NBA Staff Picks 2015

Staff
WSN staff members predict this year's NBA season.

 

The NBA season kicked off with a bang last week. With so much uncertainty this year about who will emerge in the brutal Western Conference, and speculation about whether LeBron James can lead the Cavaliers to not just the Eastern Conference Finals but the title, here are the sports desk’s predictions on how the 2015-2016 season will shake out.

Ben Goodkin, Contributing Writer
The thing I am most excited for is the highly competitive battle at the top of the Western Conference. The reigning champion Golden State Warriors will try to duplicate last year’s amazing season. However, it will not be easy as many Western Conference contenders have reloaded their rosters with new talent. The Los Angeles Clippers won 56 games last season, but they have added Paul Pierce, Josh Smith and Lance Stephenson to their already loaded roster. The San Antonio Spurs made it clear that last year’s first-round exit was not good enough by adding All-Stars Lamarcus Aldridge and David West. Many other teams such as the Oklahoma City Thunder, Houston Rockets and Memphis Grizzlies are back to full strength after seeing their rosters depleted by injuries last season.

East

  1. Hawks
  2. Cavaliers
  3. Bulls
  4. Heat
  5. Wizards
  6. Raptors
  7. Bucks
  8. Knicks

West

  1. Warriors
  2. Clippers
  3. Thunder
  4. Spurs
  5. Grizzlies
  6. Rockets
  7. Mavericks
  8. Kings

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MVP: LeBron James
NBA Finals: Clippers vs. Heat
Prediction: Clippers in 5

Bobby Wagner, Sports Editor
There’s so much I’m excited for that it’s criminal to have to pick one thing. So, I’m going to bend the rules and pick something that spans the entire league. This season I’m most excited to see the development of the brightest young first and second year players. Playing in Denver will likely cause Nuggets guard Emmanuel Mudiay to be overlooked by the general viewing public, but I think he’ll win Rookie of the Year in a landslide. Julius Randle and Jabari Parker are both coming off season ending rookie year injuries and will get a second chance to take the league by storm. Jahlil Okafor and Karl-Anthony Towns will try to spearhead the new NBA big men movement and remind fans that it’s not all about the three point shot. And, of course, Anthony Davis — who is not a first or second year player but is still barely old enough to legally drink — will have a chance to prove that he is the NBA’s next big thing by vaulting the Pelicans into Western Conference contention.

East

  1. Hawks
  2. Cavaliers
  3. Bulls
  4. Heat
  5. Wizards
  6. Raptors
  7. Bucks
  8. Celtics
West

  1. Warriors
  2. Thunder
  3. Spurs
  4. Clippers
  5. Grizzlies
  6. Rockets
  7. Pelicans
  8. Suns

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MVP: LeBron James
NBA Finals: Warriors vs. Cavaliers
Prediction: Cavaliers in 7

Michael Thompson, Deputy Sports Editor
After last year’s thrilling NBA Finals victory, the Warriors have exploded out of the gate and may just be the team to beat again. But the West is always tough, and with Lamarcus Aldridge going to the Spurs and the Clippers gaining valuable reinforcements on their bench, the conference is very much up for grabs.

In the East, LeBron and company are favorited again, but the Cavs will have some strong competition. The Bulls look to recover under new head coach Fred Hoiberg, while the return of Chris Bosh puts the Heat in serious contention again. It’s shaping up to be another electrifying year in the NBA.

West

  1. Warriors
  2. Clippers
  3. Thunder
  4. Spurs
  5. Rockets
  6. Grizzlies
  7. Mavericks
  8. Pelicans

East

  1. Cavaliers
  2. Heat
  3. Bulls
  4. Wizards
  5. Raptors
  6. Hawks
  7. Bucks
  8. Pistons

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MVP: Steph Curry
NBA Finals: Cavaliers vs. Spurs
Prediction: Spurs in 6

Email the WSN Sports Desk at [email protected]

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