. Charlotte Hornets
    13. Orlando Magic
    14. Philadelphia 76ers
    15. Brooklyn Nets
    Last edited by RepTdot; Wed Aug 3rd, 2016 at 10:07 AM.

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    1. Cleveland
    2. Raps
    (Or 1 Raps, 2 Cavs if they rest James)
    3-5. Detroit, Indiana, Boston (flip them, though Boston edge IFF they land another all star without giving up core player);
    6. Atlanta
    7-11: (pretty much any order, depending on who gets hot):
    -Washington (IMO best of the bunch);
    -Miami (If healthy Bosh);
    -NY (If healthy long enough to get some early wins);
    -Bucks
    -Bulls
    12: Charlotte
    13: Orlando
    14: 76ers
    15: Nyets

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    Default Changes

    1. Cleveland - As long as Lebron is on your team, you're reaching the top.
    2. Raptors - Best Backcourt in the East with a Top 5 Center in the East
    3. Pacers - Added some veteran pieces that can still go plus Paul George
    4. Boston - Still a good team but now with Al Horford, they should be better.
    5. Pistons - Young and hungry, they continues to improve
    6. Chicago - D-Wade and Butler are healthy I don't see why not.
    7. Knicks - I think with the talent alone they should make it but they won't make noise just yet.
    8. Atlanta - Fairly decent team but lost a few pieces and their declining slowly.
    9. Washington - They are a piece away from being back in contention
    10. Charlotte - Had a great season but lost some pieces that made them contenders in the first place
    11. Bucks - Still young and learning but they are a sleeper team, they might just explode
    12. Miami - It's the 2016 version of Portland but they have no superstars to make them splash
    13. Orlando - Made some improvements and will be a defensive juggernaut but offensively idk.
    14. Nets - Made some decent moves but I see this as more of a rebuilding year
    15. 76ers - Sigh. At least we get to see Joel this year.
    Last edited by iBlackula; Thu Aug 4th, 2016 at 07:23 AM. Reason: Edit

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    1. Cavs
    2. Raps
    3. Everyone else

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    Super Moderator Joey's Avatar
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    Quote Nilanka wrote: View Post
    1. Cavs
    2. Raps
    3. Everyone else
    Though, I'd add Boston at 3.

    1. Cavs
    2. Toronto
    3. Boston
    4. Everyone else

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    Guess, my picks after the top 2 are a bit out there buuuttt...

    1. Cavs
    2. Toronto
    3. Knicks - I know that most are down on this team, but I'm not reacting to the Rose signing on it's own. They also added Noah who is a terrific defender when healthy, Courtney Lee, Brandon Jennings. Melo, I think is going to be rejuvenated and back to top of his game with competent players around him. I think Raptors and Knicks are going to be boxing it out for whom gets second seed.
    4. Boston - This team is over rated. They took advantage of a week conference to get the seeding they did last season. Can't stand the Celtics and I hope they drop further.
    5. Chicago - Wade can carry a team on his own, but him and Butler together should make for interesting chemistry.
    6. Atlanta
    7. Indiana - Another team that is over rated imo. They had a good run against Toronto in the playoffs, so now they are contenders? East got tougher as a whole so last years team wouldn't even have made the playoffs. They added Big Al, so they improve enough to get into playoffs again I think, but it's going to be a battle for the last few spots.
    8. Charlotte - If Hibbert bounces back and is a defensive force again this year then I think they can get in

    Honourable Mention - Washington is too talented not to make the playoffs. If they (Beal) can stay healthy for long enough then they could bounce either Indiana or Charlotte.

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    Quote Joey wrote: View Post
    Though, I'd add Boston at 3.

    1. Cavs
    2. Toronto
    3. Boston
    4. Everyone else
    Fuck Boston...

    Love to see that tag line on an alternate jersey...

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    Raptors will win 60 games

    Espn forecast

    East champions

    @Chr1st1anL

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    How BOS got twice as many votes as us to get out of the East is beyond me.

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    Quote DanH wrote: View Post
    How BOS got twice as many votes as us to get out of the East is beyond me.
    Because the Celtics are this years darlings....

