Official DMR 2017 NBA Season Preview

October is the best time of the year to be a sports fan. Playoff baseball, the NFL is in full swing and basketball returns Tuesday, a little earlier than usual. This past off-season boasted one of the most unusual in the association’s history. Chris Paul is in Houston, Melo and PG joined Russ in OKC, Kyrie forced his way to becoming a Celtic and the Cavs and Warriors casually reloaded as well. The boys of the DMR are here for their annual season preview giving you a few teams we expect to over/underperform, who will take home the individual awards as well as playoff seeding and eventual champion come June 2018. Buckle up, it’s going to be a fun year to be a basketball fan.

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Over/Unders:

LordTreeSap – Wolves: Under 48.5

Tom Thibodeau cashed in all his chips to assemble a roster that contains the makeup of a gritty Tom Thibodeau type of team. Bringing Jimmy Butler and Jeff Teague will definitely make this one of the most improved teams in the league and secure a playoff birth, but I believe they went all in a couple years too soon with Wiggins and KAT still in their earlier 20’s. The West will only have four 50+ win teams.

Pelicans: Under 39.5

This seems like easy money with one of the most puzzling rosters constructed in the NBA. Rondo is already hurt and outside of Holiday, Cousins and AD this team doesn’t have much, in a loaded Western Conference they will struggle and may look to move one of their All-Star bigs.

Warriors: Over 67.5

The Dubs won 67 games last year, and that was with KD missing 20. Bringing back the same core for round two with an added Swaggy P will make this team push for another 70 win season and number one seed.

Kings: Over 27.5 Wins 

Sacramento had a solid off-season bringing in high quality veterans to offset their youth movement (VC, George Hill, Z-Bo). This team really has no incentive to tank so I believe they will eclipse the 30+ wins mark fairly easily as De’Aaron Fox and Buddy Hield make for an exciting back-court.

Celtics: Under 55.5 Wins

I hated how this roster was constructed before the Kyrie deal, now looking at it Danny Ainge delivered with a huge off-season bringing in Gordon Hayword to team up with his college coach once again. They should’ve held on to Avery Bradley, he would’ve complemented Kyrie’s lack of defense well. With a front court that includes Horford, Marcus Morris and Baynes they will still get beat up on the glass and struggle to gel early in the season. Give me the under as the Celtics hover in the low 50’s for 2017.


DG – 76ers: Under 40.5 Wins

I’m not the biggest O/U guy. They’re hard to predict IMO. Injuries can make or break you. That being said, the 76ers haven’t won over 40 games since 2010-2011. Now they’e going to magically stay healthy and get over 40.5 wins? They’re a year away from taking a big step so I’m going under.

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Spurs Over 53.5

Death, taxes, and the Spurs winning over 50 games. Pop is the best coach in the league and until they show signs of a major drop off, you have to go over. Have to do it.

Individual Awards:

LordTreeSap – MVP: LeBron James

This will be one of those years LeBron gets MVP when he actually deserves it pretty much every single season. With Kyrie moving on and IT out until at least January, LeBron will be motivated to keep up with Boston in the Eastern Conference while posting marvelous numbers once again in his 15th season!!!!

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6th Man: Lou Williams

Sweet Lou was having a great year in L.A. before being dealt to Houston where he had to adjust his game a little bit to fit in because they already had the 2016 6th Man of The Year with Eric Gordon in that role. Now, with the Clippers they will need Lou-Will to ball out if they want to have a chance at finding their way into the post-season without Chris Paul at the helm.

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DPOY: Draymond Green

Draymond has a really good chance to go back-to-back in this department after leading the league in steals and averaging 1.4 blocks and nearly eight boards a night while still being the heart and soul of a stingy Golden State defense.

MIP: Kristaps Porzingis

Zinger!!!! Gotham is officially Kristaps’ city with Carmelo moving on. Hopefully the 22-year-old will be able to wear the burden this season. If Frankie Ice can get him the ball in good spots I can’t see how Porzingis doesn’t average at least 22 and 10 in this uptempo system. Goodbye triangle offense.

