I always try to make my predictions before the season starts. I just need to wait until after the first game of the season...then the answers are clear!
For example, had I waited until after opening day of the baseball season, I would have seen the error in my ways. I clearly would have known that the Mets would collapse in September and the Phillies would be World Series champs.
NFL? I would have known Tom Brady would be hurt, the Dallas Cowboys would be flawed, and Vince Y---err...Kerry Collins would lead the Titans to a 19-0 season.
And of course, in college football, I would have known that Virginia Tech can't move the ball at all on offense, and their defense isn't stellar enough to compete with any of the top tier teams outside of the ACC---let alone the sad excuses for top teams within the conference.
So here we are, after day one of the NBA's season, and boy am I grateful that I waited to blog. Had I done my predictions yesterday or the day before, I probably would have picked the Trail Blazers to win it all, led by Most Valuable Player Greg Oden.
One game into the season, I've now got the inside scoop. I'll just list my top two teams in each division. Here we go:
2) Toronto Raptors
--Boston has an easy ride for the most part. The only teams that have actually improved in the east aren't in their division. The 76ers can make a run at the playoffs, but the Knicks and Nets are going to be playing like they've overdosed on sleeping pills.
2) Detroit Pistons
--The Pistons have gotten older, and LeBron has a little extra help. This looks like the only division in the Conference where three teams are a lock for the playoffs. Cleveland, Detroit, Chicago. Indiana has an outside shot.
1) Orlando Magic
2) Washington Wizards
--Orlando basically wins by default. Washington should sneak into the playoffs with a 7 or 8 seed. They're probably better off without Agent Zero, but we love ole' Gil anyway. Charlotte can compete if they stay healthy.
1) Utah Jazz
2) Denver Nuggets
--This may have looked a little different if I didn't watch the Lakers/Blazers game last night. But I did. Only two playoff teams in the northwest.
1) Los Angeles Lakers
2) Phoenix Suns
--The Lakers were only a complete team for half the season last year. A full year of health is a return to dominance. The Lakers should run away with this division.
1) Dallas Mavericks
2) Houston Rockets
3) San Antonio Spurs
4) New Orleans Hornets
Lakers over Cavaliers
LeBron and the boys may have lost in Boston last night, but they showed a little extra flair that was lacking last season. They'll take out the Celts in the playoffs in seven this year. The Spurs can make some noise in the playoffs, but they aren't getting any younger. Indianapolis Colts syndrome perhaps. I still like the Lakers to come out of the west. Don't expect any more NBA blogs this season. I've got Marist women's hoops to concentrate on.