Friday, November 04, 2005

NBA Predictions (by Creek)

Western conference playoff teams:

8th. Minnesota Timberwolves

Why they'll make the playoffs:

KG is healthy.... Getting rid of Sam Cassell is a good move, but Marko Jaric's career can be discribed as consistently unimpressive. Although, give him credit for having the shortest last name among active Serbian players. He also has his own website where you can learn things like Marko ranks #11 in the NBA in Steals Per Turnover. Wonderful. We could see a lot of troy Hudson at the point.... Sprewell's departure makes room for Rashad McCants, even though Trenton Hassell is listed as the starter. My guess is McCants takes over fulltime at some point early on. Why? Because his competition is Trenton fucking Hassell. Hassell's defense is nice off the bench, but McCants is a good shooter and should average somewhere around 14-16 points this year.... The Kandi man is in a contract year, which can only be good for the T'wolves.

Player to watch - Eddie Griffin
Just for sheer amusement. He's legitimately crazy, and crazy is always enjoyable. Plus, he's talented. He can score, and if he can stay focused he could be a candidate for 6th man of the year, and a big help in getting this team in the playoffs.

7th. Utah Jazz

Why they'll make the playoffs:

Jerry Sloan is coaching them.... They were the victim of countless injuries, and a feud between Sloan and Carlos Arroyo last year, but this year, they have a new point guard in Deron Williams, who is a solid defender, and has very good court vision.... A healthy Andrei Kirilenko. He has, by far, my favorite nickname in the NBA. AK47. It's genius. He is the best defender in the league, as well as a good scorer. He may be ready to take over Dirk's crown as the best foreigner in the league.... Hopefully now that Carlos Boozer has got his Woody Allen movie behind him ("Take the Money and Run"), he can stay healthy, and actually earn his man. When he does play, he is one of the better power forwards under 25.

Player to watch- Mehmet Okur
Literally, watch him play. I don't think anyone makes funnier faces playing basketball than Mehmet Okur. Take a look: so much his face, but the picture itself is hilarious)

And if you didn't take the time to look at every single one of those, shame on you.

6th. Sacramento

Why they'll make the playoffs:

Mike Bibby. Bibby makes the Kings click. He's the one you can count on *looks at Peja, and shakes head*. Somehow, he's still underrated.... I'm not a Bonzi Wells fan. He doesn't impress me that much, be he's another guy that if you give minutes, he'll put up 15/5. I like Francisco Garcia much more than him. Garcia is a better shooter, and has become a very good defender. I think he'll be starting for the Kings before the year is done.... Peja is great as long as he isn't touching the ball in the playoffs. Other than that, I see no problem with him.... Brad Miller has come on as a top center in recent years, and is a great passing big man. In a perfect world, he's getting it down low, then dishing it to Garcia, where he can show off his quick release....

Player to watch- Francisco Garcia
I'm telling you people, he is a fantastic shooter. He plays with a passion, and is a solid all-around player.

5th.Dallas Mavericks

Why they'll make the playoffs:

They still have a talented team.... Dirk is coming off his best season yet, and it will be interesting to see what type of leadership role he has with Michael Finley in San Antonio.... Josh Howard and Marquis Daniels are two top young talents, and will only get better.... Jason Terry is going to be the 2nd scoring option, for better or worse. I wouldn't be suprised to see him play some 2, with Devin Harris at the point.... Doug Christie will be the first guy off the bench, as the Mavs need a strong defensive presence. On the other hand, his wife's a complete and total bitch, and he has no balls. So, what was my point again?

Player to watch- Marquis Daniels
He's healthy again, and with Stackhouse out for what could be awhile, Daniels is an explosive player who could spark the Mavs to bigger and better things.

4th. Houston Rockets

Why they'll make the playoffs:

T-Mac has reached the next level. It happened sometime in the series with Dallas last year, but he is now officially in the upper echelon.... Yao wasn't hanging around with all his Chinese buddies this year, so he'll be rested, and ready for the stretch run.... Stromile Swift was a great signing. He'll protect Yao nicely, and throw down some great 'oops from Rafer Alston's alley'..... The rebirth of Derek Anderson.

Player to watch- Derek Anderson
Anderson's career had been going down in Portland, and I think a change of scenery will be good for him. He is a legit scoring threat, and has range from beyond the arc.

