Projecting Every NBA Team's Depth Chart, 2014 Training Camp Edition

Josh Martin@@JoshMartinNBANBA Lead WriterSeptember 20, 2014

Projecting Every NBA Team's Depth Chart, 2014 Training Camp Edition

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    Sue Ogrocki/Associated Press

    The air is cooling, the leaves are changing colors and football's demons are rearing their ugly heads once again. That can only mean one thing...

    NBA training camps are right around the corner!

    (You thought I was going to say, "It's fall!", didn't you?)

    There are still some details to be ironed out before the calendar turns to October, not the least of which is Eric Bledsoe's future with the Phoenix Suns. By and large, though, teams around the league have compiled their rosters, with only the occasional hangers-on from the D-League and overseas waiting on invites.

    With all the negative news floating around the sports world these days, now would seem as good a time as any to distract ourselves from what's supposed to be a distraction from real life, by delving into the semi-speculative exercise of sorting out depth charts.

    Here, then, is a look at how all 30 rosters figure to shake out, with teams listed in alphabetical order by city.

Atlanta Hawks

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    Dave Tulis/Associated Press

    PG: Jeff Teague, Dennis Schroder, Shelvin Mack

    SG: Kyle Korver, John Jenkins, Kent Bazemore

    SF: DeMarre Carroll, Thabo Sefolosha

    PF: Paul Millsap, Mike Scott, Elton Brand, Adreian Payne

    C: Al Horford, Pero Antic, Mike Muscala

    Key Additions: Thabo Sefolosha, Adreian Payne, Kent Bazemore

    Atlanta's newcomers—who can only hope their scouting reports weren't as offensive as Luol Deng's was—don't figure to make much of a difference beyond the margins, at least not at the outset.

    Sefolosha had been a solid three-and-D type with the Oklahoma City Thunder before his three-point stroke went bunk last season. Payne's a precocious and college-experienced rookie, but he's a rookie nonetheless. As for Bazemore, his NBA legacy will probably be marked more by sideline celebrations than by anything he's done on the court.

    That being said, the Hawks already had a solid starting five coming into the summer. An upgrade on the wing would've been nice, but...well, there's that bit about Deng again.

    In any case, the Hawks certainly have the assets to be a strong, deep squad in the East. The question is, will the on-court efforts of their players be dragged down by the off-court controversies of their owners and executives?

    Position to Watch: Power forward

    Just because the Hawks already have an All-Star at power forward, in Millsap, doesn't mean that spot won't be one of significant intrigue in the ATL this season. For one, Millsap will be playing on an expiring deal, giving him that much more incentive to put together another sensational campaign.

    But the Hawks, as an organization, will have to strike a balance between what Millsap brings them now and what's best for their frontcourt going forward. Horford, who's due to return from another pectoral injury, is a more natural fit at the four than he is at the five, as far as size and skill set are concerned. Meanwhile, Payne, Atlanta's first-round pick in the 2014 draft, possesses considerable promise at the position.

    And that's to say nothing of Scott, who inked a three-year, $10 million deal with the team this summer.

    All told, head coach Mike Budenholzer should have no shortage of options to consider in training camp when deciding how best to organize his big-man rotations, even though his starters are already set.

Boston Celtics

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    Michael Perez/Associated Press

    PG: Rajon Rondo, Marcus Smart, Phil Pressey, Will Bynum, Tim Frazier

    SG: Avery Bradley, Marcus Thornton, James Young, Chris Babb, Rodney McGruder

    SF: Jeff Green, Evan Turner, Gerald Wallace, Keith Bogans, Chris Johnson

    PF: Brandon Bass, Jared Sullinger, Christian Watford

    C: Tyler Zeller, Kelly Olynyk, Vitor Faverani

    Key Additions: Marcus Smart, Marcus Thornton, James Young, Evan Turner, Tyler Zeller

    The Boston Celtics made a doggy-paddle-sized splash when they plucked Thornton and Zeller out of a three-team deal with the Brooklyn Nets and the Cleveland Cavaliers. The former could serve as an intriguing scorer off the bench—and insurance for the oft-injured Bradley—while the latter figures to add size and mobility to the squad's stock of centers.

    In truth, Smart and Young are the ones to watch over the long haul. Boston's first-round rookies both have the talent to become key rotation cogs, if not outright starters (and, in Smart's case, a bona fide star), in the years to come. As for Turner, he and the C's have reached an agreement, per The Boston Globe's Gary Washburn, though nobody has yet put pen to paper to seal that deal.

    Position to Watch: Point guard

    Is Rondo staying, or is he going? That question has been on the minds of Celtics fans for months, especially since general manager Danny Ainge added Smart, another point guard, with the No. 6 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft.

    Given the C's lackluster prospects for success this season, their selection of Smart and Rondo's impending foray into free agency, it would seem an obvious choice for Boston to trade its All-Star point guard before he can walk away for nothing. But, as Bleacher Report's Ric Bucher noted, the calculus involved isn't so simple:

    One Eastern Conference GM listed Ainge's demands, Rondo's health post-ACL tear and questions about his temperament and coachability as the offsets to teams that would love to acquire a pass-first point guard with Rondo's defensive abilities and the mental toughness to run point for a championship-caliber squad.

    Sooner or later, Rondo will be gone, and Smart will become Brad Stevens' floor general of choice. At this point, it would seem a matter of when, not if, that comes to pass.

Brooklyn Nets

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    Uncredited/Associated Press

    PG: Deron Williams, Jarrett Jack, Marquis Teague, Jorge Gutierrez

    SG: Joe Johnson, Alan Anderson, Markel Brown

    SF: Andrei Kirilenko, Bojan Bogdanovic, Sergey Karasev

    PF: Kevin Garnett, Mirza Teletovic, Cory Jefferson

    C: Brook Lopez, Mason Plumlee

    Key Additions: Jarrett Jack, Sergey Karasev, Bojan Bogdanovic

    Jack and Karasev both arrived in Brooklyn by way of that aforementioned three-team trade with the Celtics and the Cavs. Jack was presumed to take on a significant role with the Nets, in light of Williams' perennial injury problems, but the latter's offseason ankle surgery may prove otherwise.

    "It’s definitely different this year, and I think it’s great," Williams said recently at his charity dodgeball tournament (via the New York Post's Tim Bontemps). "I’ll be able to participate in training camp. I’ll be practicing with the guys right now, and I’m able to play with the guys before training camp, which is great."

    Karasev and Bogdanovic could find themselves in similar dire straights in terms of playing time. Kirilenko is no sure thing to play 82 games—he hasn't played more than 72 games in a season since 2003-04—but the two international youngsters (the Russian Karasev and the Croatian Bogdanovic) figure to go toe-to-toe for whatever's left.

    Position to Watch: Point guard

    Williams may have all the confidence in the world in his problematic ankles, but until he shows that they're better off now after surgery, the Nets will have no choice by to hold their breath and hope that Jack is ready to step in at a moment's notice. After all, Brooklyn must take care of a player in whom it still has upward of $63 million invested over the next three years.

