Southwest Division

1. Houston Rockets

They were one win away from the Finals last year. They won’t change what worked for them last year.

2. San Antonio Spurs

Gone is Kawhi Leonard and replacing him is a perennial scorer in DeMar DeRozan who changes the focus of this team.

3. New Orleans Pelicans

Even without DeMarcus Cousins this team is capable of making a surprising run in the competitive Western Conference.

4. Memphis Grizzlies

Health is the biggest factor for them. Mainly with their point guard Mike Conley.

5. Dallas Mavericks

Getting Luka Doncic was exactly what this franchise needed. Continue reading “Southwest Division”

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Southeast Division

1. Washington Wizards

The window is starting to close, but with a healthy John Wall and Bradley Beal, they should remain contenders.

2. Miami Heat

They were sneaky good last year and could make a sizable jump in the East.

3. Charlotte Hornets

Without a true identity it could become an interesting year with Kemba Walker in a contract year.

4. Orlando Magic

Yet another coaching change has me wondering exactly what this franchise wants to do.

5. Atlanta Hawks

The rebuild is in full swing and they’re off to a good start with Trae Young. Continue reading “Southeast Division”

Central Division

1. Milwaukee Bucks

Their superstar in ‘The Greek Freak’ could be primed for an MVP caliber year.

2. Indiana Pacers

They took Cleveland to the brink in the opening round last year and should be a major contender this year.

3. Detroit Pistons

With a different direction on the bench, they could be a surprise contender.

4. Cleveland Cavaliers

The second go-round without LeBron should be easier with a better roster than the first time.

5. Chicago Bulls

There’s plenty to build on, but it could be another long year in the Windy City. Continue reading “Central Division”

Atlantic Division

1. Boston Celtics

The favorites to win the East, they’ll have some competition in their own division.

2. Philadelphia 76ers

The ‘process’ is starting to become perennial contenders.

3. Toronto Raptors

A new coach is in place with a budding star in Kawhi Leonard.

4. New York Knicks

The best course is to keep Porzingis out for this year and become instant contenders next year.

5. Brooklyn Nets

Terrible trades in years past have kept them at the bottom of the talent pool. Continue reading “Atlantic Division”