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Hasty Predictions: Eastern Conference

Yeah I think Orlando gets over 55 easy in this conference. If the Sixers don't make the playoffs I'll end up rooting for them. I think they can win it all this year, they could pound Miami with their frontcourt and their bench, and Boston will be another year older and slower. Orlando screwed up that series last year anyway, they really should have won it. I don't think Lewis could possibly play any worse. And if it comes down to it again, SVG get Howard the ball early!

Louis Farrakhan III on Oct 25 at 8:09

Miami 154, Philadelphia 62

Always appreciate the predictions, Brian.

Leaves me a place to check my own at the end of the season.

* Atlanta (46.5 wins) - Will Josh Smith regress more than Al Horford improves? I don't know the answer to that question. I think this line is dead on. I'll take the over. I don't doubt Al Horford much anymore.
* Boston (54.5 wins) - Another tough one. I wouldn't touch the Hawks of Celtics lines personally. I'll take the over. I think Pierce and Allen hold off one more year before dropping off the radar and I expect Garnett to return to form. If Delonte has his head on, he is a big upgrade over Marquis Daniels.
* Charlotte (41.5 wins) - Under. Felton was unexpectedly productive last year. Gerald Wallace won't stay healthy forever.
* Chicago (46.5 wins) - Over. More minutes for Noah, add in Boozer as well? Ronnie Brewer too possibly? Team is looking good. Korver can be so hit or miss, but I think they win 47 in their sleep.
* Cleveland (30.5 wins) - Over. Roster has plenty more talent than the Sixers IMO. I see them pushing for the 8 seed. Preseason also shines positively on them.
* Detroit (30.5 wins) - Jeez. These are difficult. Over. Same logic as Brian actually. I think Daye could help them a little as well. Jerebko was a loss, though. Wouldn't touch this one.
* Indiana (33.5 wins) - Under. Troy was their best player IMO. His loss will hurt them quite a bit. Hibbert has looked like a great fantasy player. In real life, he needs to rebound and shoot for a better percentage.
* Miami (64.5 wins) - I'm teetering. I'll say under. Only because Stackhouse seems like he may play and he is atrocious. They need Miller to push at 70.
* Milwaukee (45.5 wins) - Under. Why Maggette? Isn't Bogut's arm still messed up or something? They seem to be squeezing guys like Delfino and Mba Amoute (100% necessary if you have a Brandon Jennings)
* New Jersey (24.5 wins) - Over. Key additions improve this team. I think Murphy adds 10 wins himself if given enough minutes. I think they push for the 8 seed.
* New York (35.5) - Under. This is a toss up. hard to say until the rotation pans out. They will win 30, but likely not 40.
* Orlando (54.5 wins) - Under. Barnes was an engine for that team. Big loss. I think 51-53 is about right.
* Philadelphia (34.5 wins) - Under. If the line was 29.5, I'd still be under. They may not win 20.
* Toronto (26.5 wins) - Over. This is a close one. I think Amir, Reggie, Calderon, Jack are all OK players. If they are given enough minutes, maybe, just maybe, they can offset Bargs' serious damage.
* Washington (32.5 wins) - Under. Worst team in basketball. Doubt they win 25 and under 20 is really possible.

The preseason is not fooling me. Cleveland has a worse roster with less talent than the Sixers.

I disagree, but I agree with most of your picks that you made.

The sixers are the fourth place team in the atlantic

Cleveland does have Jamison, Mo Williams, Ramon Sessions. Leon Powe or Hickson could have a breakout year. Who are our three best players? Iguodala, Jrue, and ... I suppose you'd have to say Lou? Aside from our having a top 25 player in the league and their not having one, I don't see that our roster's better than theirs.

Powe and Hickson aren't relevant. I'd say Varejao is their best player at this point.

Their biggest problem is that they lost maybe the best playmaker in the Eastern Conference and replaced him with Ramon Sessions. I expect a drop in efficiency from everyone on that roster. LeBron opened things up for them with his presence on the floor and his passing. They could seriously be the worst team in the league.

Lebron Z and Shaq are responsible for 30+ wins?

At least.