    At some point, the Nets would probably like Lopez to become the focal point of this club. He's nearly four years younger than Williams and has been a standout performer at a much thinner position.

    But Lopez's feet remain cause for concern after sidelining him for most of the 2013-14 season. For now, if the Nets are to stay relevant in the East, they'll need D-Will to be their torchbearer—for better or worse.

Charlotte Hornets

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    Kent Smith/Getty Images

    PG: Kemba Walker, Brian Roberts, Gary Neal, Jannero Pargo

    SG: Lance Stephenson, Gerald Henderson, P.J. Hairston

    SF: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Jeff Taylor

    PF: Marvin Williams, Cody Zeller, Noah Vonleh

    C: Al Jefferson, Bismack Biyombo

    Key Additions: Lance Stephenson, Marvin Williams, Brian Roberts, Noah Vonleh, P.J. Hairston

    Stephenson could be a game-changer for the Charlotte Hornets from the get-go. The 24-year-old former Indiana Pacers guard isn't a great perimeter shooter, but he's still better than Gerald Henderson, whom he's due to replace in the starting lineup.

    Better yet, Stephenson can take over a portion of Charlotte's creative duties, thereby affording Walker to operate more as an attacker off the ball and ameliorating the ill effects of Josh McRoberts' departure. Roberts, who burnished his credentials in New Orleans the past two seasons, could help in that regard, as well.

    Beyond those two, Charlotte spent the summer enlisting players who could serve as floor-stretchers. Williams, Vonleh and Hairston all come equipped with useful jump shots and solid size for their respective positions. Vonleh, in particular, could emerge as a two-way stud in time but not until he returns from a recent surgery to repair a sports hernia.

    Position to Watch: Power forward

    The loss of McRoberts to the Miami Heat left the Hornets with a hole at power forward, albeit one that head coach Steve Clifford will have some intriguing options to fill.

    At the outset, it appears as, though, Clifford will enlist Williams as his top option at power forward. "He’ll play both forward spots, but I see him primarily as a stretch 4 (a power forward with three-point range)," Clifford told The Charlotte Observer's Rick Bonnell. "Up close you see that he can shoot and pass very well. He’s a very smart player who makes smart, simple plays. And he’s very professional in his approach."

    The Hornets can only hope that Williams' path to a starting spot won't be a cakewalk. Zeller's rookie year was nothing short of a struggle, and Vonleh's could be in the wake of a spotty summer league and September surgery.

Chicago Bulls

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    USA TODAY Sports

    PG: Derrick Rose, Kirk Hinrich, Aaron Brooks

    SG: Jimmy Butler, Tony Snell

    SF: Mike Dunleavy, Doug McDermott

    PF: Pau Gasol, Taj Gibson, Nikola Mirotic

    C: Joakim Noah, Cameron Bairstow

    Key Additions: Pau Gasol, Doug McDermott, Nikola Mirotic, Aaron Brooks

    The Chicago Bulls' frontcourt should be as stacked as it's been in some time, even (especially?) without Carlos Boozer in the mix. Gasol, McDermott and Mirotic all bring plenty of size and skill into the equation. Gasol, in particular, has head coach Tom Thibodeau tingling with anticipation.

    "Pau helps the team in so many different ways," Thibodeau told HoopsHype's Raul Barrigon after the 2014 FIBA World Cup. "He makes other people lot better. Offensively, defensively." 

    As for Brooks, he could be the next in an ever-lengthening line of undersized scoring guards who've thrived under Thibs, joining the likes of Eddie House, C.J. Watson, Nate Robinson and D.J. Augustin.

    Position to Watch: Point guard

    Derrick Rose still plays the point, right? Then that's the spot on which all Bulls fans should and will be keeping the closest tabs. 

    Rose looked rusty during his recent stint with Team USA at the FIBA World Cup. He converted just 25 percent of his shot attempts, including a mere one of 19 from three.

    The fact that he was able to play without physical incident, though, is reason enough for Chicago to take heart. He'll find his game in time, so long as he's able to avoid injury for an extended period.

    And if Rose needs rest, the Bulls have the bodies to accommodate him. Hinrich is showing his age more and more with each passing game, but the guy's still tough and knows what to do for Thibs. Brooks has been an effective creator at the NBA level, and should do no worse than provide a spark off the bench on occasion.

Cleveland Cavaliers

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    Credit: Bleacher Report

    PG: Kyrie Irving, John Lucas III

    SG: Dion Waiters, Matthew Dellavedova, Joe Harris, Chris Crawford

    SF: LeBron James, Mike Miller, Shawn Marion, James Jones

    PF: Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson, Dwight Powell, Erik Murphy, Malcolm Thomas

    C: Anderson Varejao, Brendan Haywood, Louis Amundson, Alex Kirk

    Key Additions: LeBron James, Kevin Love, Mike Miller, James Jones, Shawn Marion, John Lucas III

    I hear this LeBron James fellow is pretty good and has done quite well for himself in a Cavs uniform before.

    This time around, James decided to bring some of his buddies along for the ride. Love, who played with James on Team USA at the 2012 London Olympics, came over as soon as Andrew Wiggins was fair game for trade fodder.

    Miller and Jones, who won rings as sharpshooters next to LeBron in Miami, signed on for similar roles prior to that. Marion, once an adversary of James' in the 2011 Finals, can now say he's beaten and joined his top competition.

    Lucas should come in handy as support for Irving, though it seems unlikely that he came aboard at Bron-Bron's behest.

    Position to Watch: Center

    For all of its obvious talent, this Cavs squad remains troublingly soft in the middle. 

    Varejao's a fantastic rebounder who's as tough and fearless as they come, but the guy hasn't played anything approaching a complete season since 2009-10. The same goes for Haywood, who missed all of last season—and might miss part of the 2013-14 campaign—after undergoing foot surgery in Oct. 2013.

    It's possible, then, that Amundson, a well-traveled big man, and Kirk, a seven-foot rookie out of New Mexico, will see significant playing time at center. That can't come as any confidence boost to the Cavs, whose rotation isn't exactly replete with plus defenders and rim protectors to begin with.

Dallas Mavericks

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    Eric Gay/Associated Press

    PG: Jameer Nelson, Raymond Felton, Gal Mekel

    SG: Monta Ellis, Devin Harris, Ricky Ledo 

    SF: Chandler Parsons, Richard Jefferson, Jae Crowder, Al-Farouq Aminu, Eric Griffin

    PF: Dirk Nowitzki, Brandan Wright, Ivan Johnson

    C: Tyson Chandler, Greg Smith, Bernard James

    Key Additions: Chandler Parsons, Tyson Chandler, Jameer Nelson, Raymond Felton, Richard Jefferson, Al-Farouq Aminu

    Another year, another "Extreme Makeover: NBA Edition" for the Dallas Mavericks. This time, though, they may have hit upon a winning combination.

