Monday, October 28, 2013

ROUNDBALL IS BACK!

After a summer league full of Fabio's Kelly Olynyk's hair, we here at Roundball Manor are ready to jump on board the NBA Express.  Tomorrow tips off the 2013-2014 season with plenty of story lines ready to go:


1. Heat Three-Peat

Does Miami have what it takes to hold on for one more title?  Will Greg Oden give them the inside presence they have been missing?  Will Brooklyn, Chicago, or Indiana have what it takes to take over the East?  Will LeBron continue his historic run of pure dominance for another MVP season? 


2. DUHWight Howard in Houston

Can DUHWight regain his Orlando form and lead the Rockets out west this season?  Will he re-establish himself as the best center in the game?  Will he FINALLY get his head out of his ass?


3. Back from Injury

After season ending injuries to Derrick Rose, Kevin Love, Kobe Bryant, and Russell Westbrook, how will the balance of power shift?  A healthy Derrick Rose means big trouble for the Miami Heat.  Kevin Love back at 100% will give the TimberWhites a nice one two punch with Ricky Rubio, and should make for some very exciting hoops up North.  Russell Westbrook's second knee scope has him making a late fall return to OKC.  Can the Thunder keep pace in the standings until his return?  And finally, when will we see the Black Mamba back in purple and gold?  Do the Lakers have any chance at competing this season?


4. Wild Cards

Are the Brooklyn Nets better than advertised?  KG and Paul Pierce have led some very weak Celtic teams into deep playoff runs before.  Can they team up with their best supporting cast ever and lead the Nets to the promised land?

Can the Splash Brothers lead the Golden State Warriors from good to great?  Will the addition of Andre Iguodala give them the grit they need to make a deep playoff run?


5. Playoff Predictions

Last year Roundball Manor predicted a repeat of the 2012 Finals, with LeBron and company holding off another furious run by Kevin Durant and company.  Due to Westbrook's playoff injury, we weren't able to see that monster match up.  So lets get into this year's predictions!

East Playoffs

1. Miami
2. Chicago
3. Brooklyn
4. Indiana
5. Knicks
6. Pistons
7. Cavaliers
8. Wizards

Round 1- Miami over DC, Chicago over Cleveland, Brooklyn over Detroit, and Indiana over NY

Round 2- Chicago over Brooklyn, Miami over Indiana

East Finals- Miami over Chicago in 7.

West Playoffs

1. San Antonio
2. Houston
3. Oklahoma City
4. LA Clippers
5. Golden State
6. Memphis
7. Dallas
8. LA Lakers

Round 1- Spurs over Lakers, Rockets over Mavericks, Thunder over Grizzlies, Warriors over Clippers

Round 2- Warriors over Spurs, Thunder over Rockets

West Finals- Thunder over Warriors.  Golden State  will have a season for the ages culminating in a Western Conference Finals appearance.  

NBA Finals- Fans are treated to the series they missed out on last year when Russell Westbrook went down with a playoff injury.  A rematch between the Miami Heat and the Oklahoma City Thunder.  Even though the Thunder may not have the best record during the regular season due to Westbrook's late return, Kevin Durant will go absolutely nuclear down the stretch.  At 100% the Oklahoma City Thunder are the team to beat out West.  That being said, they will still have to go up against the greatest player of a generation in LeBron James.  The Miami Heat will have an even tougher time climbing out of the East, but if Greg Oden is healthy and can contribute down the stretch in games with his defensive presence, rebounding, and blocks, then the Heat are on their way to a Three Peat.  Its a tall order for a tall guy with multiple knee surgeries, but after two years of rest and rebuild, Oden looks to rebound his career giving the Miami Heat the inside presence they are looking for.  A Heat Three Peat is on the horizon for the best Roundballer on the planet.

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