2013 NBA Draft: Sixers Big Board

Draft time! It’s enough to get me off of Twitter to write more than 140 characters. It’s an interesting draft for the Sixers. There is no big talent at the top, but the Sixers, and their new radio-silent analytics-loving GM, have 3 picks in the top 42. Sam Hinkie showed that he could find diamonds … Read more

2010-11 NBA Preview: Atlantic Division

Boston Celtics

Dannie’s Take

Think this is the year Boston falls apart? Nope. They were 1 quarter away from winning a championship last season when everyone had counted them out. I think they will have the same type of season.

Rondo has become their best player, but Allen and Pierce are still very good and productive. They are VERY deep with the additions of Shaq, Jermaine O’Neal, Delonte West, Von Wafer, Avery Bradley and resigning Nate Robinson. Understand Doc and Ainge did this so they can rest their core older players throughout the season so they are fresh come playoff time. It’s a smart strategy, and I think they have the best shot to beat Miami and get back to the Finals, even with their defensive guru now in Chicago.

1st in Atlantic Division, 3rd in East, 5th in NBA.

Pete’s Take

This team really impressed me last year. I thought they were over the hill, and they proved that they were anything but. Their core of guys is a year older, but so is Rajon Rondo, now considered their best player. The Shaq and Jermaine O’Neal signings didn’t make much sense to me, but they could prove beneficial in short bursts. I also really liked the drafting of Avery Bradley, who can come in and play solid defense at the 2 right away. The biggest question for me is how much the loss of Tom Thibodeau will affect them.

1st in Atlantic Division, 3rd in East, 6th in NBA.

Toronto Raptors

2010-11 NBA Preview:
Southeast Division

Atlanta Hawks

Dannie’s Take

Same team, similar results. That’s my stance on the Hawks. They screwed themselves by signing Joe Johnson to that unwarranted max contract, and they will feel the pain of it sooner than you think. They will drop to 3rd in the division and will be lucky to win 50 games because of the increased competition, but it won’t be because they are any worse. They just haven’t improved relative to the competition. And this team has almost no surprise potential (this is my new term, by the way). No player on that team, young guy like Jeff Teague or a veteran like Bibby are likely to make an unexpected impact beyond what you already know about them. All that means: same team, similar results.

3rd in Southeast, 5th in East, 10th in NBA.

Pete’s Take

So, let me get this straight. Joe Johnson plays horrible in the post-season, including one of the most embarrassing 4-game sweeps in NBA history against the Magic, trashes the supportive fans publicly, and shows the world that if he is the best player on your team, your upside is squeaking by the Bucks in the 1st round of the playoffs. His reward? The biggest contract of the summer. Even bigger than LeBron and D-Wade. How can the owners complain about payroll when they are STILL dishing out contracts like this?

3rd in Southeast, 5th in East, 12th in NBA.

Charlotte Bobcats

2010-11 NBA Preview: Central Division

Cleveland Cavaliers

Dannie’s Take

Poor Cleveland. They lost their best player, a local kid in the worse possible fashion. I am normally not the most sympathetic person, but I feel bad for them. Jamison and Mo Williams will do just enough for this team not to be the worst in the NBA. J.J. Hickson could break out with increased minutes and touches. But LeBron simply did too much for this team, and they haven’t replaced any of his production. Byron Scott’s team mantra will likely be:

“The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” ~ Aristotle

Unfortunately the parts really, really suck.

Prediction: 4th in Central, 13th in East, 27th in NBA.

Pete’s Take

Well, at least when they get their butt kicked this year, they will look good doing it. There is little hope for the Cavs in the post-LeJackass era. It’s a double whammy when you lose a franchise star and don’t get a high draft pick because he led you to the league-best record the year prior. The sole bright spot on this team right now is J.J. Hickson, who both Dannie and I wanted the Sixers to take in 2008. Hickson, who just turned 22 was pretty efficient in his limited minutes (19.5 point, 11.2 rebound per 48 minutes averages). They should give him 35 minutes a game and see if he’s a piece they can use. He might be the only player on this roster worth keeping.

Prediction: 5th in Central, 14th in East, 29th in NBA.

Chicago Bulls

2010-11 NBA Preview: Southwest Division

Dallas Mavericks

Dannie’s Take

I like Dallas this year. Kidd is not getting any younger, but they have a young, good back-up to spell him. And if Carlise is smart he won’t overexert Kidd during the regular season, while simultaneously getting Beaubois valuable playing time so he will be ready come playoff time.

They upgraded at the center position with a full year of Brendon Hayward and Tyson Chandler. They are good defender/rebounders, and Cuban got them to compete directly with the Lakers. They are thin at forward. There really isn’t anyone behind Dirk or Marion of any substance.

In order for this to be their year, they will need resurgences from Kidd, Caron Butler and Marion, solid play from their centers and Dirk to play like an MVP. IF all that happens, they will give the Lakers all they want.

1st in Southwest, 2nd in West, 3rd in NBA.