    Parsons comes to Big D at a steep cost (three years, $46 million), but he sports the versatility and the upside on the wing that the Mavs need next to Nowitzki. The team is also betting on Tyson Chandler to recapture his glory days—as a champion with the Mavs in 2011 and as the Defensive Player of the Year with the New York Knicks in 2011-12—now that he's left the Big Apple behind.

    The Chandler trade forced Dallas to turn to flotsam (Nelson) and jetsam (Felton) at the point, but the Mavericks should be in better shape all around now that they've fortified two other spots.

    Position to Watch: Point guard

    Have I mentioned that the Mavs are weak at the point?

    Not that it was any great strength before. They spent last season with Jose Calderon, a noted negative on the defensive end, filling that spot.

    But at least Calderon brought fantastic offensive skills—particularly his three-point shot (.449 from three last season)—to the table. Neither Nelson nor Felton can claim anything close to that, and both have been on the decline for some time.

    That means that Mekel, a scantly used guard out of Israel, might have to bite off much more than he chewed as a rookie in 2013-14.

Denver Nuggets

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    Daniel Ochoa de Olza/Associated Press

    PG: Ty Lawson, Nate Robinson, Erick Green

    SG: Arron Afflalo, Randy Foye, Gary Harris

    SF: Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler, Quincy Miller, Jerrelle Benimon

    PF: Kenneth Faried, J.J. Hickson, Darrell Arthur

    C: Timofey Mozgov, JaVale McGee, Jusuf Nurkic

    Key Additions: Arron Afflalo, Gary Harris, Jusuf Nurkic

    Harris and Nurkic could both eventually emerge as quality NBA players, but the real story of the Nuggets' summer acquisitions is Afflalo's return. Denver gave up Evan Fournier and rookie Roy Devyn Marble to bring the UCLA product back to the Mile High City.

    Afflalo, for his part, is looking forward to his second go-round in a Nuggets uniform, after a two-year pit stop in Orlando.

    "My moves have all been just about my belief in me and the next team that takes me on appreciating that," Afflalo told Bleacher Report at Adidas Nations back in August. "Hopefully I’ll find a home here for my second run in Denver."


    Position to Watch: Power forward

    Truth be told, every position in Denver brings with it some measure of intrigue.

    Can Lawson be an All-Star among a stacked field of point guards? What sort of veteran leadership will Afflalo bring to the table? Will Gallo be anywhere near as good as he was before he tore his ACL? Is McGee prepared to outplay Mozgov and live up to his hefty contract?

    But, after watching Team USA steamroll its way through the FIBA Basketball World Cup, it's clear that Faried's future at power forward will be the prime focus for prying eyes in Colorado. Faried averaged 12.2 points and a team-high 7.7 rebounds in Spain, prompting pro trainer David Nurse to fawn on HoopsHype:

    There’s a certain characteristic, a certain trait that very few players bring to the game. It’s hard to exactly put your thumb on what it is and how certain players can possess this extreme added value. But you know it when you feel it...whatever it is, Kenneth Faried has it and it is what is going to make him a star in the NBA.

Detroit Pistons

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    Duane Burleson/Associated Press

    PG: Brandon Jennings, D.J. Augustin, Spencer Dinwiddie

    SG: Jodie Meeks, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope

    SF: Josh Smith, Caron Butler, Kyle Singler, Luigi Datome

    PF: Greg Monroe, Jonas Jerebko, Cartier Martin, Tony Mitchell

    C: Andre Drummond, Aaron Gray, Joel Anthony

    Key Additions: Jodie Meeks, Caron Butler, Cartier Martin, D.J. Augustin, Aaron Gray

    What do Meeks, Butler, Martin and Augustin all have in common? Aside from signing with the Detroit Pistons this summer, they're all respectable three-point shooters.

    Which is important because Detroit shot the second-lowest percentage from three last season (32.1 percent). Their frontcourt of Smith, Monroe and Drummond makes for enough of a logjam in the middle on its own. The last thing the team's offense needs around them is other guys who can't command defensive attention from a distance.

    The Pistons' newest perimeter players shouldn't have any problem with that. Neither should Gray, but it's only because he has nothing to do with this particular problem. 

    Position to Watch: Power forward

    Speaking of the cluster up front in the Motor City, power forward remains a point of contention for the Pistons—on paper, at least.

    Smith isn't a good fit on the wing and will be an even worse one now that he's bulked up this summer. 

    "I’m ready to play whatever position is asked of me," Smith told the Pistons' website, reports Keith Langlois. "But I’m going to play a lot of (power forward) and that was my main focus on being able to get more in the weight room and put some more muscle on my body to be able to withstand that physicality in the paint.

    I played that position so much, so long in the league that I know how big you have to be in order to be able, night in and night out, to withstand that impact and that physical nature inside the paint."

    Trouble is, Monroe still inhabits that spot. He might not for long, after turning down a long-term deal in favor of Detroit's one-year qualifying offer, but Monroe's not likely to budge until then.

    In the meantime, the onus will be on new head coach/team president Stan Van Gundy to find a workable solution to this ongoing conundrum, lest he let the Pistons' playoff drought creep into a seventh season.

Golden State Warriors

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    Daniel Ochoa de Olza/Associated Press

    PG: Stephen Curry, Shaun Livingston*, Leandro Barbosa, Nemanja Nedovic, Aaron Craft

    SG: Klay Thompson, Brandon Rush, Justin Holiday

    SF: Andre Iguodala, Harrison Barnes, James Michael McAdoo

    PF: David Lee, Draymond Green, Marreese Speights, Mitchell Watt

    C: Andrew Bogut, Festus Ezeli, Ognjen Kuzmic

    Key Additions: Shaun Livingston, Leandro Barbosa, Brandon Rush

    After struggling to find a viable replacement for Jarrett Jack, the Golden State Warriors made quick work of signing Livingston to serve as Curry's backup...only to see the former succumb to a toe injury in August. Livingston should be back before the regular season starts, but considering his disconcerting history of injuries, this can't be the foot on which he and Golden State wanted to start their partnership.

    As such, the Dubs turned to Barbosa, another ACL recovery, to fill out their depth chart at the point.

    And who, prey tell, has Golden State brought in to support Thompson at the other backcourt spot? None other than Rush, who played sparingly for the Utah Jazz last season after the Warriors traded him there—in the aftermath of his own horrific leg injury, no less.

    Position to Watch: Small forward

    Mark Jackson's follies aside, Iguodala and Barnes both came out as scapegoats for the Warriors' not-quite-up-to-par 2013-14 campaign. Iggy, for whom the Dubs sacrificed valuable assets and cap space, missed 19 games and managed just 9.3 points and 4.7 rebounds in the 63 in which he did feature. Barnes struggled to capitalize on his rookie playoff success, shooting a shade under 40 percent from the field.

    Granted, Jackson probably deserves some flack for this. Neither seemed to find a comfortable niche, though Barnes' struggles as a reserve, after starting throughout his first year, were particularly troubling.

    As such, the Warriors can only cross their fingers and hope that new head coach Steve Kerr will have some novel solutions to this problem and, in turn, unlock this team's full potential.