3rd. Phoenix Suns

Why they'll make the playoffs:

Even without Amare, they still have the leagues MVP in Steve Nash. But seriously, 8 years ago, who would have thought this guy would end up EVER being the league's MVP. He looks exactly like Alan Cummings. Free Image Hosting at

The most valuable player of the National Basketball Association bears a striking resemblance to the guy who played The Great Gazoo in "The Flinstones in Viva Rock Vegas." Let that sink in.... They replaced "Q" with Raja Bell, who is 100X better of a defender, and to make up for the loss of three pointers, they signed James Jones.... Trading for Kurt Thomas looks like an even better move now with Amare out.

Player to watch- James Jones
How will he do starting? He is a good shooter, and will be getting starter's minutes. I would definitely take a risk on him in a fantasy league (oh wait, I am). I'm thinking 13/6 & a couple of three's a night.

2nd. Denver Nuggets

Why they'll make the playoffs:

They've only gotten better since last year.... 'Melo is a prime canidate for comeback player of the year. He's still one of the most talented players in the league, but for the love of god, tell him to stop shooting three's. I won't be happy until he attempts under 100 three's in a season.... "The fat boy is back, the fat boy is back" OK, so maybe Voshon Lenard isn't as fat as he was at the 3 point contest, but I'm milking this joke for as long as I can. With any luck, someone taped the 3pt contest & will send me a copy.... Having a whole offseason and training camp with George Karl will be good for the team.

Player to watch- Nene Hilario
Damn - my best rant and he goes down day one! I'm keeping this in anyway...I refuse to call Nene Hilario "Nene." 1st of all, you can't tell people what you want to be called. You have your name, and then we the people will decide on a nickname if we deem you worthy. And I don't deem him worthy as of yet. He has done nothing to deserve single name status. So, Mr. Hilario, if you perform, I will take into consideration your idea for a nickname, but until then, Hilario it is.

1. San Antonio Spurs

Why they'll make the playoffs:

Everything about this team is a bright spot. Offense, defense, bench, coaching, Eva Longoria (mmm Eva).... Duncan is still the best forward in basketball.... 'Manu was amazing in the playoffs.... Bruce Bowen still shuts people down.... The Michael Finley signing.... I'll stop here, as not to embarrass the rest of the teams in the West.


8th. Milwaukee Bucks

Why they'll make the playoffs:

TJ Ford is BACK.... Bringing in Jamal Magloire to let Bogut develop behind him was a great move. Magloire is still a very good center.... Bobby Simmons is a definite upgrade over Desmond Mason. Simmons is a better rebounder, plays better defense, and is just as good of a scorer..... It will be fun to watch Dan Gadzuric come in every now and then, and foul out within 5 minutes. always enjoyable.... They really don't have any holes, and that's good enough to make the playoffs.

Player to watch- T.J Ford
After a scary neck injury, and ensuing rehab, it will be interesting to see how he plays. In game one, he had 16/14, so if that's a sign of things to come, things will be looking up in Milwaukee.

7th. Washington Wizards

Why they'll make the playoffs:

Gilbert Arenas is a premiere scorer, and the one guy who I just couldn't seem to get in any of my fantasy leagues this year.... Caron Butler will re-emerge as a solid wing....Antonio Daniels showed last year in the playoffs, that he is capable of starting. They would be fools not to let him run the point with Arenas at the 2.... Antawn Jamison is back, and is still a solid number 2 scoring option.... Michael Ruffin looks like an alien.... Chucky Atkins is good to come in and sink a big three in crunch time. If a guard goes down, he'll come in at the point and the other will move to the 2.

Player to watch- Caron Butler
Was one of the key players in Miami's pre-Shaq playoff run. A very good defender, and scorer.

6th. Philadelphia 76ers

Why they'll make the playoffs:

They're my team, and these are my predictions, damnit.... AI and C-Webb have had a whole offseason to play with each other (oh quit giggling!).... Iguodala is the bomb-diggity. If he can become a better scorer, he'll be an all-NBA 1st teamer in a couple of years..... Stephen Hunter is a great guy to have fill in down low when Webber or Dalembert go down, or need a break. And with Dalembert and Webber, you know someone will be going down, in fact, Sammy D is already hurt.... John Salmons will become what Aaron McKie was to the Sixers team that reached the NBA finals. A solid guard off the the bench, who has the ability to score.

Player to watch- Chris Webber
If he's back to form, and starts to feel comfortable with the team, the Sixers have a chance to win the division. If he is constantly injured, Philly fans will kill him. Literally kill him... Like end his life.

