Crystal Ball Time

Kurt —  September 19, 2006

I’m pulling this out of the comments and making it its own topic because, well, it made me laugh (and has a lot of potential).

It just feels too early to start predicting who will finish where in the West and what team will make it out of the Eastern Conference. But it’s not too early to make a few fun predictions for the 2006-07 NBA season, which is just what commenter Rob did recently:

1. I will throw a projectile at the television screen at least six times. Something soft, like a pillow.

2. Not a single NBA game will be broadcast without “Euro big” being uttered.

3. A team from a city that begins with “C” will represent the East in the Finals.

4. Isaiah Thomas will be Coach of the Year.

5. The Dwyane Wade backlash will begin.

6. The Western Conference Finals will be the highest scoring since the Seventies.

7. Time Warner Cable will drop NBA TV.

8. I will eat a lot of nachos. Seriously. Like way too many.

John R. then pitched in with another good one:

The Christmas day game will feature at least 100 FTA by each side and will not end until after midnight EST. This is the reason it is no longer a double-header.

Then minutes before I posted this, Xavier came through with a long list, of which I’ll excerpt a few here:

1. On Christmas day we’re going to see fire in Shaq’s eyes when Bynum enters the court, and the same in Bynum when he’ll be again at home vs. Shaq

6. Lakers will have 2 All-star players.

7. Shaq won’t start for the East in the All-star game.

For fun, let me throw in a few:

1. Whatever marketing catchphrase the NBA beats into the ground this season, it will drive me to drink (but not as much as those borderline-blasphemous Audrey Hepburn Gap ads).

2. Despite my best efforts, my 2-year-old daughter will learn some “magical” new words during a Laker loss this season

3. Columnists/sports talk show hosts who don’t know the game will say LeBron James is overrated.

4. Don Nelson will be coach of the year. It’s his birthright.

What are your predictions?

to Crystal Ball Time

  1. 1) There will be several ESPN segments on the “Kobe-Shaq Feud: Revisited”

    2)There will be several LA Times articles revisiting the “Kobe/Shaq” feud.

    3) Every time I see one of these articles or segments on TV, I will be reminded of that one glorious comeback game against Portland in the West finals, and that lob pass from Kobe to Shaq, saddened that we’ll never see that again.

    4) Andrew Bynum will dominate in garbage time, and still not be given meaningful playing time by Phil Jackson.

    5) The Lakers will secure the fifth seed in the playoffs, defeating the Denver Nuggets, who had been in the fourth spot. Unfortunately, they will then go on to fall in the second round to the Ron Artest-led “resurgent!” Sacramento Kings, who, after pulling off an unbelievable upset of the 1st-seeded Houston Rockets in the first round, end up playing the Phoenix Suns in a barnburning 7-game Western Conference finals.


  2. 1. The Lakers will make the second round of the playoffs.

    2. Lebron James will still suck at defense.

    3. The Clippers will miss the playoffs.

    4. Dwayne Wade will miss most the season with an injury.

    5. When Wade gets hurt Shaq will start whining and the city of Miami will get tired of him or forget about him.

    6. Kwame Brown will get off to a slow start before picking it up later in the year.

    7. Bill Simmons will continue his recent streak of pissing me off more than he makes me laugh.

    8. Kobe will average under 35.

    9. Lamar will play the best basketball of his career.

    10. Kobe will be recognized by more than just the former players as the best player in the world on NBA shows.


  3. I predict…

    Phil Jackson and TJ Simers will exchange smarmy remarks more than once throughout the course of the season…

    Dwyane Wade will walk on water…

    The new ball will help decrease Kwame’s turnovers…

    The team with the most points at the end of the game will win…

    The Lakers will progress, showing flashes of “getting it”, while continuing to be maddeningly inconsistent…


  4. La Fleur, i dont think Kobe will be recognized as the best player in the NBA, tho he is, bcuz he’s a Love-or-Hate player, which implies the word hate. even Utah fans loved Jordan. The MSG and Spike Lee ovationed Miller in his last game in NY. and i think that this is going to be dificult to hapen to Kobe, and that doesnt mean i’d love it.

    Gatinho made a really good point saying that “The team with the most points at the end of the game will win” instead of saying “The team contending oposite team with least points at the end of the game will win” it seams every single team in reconstruction is going to a Suns-tipe of game.


  5. 1. Adam Morrison will win ROY. Carmelo will win the MVP.
    2. Golden State will finish with a worse record than the Knicks.
    3. Jordan Farmar will be starting by February.
    4. Phil Jackson will bench Kwame Brown for a significant amount of time and be forced to play Andrew Bynum.
    5. Minnesota will win the Northwest Division.
    6. Two teams that will surprise: Charlotte and Portland
    7. Miami will not make the conference finals.
    8. Allen Iverson will be leading the league in scoring when he is traded.
    9. Ben Wallace will bomb in Chicago.
    10. Cleveland will win the NBA Finals.


  6. 1. John R will call Kobe a rapist at least 5 times.
    2. People will eventually realise that just because he had a great finals D-Wade is not the greatest player in the world.
    3. It will suck to be a fan in Philly.
    4. I will end up skipping at least 500 pages of reading in order to see the Lakers miss the playoffs.