Remove Iverson from the 2001-2002 Sixers, how many games does that team win? Same situation here.

Nah, the cavs team has more offense, those sixer teams were built around iverson offense and 4 guys to play defense

And this Cavs team was built around 4 guys standing around watching LeBron and occasionally hitting a wide-open shot that he created for them.

I think the 'cavs 4' are better than the 'sixers 4' left over after the star left. The sixer 4 had no offensive ability inherent in them, the cavs 4 do, can they tap it, maybe maybe not, but i believe they have a better chance than the 'sixers 4' would have

Tray reply to GoSixers on Oct 25 at 16:50

Is there really a question as to whether Antwan Jamison and Mo Williams can tap their offensive ability? They may not be very efficient but that's what those guys do, tap their offensive abilities to the extent they have them.

Disagree on Hickson not being relevant.

And Powe too, the guy's talented. He's had flashes.

He's had flashes.

As have Thad Young, Marreese Speights, Jodie Meeks, Spencer Hawes and Jason Smith. Flashes don't make someone relevant to me. Hickson is young, so I suppose he's got a shot. I haven't been impressed to this point, though, and I'm wondering who's going to get him the ball and how his game is going to translate to the PO.

Tray reply to Brian on Oct 25 at 17:16

He's (Hickson, I mean) just a finisher with a little bit more skill than he probably got to show last season. Guys like that can have decent years.

So LeBron held Hickson back?

Tray reply to Brian on Oct 25 at 19:42

Well yes and no, he made Hickson's job easier but substantially reduced the size of Hickson's job.

I'd lean toward LeBron spoon feeding Hickson about 50% of his made field goals.

There's an article on hoopshype about how David West doesn't want an extension from the hornets yet (mistake), and this paragraph stood out to me.

West took a step backwards last season after averaging 21.0 points and 8.5 rebounds and making the All-Star team in 2008-09. For the first time in his eight-year NBA career West's averages actually dropped in 2009-10, when he averaged 19.0 points and 7.5 rebounds per game. A large part of that unquestionably had to do with the fact that he was playing without injured star Chris Paul for much of last season, and now that Paul is healthy and back in the lineup West's numbers should resume their annual climb

So David West inherently looks better because he's playing with Chris Paul healthy. How do you distinguish what is West and what isn't?

I mean look at Tyson Chandler with and without Chris Paul?:)

Tom Moore on Oct 25 at 13:44

Iguodala went through non-contact portion of Monday practice, but expects to play in opener.

If he ain't 100%, he should sit

Hasty Eastern Conference Predictions

Heat don't win the ECF, in fact I wouldn't' be surprised to see Boston/Orlando be the two teams in the final.

New Jersey has the biggest turn around in turn of wins improvement (percentage). Milwaukee is the team everyone is most 'disappointed in'.

Sixers trade Iguodala by February

Tom Moore on Oct 25 at 14:41

Collins said there was no reason to push Iguodala Monday and that not risking aggravating the injury made the most sense.

Collins said he still doesn't know who'll start, though Holiday, Iguodala, Kapono, Brand and Hawes appears most likely.

That's just so distressing to read

Ugh, I'm so sick of LeBron.

Ever wonder what happened to the lebron/kobe puppet commercials?

The Heat and the terrible three are all making a huge PR push on the eve of the season. I saw a handful of sympathetic articles, this commercial. Don't think they want to be the team everyone in the country is rooting against, not sure how many sneakers that will sell.

Oh no - the kobe/lebron puppet commercials don't air any more - mostly cause Lebrons ego couldn't handle it :)

Atlanta (46.5 wins) - Under. Every year a team simply disappoints and takes a step back. This year i think that will be Atlanta.

Boston (54.5 wins) - Under. The Celtics are built for the playoffs, not the regular season.

Charlotte (41.5 wins) - Under. Got worse while the conference got better.

Chicago (46.5 wins) - Over. A dark horse contender with a roster built the right way. An eastern conference powerhouse for the next few years.

Cleveland (30.5 wins) - Over. They are not as bas as everybody thinks they are. Just imagine what a spectacle a first round playoffs series would it be, if they play the Heat. The stars are aligned for this to happen.