    Last year it was the Heat... who were the darlings despite having not one but two important injury prone players in Wade and Deng. They exacerbated that risk with the additional risk of having a third important player coming back from a very serious medical concern (Bosh). Just dismissed it as not gunna happen. Yet these same clucks who are anointing Boston this year as the can't miss favourites said the same things last year about the Heat only to see that fearless prediction of Miami not only easily finishing 2nd but perhaps challenging Lebron for the conference title despite the high risks of injury and downtime to three key players do a Hindenburg and go up in flames.

    Bostons risk is pretty high this year in that Horford, in and of himself ,won't put the team on his back and carry them to the finals. He has NEVER done it before. Why and how does that all change this particular year.

    Crackheads.
    Last edited by Demographic Shift; Thu Aug 4th, 2016 at 03:14 PM.

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    Quote Demographic Shift wrote: View Post
    Because the Celtics are this years darlings....

    Last year it was the Heat... who were the darlings despite having not one but two important injury prone players in Wade and Deng. They exacerbated that risk with the additional risk of having a third important player coming back from a very serious medical concern (Bosh). Just dismissed it as not gunna happen. Yet these same clucks who are anointing Boston this year as the can't miss favourites said the same things last year about the Heat only to see that fearless prediction of Miami not only easily finishing 2nd but perhaps challenging Lebron for the conference title despite the high risks of injury and downtime to three key players do a Hindenburg and go up in flames.

    Bostons risk is pretty high this year in that Horford, in and of himself ,won't put the team on his back and carry them to the finals. He has NEVER done it before. Why and how does that all change this particular year.

    Crackheads.
    Everything has to go right for Boston and some wrong for Toronto in order for Boston to finish ahead and it could happen but that's the nature of the NBA, there will be surprises.

    I would like to see how the NBA schedule will look like. Last season the Celtics didn't do so good on the road and I believe if they have long road trips at the middle or the end of the year they will burn out again.

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    1.CLE
    2.TOR
    3.ATL
    4.BOS
    5.DET
    6.IND
    7.CHA
    8.CHI
    9.ORL
    10.WAS
    11.NYK
    12.MIA
    13.MIL
    14.PHI
    15.BKN

    3 through 13 gonna be tight. The conference looks tougher than it's been in awhile. ORL could surprise, and I'm not at all confidant in my last two playoff picks. Could be anyone really.

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    Quote Demographic Shift wrote: View Post
    Because the Celtics are this years darlings....

    Last year it was the Heat... who were the darlings despite having not one but two important injury prone players in Wade and Deng. They exacerbated that risk with the additional risk of having a third important player coming back from a very serious medical concern (Bosh). Just dismissed it as not gunna happen. Yet these same clucks who are anointing Boston this year as the can't miss favourites said the same things last year about the Heat only to see that fearless prediction of Miami not only easily finishing 2nd but perhaps challenging Lebron for the conference title despite the high risks of injury and downtime to three key players do a Hindenburg and go up in flames.

    Bostons risk is pretty high this year in that Horford, in and of himself ,won't put the team on his back and carry them to the finals. He has NEVER done it before. Why and how does that all change this particular year.

    Crackheads.
    Pissing off Canadians gets ESPN more clicks than making Americans happy. That is the only reason for that projection I can think of.

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    Quote Abbas wrote: View Post
    Im usually the one that starts this thread

    1. Raptors (61-21)
    2. Cavaliers (59-23)
    3. Celtics (54-28)
    4. Pacers (51-31)
    5. Hawks (47-35)
    6. Pistons (45-37)
    7. Hornets (42-40)
    8. Knicks (41-41)
    _____________________________
    Anymore inside info?

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    1. Cleveland 63-19
    2. Boston 53-29
    3. Toronto 51-31
    4. Atlanta 47-34
    5. Indiana 45-37
    6. Detroit 44-38
    7. Washington 43-39
    8. Charlotte 43-39

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    Quote psrs1 wrote: View Post
    1. Cleveland 63-19
    2. Boston 53-29
    3. Toronto 51-31
    4. Atlanta 47-34
    5. Indiana 45-37
    6. Detroit 44-38
    7. Washington 43-39
    8. Charlotte 43-39
    Boo this man!

    Why are you so high on BOS, or more specifically, so low on the Raps?

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