Zach Lowe is one of my favorite writers, and every year his bold predictions are one of my favorite articles. Today I want to look back at five bold predictions that Zach Lowe got right.
Also if you want to check out the article, here is the link: http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/21002422/zach-lowe-32-crazy-nba-predictions-2017-18
1. “LeBron James leaves Cleveland again”
You have to remember that this prediction was made before the season even started. At the end of his description for LeBron leaving Cleveland he noted, “Sound crazy? So did everything that happened this summer. The league’s best players have the clout to make anything happen.” Not a lot of people had this prediction at the time. We didn’t know what was going to happen in Cleveland, and most thought a big three of Isaiah Thomas, LeBron James, and Kevin Love could potentially beat the Warriors. Many thought Isaiah Thomas would retain his title of the King of the 4th Quarter. No one thought injuries would ruin his season. This prediction was impressive, as we know that he is in a Lakers jersey.
2.”Denver declines its option on Nikola Jokic — and pays him the max”
What a prediction. This is a great prediction as still now people think the Jokic max deal is risky for the Nuggets. The Nuggets knew that if they accepted the option, Jokic would be on the market for another move. To lock up him for to be locked up for five more seasons is huge.
3. “Karl-Anthony Towns goes 50-40-85
The NBA has a 50-40-90 club. In order to be in it, you must have 50% from the field, 40% from three and 90% from the free throw line. Towns would have to go from being an 82% free throw shooter to a 90%, which is tough. Instead, Lowe went with 50-40-85. Last season Towns achieved just that, with a 54.5% field goal percentage, 42.1% three point percentage, and a 85.8% free throw percentage. Therefore, he achieved being in the 50-45-85 club, exactly what Zach Lowe predicted.
4. “Marc Gasol and Mike Conley remain untouchable”
As Lowe puts it in the article, “They aren’t really untouchable.” However the problem with Gasol and Conley is that they both have large contracts and they are good players. Not a lot of teams want to trade for someone like Conley, but at the same time it isn’t a bad decision to just keep him. This season Conley averaged about 17 points a game, while Gasol averaged just about 17 points a game with also 8 boards a game. They are two good players, and as Lowe predicted, they so far have not been traded.
5. “At least one coach is fired by Christmas”
Usually a coach will be fired in the offseason, and if not the offseason it is usually January. Two coaches this year were fired before Christmas, Earl Watson and David Fizdale. Watson was fired before anyone expected, just three games into the season. Even if you count that as technically before the season has really even started, Fizdale was fired in November. The Grizzlies had a hot start at the very beginning of the year, however then they went on a losing streak. The team went from 7-4 to 7-12, and because of that Fizdale was fired. Lowe was right by saying that at least one coach would be fired before Christmas, because two teams made the decision to do just that.
Zach Lowe is a smart reporter and I believe that these 5 bold predictions prove it. Whether it is something that has to do with stats or something that has to do with a Free Agency signing, Lowe can predict it using analysis. He has a great perspective on the game, and that is why he is one of my favorite writers. Thank you for reading today’s blog post!