Houston Rockets

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    Sam Forencich/Getty Images

    PG: Patrick Beverley, Jason Terry, Isaiah Canaan, Ish Smith

    SG: James Harden, Troy Daniels, Nick Johnson 

    SF: Trevor Ariza, Francisco Garcia, Kostas Papanikolau, Robert Covington

    PF: Terrence Jones, Donatas Motiejunas, Josh Powell, Jeff Adrien, Tarik Black

    C: Dwight Howard, Joey Dorsey, Clint Capela

    Key Additions: Jason Terry, Trevor Ariza, Kostas Papanikolaou, Nick Johnson

    The Houston Rockets stocked up on bodies to fill the backcourt void left behind by Jeremy Lin's ouster. Terry can man either spot, but he figures to be most valuable at the point, where he can serve as an off-ball shooter next to Harden. Johnson—who, like JET, played his college ball at Arizona—sports similar versatility up top.

    General manager Daryl Morey took a similar approach to replacing the departed Chandler Parsons. In Ariza, the Rockets have a known quantity who fits the "3-and-D" mold about as well as any role player in the league. Papanikolau, 24, could be an instant impact player off the bench at either forward spot, after spending the last two seasons cultivating his game overseas. 

    Position to Watch: Power forward

    Morey did his darndest to land an All-Star power forward to plop next to Howard and Harden in the lineup. Instead, he wound up spurned by Chris Bosh, who opted for more money and a bigger role in Miami.

    As a result, the Rockets will have to head back to the drawing board to see if any of their options, incumbent and otherwise, can leave a mark. Jones showed some promise, starting 71 of his 76 games, though his three-point shooting (30.7 percent) last season left him short of a stretch 4. Motiejunas didn't fare any better (25 percent).

    With Bosh back on South Beach and Kevin Love off the market, Houston will have to lean on those two to make some strides at the power forward spot and for Powell, Adrien and Black to contribute something to the cause, as well.

Indiana Pacers

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    AJ Mast/Associated Press

    PG: George Hill, C.J. Watson, Donald Sloan

    SG: C.J. Miles, Rodney Stuckey

    SF: Solomon Hill, Chris Copeland, Damjan Rudez, Chris Singleton, C.J. Fair, Adonis Thomas

    PF: David West, Luis Scola, Lavoy Allen, Shayne Whittington

    C: Roy Hibbert, Ian Mahinmi, Arinze Onuaku

    Key Additions: C.J. Miles, Rodney Stuckey, Damjan Rudez

    The Indiana Pacers originally signed Miles, Stuckey and Rudez to help make up for the loss of Lance Stephenson. Once Paul George went down with a horrific leg injury during Team USA's Las Vegas scrimmage, their duties doubled—and then some.

    Replacing Stephenson's production would've been tough enough on its own for Miles and Stuckey. The former is probably a better shooter than the player he's replacing, and the latter is a much headier veteran, but neither brings to the table the blend of spontaneous playmaking and physicality that enabled Stephenson's star to rise.

    The George injury, on the other hand, should provide a particularly enticing opportunity for Rudez. The 6'10" Croatian will have as good a shot as any other Pacers wing of playing big minutes at the three this season.

    Position to Watch: Small forward

    As just mentioned, the competition to keep George's spot warm looks to be wide-open at this point.

    Hill hardly played as a rookie last season. Copeland wasn't much more successful in terms of earning minutes. Singleton saw his role diminish over time with the Washington Wizards. Rudez has yet to set foot in the NBA. Fair and Thomas were fortunate to garner training camp invites after summer league.

    The names involved aren't anything to write home about, but that's sort of the point. Any one of these guys could start in George's stead. The smart money, though, is on Hill, whose talent and youth make him a prime candidate to get a good, long look from the front office and coaching staffs.

Los Angeles Clippers

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    Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

    PG: Chris Paul, Jordan Farmar, Jared Cunningham

    SG: J.J. Redick, Jamal Crawford, C.J. Wilcox

    SF: Matt Barnes, Reggie Bullock, Chris Douglas-Roberts, Joe Ingles

    PF: Blake Griffin, Glen Davis, Hedo Turkoglu

    C: DeAndre Jordan, Spencer Hawes, Ekpe Udoh

    Key Additions: Spencer Hawes, Ekpe Udoh, Jordan Farmar, Chris Douglas-Roberts, Joe Ingles

    After searching high and low for a big man who can shoot, Doc Rivers finally found one in Hawes—and for the mid-level exception, no less. He'll be joined among Jordan's backups by Udoh, who's no shooter but fits in as more of a rim protector. Elsewhere among the backups, Farmar figures to be an upgrade over fellow Bruin Darren Collison, assuming he can stay healthy.

    On the wing, Douglas-Roberts and Ingles will join the fray of those hoping to lock down a spot at small forward.

    Position to Watch: Small forward

    Now that Rivers has his sweet-shooting big man in tow, he need only find a reliable option at the three to truly round out this Los Angeles Clippers squad. As it happens, he'll probably have to keep searching.

    Barnes scrapped and clawed his way into a starting role, but it was only after Jared Dudley lost his shooting touch. With Dudley out of the picture, the spot is Barnes' to lose, and he just might.

    Bullock is a promising prospect whose rookie season was derailed by injuries. Douglas-Roberts is no less of a journeyman than Barnes was at the same juncture of their respective careers. Ingles could very well swoop in and steal some minutes, after years of seasoning overseas.

    Whoever winds up as the winner of the Clippers' "Hunger Games" needs only to focus on the little things; the foursome of Paul, Griffin, Jordan and Redick should be able to take care of the rest.

Los Angeles Lakers

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    Nathan Denette/Associated Press

    PG: Steve Nash, Jeremy Lin, Jordan Clarkson

    SG: Kobe Bryant, Xavier Henry, Jabari Brown

    SF: Wesley Johnson, Nick Young*, Roscoe Smith

    PF: Carlos Boozer, Julius Randle, Ryan Kelly

    C: Jordan Hill, Ed Davis, Robert Sacre

    Key Additions: Carlos Boozer, Ed Davis, Julius Randle, Jordan Clarkson

    The Los Angeles Lakers will hope to find some more power at forward after a summer spent restocking that position. Boozer was a burden at $13.5 million, but he should prove to be a bargain for the $3.25 million L.A. will owe him on account of its waiver claim.

    Davis could be an even bigger steal at under $1 million in 2014-15—that is, if he can sneak in any playing time with Boozer and Randle, the No. 7 pick in the 2014 NBA draft, hogging most of the minutes.

    Clarkson, the 46th pick in this year's draft, could prove a surprisingly important part of the Lakers' future. After all, he'll be the only point guard left on the roster once Nash retires and Lin hits free agency next summer.

    Position to Watch: Power forward

    The Lakers' backcourt will draw the most attention, for obvious reasons, but so long as Bryant and Nash are healthy enough to play, there'll be no debate over who rules that roost.

    The same can't be said of the team's puzzlement at power forward. Boozer struggled to remain relevant and fend off Taj Gibson in Chicago, but he is probably L.A.'s best option right now. If the future is truly paramount—which wouldn't appear to be the case with Bryant bringing home so much bacon—then Randle may well get the nod.

