What You Missed: NBA Edition

All you need to know for the 2018-19 season

Kevin Gum, PaperClip Writer

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The 2018 NBA off-season brought insane changes to the league. Many teams now have completely different starting fives or have lost great players. This year’s draft class is also interesting, bringing in many young players who have bright futures.

The Western conference is still the powerhouse, and the newest trades made it an even greater threat. LeBron James joined the Lakers with a group of other players to create the “Meme” team. The Lakers are now an even more skilled and young athletic team.

The Golden State Warriors are an even bigger threat, gaining superstar power forward, DeMarcus Cousins. This team’s only weakness will be trying to avoid technical fouls and injuries. With this change, the Warriors are said to have the greatest starting five of all time.

The Houston Rockets are the only other threat in the West. They grabbed many decent players, but also picked up Carmelo Anthony. Although he has been declining, it is still a great pick up for the Rockets.

Many other trades were made in the Western conference. Isaiah Thomas was traded to the Nuggets, Jamal Crawford signed with the Suns, and Dennis Schroder was traded to the Thunder.

Many teams in the Western Conference received very good draft picks. Phoenix got the #1 pick and got star center, Deandre Ayton. Sacramento got power forward, Marvin Bagley III with the second pick. Dallas traded for the third pick and got an excellent small forward, Luka Doncic.

The Eastern Conference made some changes, nothing drastic, but it will affect how the conference plays out. The East only gained one superstar and lost one superstar.

We will start off with the new powerhouse of the East, the Celtics. Although they did not get anybody new this offseason, they are still predicted to be the best. They have multiple young players returning such as Terry Rozier, Jayson Tatum, and Jaylen Brown. Jayson Tatum was a leading candidate for Rookie of the year during 2018.

The Toronto Raptors are looking to be a main contender against the Celtics. Although the departing of Demar Derozan hit the fans hard, they got an even better player in return. This player won a championship in his third season; Kawhi Leonard is going to be a threat if he stays healthy and wants to play.

There are two other teams in the East that pose a threat, Milwaukee and Philadelphia. Both of these teams have very young talented players that are skilled and explosive. Their biggest weakness is that they are plagued by injuries. Each team has their own superstar to build around and their futures are only showing good thing.

The East’s draft picks do not compare to the West’s draft picks. Two main draft picks were Kevin Knox of the New York Knicks and Mohamed Bamba of the Orlando Magic. Mo Bamba standing in at 7 feet tall with an 8-foot wingspan has a great defensive ability and can score in and out of the paint. Kevin Knox is a small forward out of Kentucky and can do everything from shooting outside to scoring in the paint.

During a recent interview with Portsmouth High School sophomore, Mark Gohkban, he gave his thoughts on the upcoming NBA season. “The Celtics will easily win the East. The Warriors will win the West, but the Lakers will do well, too.”

He would go on to talk about the rookies and players as individuals, “Luka is gonna be the best rookie. LeBron will be MVP.”  After speaking about players he talked about his hopes for the league and talked about the league’s biggest moves: “The Celtics will hopefully win the finals but the warriors are really good. The trades this summer set L.A up for a good future with young players and good veterans. Kawhi will do okay for the Raptors but leave after a year and Demar will try to make San Antonio his new place, but the biggest trade was DeMarcus and fans will lose all respect for him for nearly ruining the league if it wasn’t for the Celtics and Lebron in the league.”