The NBA season is now upon us with a doubleheader opening night starting with the Boston Celtics at the Cleveland Cavaliers. Right off the bat, Kyrie Irving returns to Cleveland. I hope that Irving tears it up. I’m writing this on Tuesday, so we will know the answer by the time it comes out.
I believe that he got the short end of the straw in Cleveland. Yes, he has three straight trips to the finals and won one, but he is the type of guy you build around. When you’re the caliber of player Irving is, why would you want to be in a situation where you play underneath LeBron James, who basically played the role of player-coach and made all the decisions for Cleveland.
I also feel bad for Isaiah Thomas in this trade. I would have much rather liked him to stay in Boston and have the Celtics build the team around him, especially after what happened this past season with the passing of his sister. It would have meant so much more to him having the city get behind him as he grows as a player.
Overall, I hope that Boston can play well this season and knock off Cleveland as the favorites in the East.
As usual, the Golden State Warriors will be a, if not the, factor this year. The Warriors have also been in the finals for three straight years and won two out of the three. They look set to repeat this year, and it will take a really good team to knock them off.
I can see the Houston Rockets potentially being that team, but that is if Steph Curry doesn’t break Chris Paul’s ankles and have him breakdancing again. Or the Oklahoma City Thunder who added two all-stars in Paul George and Carmelo Anthony. We also can’t forget about the San Antonio Spurs, who have the ageless wonders Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili, big men Pau Gasol and LaMarcus Aldridge (who just signed an extension to stay with the Spurs), and former Defensive Player of the Year and future league MVP Kawhi Leonard.
Now, I’m a Minnesota Timberwolves “fan.” I say that because I’m not much of a basketball fan, but I’ll still support the hometown team. The trade to get Jimmy Butler and the contract extension for Andrew Wiggins show me that the Wolves are looking to start winning now, make a name for themselves and build around Karl-Anthony Towns. To get Butler, the Wolves had to send Zach LaVine and Kris Dunn to Chicago. LaVine was coming into his own and is able to score and not be just a flashy dunker. Dunn is only in his second year after coming off the bench behind Ricky Rubio, who has since been traded to Utah, so we never really got to see his potential.
Along with these transactions, the Wolves also brought in Jeff Teague and Taj Gibson, pushing forwards Gorgui Dieng and Shabazz Muhammad to come off the bench alongside sixth man Jamal Crawford, who has great ball handling skills and can shoot off the dribble, and hometown boy Tyus Jones coming in for the guards.
The Wolves open their season on the road at the Spurs. Hopefully, they play well and we can see what this team can potentially bring. It’s a long season, but I think they can be a threat sooner rather than later.