    And that's to say nothing of Davis, a solid prospect who's produced when afforded the opportunity to do so, and Kelly, who had his moments as a stretch 4 under Mike D'Antoni last season.

    All told, starting Boozer, at least at the outset, makes the most sense, though time will tell what Byron Scott feels is best for his club going into another contentious campaign.

Memphis Grizzlies

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    Uncredited/Associated Press

    PG: Mike Conley, Beno Udrih, Nick Calathes

    SG: Courtney Lee, Tony Allen, Jordan Adams, Patrick Christopher

    SF: Tayshaun Prince, Vince Carter, Quincy Pondexter, Luke Hancock

    PF: Zach Randolph, Jon Leuer, Jarnell Stokes, Earl Clark

    C: Marc Gasol, Kosta Koufos

    Key Additions: Vince Carter, Jordan Adams, Jarnell Stokes

    The Memphis Grizzlies didn't make any sweeping changes this summer, and, frankly, they didn't need to. They won 50 games last season—despite losing Gasol, Allen and Conley for significant chunks of time—and should be among the best in the West in 2014-15 if they can stay healthy.

    That being said, their bench should be better off now that Carter's a part of it. "Vinsanity" morphed into a reliable veteran reserve over his last two seasons with the Mavs, averaging 12.7 points per game and hitting 40 percent of his threes therein.

    Memphis' draftees both have the ability to contribute to the cause if given the chance to do so. Adams is a crafty guard out of UCLA who knows how to put the ball in the basket. Stokes, a Memphis native and University of Tennessee product, practically lives and breathes the team's "grit-n-grind" mentality with the way he battles down low.

    Position to Watch: Small forward

    The battle between Lee and Allen over starter's minutes at shooting guard could make for worthwhile theater, but any fan of NBA basketball in the 2000s should (must?) take note of what's brewing on Memphis' other wing.

    Prince's game has declined precipitously since he joined the Grizzlies in 2013. He's still a decent defender, but he can no longer shoot a lick on the other end, as his percentages from last season (40.7 percent from the field, 29 percent from three) would suggest.

    Carter, on the other hand, has used his mid- to late 30s to transform himself into a bit of a sharpshooter. Don't be surprised to see Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger employ Carter as a starter if Prince proves too much of a liability on the offensive end.

Miami Heat

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    Wilfredo Lee/Associated Press

    PG: Mario Chalmers, Norris Cole, Shabazz Napier

    SG: Dwyane Wade, Shannon Brown, Reggie Williams, Tyler Johnson

    SF: Luol Deng, Danny Granger, James Ennis

    PF: Josh McRoberts, Udonis Haslem, Shawne Williams

    C: Chris Bosh, Chris Andersen, Justin Hamilton, Khem Birch

    Key Additions: Luol Deng, Danny Granger, Josh McRoberts

    Hindsight has only made Deng's decision to spurn the Atlanta Hawks' offer for the Miami Heat's look that much better—in personal terms, that is. Basketball-wise, Deng will be tasked with keeping Miami's playoff hopes from sinking into Biscayne Bay, rather than lifting Atlanta into the East's upper echelon. Granger's part in that effort would seem dubious, at best, given his lackluster comeback with the Pacers and Clippers.

    If there's any true upgrade to be found among Pat Riley's summer signings, it's McRoberts. The Duke product will, in essence, be replacing fellow former Blue Devil Shane Battier, whose performance tailed off considerably in the two years prior to his retirement.

    Position to Watch: Point guard

    The poor play of Chalmers and Cole, particularly in the 2014 Finals, prompted the Heat—perhaps at LeBron James' behest—to trade up for Napier in the draft. Even with LeBron gone, it's clear that Miami could use an upgrade at the position.

    For the time being, the Heat were content to retain Chalmers for two years and $8.3 million, trusting that his track record of stout defense and clutch contributions outweighed his most recent woes. Cole, on the other hand, will have a year to prove his worth to the franchise before he hits restricted free agency.

    Napier may well outperform them both eventually. He may not be the athlete whom either of them were coming out of college, but his resume, as a two-time NCAA champion and leader of UConn's post-Jim Calhoun rebuild, fits well with Miami's own hopes of rebounding from a devastating departure of its own.

Milwaukee Bucks

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    Tom Lynn/Associated Press

    PG: Brandon Knight, Kendall Marshall, Nate Wolters

    SG: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jerryd Bayless, O.J. Mayo

    SF: Jabari Parker, Khris Middleton, Jared Dudley, Damien Inglis, Chris Wright

    PF: Ersan Ilyasova, John Henson, Johnny O'Bryant

    C: Larry Sanders, Zaza Pachulia

    Key Additions: Jabari Parker, Jared Dudley, Johnny O'Bryant, Jerryd Bayless, Kendall Marshall

    Dudley and Bayless are both the sort of well-traveled veterans whom these young Milwaukee Bucks need. O'Bryant and Marshall are both solid upside additions, albeit ones whose best-case scenarios are those of role players.

    It should come as no surprise that Parker, the No. 2 pick in the draft, is the one summer addition on whose performance Milwaukee's fortunes could turn. Parker projects not only as the offensive fulcrum the Bucks so sorely need but also as the future of the franchise itself.

    His ties and devotion to the Midwest, as a native of nearby Chicago, could prove crucial to the team's attempt to garner public support for an arena that meets the NBA's standards.

    As Bleacher Report's Jim Cavan put it, "Sadly, time is not on Milwaukee's side, making this generation of players—young, hungry and tantalizingly talented—perhaps the city’s last, best hope of remaining in the NBA fold."

    Position to Watch: Point guard

    Positional depth charts may not do justice to Milwaukee's situation at guard. In practice, Knight could wind up spending more time off the ball, while Antetokounmpo spearheads the offense. Head coach Jason Kidd hinted at as much during the Las Vegas Summer League.

    "We’ve seen it in practice, and so when you see a player’s comfort level with the ball no matter what size, we want to see it in game action, and we slowly have started letting him have the ball and running the offense," Kidd said of Antetokounmpo (via's Scott Howard-Cooper).

    There will be growing pains, to be sure, but the ultimate result could yield a basketball revolution in Brew Town.

Minnesota Timberwolves

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    David Sherman/Getty Images

    PG: Ricky Rubio, Mo Williams, J.J. Barea

    SG: Andrew Wiggins, Kevin Martin, Zach LaVine, Brady Heslip

    SF: Corey Brewer, Chase Budinger, Shabazz Muhammad, Glenn Robinson III

    PF: Thaddeus Young, Anthony Bennett, Robbie Hummel

    C: Nikola Pekovic, Gorgui Dieng, Ronny Turiaf, Kyrylo Fesenko

    Key Additions: Andrew Wiggins, Anthony Bennett, Thaddeus Young, Zach LaVine, Mo Williams

    An eventful offseason (to say the least) has left the Minnesota Timberwolves far short of playoff competition but long on future potential.