ROY: Ben Simmons

I’ve been debating Simmons and Lonzo on this for the past couple weeks but I will give Ben the slight edge even though he may not have the hype Ball does out in Los Angeles. With a year under his belt the LSU product has sufficient talent around him to run his point-forward role with ease. Philly is going to be a fun team this year that should be able to sneak into the post-season in a weak East.

COY: Gregg Popovich

This Kawhi injury may be worse than most people think as he’s already been ruled out opening night and still has an “indefinite” tag next to the 2016 Defensive Player of The Year’s name. I still fully expect Pop to work his magic and have this team win over 50 games, which they always do no matter who’s out there. They will still be right in the thick of it in the West come April.

Scoring Champion: Kyrie Irving

Kyrie Irving is the new king of Boston. He got his wishes to get out from under LeBron’s shadow and will probably have an unbelievable year as he enters his prime and plays for the best coach he’s had so far in the NBA by a mile. With Russ and James Harden’s teams acquiring major talent I think they won’t top this list. I can definitely hear an argument from Anthony Davis or Damian Lillard who will have to carry their team to victory.

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DG – MVP: James Harden

This man has a legitimate argument that he should’ve won the MVP on at least two separate occasions. I think the third time will be a charm. Chris Paul might take away some of those assists from Harden, but expect points to go up as he flirts with 30 PPG.

6th Man – Jamal Crawford

The best 6th man in the league will notch his 4th win in this category. Minnesota has to take the next step eventually and for that to happen, Crawford needs to lead the 2nd team in scoring, a task that he will easily accomplish.

DPOY – Draymond Green

It’s really hard to bet against Green when he will once again be the best defender on the best team. Rudy Gobert will make it interesting, but Green is arguably the most important player on the Warriors and definitely the most important defender.

MIP: Jusuf Nurkic

Sticking with LTS foreign flavor, I love Zinger to death, but I think Nurkic wins this award. Who would’ve thought that he would explode onto the scene after being traded to the Blazers? Now, he’ll have a full season with a Blazers team that is looking to reach the playoffs for a 5th straight year. Big year for Nurkic.

ROY: Lonzo Ball

I can’t pick against my fellow Big Baller. Say what you want about the Ball family, Lonzo can flat out Ball *grins*. I loved his game in college and I think it will translate to the pros. The shot is weird, but it goes in. More importantly, Ball is extremely unselfish and an excellent passer so look for him to be towards the top in assists.

COY: Brad Stevens

Besides Gregg Popovich, there is no better coach in the NBA than Brad Stevens. He has improved his win total every single year and that trend will continue again. I think the Cs are one year away from getting to the NBA Finals, but Stevens officially cements himself as the 2nd best coach in the league this year.


Playoff Seeding:

LordTreeSap – Western Conference

  1. Golden State Warriors
  2. Oklahoma City Thunder
  3. Houston Rockets
  4. San Antonio Spurs
  5. Minnesota Timberwolves
  6. Denver Nuggets
  7. Utah Jazz
  8. Portland Trailblazers

Eastern Conference –

  1. Cleveland Cavaliers
  2. Boston Celtics
  3. Washington Wizards
  4. Toronto Raptors
  5. Milwaukee Bucks
  6. Charlotte Hornets
  7. Philadelphia 76ers
  8. Miami Heat

DG – Western Conference

  1. Golden State Warriors
  2. Houston Rockets
  3. Oklahoma City Thunder
  4. San Antonio Spurs
  5. Portland Trailblazers
  6. Minnesota Timberwolves
  7. Utah Jazz
  8. New Orleans Pelicans

Eastern Conference

  1. Cleveland Cavaliers
  2. Boston Celtics
  3. Washington Wizards
  4. Toronto Raptors
  5. Milwaukee Bucks
  6. Miami Heat
  7. Charlotte Hornets
  8. Detroit Pistons

Conference Final/Champions:

LTS: West – Warriors over Thunder

East- Cavaliers over Celtics

DG: West – Warriors over Rockets

East – Cavaliers over Celtics

Finals:

LTS: Cavaliers over Warriors

DG: Warrios over Cavaliers

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