Detroit (30.5 wins) - Under. Dumars finally realizes that this team is not going anywhere, blows it up somewhere in December and starts from scratch.

Indiana (33.5 wins) - Over. By a small margin. Won't be terrible, but not good enough to make the playoffs.

Miami (64.5 wins) - Under. Injuries and pressure will not let them get that far. I expect them to be somewhere in the 55-60 wins range.

Milwaukee (45.5 wins) - Under. Each year a team overperforms and has a fluke year. That was milwaukee last season. Additionally their best player (Bogut) is an injury waiting to happen.

New Jersey (24.5 wins) - Over. The biggest surprise of the year. Don't let last season fool you they are not that bad. Plus they have a few useful additions. They have an outside chance to make even the playoffs.

New York (35.5) - Over. If they don't make the playoffs this year , they never will!!!

Philadelphia (34.5 wins) - Over. I don't know why, i can't really explain it, but i am optimistic about this season. I expect us to be in the 40-45 range. Anyway i think there are 2 possible outcomes for the team this year IMO: 43 wins or 23 wins. The latter will happen if Thorn blows it all up after he is disappointed with the tough start, and the optimistic version if Thorn lets them play it out and try to win until the end.

Toronto (26.5 wins) - Under. Possibly the worst team in the eastern conference.

Washington (32.5 wins) - Under. Arenas + rookie as your best player + overhyped mediocre bigmen (Blatche and McGee). Everything points to a 25 win season with an optimistic look at the future.

By play it out for the Sixers i meant not trade any of the core players (JIT) and bring frontcourt help by trading some of the others.

deepsixersuede on Oct 25 at 18:28

Atlanta [under] I think their p.g. situation blows up, Teague is too inconsistant and Bibby doesn't have much left.
Boston [over] Rivers has a knack for resting people and D. West and Oneal's all fit in well.
Charlotte [under] Augustine's shot makes up for Felton loss but losing Chandler, and depending on Kw. Brown, again Mike, drops them out of playoffs.
Chicago [over] Deng becomes Roses's Robin.
Cleveland [over] Win in low 30's till Varajoi trade to Philly for our youngins [Thad,Spieghts,Hawes]
Detroit [under] Decide to go young and play Daye and Monroe, move Prince.
Indiana [under] Hibbert has injury from too many minutes, see Y.Ming, and p.f.'s disappoint.
Miami [under] injuries and lack of shooting.
Milwaukee [over] pieces fit and Gooden and Sanders allow Bogut to play less minutes.
New Jersey [over] Murphy compliments Lopez and may earn resigning. Outlaw and Morrow open up room for Lopez.
Philadelphia [over] Start slow but do deadline trade [Varajoi] and push for playoffs.
Toronto [under] E.Davis breaks down again and Bargnani fails as #1 option.
Washington [under] Show improvement but lack toughness up front.Fall apart after trading Hinrich [glue] to contender.

deepsixersuede reply to deepsixersuede on Oct 25 at 18:35

I forgot Knicks [over] Play well early but trade for Melo at deadline and drop out of playoff picture.

If the knicks trade for melo at the deadline they're fools since all reports are that melo doesn't want to go anywhere else

deepsixersuede reply to GoSixers on Oct 25 at 22:13

They may be afraid a Houston or New Jersey sways Carmelo although I agree they would be better by just adding him to their current talent. Question, will they have enough space to sign him in the new C.B.A. ?

No one knows that.

What Stern is doing this week is purely posturing, he got the contraction talk out there without even bringing it up (though wouldn't be surprised if reporter was primed) himself, getting people (the union) thinking the owners are ready to take away player jobs (the players don't care about the other jobs), the nba is talking 800 million dollars in cuts, which is ridiculous, Stern is an expert at this and the NBA Players Union is pretty useless, but I don't know what Stern REALLY wants (I don't believe he wants contraction, or wants 800 million dollars in cuts, but now that it's public he gets credit for compromise)

deepsixersuede reply to GoSixers on Oct 25 at 22:30

I agree no sports league wants to cut teams, or amount of games. Even with the current system, other than Curry, what flexability do the knicks have and how much less would Carmelo take to go there?

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