  7. 1) Kobe did rape that girl — 5 is a tall order better get started
    2) Bynum just might dominate garbage time…thanks to the Lakers being hopelessly behind early and often
    3) Kobe will miss a personal high number of games due to injury
    4) The Northwest will still be gross
    5) Amare will never be the same
    6) Mychal Thompson will take his own life after the Clippers finish with a better record than the Lakers for the 3rd straight year
    7) Iverson will make some team regret he wasn’t traded
    8) Lamar will have the best season of his career, and will still only be the 3rd best forward in LA

    I like to teach my niece new words at Disneyland. Once when a bird shat on me and on a seperate trip when a fat broad pushed her out of the way in the churro line. What does that place bring out in me?


  8. Lebron is gifted but definitely overrated.
    – Poor shot mechanics
    – Poor footwork
    – Terrible defense (post, screen and roll, close out)
    Why else?
    The NBA media machine is allowing him to flourish beyond what he really is. The referees allow him to blatantly carry and travel (see his game winner versus the Wizards).
    The current NBA rules reward athleticism over skill which is why he can go unimpeded to the basket whenever he wants.
    Is Lebron one of the best players in the league?
    Almost. But overrated he is until he better masters the game.


  9. 1. Referees will still suck… and as a result we will see Wade vs LeBron in the Eastern finals.
    2. Lakers won’t get past the first-round due to a poor seeding.
    3. Mavs 1, Suns 2, Nuggets 3, Spurs 4, Clippers 5, Sacramento 6, Lakers 7, Utah 8 (Eastern conference is meaningless because we all know it’s about Wade and LeBron).
    4. Stern will try to convince us to watch the WNBA about 10 times-per-game. He will still fail…
    5. Kobe won’t be the NBA leading scorer, but will have better all-around numbers.
    6. The Knicks will be worse than ever…
    7. More predictions only after some trades (or lack of…)


  10. -Tony is right on about Lebron’s shooting mechanics. But shooting mechanics and what’s poor and what’s proper regarding them varies for each player. Judging a player based on how his shot looks is a dangerous thing, because each player’s shot is unique to that player. Lebron’s shot isnt traditionally pretty, but its effective thus far and as he gets older, its only going to get better.
    -Lebron’s defense will improve as his BBall IQ improves. Being an automatic mismatch on offense can be detrimental on the defensive end as well…

    I’m pretty skeptical in regards to young players being pumped by the league and the worlwideleaderinsports…who can forget the NBA dark ages known as the mid 90’s? But Lebron is probably the most unique player any of us will see come down the line. He’s a point guard in a linebacker’s body and when his basketball brain catches up to his body, he will go down as one of the greatest to ever play. Its rather unfair to blame the player for what the referees call or dont call, so sit back and enjoy watching a once in a generation player develop.


  11. Big Game…
    “Lebron is probably the most unique player any of us will see come down the line. He’s a point guard in a linebacker’s body…”

    Have you ever heard of ‘Magic’ Ervin Johnson?

    He was a pretty good 6’9″ point guard.

    Nope, Lebron is not totally unique if you look at history any farther back than ESPN. As a matter-of-fact Wilt Chamberlain led the league in assists one year and he was 7′ 2-4″ – depending on who you talk to.


  12. Craig,

    I’ve made a couple posts comparing Lebron to Magic on this site. I guess 2 stellar and big(not just tall) point guards in the 50+ years of the NBA just isnt unique enough for you. I grew up in LA idolizing Magic and the rest of the Showtime Lakers, so please chill with the insulting tone.

    And Lebron is a bit more athletic than Magic was, even when Magic @ Michigan State. Quicker first


  13. Its really a bit early to compare Lebron to Magic. True, they’re both big guards but Magic’s play making abilities are so much greater than Lebron’s. Magic, while not always the greatest lock down defender is among the all-time leaders in steals. Lebron has many things going for him that Magic didn’t as well. For instance the power Lebron displays is anything but Magic like. Lebron is still young and eventually no one will compare him to anyone but Lebron James. He’s totally unique and think to compare him to Magic and his ilk is a little wrong headed.


  14. Renato Afonso – No way do the Lakers finish behind the OTHER LA team or the Queens. Lakers are the 5-seed this year.

    John R. – Who’s the other forward who’s better than Odom? Obviously Brand is better, but I honestly can’t even make a case for anybody else in LA…


  15. He might mean Tim Thomas, I wouldn’t agree with that but it is possible that is what John R. believes.


  16. I think he’s talking about Chris Kaman here guys 🙂


  17. Maybe OJ Mayo going to play forward for USC.


  18. I predict that no one (except maybe Kurt) remembers The Spark’s song…

    “You’re gonna take a walk in the rain
    And you’re gonna get wet
    I predict…

    L.A. is safe
    Ain’t gonna quake
    Ain’t gonna quake
    I predict”


  19. Kaman is not a Forward… but i still prefere Odom than Kaman


  20. Hopefull Predictions:

    The BAD: Kobe and Lamar are both injured in a freak on court accident that forces season-ending surgury for Odom, and Kobe’s expected to be out for 6 months.

    The GOOD: Kobe returns ahead of schedule and playes like a beast, but …

    The BEST: … the Lakers can’t recover and finish with the worst record in the Western Conference, so … a certain 7-foot phenom is wearing a Laker cap come Draft day.