    Wiggins, the No. 1 pick in this year's draft, will be the heart of that effort. The Kansas product sports the talent and potential to be one of the NBA's elite down the line. Bennett, a fellow Toronto native, could play a pivotal part in Minnesota's resurgence as well, assuming his weight loss and strong summer league performance translate into improvement from his abysmal rookie campaign.

    And don't sleep on LaVine, who's due to go toe-to-toe with Wiggins in the T-Wolves' "Dunks After Dark" event to open training camp.

    Any group as young as Minny's needs some semblance of veteran leadership. That's what Young, who was stuck in the Philadelphia 76ers' quagmire last season, and Williams, a journeyman guard who's seen firsthand the havoc LeBron can wreak, should bring to the table.

    Position to Watch: Shooting guard

    Minnesota looks to be a League Pass must-watch this season, if only for their tremendous youth and athleticism on the wings.

    Wiggins should come away as a starter in some capacity. Whether that's at shooting guard or at small forward will depend as much on fit as it does on competition. Martin has some claim to the 2-guard spot, though his past success as a sixth man in OKC could portend a return to the bench.

    On the other hand, the T-Wolves' stock of small forwards isn't exactly stacked with superior talent. At first glance, it appears as though Wiggins could slide up a spot, thereby clearing the way for Martin and LaVine to split time at shooting guard.

    Either way, we can all agree that Wiggins and LaVine should be granted every opportunity to run, jump and dunk the T-Wolves back into the hearts and minds of hoops fans everywhere.

New Orleans Pelicans

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    Layne Murdoch/Getty Images

    PG: Jrue Holiday, Jimmer Fredette, Russ Smith

    SG: Eric Gordon, Austin Rivers, D.J. Stephens

    SF: Tyreke Evans, Luke Babbitt, John Salmons, Darius Miller

    PF: Anthony Davis, Ryan Anderson, Patric Young, Kevin Jones

    C: Omer Asik, Alexis Ajinca, Jeff Withey, Vernon Macklin

    Key Additions: Omer Asik, John Salmons, Jimmer Fredette

    The trade that sent Robin Lopez to Portland subsequently made clear the New Orleans Pelicans' need to pair Davis, a tremendous defensive presence in his own right, with a capable center in order to concoct a competent defense. Enter Asik, who's emerged as one of the league's best positional defenders in the middle.

    Salmons and Fredette should add much-needed doses of scoring and shooting, respectively, to New Orleans' second unit. If nothing else, they figure to relieve Rivers of the need to play like a former top-10 pick.

    Position to Watch: Power forward

    The Pelicans will only go as far as Davis takes them, which, given his tremendous year-over-year improvement to this point, should be a considerable distance.

    Still, Davis is but one piece in an intriguing puzzle, one that also features Asik and Anderson up front. The challenge for head coach Monty Williams will be figuring out how best to juggle those three from minute to minute and game to game.

    Should he lean on the offensive firepower of the Davis-Anderson pairing, which sacrifices plenty on the defensive end? Can Davis space the floor well enough to keep the floor from clogging when Asik's out there? How well will Asik and Anderson mesh?

    More importantly, can any of these guys stay healthy long enough to make an impact as a unit?

New York Knicks

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    Al Bello/Getty Images

    PG: Jose Calderon, Pablo Prigioni, Shane Larkin, Langston Galloway

    SG: Iman Shumpert, J.R. Smith, Tim Hardaway Jr.

    SF: Carmelo Anthony, Travis Outlaw, Cleanthony Early

    PF: Amar'e Stoudemire, Andrea Bargnani, Quincy Acy, Travis Wear

    C: Samuel Dalembert, Jason Smith, Cole Aldrich

    Key Additions: Jose Calderon, Shane Larkin, Samuel Dalembert, Jason Smith, Quincy Acy, Travis Outlaw

    The New York Knicks didn't exactly come out as winners in their predraft trade with the Mavs, seeing as how they gave up the best player in the deal (Tyson Chandler).

    But they didn't make out too poorly, either. Calderon's a clear upgrade over Raymond Felton at the point, especially in the triangle offense, where his deadeye shooting (44.9 percent from three) will come in handy. Larkin's a bit undersized, but his athleticism should allow him to settle in as no worse than a solid backup.

    The real hit comes up front, where New York will attempt to cover for Chandler's departure with some combination of Dalembert and Smith.

    As for Phil Jackson's other trade of the summer, Acy should prove more consequential than Outlaw, to say the least.

    Position to Watch: Shooting guard

    Drama could be the name of the game for New York's 2-guards.

    Shumpert's tailed off considerably since his eye-opening rookie season, "thanks" in no small part to injuries and poor deployment. Smith, the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year in 2012-13, has already made it clear that he's not comfortable with coming off the bench:

    Nope no more bench for me!! RT @Stangg_ @TheRealJRSmith getting 6th man this coming season, mark my words

    — JR Smith (@TheRealJRSmith) June 10, 2014

    As it happens, Hardaway could turn out to be the best of the bunch. The Michigan product played with poise and control during his summer league stint, after showing plenty of promise as a rookie last year. Don't be surprised, then, if both Shumpert and Smith wind up watching Hardaway from the pine at some point down the line.

Oklahoma City Thunder

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    Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images

    PG: Russell Westbrook, Reggie Jackson, Sebastian Telfair

    SG: Andre Roberson, Jeremy Lamb, Anthony Morrow, Michael Jenkins

    SF: Kevin Durant*, Perry Jones, Josh Huestis

    PF: Serge Ibaka, Nick Collison, Lance Thomas, Richard Solomon, Grant Jerrett

    C: Kendrick Perkins, Steven Adams, Mitch McGary*

    Key Additions: Anthony Morrow, Sebastian Telfair, Mitch McGary, Josh Huestis

    To describe any of the Oklahoma City Thunder's summer additions as "key" would be to grossly overstate the impact that each is likely to have on the team this season. Telfair's a career backup at point guard, McGary projects as the same at center and Huestis is due to become the NBA's first domestic draft-and-stash prospect.

    If any of the new faces are going to make a difference, Morrow will; he's a career 42.8 percent three-point shooter who can help to stretch the floor around Westbrook and Durant. 

    Position to Watch: Center

    Perkins is entering the final year of his contract, which means two things:

    1. It won't be long until general manager Sam Presti can stop fielding questions about why Perk is still on the roster.

    2. All eyes will be on Adams and, to a lesser extent, McGary to see if they can fill the void Perkins will leave behind.

    Adams demonstrated a degree of understated toughness and tenacity that, along with his mobility and athleticism, should allow him to slide into that starting spot just fine—perhaps even at some point this season.

