NBA - October 20, 2019

NBA 2019-20 Season Preview Part VI

The Final Part of NBA 2019-20 preview

This is the sixth and final part of the ongoing NBA season preview series.  Each part is going to deal with one division. The roster changes of each team, the expectations coming into this season, what they might perform like, how season will end, their final win total at the end of regular season will be discussed. How the season ends, and their final win total are this author’s assumptions based on previous season, roster changes and injuries going into this season. In season injuries based on the player will dramatically affect and alter the prediction of a team.

The Pacific Division is the last division up for preview, consisting of the Phoenix Suns, the Sacramento Kings, the Golden State Warriors, the Los Angeles Clippers and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Phoenix Suns

  • Roster changes:
    • In:
      • Rookies: Jared Harper, Ty Jerome, Cameron Johnson, Jalen Lecque.
      • Trades/Free Agent Acquisitions: Ryan Aron Baynes, Jevon Carter, Cheick Diallo, Frank Kaminsky, Ricky Rubio, Dario Saric.
    • Out:
      • Dragan Bender, Jamal Crawford, Troy Daniels, Jimmer Fredette, Richaun Holmes, Josh Jackson, George King, De’Anthony Melton, Ray Spalding, T.J. Warren.
    • Same as previous season:
      • Deandre Ayton, Devin Booker, Mikal Bridges, Tyler Johnson, Élie Okobo, Kelly Oubre.
  • Expectations coming into this season:
    • While this team has great amount of talent with Devin Booker, Deandre Ayton present in the team. That talent has unfortunately not been transformed to wins on the court. While the addition of Ricky Rubio should solve their shot creation issues to some extent, this team still suffers from a lack of shot creators.
  • Expected performance this season:
    • This is a make or break season for Devin Booker, whose talent is undeniable. But, that talent has to transform to wins. They will once again miss the playoffs and be near the bottom of the table.
  • Where they’ll end the season:
    • Near the bottom of the table.
  • Expected win total this season:
    • 23-59

Sacramento Kings

  • Roster changes:
    • In:
      • Rookies: Justin James, Kyle Guy.
      • Trades/Free Agent Acquisitions: Trevor Ariza, Dewayne Dedmon, Richaun Holmes, Cory Joseph, Tyler Lydon, Hollis Thompson, Tyler Ulis.
    • Out:
      • Corey Brewer, Alec Burks, Willie Cauley-Stein, B.J. Johnson, Kosta Koufos, Frank Mason III, Troy Williams.
    • Same as previous season:
      • Marvin Bagley III, Harrison Barnes, Nemanja Bjelica, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Yogi Ferrell, De’Aaron Fox, Harry Giles, Buddy Hield, Caleb Swanigan, Wenyen Gabriel.
  • Expectations coming into this season:
    • The Sacramento Kings were one of the speed merchants of the league last season, one of the league leaders in pace and possessions. With De’Aaron Fox  who made massive improvements to his game leading the way, this is the one team I have my eye onto crack the playoffs spot. With the addition of Trevor Ariza, a veteran 3 and D and head coach Luke Walton should provide the team the impetus and quality needed to make the playoffs.
  • Expected performance this season:
    • This is a young fun fast scoring team that is one for the future. The inexperience in the playoffs will be telling and they will crash out in the first round.
  • Where they’ll end the season:
    • Every good team has to take their lumps growing up, First Round Playoff exit.
  • Expected win total this season:
    • 43-39

