Woah… What an off season!
This summer was filled with excitement, anticipation, and movement as we saw some of the top NBA players change locations all around the league.
LeBron moved to LA, he is now a Laker.
Demarcus Cousins surprisingly will suit up for the MONSTARS…I mean the Golden State Warriors
Paul George stayed in Oklahoma City, was That a mistake?
Carmelo Anthony in now a Houston rocket after being traded to the Hawks for literally days.
Kawhi Leonard and Demar Derozan swapped teams.
Dwayne Wade is still a free agent but we know where he’s going.
This Offseason shook up the league once again. The Lakers now have a HUGE red dot on their back. Not saying they didn’t last year because of a certain used car salesmen that seemed to bamboozle us all with the promise of a Lonzo Ball. (Lavar Ball cough cough) Not Saying That Lonzo isn’t a good NBA player. His stat-line of 10 points 7 assists and 7 rebounds was actually better than the former rookie of the year in Malcolm brogan in his rookie season. However, he came in with so much expectations to be this Magic Johnson, transcendent player and at times he looked shook out there and trying to live up to Daddy’s hype. Well, Lonzo if you had pressure then you don’t know anything about it now. The big cheese is in town and championship or bust is the only way to go. The Lakers made moves this offseason, adding Lebron, Rajon Rondo, Lance Stephenson, Michael Beasley, and Javale Mcgee to the line up.
A lot of rough riders and misfits that were almost ousted from the league because their personalities are bigger then basketball. There’s barely any 3 point shooting. Correction, there’s no marksmen on the team Which in today’s game you NEED to succeed. A lot of analysts believe that Magic Johnson (Lakers’ President) didn’t know what he was doing with these signings. Personally I believe Magic is brilliant. He knows they can’t win now right away. The young core of Lonzo, Kozma, Ingram, and Hart with LeBron isn’t enough. So these signings are there for one year, and one goal. To prepare these players for the league. Bring them in with veteran presence and knowledge. Push them to their limits. Rondo will challenge Lonzo on every play, show him tips and stuff like that. Stephenson and Beasley will attack Kuzma and Ingram on the wings, Hart and Pope will fight for playing time. And LeBron will go out and be LeBron, be the orchestrator of the entire project. I believe these players bought into something bigger then themselves to assist in the growth of some other players. This is a project, it needs patience. And in the age of social media and instant gratification, many of us don’t have that. So we can’t see the big picture. Remember, LeBron signed a 4 year contract, He doesn’t expect a championship in year 1,or even 2. However in year 3 there will be glory coming down the streets of Los Angeles in Purple and gold. I can predict that.
In all, This was a strategic move, a power play the league will not be ready for. And these young Lakers will be a force to reckon with for years to come if it works out the way I see it.
Changing our sites to Houston. They lost Trevor Ariza and Luc Mba Moute. But they gained Melo. What does this mean? Well, for some it wasn’t a smart move. Especially judging Melo’s last season with the Thunder. Melo looked old and tired, and a defensive liability. So to add him to a team that doesn’t play defense and shoots 3’s a lot? Houston oooh no baby what is you doing? Well, lets not disrespect the man that is Carmelo Anthony and what he’s capable of. At the same time, maybe we’re still looking at the Melo that gave us over 25 points per game so many years ago. We could be reminiscing on the past and hoping it will come back. Or Melo could be rejuvenated while playing with a Chris Paul (one of his best friends) and show us the Melo we’ve been waiting for. Championship Melo. I believe it’s a smart move, Melo a brings a dynamic offensive set that can be utilized to give James harden and Chris Paul a break from time to time. This is the mid range game, a lost art in today’s NBA. Something that can throw defenses off and shake up the game little bit. However, only time will tell if this works out. Remember Houston was one game away from the NBA finals and possibly would’ve been in the finals had Chris Paul not gotten injured. So anything is possible.
Shifting gears to San Antonio and the Kawhi Leonard Saga. So Finally Kawhi Leanard got traded after months of speculation and drama between Kawhi’s people and the Spurs to Toronto for Demar Derozan. There were other players involved yes. However these two were the primary pieces in this transaction. Oh boy, what a blockbuster. This trade is going to reshape the league. Well, in the Eastern conference at least. As for the rest the league, not that much. I don’t believe Demar Derozan is going to change the fate of the Spurs that much this year. But we all know Greg Popovic. He’s been known to turn nothing into something on many occasions. But as far as the Raptors go, they will make noise in the East. Especially because Kawhi is, when healthy, a top 3 player in this league and will cause havoc on opposing teams for a year. Until he leaves and goes to the clippers or the Lakers because he’s hell bent on going there.
Now, to the juicy bit. Demarcus “Boogie” Cousins. Boogie singed with the golden state warriors with a 5 million mid level exception deal for one year. Oh man, what a steal. According to Cousins he wasn’t offered anything from anybody. Mainly because he tore his Achilles mid season. For a big man, thats career ending. Well, for anyone it can be career ending. However for big men its more certain to end their careers. With these factors added to the equation I can see why the move happened. Although I don’t believe he didn’t receive any offers, I believe he’s playing it smart. Cousins gets to take a year off and potentially win a ring before he retires. And with this injury, he could end up retiring early. This is unfortunate, but it is reality. People don’t come back from this injury and just become the players they once were. And Demarcus cousins when healthy is the best center in the league.
Sorry Joel Embiid.
This is also a chance to redeem himself. Cousins created a bad reputation in the NBA because of his passion and desire to win. It’s gotten him in trouble a lot. This could be the chance to change that for the better. However, This makes the Warriors, I’m sorry the MONSTARS a juggernaut and a seemingly unbeatable team, as if they weren’t already. Also, Boogie isn’t expected to be back until mid March / April. Although reports say that he is talking a November return.
The power of science.
This was the most alarming and shocking offseason move all summer and makes the Warriors the winner of the offseason. For now
This Offseason was definitely exciting and has created a new buzz for the league. The season starts mid October. And what a season it will be.
Lastly, a shout out in recognition to both David West and Manu Ginobli for their careers. They were great players that were part of an era we as NBA fans will never forget.
Below are their highlights.