Our Guest Shares His Insights On The NBA Season

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by Jared Harris,

Jared Harris is a freelance writer and lover of all things sports related. He’s especially interested in how this NBA season will pan out. You can follow him on Twitter @jaredrharris.

The NBA season is finally underway! And thanks to a busy offseason, the league has an intriguing new look. So to get you ready for the coming action, here’s one thing to watch on each NBA team this season.

Atlantic Division

Boston Celtics

Watch the point guard rotation. The Celtics drafted Marcus Smart, who could be the point guard of the future if they decide to trade Rajon Rondo.

Brooklyn Nets

Don’t be surprised if Deron Williams has a resurgence. NBA.com recently quoted Williams as saying his surgically repaired ankle feels “300 times better” than a year ago. He’s also playing with a healthy Brook Lopez and a new coach after Jason Kidd never quite worked out.

New York Knicks

Phil Jackson seems likely to make a few more moves to speed up the rebuild around Carmelo Anthony, who put a great deal of faith in the organization when he re-signed this offseason.

Philadelphia 76ers

K.J. McDaniels, an athletic guard out of Clemson, may be one of the biggest surprises in the rookie class. He’s a high level defender who will also get a chance to score in Philly.

Toronto Raptors

Did this team already max out on its potential? The Raptors were a blast in 2013-14 but did nothing to upgrade their roster while the Eastern Conference around them got a little bit better across the board.

Central Division

Chicago Bulls

One storyline dominates this year’s Bulls: what will Derrick Rose look like in his second comeback?

Cleveland Cavaliers

We know Lebron James will dominate, and that it will be fascinating watching Cleveland’s new “Big Three” gel. But Kyrie Irving is the one to watch. Don’t be surprised if the new-look Cavs elevate Irving to All-NBA levels.

Lebron

Detroit Pistons

Keep an eye on the frontcourt in Detroit, because it seems like someone has to go. Andre Drummond, Greg Monroe, and Josh Smith should probably all be starting, but playing Smith at small forward is less than ideal. The Pistons could make a move.

Indiana Pacers

David West could be traded to a contender. Bill Simmons predicted as much in his Grantland.com preview of the Pacers, and it makes a great deal of sense—he’s a useful veteran, and Indy is going nowhere.

Milwaukee Bucks

How good can Jabari Parker be? This is a bit of an awkward roster, but Parker brings instant scoring ability and eventual all-star potential.

Southeast Division

Atlanta Hawks

Can Al Horford stay healthy? The Hawks’ big man is probably a top-20 talent in the league when he’s 100 percent, but injuries have thus far condemned him to a forgettable career.

Charlotte Hornets

Charlotte could be one of the biggest surprises in the league. Lance Stephenson will provide a real offensive spark to a team that was already improving.

Miami Heat

The roster is interesting, but a Southeast Division preview on Betbright.com made the interesting observation that the post-Lebron era also gives Erik Spoelstra a chance to show that he’s one of the top coaches in the league. Despite two titles, Spoelstra has a lot to prove.

Orlando Magic

The Magic are far from contention but boast a lot of young talent. Second-year player Victor Oladipo and rookies Elfrid Payton and Aaron Gordon could form this team’s core for years to come.

Washington Wizards

John Wall and Bradley Beal made some noise proclaiming themselves the best backcourt in the NBA. Now they have to back it up.

Southwest Division

Dallas Mavericks

The Mavericks may just contend for the Western Conference title and nearly beat the Spurs on opening night.

Houston Rockets

James Harden has the chance to become an MVP candidate if he plays even a little defense. With Kevin Durant missing six weeks or more and Lebron possibly taking a statistical step back on a loaded Cavs roster, there’s an opening for a new MVP.

Memphis Grizzlies

Look out for Jordan Adams. He’s not an elite athlete but he can score, and Memphis has been looking for a consistent shooting guard for years. The rookie could have a significant impact.

New Orleans Pelicans

Can Anthony Davis handle the pressure? The media seems to have universally declared Davis to be a future MVP, and he’s just 21, playing for a bad team.

San Antonio Spurs

Kawhi Leonard might define himself this season. With Duncan, Parker, and Ginobili another season older, Leonard can become a star, rather than an elite role player.

Northwest Division

Denver Nuggets

Rumored for head coaching positions for years, Brian Shaw finally gets his chance with a Nuggets roster that could go either way.

Minnesota Timberwolves

Andrew Wiggins isn’t an exciting rookie—he’s the entire future. Minnesota banked heavily on Wiggins in the Kevin Love trade, rather than securing a pile of future assets.

Oklahoma City Thunder

Russell Westbrook playing for six weeks or more without Kevin Durant is one of the most fascinating storylines of the early season.

Portland Trail Blazers

Like Harden, LaMarcus Aldridge could be a surprise MVP candidate if the race does indeed open up this season.

Utah Jazz

This team’s starting backcourt may be on its bench. Rookies Dante Exum and Rodney Hood probably have a higher upside than starters Trey Burke and Alec Burks—we’ll see if new coach Quin Snyder agrees.

Pacific Division

Golden State Warriors

New head coach Steve Kerr is expected to bring some offensive creativity to what is already one of the most exciting offenses in the league. The Warriors will be a blast.

Los Angeles Clippers

With Oklahoma City dealing with the Durant injury and the Spurs a year older, the Clippers have a legitimate argument as the top team in the West.

Los Angeles Lakers

The Lakers are terrible, but if Kobe Bryant can keep their offense even respectable, it could be one of his most impressive seasons.

Phoenix Suns

Can Goran Dragic keep it up? His outstanding 2013-14 season netted him a few MVP votes, per ArizonaSports.com, and an encore in 2014-15 would be a thrill.

Sacramento Kings

DeMarcus Cousins looked great for Team USA this summer, and many have suggested the experience might help to improve his maturity. This could be the year he blossoms into a truly elite center.

Jared Harris is a freelance writer and lover of all things sports related. He’s especially interested in how this NBA season will pan out. You can follow him on Twitter @jaredrharris.