9 October 2022
Here is a quick look of what I’m expecting to see in the 2022/23 season this year across the various awards, standings, and results.
Ultimately, it should be a fun season. I see Philly surprising people; Maxey makes a big jump and Harden has a bounce back season to be an effective enough player around Embiid and Maxey. I think the Nuggets are going to come out swinging every night and dominate the regular season and playoffs until, ultimately, the Clippers turn on the jets in the playoffs and Kawhi reminds people who he really is.
I hate to say it, but my Bulls are more than likely going to take a step back. Going without Lonzo for 1-2 months, Patrick Williams unlikely to take that next step on the offensive end, DeMar a year older… it just doesn’t have the makings of good things to come for us. They did add some depth at PG and C with Dragic and Drummond, but still… Putting them at 8 is probably overly optimistic at this point, especially considering the Hawks added Dejounte Murray to bolster their backcourt. I am hopeful that Dalen Terry can bring a real spark to the Bulls as long as he doesn’t get carried away on the offensive end, but is still able to knock down open opportunities. A Lonzo, Caruso, Dalen, PatWil lineup can be deadly on the defensive end for them though. Ultimately, for the Bulls to have any real shot at the playoffs, DeMar needs to continue to bring it and LaVine needs a bounce back year after he was riddled with injuries last year, and Lonzo needs to play. Too much of how the Bulls run revolves around Ball. He keeps the ball moving on offense to ensure easy buckets and is the captain of the defense, helping to limit drives to the softly guarded lane, especially when partnered with Caruso.
Staying in the East, I expect both Barnes and Mobley are only going to get better and do great things for their respective teams to help elevate them above the middle of the pack.
On the other side of things, I’m hopeful that the Pelicans will be better than I’ve predicted because if they are, they will be super fun to watch. Despite the Draymond mess, Warriors will hang around and play solid to stick in the middle of the pack as will the Clippers with their wing depth and resting stars.
I have zero thoughts on the Nets and Lakers and don’t plan on giving them anymore thought until they prove they can do something.