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IndyFan
08-15-2008, 01:21 PM
Another look at the eastern conference. this one from marty burns of SI.


With the NBA in full summer mode, it's a good time to take a look at how teams stack up right now. First up is a snapshot of the Eastern Conference, followed by the West later this week.

It's extremely difficult to get a read on the East, especially the bottom half. Nearly every team that finished out of the playoffs last season looks improved, with no obvious doormats. The battle for the No. 8 spot could be very tight among a handful of teams.

Here's a look at how we see it at the moment, with the caveat that the view could change between now and the start of training camp in October:

1. Celtics:
2. Cavaliers:
3. Magic:
4. 76ers:
5. Wizards:
6. Pistons:

7. Raptors: GM Bryan Colangelo made perhaps the most underrated move of the offseason, acquiring five-time All-Star Jermaine O'Neal from the Pacers for T.J. Ford and Rasho Nesterovic. If O'Neal is recovered from his knee problems, he should join with Chris Bosh to give the Raptors one of the best frontcourts in the East. Colangelo also re-signed Jose Calderon and brought in Croatian star Roko Ukic to replace Ford as backup point guard. The Raptors still need Andrea Bargnani to live up to his billing as a No. 1 overall pick, but Toronto definitely will be a team to watch next season.

8. Pacers: Last year they finished just one game out of the playoffs -- even with O'Neal sidelined for most of the season. Ford, if he stays healthy, is an upgrade at the point over Jamaal Tinsley. The Pacers also added a quality combo guard in Jarrett Jack and a reliable true center in the 7-foot Nesterovic, who averaged 12.4 points and 6.1 rebounds in the second half of last season. With Danny Granger, Mike Dunleavy and Troy Murphy, the pieces are there for coach Jim O'Brien to run his type of fast-breaking, three-point-shooting system.

9. Hawks:
10. Bobcats:
11. Heat:
12. Bucks:
13. Bulls:
14. Nets:
15. Knicks:


marty burns (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/writers/marty_burns/08/13/east.rankings/1.html)

:)

conway429
08-15-2008, 01:27 PM
pistons 6th?

lovingTO
08-15-2008, 01:36 PM
cavs 2?
pistons 6?
raptors 7?

I dont think inddy will grab the 8 seat. Washington will finish below us in the standing in my opinion as well. This guys sucks. It looks like anyone can get a job writing for SI nowadays.

lovingTO
08-15-2008, 01:37 PM
Leafs traded McCabe:)

AgentViet
08-15-2008, 01:38 PM
Raptors in 7th? :pity: Unless JO AND Bosh miss a large part of the season, I don't see us being any lower than 5th.

Dol-Fan
08-15-2008, 04:36 PM
Only way this happens is if JO is injured and Calderon really isn't as good as he's shown in TJ's absence, which he is...

in other words, this won't happen. We won't fall lower than 5th i'm almost sure of that.

We've been a 4-5 seed for the last 2 years with Rasho and TJ why would we be worse with JO and Caldy with essentially the same team minus Delfino.

Bob_at_york
08-15-2008, 04:57 PM
Interesting pick. You can make the argument for all of those teams being ahead of us especially now that the Cavs have Mo Williams. The tough one to swallow is the Wizards for me.

dirtybird
08-15-2008, 05:21 PM
Marty has gone out of the box on both conferences. That being said, I won't rip him for his picks because I can't say it's impossible that it wouldn't happen. I do think that the Heat and the Bulls have the potential to bounce back next season.

Tom Stone
08-15-2008, 05:27 PM
Interesting pick. You can make the argument for all of those teams being ahead of us especially now that the Cavs have Mo Williams. The tough one to swallow is the Wizards for me.

Yeah, I was mad to hear the cavs piked up MO Willams, he should help them...And the wizards being better than us........I don't see the wizards haveing a great season, Gilbert's knee has been a problem, and there was alot of talk last year that they might have been playing better without Gilbert , the youth finally got a chance to play, and they improved.....Gilbert can make them better, but it will be an ajustment playing with him again , because he demands the ball so much.

IversonIsKrazy
08-15-2008, 05:30 PM
this list is stupid, SI is stupid. Pistons 6th? Cavs 2nd? Raptors 7th? Indy making the playoffs? wizards 5th? this list is very very dumb. this is the rankings.

