Posts Tagged ‘Espn.com’

Reading NBA tea leaves in September

September 29, 2008

Providing accurate Power Rankings at this point in the PRE-SEASON is a perilous exercise. 

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Power Rankings: Training Camp edition

NO. RANK  | Team | Last Season’s W-L Record | Last Season’s Ranking | Improved Ranking This Pre-Season

1 Boston Celtics 66-16 [1] +0
2 LA Lakers 57-25 [2] +0
3 New Orleans Hornets 56-26 [5] +2
4 Houston Rockets 55-27 [6] +2
5 San Antonio Spurs 56-26 [8] +3 **
6 Cleveland Cavaliers 45-37 [15] +9 **
7 Detroit Pistons 59-23 [3] -4 *
8 Philadelphia 76ers 40-42 [13] +5
9 Utah Jazz 54-28 [4] -5 *
10 Toronto Raptors 41-41 [19] +9 **
11 Dallas Mavericks 51-31 [10] -1
12 Phoenix Suns 55-27 [7] -5 *
13 Portland Trailblazers 41-41 [17] +4
14 Orlando Magic 52-30 [11] -3 *
15 Washington Wizards 43-39 [12] -3 *
16 Milwaukee Bucks 26-56 [24] +8
17 Chicago Bulls 33-49 [23] +6
18 Denver Nuggets 50-32 [9] -9
19 LA Clippers 23-59 [29] +10 **
20 G-State Warriors 48-34 [14] -6
21 Charlotte Bobcats 32-50 [21] +0
22 Atlanta Hawks 37-45 [17] -5 *
23 Sacramento Kings 38-44 [16] -7
24 Miami Heat 15-67 [30] +6
25 Indiana Pacers 36-46 [20] -5 *
26 New York Knicks 23-59 [25] -1
27 New Jersey Nets 34-48 [22] -5 *
28 Minnesota Timberwolves 22-60 [28] +0
29 Memphis Grizzlies 22-60 [26] -3
30 Oklahoma Thunder 20-62 [27] -3

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According to these eyes, Marc Stein [ESPN.com] has not perceived accurately what’s in the cupboard, right now, for a number of different teams, in the NBA, for the 2008-2009 season:

Under-rated *
Pistons [-4], Jazz [-5], Suns [-5], Magic [-3], Wizards [-3], Hawks [-5], Pacers [-5] and Nets [-5];

Over-rated **
Clippers [+10], Raptors [+9], Cavaliers [+9] and Spurs [+3].

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Bookmark this page … and, come April 2009, it will be interesting to see which of these teams have performed according to the training camp expectations of a noted ‘NBA Insider’ and which ones have not.

The 10 worst words heard in Raptorland …

February 29, 2008

… were just uttered, a few moments ago, live on-air, during this evening’s TV broadcast of Toronto’s game (at home) vs Indiana … in the aftermath of Chris Bosh being substituted out (in favour of Jason Kapono) at the 02:23 mark of the 1st Quarter (TOR 17, Ind 26), with what looked to be an injury to his right knee:

2nd Quarter
08:47 … Chuck Swirsky (Toronto’s Play-By-Play Announcer, reading an official report passed along from the team’s locker-room): Chris … Bosh … with … a … sore … right … knee … will … NOT … be … back. (TOR 29, Ind 43)

Yes, it’s still early and, hopefully, this is simply a ‘cautionary’ move by the Raptors’ athletic training staff …

but, on the same day that John Hollinger (Espn.com) annoints the Raptors as one of the dark-horse teams (from the Eastern Conference) to make it to the NBA Finals this spring … this news bulletin strikes with ‘Lethal Force’ to Toronto’s playoffs aspirations this season.

If Chris Bosh is forced to miss any significant number of games for the Raptors this season, from this point forward, this team:

i) Will not be able to secure the #4 spot in the Eastern Conference Standings;

and, without home-court advantage in the 1st Round of the Playoffs

ii) Will not be able to advance to (at least) the Conference Semi-finals this year.

The next 24-48 hours … awaiting formal diagnosis of Bosh’s injury, will hold the key to the Raptors’ long term prognosis as an elite level team in the NBA. 

Everyone who’s a fan of CB4, specifically, and the Raptors’, in general, should be holding their collective breath until then.


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