01 October 2008

October means NBA


It's the first day of October, and you know what that means. 28 more days until Robert Swift plays the season opener with his new team, the Oklahoma Thunder!

I love the NBA.

If you're new to the Frozen Wasteland, you may not know that I'm a die-hard Jazz fan, despite hating the color purple and not really liking Carlos Boozer.

So while I'll be ranting about many different NBA topics, it'll always come back to Utah.

My general sense about this Jazz team is that they'll once again be good, but not great. They'll win 50 games, struggle through the first round of the playoffs, and lose in the second round or the Conference Finals.

Reasons:

1. There were no major changes to the team in the offseason. Get handled by the Lakers in 2008 Playoffs + Make no offseason changes = same result. Besides getting rid of Jason Hart (thank heavens) and picking up Brevin Knight, this is the exact same roster the Jazz trotted out last May.

2. You cannot win an NBA championship with Okur and Boozer as your four and five. Winning it all requires interior defense, and Boozer and Okur are possibly the worst starting power forward and center, individually, in the league. Combine them and it's a disaster. If I'm an opposing coach, I tell my guys to drive into the lane every single play. Either the Jazz will foul you or you'll get a layup.

3. The Lakers are going to be better. Courtesy of the Ball Don't Lie blog:

Here's Andrew Bynum three years ago:


And here he is today-ish. 





















Add Sun Yue, and L.A. is set for a good long time. Oh, and don't forget about Gasol and Kobe. 

Man, I hate the Lakers.

Plus, the Hornets and Blazers young and improving.

Then I read a couple articles about how the Jazz look in camp, and developed a little more faith. 



Reasons:

1. Kyle Korver had surgery to rid himself of a bone spur in his foot back in June. I liked the trade when it happened, and if we can get Korver shooting 40% from the 3 this year, the Jazz offense will be ever harder to stop.

2. I've heard good things about CJ Miles. The Jazz gave him a $16-million salary this offseason, and I hope that means the Jazz force Jerry Sloan to play the kid. 

3. Ronnie Brewer has reportedly gained around 20 pounds of muscle, and has improved his shot. 

4. There's always the off chance that Boozer and Okur will decide they are interested in playing defense. I believe they have the ability, just lack the will. Even if those two played up to 60% of their potential on that end of the floor, the Jazz win more games. 

The season opens with a doubleheader on TNT on October 28: Cavs/Boston and Portland/Lakers. Will we finally see Greg Oden play his first ever NBA game? Maybe

With playoff baseball, NFL, NCAA football and the NBA right around the corner, I love this month. 

6 comments:

LaPaube said...

Holy wow, Bynum has really put on some beef this summer. I just hope he can stay on the floor.

I think you're right about the Jazz staying mid-to-high in the Western Conference, then losing in the playoffs again. We learned last year that Williams is the one guy on the team who has the talent and the resolve to keep rolling in the playoffs. Teams need two or three of those type of guys in order to win it all.

Nick said...

WOOOO! Let's go Lakers, eh Brandon? Now you agree that the Lakers will be amazing?

But, I agree. Williams needs a way better frontcourt. He's too good to have these guys at 4 and 5. He needs Tyson Chandler and David West. Haha just kidding

LaPaube said...

By the way, Brandon, since you follow Swift so closely, what was up with the sudden change in appearance last year? (I think it was last year) I don't think I've ever seen a guy go from zero tattoos to entirely covered in tattoos in one fell swoop. Add in the long hair, the nail polish, and so on, and you have a pretty dramatic transition. Did he just get bored over there on the bench, or what?

Brandon said...

I never said the Lakers were a bad team... just that the way they got there was dirty, dirty, dirty. :)

And re: Swift, it's all part of his mystique. I don't try to understand it... I just take it in.

Josh said...

holy cow, Bynum has gotten fat

Nick said...

josh, thats not fat its freakin buffness