1. BOS
2. DET
3. ORL
4. TOR
5. PHI
6. CLE
7. WAS
8. MIA

star
08-15-2008, 05:53 PM
Yeah, I was mad to hear the cavs piked up MO Willams, he should help them...And the wizards being better than us........I don't see the wizards haveing a great season, Gilbert's knee has been a problem, and there was alot of talk last year that they might have been playing better without Gilbert , the youth finally got a chance to play, and they improved.....Gilbert can make them better, but it will be an ajustment playing with him again , because he demands the ball so much.

Interesting how a few days ago you jumped down my throat when i said its dumb to think the raps are a #2 seed now 2 professionals have agreed with my assessment of 5 - 7 ... interesting though isnt it

jdot22
08-15-2008, 07:21 PM
Marty Burns always seems to screw us in any rankings he does ...

Im actually suprised Bucher from espn noted how well bosh played ...

the American press never give us enough credit ...

minus Mark Stein of espn ... he always seems to mention the raps ...

he could do it a little bit more on his DIME column though

The Wise 1
08-15-2008, 07:56 PM
Only way this happens is if JO is injured and Calderon really isn't as good as he's shown in TJ's absence, which he is...

in other words, this won't happen. We won't fall lower than 5th i'm almost sure of that.

We've been a 4-5 seed for the last 2 years with Rasho and TJ why would we be worse with JO and Caldy with essentially the same team minus Delfino.

Because Philly has improved. Same goes for Cleveland with Mo and Washington because of Arenas being healthy.


Interesting pick. You can make the argument for all of those teams being ahead of us especially now that the Cavs have Mo Williams. The tough one to swallow is the Wizards for me.

I agree, it wouldnt shock me if we finished 7th at all. Anywhere from 4th to 7th is where I expect the Raptors to be.


Yeah, I was mad to hear the cavs piked up MO Willams, he should help them...And the wizards being better than us........I don't see the wizards haveing a great season, Gilbert's knee has been a problem, and there was alot of talk last year that they might have been playing better without Gilbert , the youth finally got a chance to play, and they improved.....Gilbert can make them better, but it will be an ajustment playing with him again , because he demands the ball so much.

Last time Gilbert was healthy they were 1st in the Conference, which was 2 years ago. They will be better with him then without him. So your worried about Gilberts knee and think Oneals will be fine? The same should be said about JO.

IversonIsKrazy
08-15-2008, 08:26 PM
we r better than the wizards. we are better than the 76ers. we are better than the cavs. we r going to get the 4th seed in the east. the least we can go is 6, i dont c anything lower.

Possibility #1 Possibiltiy #2 Possibility #3

BOS BOS BOS
DET DET DET
ORL ORL ORL
TOR CLE PHI
PHI TOR CLE
CLE PHI TOR
WAS WAS WAS
MIA MIA MIA

Possibilty #4

BOS
DET
ORL
PHI
TOR
CLE
WAS
MIA

those r the situations i c us in.

star
08-15-2008, 09:30 PM
Only way this happens is if JO is injured and Calderon really isn't as good as he's shown in TJ's absence, which he is...

in other words, this won't happen. We won't fall lower than 5th i'm almost sure of that.

We've been a 4-5 seed for the last 2 years with Rasho and TJ why would we be worse with JO and Caldy with essentially the same team minus Delfino.

maybe because other teams have improved

Bramaca
08-15-2008, 09:49 PM
I don't think his picks are that bad. I don't think the Wiz will be that high though. I also agree with the Pistons taking a drop, I could see them blowing up the team part way through the season and not even making the playoffs.

Dol-Fan
08-15-2008, 10:35 PM
maybe because other teams have improved

oh maybe? the sarcasm is cute.

but if we have improved, and they have improved, then why do we move behind? Philly got Brand who has/had an injured achilles and should be just as much of a concern as JO. Same with Arenas, and as great a scorer as Agent 0 is, he is an awful defender and puts alot of the team's strengths to waste. We'll see what happens there. IMO our biggest challenges for #3 will be Orlando and Cleveland

airjuice
08-16-2008, 02:07 AM
Wow! They have us actually making the playoffs!! Let's be happy they even have us ranked that high. Usually we're ranked between 9 - 12. I don't take those guys too serious though. We'd have to have Bosh, O'neal, Wade and Yao Ming on our team to make top 3. :D

ramz.n
08-16-2008, 10:23 AM
i would put Raptors before Phili and the Wizards...Phili seems to be the cinderella team that will make the 7 or final spot, they haven't changed much from the last year. The Wizards will take a step backwards with Arena's back in the lineup, when he was out they played better as a team and started to win games as a team, when Arena's was in, his personal stats went up, the wizards franchise began to lose again and the word "team" was replaced with "arenas"..the raptors did a pretty good job last year even with Rasho and t.j missed a portion of the season, i really believed that getting o'neal would have pushed the raptors from the number 6 spot up to at least 3,4,5 with a healthy Calderon, Bosh and O'neal as well as AP who was a top 10 in 3 pt% and the high flying moon with Bargnani off the bench..i would take this lineup over the aging pistons, young phili, team arenas.

