2008-09 NBA Season Preview
The NBA season is finally here! Can Boston repeat? Not if Kobe, Chris Paul or LeBron have a say on things! Kidzworld's got the 411 on the 2008-09 season!
#1. Cleveland Cavaliers - After losing in seven games to the Boston Celtics in the seconds round, LeBron and company fell short of winning the title. But don't expect that to be the case this year. King James has just returned from winning a gold medal at the Olympics, so expect him to bring that leadership into the season. Plus the Cavs acquired a quality point guard in Mo Williams.
#2. Boston Celtics - Boston proved last year that they were the best team in basketball. But a year has passed, and now Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce area year older. Plus they lost a great player in James Posey over the offseason. They will still contend for a title, but it will be a lot tougher this time around.
#3. Philadelphia 76ers - The 76ers were the last year's surprise team by making it to the second round. Now they got even stronger by adding All Star power forward Elton Brand over the summer.
#4. Toronto Raptors - The Raptors got bigger this offseason by acquiring Jermaine O'Neal from the Pacers. O'Neal and Bosh should be one of the most powerful frontcourts in the league. The Raptors have great role players and if Andrea Bargnani can have a breakout season, they have a chance to go deep in the playoffs.
The Rest of the Best - Every year the one-two combo of Dwight Howard and Jameer Nelson of the Orlando Magic gets better. Expect them to finish fifth. The Detroit Pistons' youth movement has already started, but they should still be good enough for the sixth seed. Atlanta almost shocked the world by defeating the Celtics in the first round. The Hawks should finish seventh or higher. The last playoff spot should go to the Knicks, who have a new coach and new attitude.
#1. New Orleans Hornets - Chris Paul's MVP-esque performance last season pushed him into the NBA's elite level. With the addition of James Posey, CP's amazing supporting cast just got better. There is no reason why they can't win the West this year.
#2. Los Angeles Lakers - Kobe Bryant, the reigning NBA MVP took his team to the Finals last year. But the team didn't really improve much over the offseason. Sure they got a healthy Andrew Bynum, but he hasn't gelled well so far in the preseason with Pao Gasol. Lamar Odom looks out of shape and is said to be feuding with his coach.
#3. Utah Jazz - Deron Williams is quickly becoming one of the best point guards in the game today. He has already led the Jazz to the Western Conference Finals two years ago, and the Western Conference semi finals last year. Can he take the Jazz to that next level this year? If rising shooting guard Ronnie Brewer has a breakout year it could happen.
#4. Houston Rockets - On paper this team is stacked. With the addition of the talented but troubled Ron Artest, the Rockets are extremely deep. The question is, can they stay healthy? T-Mac and Yao Ming have a history of getting injured.
The Rest of the Best - The San Antonio Spurs are as old as dinosaurs, but they are still good enough for the fifth spot. Shaq and Steve Nash will help bring the Suns to a sixth place finish this year. Watch out for Portland! With Greg Oden joining Brandon Roy, you can expect the up-and-coming Blazers to return to the playoffs as the seventh seed. And Dirk Nowitzki and Jason Kidd edge out Denver and the L.A. Clippers for the eighth and final playoff berth.
Rookie of the Year - Greg Oden.
MVP - LeBron James.
NBA Champions - The Cleveland Cavaliers will defeat the New Orleans Hornets in seven games!
NBA Summer Leagues
Chris Paul Biography
Yao Ming Biography