Who Wins The Chip?
As Training camp gets ever so close, meaning the season can’t be far away, the anticipation of the next finals winner is top of any debate. Many basketball players are taking to radio or TV to stake their claim however who will reign supreme? In most scenarios you look for the title holders to be the main contender, is this the case here? Does the fact last year in the NBA was a lockout season make a difference? Is that why we saw two youthful, energetic teams, beat two older teams to get their? Should we pay much attention to this fact or were they just far better? This upcoming season is what will paint the picture for many pundits out their.
Miami are champions so they deserve first mention. A healthy D Wade and Bosh means the big three should be firing on all cylinders. Another year under Mario Chalmers belt means more experience and more confidence. Again the 4/5 spot is where Miami are vulnerable but they had enough to get the chip this year. What about the new additions? R Lewis effectively looked like a well overpaid player the last few seasons, is Miami the place to resurge his career? Ray Allen swapped the bench in Boston for the bench in Miami, best move of his career? Time will definitely tell. With Miami’s additions, you can only say they have improved as a team. The common factor with any LBJ team is it all falls on him to deliver. If Lebron is not firing, the Heat are not the team we saw last finals.
What now for the runners-up last year? We have seen a steady improvement from the Thunder, reaching the conference finals, the finals and now what comes next? In some senses its boom or bust. The Thunder only have so much more space to manoeuvre on the upside before anything they do is called a declining year. Surge Ibaka signed and sealed, the nucleus of the team seems to be set for the future but what about the Beard? Coming off a poor showing in the finals by his standings and a poor Olympics (which can be explained due to chemistry and playing time) what is next for Harden. With the new agreement, Harden may be destined for a new jersey.
The Lakers have revamped a somewhat strong roster now and look like a refreshed beast. Stronger line-ups and bench means the Lakers will no doubt be contenders this year. Boston were one game away from the Finals and you can expect them again to push Miami. Jason Terry and two good prospects from the draft will only strengthen a great coach and players. San Antonio are San Antonio, it is clear what we expect from them now. Good regular seasons and unpredictable playoff performances.
Any smart analyser of Basketball can’t really make a real substantial claim for any other team to win the chip so who will it be. Is the title staying in the East or is the Title going back home to the West?
Time will tell.