star
08-16-2008, 11:50 AM
oh maybe? the sarcasm is cute.

but if we have improved, and they have improved, then why do we move behind? Philly got Brand who has/had an injured achilles and should be just as much of a concern as JO. Same with Arenas, and as great a scorer as Agent 0 is, he is an awful defender and puts alot of the team's strengths to waste. We'll see what happens there. IMO our biggest challenges for #3 will be Orlando and Cleveland

actually as a matter of fact an achilles injury is less likely to cause problems and re-injure VS a knee injury ....

Honest Truth
08-16-2008, 12:55 PM
I don't understand why everyone is so surprised about the Raptors as 7th or Cavs as 2nd. I think the east has improved dramatically and feel the Raptors will finish around 5-7. The Cav's addition of Williams, I feel makes them one of the better teams in the Conference. It'll be a tight race, and nothing will surprise me this year as far as the East's standings are concerned.

Dol-Fan
08-16-2008, 07:55 PM
I don't understand why everyone is so surprised about the Raptors as 7th or Cavs as 2nd. I think the east has improved dramatically and feel the Raptors will finish around 5-7. The Cav's addition of Williams, I feel makes them one of the better teams in the Conference. It'll be a tight race, and nothing will surprise me this year as far as the East's standings are concerned.

Mo Williams? Why is he any better than someone like Delonte West or Daniel Gibson?

1. he doesn't play D
2. he needs to dominate the ball to score.
3. he's not a great passer

and the result of all this: Mike Brown does not like guys who don't play D and the Cavs will not want a guy who is not a great passer to dominate the ball, how would that make them better? If a guy can't get the ball to Lebron consistantly then why not just let Lebron dominate the ball? Maybe i'm just being analytical to make the Cavs sound worse than they are but this is how i feel. I think the Cavs tried to kill two birds with one stone but they only grazed each of the birds (trying to get a starting point and a secondary scorer, they need these in two seperate bodies IMO).

Philly and Orlando are both going to be better than Cleveland.

Honest Truth
08-16-2008, 09:52 PM
Mo Williams? Why is he any better than someone like Delonte West or Daniel Gibson?

1. he doesn't play D
2. he needs to dominate the ball to score.
3. he's not a great passer

and the result of all this: Mike Brown does not like guys who don't play D and the Cavs will not want a guy who is not a great passer to dominate the ball, how would that make them better? If a guy can't get the ball to Lebron consistantly then why not just let Lebron dominate the ball? Maybe i'm just being analytical to make the Cavs sound worse than they are but this is how i feel. I think the Cavs tried to kill two birds with one stone but they only grazed each of the birds (trying to get a starting point and a secondary scorer, they need these in two seperate bodies IMO).

Philly and Orlando are both going to be better than Cleveland.

I completely understand where you are coming from with your argument and I cannot completely disagree as we would have to see them together to really determine the success/failure of the transaction. I will say however, that I believe Mo Williams can be a good distributor of the ball. I think at the very least that he would be relieve some of the pressure off of LeBron and perhaps even provide a consistant threat while LeBron gets his rest. No one else on the Cavs can really provide that. That being said, the Cavs aren't the only team I would rate above Toronto. I would put Orlando and possibly Philly ahead of them (the latter of which I am not so sure about). As I sad, 5th-7th is not only possible but likely it is realistic as well. I would be blown over if we finish 2nd in the east.

DryLopi
08-18-2008, 10:42 PM
Who submited this lol

Someone who posts here?

Toronto should be fourth or fifth. (although 7th is'nt too bizzare)
In the shape Indiana is does anyone expect them to be a playoff team? A team without chemistry which is in need of an overall upgrade? Atlanta would be better than Indy.

Mile High Champ
08-19-2008, 08:45 AM
Cant see the wizard ahead of us, not a chance. I find you can't give much consideration to SI and their writers in terms of predictions. They are always wrong in every sport. They write informative articles but man they should never predict anything ever!