Mid-season report

Posted by By at 15 March, at 08 : 59 AM Print

Mid-season report

The season is entering the final third and still the same playoff teams from last year are contending in their divisions. Injuries have crippled or hobbled every team because of the abbreviated season and lack of preparation. The back to back sets have also taken their toll on each team and reserves have been tested. The surprise team has been the Minnesota Timberwolves who are in playoff contention while Portland has been the disappointment this season. Portland was a pick to contend in the Northwest and compete for a top seed in the playoffs, but players like Raymond Felton have voiced problems over Coach Nate McMillan’s offense leading him to bench the star. The Lakers have been fairly good in the standings but the team psyche was frayed when Lamar Odom was traded to Dallas. Since then Pau Gasol has had ‘hurt feelings’ because he was to be traded as well. Kobe Bryant has defended Gasol and then overruled Coach Mike Brown on a set play for a last second win.

The Knicks as usual have under performed according to the talent on their roster but in February found ‘lightning in a bottle’ with Harvard graduate, free agent point guard Jeremy Lin. They won seven straight games with Lin. The schedule got tougher, Am’are and Carmelo came back from injury and Carmelo hasn’t been happy with the new offense. Mike D’Antoni was fired after six difficult seasons in New York because of the failure to develop his team. The Heat have proven themselves to be the favorite to defend their Eastern conference title but have to fight with their own arrogance if they want to win the NBA title. In certain stretches the Heat look unbeatable having a margin of victory by 14 points. Lately, their lack of size and tendency to fall in love with Wade & Lebron taking on the rest of the opposition by themselves shows weaknesses in their team.

Chicago and Oklahoma City have the best records in each conference but haven’t changed much since last year when they stood at the top with the best records also. The Clippers are another surprise but not because of their record, that they have been what fans expected them to be when Chris Paul was traded there in the off season. They will definitely miss Chauncey Billups though in the playoffs. Now, after today’s trading deadline will come the ‘homestretch run’. Teams will start to fade and lose playoff position while other teams will gain. As fans, the best is yet to come.

 

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