Previewing The NBA’s Southeast Division According To Bloggers | Truth About It.net

Previewing The NBA’s Southeast Division According To Bloggers

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Updated: October 27, 2008



Jeff from CelticsBlog.com is doing the grunt work to put together a comprehensive NBA preview from bloggers ’round the ‘sphere. The Atlantic Division Preview was first, the Southwest Division was second, the Central Division was third, the Northwest Division was fourth, and now the Southeast Division is out. Here are the highlights from the participating bloggers for each team, click on the blog links to see the full team preview:

Atlanta Hawks

[Basketbawful]
We’ve all seen it before. A team gets hot at the end of the regular season, sneaks into the playoffs, makes some noise, and so everybody expects them to take The Next Big Step next season. But when said team is flawed — as the Hawks are — this often leads to overconfidence and failed expectations. The most recent example of this is the Golden State Warriors. The 2007-08 Warriors may have won a few more games than the 2006-07 Warriors, but they failed to recapture the magic of that ’07 playoff run. I think we’re going to see the same thing happen to the Hawks this season. Prediction: 40-42

[Peachtree Hoops]
The franchise’s goal is to make the playoffs. I wish I could say the franchise’s goal was to make the playoffs and win a series (or even a road game) but I don’t think their off-season activity suggests they’re trying to accomplish anything grander than to finish within a handful of games of .500 and hope that that again is good enough for a playoff spot in the East. Prediction: 34-48

Charlotte Bobcats

[Queen City Hoops]
One goal: To make the last 10 games of the season count. Whether or not they make the playoffs, they need to be in contention for a spot all season long. The franchise has only been around for 4 seasons, yet it is already a punch-line around the league and Charlotte is largely apathetic about it. Being even mediocre would be an improvement and might help generate more interest among fans. Prediction: 40-42

[Bobcats Planet]
Theres one important thing that you need to know about the people here in Charlotte. This is a city full of bandwagon fans, Of course you have yout diehards like all of the folks here, but the majority of the folks in town are the corporate khaki pants wearing, blackberry clutching, wine and cheese banker types that don’t really care to show up for a sporting event unless its “the” place to be seen. Prediction: 41-41

Miami Heat

[Sports Agent Blog]
I am confident that the Heat will be much better than last year, but it seems nearly impossible to go from the NBA’s worst team to a top 4 team in either conference. The Heat should make the playoffs, but as a 6-8 seed. Prediction: 42-40

[The Peninsula is Mightier]
Improvement from a 15-win season shouldn’t even be considered an achievement, so it’s up for debate as to what would constitute a successful Miami Heat campaign. The combined talents of Wade, Beasley and Marion make 50 wins and a postseason run seem plausible, while the clutter surrounding those three on the roster threatens to drag the team back into the lottery. Prediction: 41-41

Orlando Magic

[Third Quarter Collapse]
The team has made it clear that its goal is an NBA Championship. A more attainable goal is to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals, although it’ll certainly be an uphill battle, given the increased level of competition at the top of the East. If the Magic are eliminated in the second round, the season won’t have been a total loss if they at least stayed competitive. If they are eliminated in the first round, the season will have been an unmitigated disaster, and heads will roll at One Magic Place. Prediction: 55-27

Washington Wizards

[Hoops Addict]
Now, a knee surgery and $111 million dollars later, Arenas is still with the team, and he’ll have to prove that he can co-exist with the rest of his team. He can score 40 to 50 points a night, but he’ll have to balance that out with hard nosed defense and timely ball movement. If Arenas masters this skill, the Wizards will be a tough out in the playoffs and they may even finally beat LeBron and the Cavs. If not, it could be a long season for Coach Jordan and the Wizards. Prediction: 41-41

[Hoops Avenue]
Yep, I’m taking the optimistic angle here that W
ashington does have a Big 3 in mid-January and improves on last season’s record. Even without Arenas, there’s no reason this team isn’t at or above .500 by January. Jamison and Butler should be able to carry the load and they’ve got a capable group of role players and some improving young talent. I’ll go as far to say that the Wizards will make the 2nd Round. Prediction: 45-37

[Bullets Forever]
Prior to the injuries, I would have said advance past the first round of the playoffs, but that may be unrealistic now. Just getting into the playoffs seems reasonable. Anything more is gravy. If the injuries continue, the goal should be to get as good a lottery pick as possible. Prediction: 40-42

[Truth About It (this place)]
Maybe Jamison and Stevenson will continue to hit open threes. And maybe Caron Butler diversifies his offensive game. And maybe Nick Young and Juan Dixon can provide a needed spark off the bench. But all those ‘maybes’ won’t cut it for the duration of the season. If Arenas doesn’t come back some time in December, as is currently, tentatively, scheduled, then it’s not looking good for the Wizards to win more than 35 games. Prediction: 41-41



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