Orlando Magic

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    Fernando Medina/Getty Images

    PG: Elfrid Payton, Luke Ridnour

    SG: Victor Oladipo, Evan Fournier, Ben Gordon, Willie Green, Roy Devyn Marble

    SF: Aaron Gordon, Maurice Harkless

    PF: Channing Frye, Tobias Harris, Kyle O'Quinn

    C: Nikola Vucevic, Andrew Nicholson, Dewayne Dedmon

    Key Additions: Elfrid Payton, Aaron Gordon, Channing Frye, Ben Gordon, Evan Fournier, Willie Green

    Another year on the treadmill of mediocrity for the Orlando Magic could feature a pair of rookies in the starting lineup. If Payton and Gordon are the future of basketball in Orlando, they might as well get a move on.

    And what a move it would be, at least on the defensive end, where the trio of Payton, Oladipo and Gordon could comprise a nightmare for opposing perimeter players.

    Not that the Magic didn't add plenty of offense this summer. Frye, Gordon and Fournier are all capable of stretching defenses with their outside shots. Green isn't likely to make much of a dent, but he has shown himself to be a quality fill-in for injury-riddled squads.

    Position to Watch: Point guard

    Oladipo got more than his fair share of time at point guard last season, even though he'd hardly played the position in his life prior to that. Whether the Magic intended to turn him into one or were merely hoping to submarine their own season is another story.

    What is clear is that Orlando needn't enlist Oladipo in that capacity any longer. Payton has drawn rave reviews for his talent, tools and attitude. "Payton is good, man,” said Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas reports Sheridan Hoops' Kels Dayton. "I mean, Payton is just really, really good. Everything about him is just solid."

    The same could be said (to some extent) of Ridnour, who's long been a reliable second-stringer in the NBA. The combination of Payton and Ridnour should afford Oladipo ample opportunity to spread his wings as an off-guard on offense.

Philadelphia 76ers

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    Brian Babineau/Getty Images

    PG: Michael Carter-Williams, Tony Wroten Jr., Casper Ware, Pierre Jackson

    SG: Jason Richardson, Alexey Shved, Elliot Williams, Jason Richardson

    SF: Hollis Thompson, Ronald Roberts

    PF: Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, Arnett Moultrie, Jarvis Varnado

    C: Nerlens Noel, Henry Sims, Brandon Davies, Joel Embiid

    Key Additions: Nerlens Noel, Joel Embiid, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute

    Noel was a member of the 76ers organization last season, but he winds up here on account of sitting out what would've been his rookie season while recovering from a torn ACL. He's still too skinny to realistically hold his own at center against grown men, but he sports the length and leaping ability to make up for it as a rim protector.

    If there's a superstar to be gleaned from this swamp-of-a-roster, though, it's Embiid. The No. 3 pick in the 2014 draft could spend the 2014-15 season rehabbing from foot surgery and working on his game, not unlike the route the Sixers set Noel upon last year. It's also possible that Embiid will be back in time to play the second half of Philly's schedule.

    Either way, he'll have Mbah a Moute, his mentor and fellow Cameroonian, to show him the ropes.

    Position to Watch: Center

    The Sixers are clearly counting on size to carry them back into (eventual) championship contention. That was the case when the powers-that-be signed off on bringing Andrew Bynum to the City of Brotherly Love, and it has certainly held true with the team's acquisition of two other injury-riddled giants (i.e. Noel and Embiid).

    At some point, the coaching staff and the front office will have to figure out how best to pair Noel and Embiid once they're both healthy at the same time. They should have little trouble sealing off the interior, thanks to their combined length and agility.

    The real concern will come on offense. Noel spent much of his year off working on his shot, but can he really stretch opposing defenses at power forward? Or will the Sixers count on Embiid to turn his jumper, of which he showed flashes at Kansas, into a bona fide weapon?

Phoenix Suns

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    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    PG: Goran Dragic, Isaiah Thomas, Tyler Ennis

    SG: Eric Bledsoe, Gerald Green, Archie Goodwin, Zoran Dragic

    SF: P.J. Tucker, Marcus Morris, T.J. Warren

    PF: Markieff Morris, Anthony Tolliver, Shavlik Randolph

    C: Miles Plumlee, Alex Len, Earl Barron

    Key Additions: Tyler Ennis, Isaiah Thomas, Anthony Tolliver, T.J. Warren

    In Thomas, the Phoenix Suns now have an ideal scoring sixth man who can step in as a starter if/when something should happen to Bledsoe—and on an eminently reasonable deal (four years, $27 million), no less. Ennis, a rookie out of Syracuse, gives Phoenix added insurance at the point.

    Up front, fellow rookie Warren could snag some playing time early on, while Tucker serves his three-game, DUI-related suspension. The NC State product and reigning ACC player of the Year proved in college that he can score, and he kept that roll going with 17.8 points per game in the summer league.

    As for Tolliver, he's no Channing Frye—who left for a lucrative deal in Orlando—though he does fit the mold of a big guy who can shoot out of the pick-and-roll.

    Position to Watch: Point guard

    The point was the focus in Phoenix last season, and it figures to be the same this time around. Bledsoe seems all but destined to sign a one-year qualifying offer with the Suns, especially now that any talk of him being signed and traded to Minnesota has been put to rest, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports. Thomas, who's more of a scoring guard than a pure point, should offer a tricky change of pace.

    But the real star here is Dragic. The slipper Slovenian was the driving force behind Phoenix's surprising resurgence, and he earned third-team All-NBA and Most Improved Player honors for his efforts. With another strong year, Dragic should be due for a hefty payday next summer, when he can opt out of his contract and into free agency.

Portland Trail Blazers

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    Sam Forencich/Getty Images

    PG: Damian Lillard, Steve Blake, Darius Morris

    SG: Wesley Matthews, C.J. McCollum, Will Barton, Allen Crabbe, Diante Garrett

    SF: Nicolas Batum, Dorell Wright, Victor Claver, James Southerland

    PF: LaMarcus Aldridge, Thomas Robinson

    C: Robin Lopez, Chris Kaman, Joel Freeland, Meyers Leonard

    Key Additions: Steve Blake, Chris Kaman

    The Portland Trail Blazers didn't need much, so they didn't add much this summer. Blake and Kaman, both recent members of the Lakers, will serve as key reserves behind Lillard and Lopez, respectively.

    Other than that, Portland appears prepared to ride into the 2014-15 season on the strength of its most recent campaign, the stability of the starting lineup and the hope that its nucleus—Lillard, in particular—has yet to hit its ceiling. 

    Position to Watch: Point guard

    Lillard couldn't quite cut it with Team USA this summer, but the kid is clearly on the march through the ranks of the NBA's best. He already has a Rookie of the Year award and an All-Star nod under his belt.

    The rest of his climb is contingent on his ability to lead the Blazers even deeper into the playoffs. That'll be a tall order, given the depth and strength of the West, but if Lillard can overcome those odds and keep improving, he could soon find himself challenging the top players at his position.

    And with Blake aboard, Lillard might not have wear himself quite so thin in the process.