Pete’s Take

This could the year for the Mavericks. It’s obviously going to be tough, but if there is a darkhorse title contender, they are it. They have a go-to superstar (Nowitzki), two other guys who can fill it up (Jason Terry, Caron Butler), a smart PG (Kidd), depth and talent in the frontcourt (Brandon Haywood, Tyson Chandler), a spark off the bench (Roddy Beaubois), three guys who shoot 40% from 3 (Dirk, Kidd, Roddy) and a do-it-all defender (Shawn Marion). Just keep Jose Barea and Tim Thomas off the floor, and they should be good.

1st in Southwest, 2nd in West, 4th in NBA.

Houston Rockets

2010-11 NBA Preview: Northwest Division

Denver Nuggets

Dannie’s Take

Hardest team to predict with all the uncertainty with Melo. He doesn’t want to be there, he clearly won’t resign, so you have to trade him. It’s just a matter of when. And when that happens, their season will likely go down the tubes. Aside from Al Harrington, this is the exact same team with less unity.

Prediction: 4th in Northwest, 7th in West, 12th in NBA.

Pete’s Take

I had them higher, but there certainly seems to be some turmoil with Carmelo making a sad face that he didn’t get invited to the party in Miami. Al Harrington was an interesting pick-up, but the price (5 years, 33 mill??) was comical.

Prediction: 3rd in Northwest, 6th in West, 10th in NBA.

Minnesota Timberwolves

2010-11 NBA Preview: Pacific Division

Golden State Warriors

Dannie’s Take

I am starting to like the looks of the Warriors. They have scoring and shooting in the perimeter. They have defense and rebounding out of the center position and rebounding and high percentage scoring out of David Lee at PF. On top of that they have Keith Smart coaching. Now I don’t know a thing about him, but I know he has to have a more well-rounded approach than Don Nelson.

Three major questions:

  1. Will they improve their defense? Change has to start on the perimeter. If Curry and Ellis buy in to playing tough defense, the Warriors could be fun to watch.
  2. Depth. After their starters they are really thin on talent. They will need guys to step up and be productive in their limited minutes and roles if the Warriors want to show some overall improvement.
  3. The biggest weakness offensively was their offensive rebounding. They were last in the NBA. David Lee should help, but they’ll need more.

Prediction: 4th in Pacific, 13th in West, 24th in NBA.

Pete’s Take

Golden State finally has some hope, and it has nothing to do with the players on the court. The Warriors ownership finally sold the team, ending years of strange personnel decisions and very few playoff berths. There might not be an immediate return this year (or ever, for that matter), but right now Golden State fans have something to be excited about. They also have some young talent, and some interesting new unis. Most notably, Stephen Curry, who was the first rookie ever to have 150+ steals and 160+ 3’s in his first season and finished the year with a ridiculous April: 26 points, 8 assists, 4 boards, 2 steals per game. He and newly-acquired (and overpaid) David Lee won’t be enough though.

Prediction: 4th in Pacific, 13th in West, 20th in NBA.

Los Angeles Clippers

Where Will They All Land?

NBA free agency starts Thursday. Not sure if you guys had heard about it.

The way this off-season is looking like it will play out, it seems like the NBA might as well just re-draft the entire league and give the teams with the most cap room the first picks.

Right now, all sorts of reports of floating around. LeBron and Bosh to the Bulls. LeBron/Wade/Bosh to the Heat. Joe Johnson/Amare to the Knicks. The Mavs want a shot at LeBron. The Nets want to make a huge splash. The Wolves want Rudy Gay (seriously David Kahn? You just acquired 4 small forwards you freak). The Clippers want to get in the mix.

It’s going to be ridiculous and I’m sure we will talk a lot about it here, even though the Sixers won’t likely be a part of it (though a team that totally strikes out might look to trade for someone like Iggy).

So this post is going to be a place where everyone can guess what’s going to happen before the big day on Thursday.

Who Has Cap Space?

2009-10 NBA Preview: Philadelphia 76ers

Philadelphia 76ers

2008-09 Record: 41-41

Anticipated Starting Five

PG- Lou Williams
SG- Andre Iguodala
SF- Thaddeus Young
PF- Elton Brand
C- Samuel Dalembert

Key Reserves: Marreese Speights, Jason Kapono, Willie Green, Jason Smith, Jrue Holiday

Preseason Wrap-Up

Below is two tables. The first is the Sixers preseason player totals. The second is the players preseason averages on a per 36 minute basis so there is a degree of extrapolation. (click the image to enlarge)

Sixers 2010 Preseason Stats

A few thoughts on the team as a whole

  • 36.5% on 104 attempts from three is very promising. It’s very clear Kapono will make threes. We just need him to focus on shooting threes and not trying to do to much (i.e. pump fake step in jumpers).
  • Rebounding will continue to be a strength for us.
  • There is also some potential we will improve from the line as a team as well. Last season we were 25th in the league at 74.5%. I’d love to see that number at 78% minimum. The two guys that can get us there are Thad and Brand.

Individual player thoughts