After last night’s loss to the Spurs, I was frustrated, yet optimistic on this season. I sat up until 3am thinking and talking Thunder basketball with my followers, while researching this team. A few things came to mind and I’d like to make some Bold predictions on this season. Some of you may not like the predictions, but as you’ve probably read, I’m a realist. Not everything that comes here is all rainbows and candy drops. If you want that, go to another Thunder site. All that said:
Prediction #1: Ibaka will not be a top 2 in the Defensive Player of the Year Race
I get it, blocks are really exciting and probably have made you spill your beer a time or two. However, that doesn’t make him a good defender. With Dwight Howard back this season, Tyson Chandler is going to still be himself. Not to mention, I feel Shane Battier is a much better defender than Ibaka. I think he finishes Third or fourth if he continues his blocking pace.
Everyone can admit that Dwight Howard is the best defensive player in the league. He might not block the most shots, but he does alter the way teams attack the lane. Teams are more tempted to pass the ball again once they hit the paint. Especially with the Pau Gasol teaming up with Howard.
Prediction #2: Thunder still win the Northwest Division
I know, this doesn’t seem like a real big bold prediction. However, Nuggets got better and the Trail Blazers definitely improved. However, both teams do not have a point guard who can guard Russell Westbrook. He’s huge in the Thunder winning the Northwest. Also, both teams just do not match up defensively with the Thunder. Wild to think that, but they don’t. If a team was to overthrow the Thunder, it would be the Nuggets. With Andre Iguodala, Denver finally has a defender who might be able to guard Kevin Durant.
What is really the point of this point is that it is Oklahoma City’s to lose. While the Thunder lost to a juggernaut of a Spurs team, they still have their own questions. However, the Thunder have a star at a point guard, and a really good shooter in Kevin Durant. If any team wins this division other than Oklahoma City, it’ll be because the Thunder choked.
Prediction #3: Thunder lose to the Heat in the Finals
This one isn’t too popular, or is it? With all that happened with the Thunder, Oklahoma city is still the best team in the Western Conference. Kevin Martin is a viable scorer, and we still have Durant and Westbrook. The Lakers are the Lakers, and they still have Mike Brown as their head coach. Spurs are really good, but once the Thunder come together, I think they can take this team in 6 games again. Remember, The Thunder did it last year when no one expected them to beat the Spurs.
I think the Heat is the best team in the league. Hands down. They got better by adding Ray Allen. They have the best player in the league in Lebron James, and another top 10 player in Dewayne Wade. Losing in the Finals isn’t exactly a failure. However, the Heat are just REALLY REALLY good right now.
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