Orlando Magic Blog

Group Blog talking about the NBA 2009 Eastern Conference Champions. Due to the amazing success of the 2009 playoff run comments are now frequently deleted to kill offensive comments, incoherence, or asininity. Comments can no longer be anonymous and require either a Blogger or OpenID account.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Preseason is not regular season, but still

NBA.com

You could make an argument that the current preseason standings will be a close match to the standings at the end of the season.

1-2. Detroit, Orlando 6-1
3. Boston
4-5. Atlanta, Philadelphia
6-7. New York, Toronto
8-9. Chicago, Indiana

Everyone else: New Jersey, Cleveland, Miami, Milwaukee, Charlotte.

O.K. so Cleveland isn't going to finish 12th, and New York is not making the playoffs. But I feel pretty good about putting Orlando, Detroit and Boston in the top 3. Cleveland can fight Atlanta, Philadelphia and Toronto for the next four, and who knows what mediocre team will be the best of the rest.

My WAG prediction for the East:

1. Orlando -- Superman averages over 20 ppg, leads the league in rebounds, blocked shots. Shoots 70% from the line and begins an 8-10 year streak of finishing in the top 3 for MVP. New guards are an improvement, and are even better after a minor trade for another guard.

2. Detroit -- last gasp from this group.

3. Boston -- season derailed by an injury to one of their big 3

4. Atlanta -- Horford gets better in his second year and becomes one of the ten best players in the East.

5. Cleveland -- stays the same. Probably trades a third of their roster during the season again and loses to Atlanta in the first round.

6. Philadelphia -- Never assume great things when your best player is from Duke.

7. Toronto -- I love Chris Bosh, Jermaine O'Neil used to be great. And their coach still sucks.

8. Really, it could be any of Miami, Milwaukee, Chicago...

5 Comments:

  • At 11:14 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    At the ESPN Daily Dime NBA preview page, ten of their writers and columnists all pick the Magic to finish first in the SE and fourth in the East. Even Chris Sheridan, who picked the Magic for twelfth in the East last season, picks the Magic to win the SE.

    Most of them are not impressed with the Magic's guards and think they have a lack of depth in the frontcourt.

     
  • At 2:00 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    I like svg's approach to the pre-season no matter what everybody else is doing. Svg stated quote "if they're keeping score i wanna win",and with the way rashard and dwight were playing it seems like they were very serious in their approach also. The east is wide open behind the top three, bos,det and orlando. Everybody else is flawed IMO. Atlanta still doesnt have a quality big thats gonna be a factor defensively in the paint,zaza isnt gonna cut it. Tor and philly both went out and got PF's,but neither is the same player anymore. Brand will give you a double double but also give up a double double,so did philly get better? Do we know what JOneal has left,playing center full time isnt an ideal situation for him being 6ft10 or bosh who isnt very heavy. Cleveland and miami are casts of merry men around one star,wade and bron. I have no faith in teams like new jersey,washington,chicago or indiana as they all will take a step down this year.

     
  • At 4:00 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    I thought I'd get skewered for putting the Magic at #1. I was high on the Ray's making the World Series.

    I just spent the weekend in Times Square where there are murals of KG, LeBron, Wade, Kobe on the TNT billboard. No Howard.

    This has to be the year that Howard takes the league by the throat and squeezes.

    The other 11 guys need to figure out how to play even whenever Howard sits.

     
  • At 1:05 AM, Blogger Matt said…

    I really like how WeRDevos writes on the edge. Magic, in my view is still questionable in two guards spot and PF spot. Of the two guards spot, SG shortfalls could have been ignored if the PG was a top one. I still don't believe the two SFs manning the PF spot is a good idea, and that could be exposed against good teams, young or old; DET did it last year, and would do it again this year.

    In my view Magic is somewhere in the range of 3-5 in the east more leaning towards the upper side, this year. I also would give TOR and PHI more credit than you guys are willing to give.

     
  • At 4:55 AM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Some of my random thoughts as opening night draws ever closer...

    I'm looking forward to seeing Marcin Gortat as the first big man coming off the bench for the Magic. He is a big improvement over Foyle from last season. Gortat has shown he can be a tremendous rebounder and has much more of an ability to score on offense than Foyle.

    Having Tony Battie available will help also.

    It may take Mickael Pietrus a while to adjust to his new team and starting role with the Magic, but I like the acquisition and believe his defense will be a big help and an upgrade over last year's shooting guards.

    I'm looking for a career year from Jameer Nelson. It was very encouraging to read SVG's praise of how well Nelson is doing defensively. Anthony Johnson will do an adequate job as Nelson's backup.

    It would be great if J.J. Redick can come off the bench and average close to the 10.5 ppg he averaged in the preseason. All the hard work he put in during the offseason at improving his play, especially his defense, looks like it will pay off.

    I think Rashard Lewis will have a much better year scoring-wise than he did last year, as he is much more comfortable now in his second year with the Magic. His excellent preseason bodes well for the upcoming season.

    I don't expect Hedo Turkoglu to duplicate the career year he had last year, but he will still put up some good numbers.

    I expect Dwight Howard to average between 23-24 ppg, 13-14 rebounds per game, and over 2 blocks a game. If his free throw shooting can improve to between 65-70%, then he can average around 25 ppg.

    Keith Bogans can be used at either shooting guard or small forward.

    It's going to be difficult for rookie Courtney Lee to see meaningful playing time, but he showed some good potential for the future in the preseason.

    I expect no less than 52 wins for the Magic this season, and if everything works out well and there are no major injuries, 57-58 wins are a possibility.

    I would love to see the Magic advance to at least the conference finals, but it will be difficult because if they finish third or fourth in the conference, that means a difficult second round matchup against most likely Detroit or Boston.

    I am optimistic the Magic can advance to the conference finals and that this will be a great season to follow our team... GO MAGIC!!

     

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