2009 NBA Predictions: LeBron Stays, Shaq Goes, Lakers Fall Short Yet Again
As we head into the New Year, I've decided to take a look into the year ahead and predict what the NBA has in stock.
2008 was a year that some hope will be forgotten—a year which included an economic meltdown, the Sonics moving to Oklahoma City, Iverson to Detroit, the beginning of preparations for the Free Agency Boom in 2010.
There could be some major unveilings in the upcoming year. Here are a few moves that I think could happen. Some are a bit of a stretch, but some are very possible.
Flip Saunders Will Coach Again
With the high number of firings thus far in the NBA, Saunders is atop the replacement candidates. There are a number of teams that could use his services—Minnesota, Toronto, and Chicago are possible locations for the coach.
Bulls Fire Vinny Del Negro
The Bulls have plenty of talent to be a competitive team. Unfortunately, Del Negro was not the right choice to guide this young team and could very well be fired by the season’s end.
Boozer Signs With Pistons
If Boozer is not traded by the deadline, I’ll go ahead and say he’ll sign a contract with the Detroit Pistons. I’m guessing somewhere in the $15 Million per season range.
Clippers Trade Kaman
Chris Kaman is the odd man out in Los Angeles. The Clippers could net a lot of value for the Center. They could acquire another scorer or slasher in a deal with a team like Detroit, Cleveland or even Phoenix—who will be looking to replace Shaquille O’Neal, when he enters free agency.
LeBron Signs Extension
Yup, I said it. The Cavs make it far in the postseason—enticing LeBron to sign a major extension. The ultimate buzz-kill for the Knicks, Nets and other teams hoping to cash in on the Ohio native.
Shaq Signs With Knicks
This one may be a little bit of a stretch. The Knicks won’t fully recover from the cardiac arrest suffered when LeBron signs his new extension, but they will get a nice new rental piece to spark the franchise. Shaquille O’Neal will sign a one-year deal with the Knicks.
Rockets Upset Lakers
The Rockets will upset the Lakers in the Conference Finals and Houston will face off against the Cavaliers in the NBA Finals—with the Rockets winning the Finals!
KG Wins MVP
Kevin Garnett will win MVP as the Celtics boast an outstanding 68-14 record. They will lose to the Cavaliers in the Conference Finals, though.