With the second half of the NBA about to begin, we here at Over the Grill take a look into my crystal ball to see the future and how the season ends. This is Ryan McMahon’s End of the Season Predictions.
The Golden State Warriors will finish with the best record in the NBA:
Despite the surprising competition being put up by the Atlanta Hawks, the Warriors will finish the NBA regular season with the best record in the NBA. They are just too good on both ends of the floor to be stopped. And their bench is ridiculously deep with both scorers and defenders. And with Steph Curry and Klay Thompson showing no signs of slowing down, is there any back court that can stop the Western leading team?
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The Atlanta Hawks will make a deep run in the postseason:
The Atlanta Hawks are winning. They are winning a lot. And they are doing this by using the a very similar formula a certain Gregg Popovic uses over in San Antonio. The Hawks have the talent and depth that can make them a team no one wants to play in the post season. That, and almost every team in the Eastern Conference sucks. I can see them making a run into the second round at least, and potentially even the Eastern Conference Finals.
The Oklahoma City Thunder will not only make it into the postseason, the will go far:
The Thunder currently sit in 9th place in the West. But now everyone is healthy and they are ready to finish the season strong. This is the perfect time for the team to go on a roll, and keep the hot-streak entering the postseason. And if Sam Presti gets a decent return for OKC guard Reggie Jackson, which I believe he will, the Thunder will have enough depth to compete with any team in the West.
Many big name free agents will accept 1-year deals in attempts to get paid in a big way:
The current CBA is set to expire next offseason, but what about all the big name free agents this offseason? Expect many names, such as Rajon Rondo and Kevin Love to push their free agency off another year to collect under the new CBA in a big way.
The Los Angeles Lakers will win the NBA Draft Lottery:
With the 4th worst record in the NBA and a top-five protected pick, the Lakers are on the edge of glory. As the NBA’s most profitable franchise, the NBA lottery, if actually rigged, will award Duke center Jail Okafor to the purple and gold on the West coast.
James Harden will beat out Steph Curry to win MVP:
James Harden is balling right now. So much so that his team does not miss Dwight Howard all that much. The All-Star shooting guard is leading the NBA in scoring and has his team in playoff contention despite the loss of the Houston center being benched with a knee injury. Steph Curry may have lead his team to the best Western record, but he has a whole lot of talent surrounding him. Advantage: Beard.
Andrew Wiggins wins Rookie of the Year and Kevin Garnett retires a Timberwolf:
Ok, these are two separate things but its Minnesota so lets just throw them together. Andrew Wiggins is one heck of a player, and I believe the the Cleveland Cavaliers trade to get Kevin Love will go down as one of the stupidest and most short-sighted trades in NBA history. Andrew Wiggins will be great,as he is already pretty good now. Kevin Garnett will return to the T-Wolves at today’s trade deadline. And why not? The Nets are not much better than the struggling Minnesota franchise, and Garnett gets to return to the place that drafted him. I see him taking a similar route to Michael Jordan: an all-time great who plays, immediately jumps in the front office, and then eventually makes a bid for the team. Kevin Garnet: Hall-of-Famer, President of Basketball Operations, Team Owner. Yeah that all has a nice ring to it. And the T-Wolves will improve tremendously with such a competitive person calling the shots.
Mark Cuban wins Executive of the Year:
Because how would he not win this award? I know he’s an owner and everything, but the man is a certified basketball genius. He has taken the cap space he made to sign Dwight Howard and has turned it into a very productive Monta Ellis, Rajon Rondo, Tyson Chandler and was able to keep his aging star in Dallas without a heavy pay day. The guy has turned the Mavs from a middle of the road, not making the playoffs team into a potential title contender. Now he adds Amare Stoudemire and everyone watch out. These guys will be tough to beat.
Mike Budenholzer beats out Steve Kerr for Coach of the Year:
Or maybe the other way around. Or maybe they spilt it. The point is these two coaches are by far the best two coaches in the NBA. The both have the best record in their respective conference. One of these two will walk away with the award.
And the Larry O’Brien Trophy goes to….
The Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Washington Wizards in 6 to take home the trophy. the Thunder will get hot entering the playoffs, and not even the explosive Warriors will be able to stand in their way. Kevin Durant will win the Finals MVP award. The Wizards will rely heavily on their backcourt duo of John Wall and Bradley Beal, as well as the contributions from forwards Nene and and Marcin Gortat to reach the Finals. But in the end, the scoring prowess of both Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook will be too much to overcome.