Golden State Warriors

  • Roster changes:
    • In:
      • Rookies: Nick Zeisloft, Alen Smailagic, Eric Paschall, Jordan Poole, Ky Bowman.
      • Trades/Free Agent Acquisitions: Alec Burks, Willie Cauley-Stein, Marquese Chriss, Jared Cunningham, Glenn Robinson III, D’Angelo Russell, Omari Spellman.
    • Out:
      • Jordan Bell, Andrew Bogut, Quinn Cook, DeMarcus Cousins, Marcus Derrickson, Kevin Durant, Andre Iguodala, Jonas Jerebko, Damian Jones, Shaun Livingston, Alfonzo McKinnie.
    • Same as previous season:
      • Stephen Curry, Jacob Evans, Draymond Green, Kevon Looney, Klay Thompson, Damion Lee.
  • Expectations coming into this season:
    • They are not the Death Star destruction machine rampaging the league this year with the loss of KD and to some extent Iguodala. But, they are still a damn good team. With the exit of KD, watch out for Steph to return to his MVP winning season and put on a show. They will probably be the 4 seed and have a home playoff series in the first round.
  • Expected performance this season:
    • With Klay returning just before the playoffs, if he return anywhere close to his peak, WCF is their ceiling. Without Klay being near 100%, a Second Round Playoff exit is the max for Steph and Draymond led team.
  • Where they’ll end the season:
    • Final home playoff spots and a Western Conference Final exit.
  • Expected win total this season:
    • 49-33

Los Angeles Clippers

  • Roster changes:
    • In:
      • Rookies: Terance Mann, Mfiondu Kabengele, Amir Coffey.
      • Trades/Free Agent Acquisitions: Paul George, Donte Grantham, Moe Harkless, Kawhi Leonard, Patrick Patterson, Derrick Walton.
    • Out:
      • Wilson Chandler, Ángel Delgado, Danilo Gallinari, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Garrett Temple, Sindarius Thornwell, Tyrone Wallace.
    • Same as previous season:
      • Patrick Beverley, JaMychal Green, Montrezl Harrell, Rodney McGruder, Jerome Robinson, Landry Shamet, Louis Williams, Ivica Zubac, Johnathan Motley.
  • Expectations coming into this season:
    • If anyone says any other won this offseason, they are lying. While Nets gave them a close run, the Clippers are clear winners of this offseason. The Resistance and Thanos all rolled into one, Mr.  Kawhi Leonard joining this team, the NBA Championship  is the only thing on this team’s mind. With Paul George also joining him, nothing but injuries to one or both of them is the only  thing stopping them from lifting the Larry O’Brien.
  • Expected performance this season:
    • Barring any injuries to their star duo, this team which pushed the Warriors to 6 games last season without the before mentioned star duo in some ways feel destined to win the trophy.
  • Where they’ll end the season:
    • The winners of Larry O’Brien trophy.
  • Expected win total this season:
    • 53-29

Los Angeles Lakers

  • Roster changes:
    • In:
      • Rookies: Talen Horton-Tucker, Zach Norvell Jr..
      • Trades/Free Agent Acquisitions: Kostas Antetokounmpo, Avery Bradley, Quinn Cook, DeMarcus Cousins, Troy Daniels, Anthony Davis, Jared Dudley, Danny Green, Dwight Howard, Demetrius Jackson.
    • Out:
      • Lonzo Ball, Isaac Bonga, Reggie Bullock, Tyson Chandler, Josh Hart, Brandon Ingram, Mike Muscala, Lance Stephenson, Moritz Wagner, Jonhathan Williams.
    • Same as previous season:
      • Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Alex Caruso, LeBron James, Kyle Kuzma, JaVale McGee, Rajon Rondo.
  • Expectations coming into this season:
    • With the arrival of AD to the tinsel town, championship feels the only way to justify the trade. But, with the lack of quality bench depth and anyone outside AD and LeBron to consistently score 20 points per game, it still feels a bit out of grasp. The injuries to their star duo is what will limit this team in the post-season. With the injury history of AD, any predictions for this team is fraught with danger.
  • Expected performance this season:
    • With the injury history of this team and LeBron’s past with big men, head into this postseason with a grain of salt.They will crash out in Second Round of Playoffs.
  • Where they’ll end the season:
    • Second Round Playoff exit.
  • Expected win total this season:
    • 55-27

 

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