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NBA Western Conference Preview

Western-Conference

The Western Conference has in many ways being forced to take a back seat role as the Miami Heat have ripped up the entire NBA over the past two seasons. The pre season games are now a matter of weeks away whilst teams begin training camps next weekend. The season really is just around the corner and I for one certainly cant wait.

How things have changed for the Dallas Mavericks since they won the Championship not too long ago. Dirk Nowitski has been a pro for the past fifteen years but simply put cannot continue to carry this Mavs team like he has done over the past two seasons. Having lost many of their star performers throughout those two seasons I think it is safe to say that the Mavs are no longer serious play off contenders and must be contempt with a few mediocre seasons as they look to rebuild their team.

If you are a fan of the NBA which I presume you are if you are reading this then you surely must be excited to see how the Rockets get on this year. James Harden, Dwight Howard and Jeremy Lin all on one team. There is only one thing that can mean and that is that the Rockets are now serious title contenders.

The Grizzlies will struggle this season and will once again lean on Marc Gasol to carry the load. Also in the Southwest we are set to see the re emergence of the New Orleans Pelicans. The former Hornets will be looking to star man and US Olympian Anthony Davis to carry much of the scoring load.

The main team of interest in this division will once again be the ever impressive San Antonio Spurs who went oh so close to winning the NBA Championship only to lose out to the Miami Heat at the very last hurdle. Having managed to unsurprisingly retain nearly the whole squad for this upcoming season the Spurs will once again fancy themselves as title challengers and will be hoping to go one better this time around.

The Lakers are in many peoples eyes a team living in the past as their supporters dream of regaining that Championship. Kobe Bryant last season showed why he really can be considered one of the greatest players of all time as the “Black Mamba” carried his team for much of the season before suffering a season ending injury. How well Bryant returns in a few weeks time will have a massive impact on the Lakers season. This is an ever ageing Lakers team and it remains to be seen just how long they can continue to go before Head Office decide it’s time to rebuild.

Moving across to the other side of Los Angeles and we have the Clippers. Blake Griffin’s dunks have got many a commentator excited over the past two seasons as his link up play with DeAndre Jordan and Chris Paul continues to excite crowds around the league.

The only real news to bring you from Sacramento Kings is that Shaquille O’Neal has bought a minority stake in the team that he once called the “Queens”. The Golden State Warriors will look for Stephen Curry to continue his form of recent seasons by shooting lights out from behind the three point line. Stephen has now been joined by his younger brother Seth while David Lee will hope to put up big numbers inside for the Warriors whilst not forgetting US international Andre Iguodala.

The last team of note in my preview of the Western Conference just hast to be The Oklahoma City Thunder. Kevin Durrant and Russell Westbrook were far from happy with how their season ended last time out. The Thunder were beaten champions two years ago and will be hoping to at least make the NBA Finals this time round. The addition of Jeremy Lamb will provide further depth to an already extremely good but extremely young group of players who have many championships in them.

I will be back with some updates throughout the season on some of the major talking points whilst also keeping all you basketball fans in the loop with regards to Irish Basketball. The season is nearly upon us after what has been a long off season.

Image courtesy of bettingbasketball.org

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  1. October 9th, 2013

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