We Definitely Have Our Work Cut Out For Us This Summer
Old 05-06-2008, 12:12 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Unhappy We Definitely Have Our Work Cut Out For Us This Summer

Michael Grange putting things in perspective in his blog today which makes me think that if the next season was to start today, we could definitely be back where we were a couple seasons ago and not one of the Eastern threats like we were last season and were to be this season. Sadly whether you want to admit it or not, many teams are stronger than us right now (Boston, Detroit, Orlando, Cleveland, Philly and Atlanta) and possibily some could be better next season if they can remain healthy. (Wizards, Pacers and Heat)

That being said based on what we saw down the stretch of this season, I'm very much concerned heading into next season especially if Colangelo doesn't fill some of our biggest needs: a second scorer, rebounding and defense. If BC only tweaks this current line-up then we stand a very good chance of missing the playoffs altogther next season.

Originally Posted by Michael Grange
Hi Michael,

I believe this season has to be considered a failure but not necessarily because of the record. ...The other thing that concerns me is that we seem to be losing ground against other teams in the East. Forget about the Celtics and Pistons, they're in another stratosphere. I used to think the Cavs and Magic were reachable but they're starting to pull away, admittedly with the not inconsiderable help of a superstar on each team. But now even the Wizards and 76ers are moving in the right direction while we seem to be regressing or treading water at best. Also the playoff performance of all of the East teams that we would consider to be our immediate competition has been superior to the Raps.

Steve Graham

Grange: I think that pretty well sums it up Steve. How would the projected Eastern Conference standing look right now, barring trades, signings and the draft?

I'd say:

1. Boston
2. Detroit
3. Cleveland
4. Orlando
5. Washington
6. Philadelphia
7. Atlanta
8. Toronto

And it's not like the Raptors would be a lock for eighth. I think it's safe to expect Chicago to make a move up; Indiana maybe; Milwaukee will be better. Charlotte played better basketball than Toronto down the stretch. Miami will have a healthy Dwayne Wade, an integrated Shawn Marion and the No.1 pick in the draft.

As well, the gap within the top eight appears to be growing. Orlando is a much better team than most people realized; Cleveland will almost certainly return to it's 50-win ways. Detroit and Boston of course, and Washington, presuming a healthy Arenas, is a team that has had some brilliant stretches the past two seasons but has had serious injury woes. If their big three is healthy and you get continued production from an improving supporting cast, is that not a team that can think about 50 wins? Philly is probably a year away, but they do have cap room to add talent. And who wouldn't trade Atlanta's top-six for the Raptors, straight up?
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Old 05-06-2008, 12:17 PM   #2 (permalink)

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Philadelphia is kind of a wild card here. If they resign Andre Miller then yes, they're a threat but if not, they'll regress more than any of us think. They have no one waiting in the wings really.

Atlanta too. Again, if Josh Smith leaves, that's a huge piece they'll miss. He's their strongest defensive player and he's one of the best weakside help defenders in the league. And if he stays, Marvin Williams was just coming into his own this year and losing him would be a key loss imo. And Bibby, as good as he is, is too inconsistent. They'll be dangerous though because of Horford.

And to be honest, let's examine our record prior to TJ getting hurt and coming back and disrupting chemistry. We were arguably a top 4 team in the East but something internally changed. We're still a good baskeball team, and I underline team here. Maybe with a change internally and an adjustment to our chemistry, plus adding a front line scorer which we all seem to agree will happen this summer, I still like our chances of being better than Washington, Atlanta et al.
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Old 05-06-2008, 12:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I prefer that everyone has lower expectations of the team. I hate when everyone's all hyped up.

That being said we have a draft pick, some trade bait, the chemistry problems will be solved, a few players that will hopefully be improved next year and maybe, just maybe a healthy Garbo. The weaknesses in the roster also have been identified and the coach, GM and "franchise" player all seem to be in agreement as to what they are, so hopefully they can be filled.

Nothing to get too excited about, but also not time to prepare for bottom dweller status again.
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Old 05-06-2008, 12:31 PM   #4 (permalink)

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ATL is gonna keep Smith unless he demands out it looks like.

Miller IS going to leave by the sounds of the last report I saw on RGM saying he wants to move back to the west coast, which is why the TJ for Dalembert and Young trade is coming .

Washington is going to lose Gilbert and possibly Antawn so I'm not too worried about them.

Next year I'm most worried about Boston, DET and ATL. Everyone else doesnt look so tough.

Also, I think ORL is gonna have to make a pretty big move this offseason because the 2 SF lineup just isnt going to work over the longhaul. I think a Hedo for AK trade would be amazing for both teams.
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Old 05-06-2008, 06:53 PM   #5 (permalink)
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That would be a steal for us (TJ for Daley and Young). Philly's high enough on Young that they would probably hesitate to make that move straight up.

But I would LOVE if we could somehow get those two players. Throw in Rasho, AP, Hump, I don't care. Unfortunately though I think the biggest obstacle is Bargnani. He's being given one more year, we aren't bringing in another C.
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Old 05-06-2008, 07:58 PM   #6 (permalink)
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At this point in time I have no faith that Raps will be in post season next year... if they upgrade their roster... maybe... but right now... as the things are... no way...
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Old 05-06-2008, 08:29 PM   #7 (permalink)

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although i think our team sucks because they're a bunch of pansies, as mentioned by Claudius, we did deal with major health issues with both Bosh and Ford being out for long stretches. Nothing like the wizards, but still...
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