We continue the season previews with question number 30! Enjoy!
30. Is Lebron still the best player in the league? – Yes
Lebron is for sure the best player in the league, and will be for the next 2 seasons. This season he is off to a great start, with 25 PPG, 8.3 RPG, and 6.3 APG. The King had a great opener against the Celtics, with 29 points, 16 rebounds and 9 assists. He also got 2 blocks on the game, with 4 blocks on the season. In every season for the Cavs he has averaged over 25 PPG. Questions were asked last year about whether he could perform at his age, Lebron went out there scoring 26.4 PPG, 1.1 more points a game then the year before. King James looks like he is getting better each year, as he shows his experience in the Playoffs. That is why he has been to six straight finals.
31. Are the Raptors being underestimated – No
The Raptors are a good playoff team. That is pretty much it. They have no shot at making the Finals, and I think the real question is if they got better from last year. Here is the starting 5 + bench from last season and this season:
PG: Kyle Lowry(30-31)
SG: Demar Derozan(27)
SF: DeMarre Carroll(30)
PF: Serge Ibaka(27)
C: Jonas Valanciunes(24)
PG: Cory Joseph(25)
SG: Norman Powell(24)
SF: P.J. Tucker(31)
PF: Patrick Patterson(27-28)
C: Lucas Nogueira(24)
PG: Kyle Lowry(31-32)
SG: DeMar DeRozan(28)
SF: C.J. Miles(30-31)
PF: Serge Ibaka(28)
C: Jonas Valanciunes(24)
PG: Delon Wright(25-26)
SG: OG Anunoby(20)
SF: Norman Powell(25)
PF: Pascal Siakam(23-24)
C: Jakob Poeltl(21-22)
These depth charts show they lost some valuable players in the offseason. P.J. Tucker went to the Rockets, as well as Patterson going to the Thunder. There are other players on the bench that helped with depth. Not only that, players are getting older. The Raptors could be stuck with Lowry for 3 more years, as at the end of his contract he will be about 35. Derozan will be older this year, as well as C.J. Miles and Serge Ibaka. With this in mind, the Raptors not only lost depth but they don’t have a key young player to grow on. They aren’t going to build on Valanciunes, because while he is a good player he is not close to an all-star. OG Anunoby could be good, however as a late pick in the draft you can’t rely on him. With the back court getting older, they need to decide how they are going to get another star. They need a front court player as good as Cousins, Towns, Jokic, and Deandre Jordan. If they get a great front court member, they can succeed in the season. I don’t believe it will happen during the season, therefore they aren’t being underestimated.
32. Is Nikola Jokic a franchise player? – Yes
Nikola Jokic is definitely a franchise player. We have seen centers in this century such as Dwight Howard, Yao Ming, and Shaq dominate competition. More specifically, Dirk Nowitzki is a European franchise player. Nikola Jokic is the guy to build around for the Nuggets. If they get a good Point Guard such as Eric Bledsoe, they can succeed in the coming seasons. Nikola Jokic is only 22 years old, meaning he has many years to grow as one of the best Nuggets players in franchise history.
33. Will the Warriors win 70+ games? – No
As I said before, I made these predictions before the season started. However it really proves a point of the Warriors when they are 2-2. With how they look against the Grizzlies, Pelicans, and Rockets it doesn’t look good for the defending champions. They don’t have the same amount of energy, especially when they played at home vs the Rockets.
I thought the Warriors wouldn’t hit 70+ games because last year they didn’t get to the mark. There older players are getting on, meaning they have to play less minutes. With this in mind, the bench will be playing a lot more minutes until the Playoffs. Guys like Cassipi and Young have to step up, which isn’t as much production as a 2014-15 Andre Igoudala off the bench. At 33 years old, Iggy won’t be playing much minutes in the regular season. This was the one major point on why I didn’t and still don’t think the Warriors will get 70+ wins.
Thank you for reading and have an amazing rest of your day!