5th. Detroit Pistons

Why they'll make the playoffs:

Even without Larry Brown, they still have all the talent left over.... They are the best defensive team in the league.... Tayshaun got paid, so maybe now he can afford some food.... Rip Hamilton is still a super hero.... Flip Saunders is actually a good coach. I think the players just stopped trying towards the end in Minnesota.... Remember Carlos Arroyo at the Olympics? He still has that talent right? The bugs from Space Jam haven't been hiding around lately, have they? Those damn bugs, almost ruined Larry Johnson's career. Oh wait-.... The Wallace boys are still down low. Gotta love ol' Afro & Baldspot.

Player to watch- Darko Millcic
It sounds like he may not be as bad as Brown thought he was. I'm hoping he remains unsuccessful, so basketball fans don't lose our favorite joke.

4th. Cleveland Caviliers

Why they'll make the playoffs:

They have the most talented NBA player since MJ.... the additions of Larry Hughes, Donyell Marshall, and Damon Jones. Hughes lead the league in steals last year, and both Marshall and Jones are good three point shooters.... They resigned Big Z, one of the conference's top offensive centers.... Eric Snow won't be starting. At least I hope for their sake he won't be. He hasn't made a shot in 6 years. Just trust me on this.

Player to watch- Luke Jackson
Remember him? Him and Luke Ridnour were so fun to watch. He was hurt last year, but hopefully he is back to the status that made him the 10th pick in the draft.

3rd. New Jersey Nets

Why they'll make the playoffs:

Kidd's back, Jefferson's back, Carter's back.... Alleyoops are OMG super cool! Seriously, I'm banking on at least 5 of them a night from this team..... The additions of Jeff McInnis, Marc Jackson, and Clifford Robinson help solidify the bench. The McInnis signing is especially important, because if Kidd goes down, it's his show..... Nenad Krstic is a valuable weapon down low, and enjoys giving Yao titty twisters

Player to watch- Jason Kidd
Just how healthy is he? If the Nets get up by more than 15 late, can they take him out immediately? If this team can get in the playoffs with Kidd, Jefferson, and Carter healthy, they could upset the Pacers or Heat.

2nd. Indiana Pacers

Why they'll make the playoffs:

None of their players got jail time.... A full season with Jermaine O'Neal, and Ron Artest. Artest is even getting a lot of preseason MVP buzz. Artest is a hair below AK47 defensively, but is a better scorer. JON is the best power forward in the east..... I love Jeff Foster.... the combination of Jamaal Tinsley, and Sarunas Jasikeviciusnousnostracornicopius should keep both fresh for the playoffs.... Stephen Jackson taking over for Reggie Miller isn't much of a step down, plus, do you really think anybody in the NBA would mess with him? Excatly.

Player to watch- Jonathan Bender
All we've been hearing about since he was drafted, is how much talent he has. This year, he's rehabbed, and ready to contribute. He was supposed to take Al Harrington's spot as the main contibutor off the bench last year, but got hurt, and only played in 7 games.

1st. Miami Heat

Why they'll make the playoffs:

Shaq-Fu! Got to love the best personality in sports. Did anyone else enjoy his show as much as I did?.... Dwayne Wade's emergence as the biggest star in Miami sports since Marino (that's right, he's bigger than Shaq).... They have more talent than anyone else.... James Posey is an upgrade from Eddie Jones..... Udonis Haslem a beast rebounding the ball. He's only 6'8, but plays 6'11. Alonzo Mourning will cry if they don't.... 'cause he's a big, kidney-less baby.

Player to watch- Antoine Walker
How will he deal with being the 3rd scorer? Early in the season, after launching his 7th straight missed three pointer in 3 minutes, I'm betting Shaq's just going to slap him. That would make my day.

Western Conference Finals- Spurs over Suns in 5
Eastern Conference Finals- Pacers over Heat in 6
NBA Finals- Pacers over Spurs in 7

Player Awards:
MVP- Tracy McGrady
Rookie of the Year- Chris Paul
6th Man of the Year- Michael Finley
Most improved- Smush Parker
Defensive Player of the Year- AK47
Coach of the Year- Rick Carlisle
All NBA 1st team:
PG- Allen Iverson
SG- Tracy McGrady
SF- Kevin Garnett
PF- Tim Duncan
C- Shaq

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