Reporting with Hills Pride

The Trailblazer

Reporting with Hills Pride

The Trailblazer

Reporting with Hills Pride

The Trailblazer

    2011-2012 NBA Season Preview

    A month ago, it seemed almost inevitable that there would not be an NBA season, due to the 149-day lockout. Thanks to a sudden turn of events, the season is set to begin on Christmas day. Currently, basketball fans are witnessing a crazy offseason, highlighted by the trade rumors surrounding two of the games biggest stars: Chris Paul and Dwight Howard. Where will they land? No one knows. Therefore, any picks for the season are subject to change. But with the tip-off of the shortened NBA season just days away, it is time to make some predictions.


    Eastern Conference:

    For the Atlantic Division, the first place finisher will be the New York Knickerbockers. The Boston Celtics have been the powerhouse in this division for a few years now, but this year will be different. With the Celtics “Big Three” aging quickly, the New York Knicks are on the rise with one of the most dominant frontcourts in the league, consisting of Amar’e Stoudemire, Carmelo Anthony, and newly acquired Tyson Chandler. However, if the New Jersey Nets can manage to pull off a trade for superstar Dwight Howard, the Nets may be able to give the Knicks a run for their money.


    In the Central Division, the winner will be the Bulls from the Windy City, Chicago. Let’s be honest, in a division that consists of the Indiana Pacers, Milwaukee Bucks, Detroit Pistons, and Cleveland Cavaliers, if the Chicago Bulls didn’t win the division, the team would be a disgrace to basketball fans around the globe. Reigning MVP Derrick Rose will carry his Bulls to another playoff appearance. Nothing else need be said.


    In the Southeast Division, the Miami Heat will come out on top. After a disappointing finish to the 2010-2011 season, the Miami Heat is looking for revenge. Having already played a full season together in South Beach, Lebron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh will again be a favorite to reach the finals, no doubt, especially after last year’s finals collapse. And with the possible departure of Dwight Howard in Orlando, there won’t be much competition for Lebron and crew.


    Ranked from first place to eighth in the Eastern Conference, my playoff picture looks like:

    1. Miami Heat
    2. New York Knicks
    3. Chicago Bulls
    4. Boston Celtics
    5. Atlanta Hawks
    6. Orlando Magic
    7. New Jersey Nets
    8. Indiana Pacers


    Western Conference:


    In the Western Conference, the Dallas Mavericks will win the Southwest Division. Coming off the organization’s first championship, the Mavericks have only gotten better. Although they lost Tyson Chandler to the Knicks, they have already acquired Lamar Odom and Vince Carter. The Mavericks have some good competition in their division with the Memphis Grizzlies and the San Antonio Spurs, but neither team has what it takes to dethrone the former champions.


    For the Northwest Division, the Oklahoma City Thunder will come out on top. If anyone in the Western Conference is going to take down Dallas, it’s going to be the Thunder. Led by the young, dynamic duo of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, the Thunder are emerging as one of the league’s best teams and should stay that way for many years to come.


    In the powerhouse Pacific Division, the Los Angeles Lakers will dominate the Staples Center. Make room Kobe. Your Lakers are not the only team in Los Angeles worth anything. The Clippers and high-flying Blake Griffin are not going to let the Lakers run away with the division title that easily. They have already claimed Chauncey Billups off waivers to add veteran leadership to the team and they are battling with the Lakers to trade for possibly the best point guard in the league in Chris Paul. The Clippers won’t win the division this year, but the Lakers better watch out because it won’t be easy.


    For the Western Conference, the playoff picture will go as follows:


    1. Dallas Mavericks
    2. Oklahoma City Thunder
    3. Los Angeles Lakers
    4. Memphis Grizzlies
    5. San Antonio Spurs
    6. Los Angeles Clippers
    7. Golden State Warriors
    8. Portland Trailblazers



    When the year gets deep into the postseason, the NBA Finals will be more thrilling than ever. I believe that the Miami Heat will defeat Oklahoma City Thunder in a series of 4-2. Both teams battle it out in a very intense, memorable series, which will include three game-winning shots. Lebron James will shut up the critics and put an end to his reputation of not being able to close out games. The Heat are a more experienced team and that will ultimately give them the advantage. The Big Three will win their first of many future NBA championships.


    These are all my personal predictions, so nothing is guaranteed. But soon the sports world will see how everything plays out. Basketball is back and better than ever.

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