Sacramento Kings

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    Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

    PG: Darren Collison, Ray McCallum, Deonte Burton

    SG: Ben McLemore, Nik Stauskas, Trey Johnson

    SF: Rudy Gay, Omri Casspi, Alonzo Gee, Scotty Hopson

    PF: Jason Thompson, Carl Landry, Derrick Williams, Eric Moreland, David Wear

    C: DeMarcus Cousins, Reggie Evans, Ryan Hollins, Sim Bhullar

    Key Additions: Darren Collison, Nik Stauskas, Omri Casspi

    As far as personnel changes are concerned, it's tough to see how (or if) Sacramento improved. Collison is taller and longer than Isaiah Thomas and may more closely resemble a pure point guard than his predecessor, but his ball skills pale in comparison to those of the diminutive Seattle native.

    Stauskas may turn out to be a good value pick at No. 8 for the Kings. In the context of this roster, though, he looks more like a Mulligan on McLemore, who struggled mightily through much of his rookie season.

    Aside from those two, the only notable "newcomer" is Casspi, who began his NBA career in California's capital and could be a good fit behind Gay at small forward.

    Position to Watch: Center

    The Kings will be hard-pressed to crack the Western Conference playoff picture in such a competitive climate. But if they do put the breaks on their nine-year postseason drought, it'll be Cousins who puts his foot down.

    Boogie was nothing short of beastly during Team USA's torching of the field at the FIBA World Cup. He averaged 9.8 points and 5.7 rebounds off the bench, including a double-double (13 points, 10 rebounds) against Serbia in the gold-medal game.

    If Cousins can parlay his success in Spain into a more dominant (and more mature) performance in the NBA, he may well be able to make the Kings relevant again all on his own.

San Antonio Spurs

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    Layne Murdoch Jr./Getty Images

    PG: Tony Parker, Cory Joseph, Patty Mills, Bryce Cotton

    SG: Danny Green, Manu Ginobili, Marco Belinelli

    SF: Kawhi Leonard, Austin Daye, Kyle Anderson, Josh Davis

    PF: Tim Duncan, Matt Bonner, JaMychal Green

    C: Boris Diaw, Tiago Splitter, Jeff Ayres

    Key Additions: Kyle Anderson

    When you're San Antonio and you're coming off a season in which you led the NBA in regular-season wins (62) and romped to the Larry O'Brien Trophy, you don't really need any key additions.

    But...well, the Spurs, being the Spurs, managed to come up with one anyway. The reigning champs added Anderson, a 6'9" point guard out of UCLA, with the final pick of the first round in the 2014 draft. With all of their depth and their solid rotation, the Spurs can take their sweet time grooming Anderson into the next cog in their seemingly unstoppable machine.

    Position to Watch: Center

    The Spurs' success with Diaw in the lineup, particularly during the postseason, may have introduced a smidgen of uncertainty to their starting lineup. According to, the fivesome of Parker, Green, Leonard, Duncan and Diaw outscored the opposition by a whopping 27.2 points per 100 possessions during the regular season and by a still impressive 10.7 points in the playoffs.

    Throw in Diaw's performance with France at the FIBA World Cup (9.2 points, 4.6 rebounds, four assists, one bronze medal) and his new four-year, $30 million deal (only $15.5 million of which is guaranteed) and there would seem every reason for Splitter to wonder whether he's long for a starting role in the Alamo City.

Toronto Raptors

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    Ron Turenne/Getty Images

    PG: Kyle Lowry, Greivis Vasquez, Will Cherry

    SG: Terrence Ross, Lou Williams, Jordan Hamilton

    SF: DeMar DeRozan, Landry Fields, James Johnson, Bruno Caboclo

    PF: Amir Johnson, Patrick Patterson, Tyler Hansbrough

    C: Jonas Valanciunas, Chuck Hayes, Greg Stiemsma, Lucas Nogueira

    Key Additions: Lou Williams, James Johnson, Jordan Hamilton, Bruno Caboclo, Lucas Nogueira

    Williams and Johnson are the only Toronto newcomers who figure to feature much in Dwane Casey's rotation. Williams, though, had some trouble bouncing back last season from a torn ACL suffered in 2012-13, while Johnson, a once-and-former Raptor, fell off the map after a strong start in Memphis.

    Hamilton's non-guaranteed deal reads more like a smart value play than anything that might impact the Raptors going forward. Caboclo and Nogueira, on the other hand, could both turn out to be key cogs in Toronto, though the Brazilian duo will probably need at least a couple of years to mature before they can be reasonably expected to contribute to an Eastern Conference contender.

    Position to Watch: Point guard

    In Lowry and Vasquez, the Raptors boast two floor generals who are capable of starting in the NBA. Lowry, in particular, may well have been the best point guard in the Eastern Conference last season and probably should've been an All-Star.

    That aside, Toronto did remarkably well to not only bring Lowry back but also do so on its own terms (i.e. four years, $48 million). It's not every day—or ever, really—that a high-profile free agent chooses to stay in (or come to) Toronto. Perhaps Lowry's commitment will signal a sea change in how the Raptors are perceived around the league going forward.

Utah Jazz

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    Melissa Majchrzak/Getty Images

    PG: Trey Burke, Dante Exum, Toure' Murry, Dee Bost

    SG: Alec Burks, Ian Clark, Kevin Murphy

    SF: Gordon Hayward, Rodney Hood, Carrick Felix

    PF: Derrick Favors, Trevor Booker, Steve Novak, Jeremy Evans, Brock Motum

    C: Enes Kanter, Rudy Gobert, Jack Cooley

    Key Additions: Dante Exum, Rodney Hood, Trevor Booker, Steve Novak

    The Utah Jazz doubled down on young point guards by taking Exum with the fifth pick in the 2014 draft. Of Utah's two first-round choices, Hood, a seasoned three-and-D type out of Duke, is probably better prepared to contribute to the team right away—not that the Jazz will need him to.

    Hood's game is similar to that of Novak, albeit with better defensive upside and a less accurate shot than the recent Toronto Raptor. Novak, though, figures to find himself buried on the depth chart behind Booker, who established himself as a solidly productive power forward during his four years in Washington.

    Position to Watch: Point guard

    If Exum's so-so play in summer league and scant minutes at the FIBA World Cup are any indication, the teenaged sensation out of Australia will need some time to refine his game and grow into his body before he's ready to shine at the NBA level.

    Still, Exum's a blur with the ball and has shown no fear when attacking the basket. Some strength training here, some smoothing of the jump shot there and voila! The Jazz could have themselves a star capable of igniting their rebuilding efforts.

    When that time comes is anybody's guess at this point. Exum figures to spend much of his rookie season watching, waiting and learning behind Burke, who endured some growing pains of his own as a newbie in 2013-14. Exum might not have a clear opportunity to play big minutes until Burks, a restricted free agent next summer, is off the books.

    Unless, of course, Exum manages to outplay Burke at the point before then.

Washington Wizards

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    Garrett Ellwood/Getty Images

    PG: John Wall, Andre Miller, Garrett Temple

    SG: Bradley Beal, Martell Webster

    SF: Paul Pierce, Otto Porter Jr., Glen Rice Jr., Damion James

    PF: Nene, DeJuan Blair, Drew Gooden

    C: Marcin Gortat, Kris Humphries, Kevin Seraphin, Melvin Ely

    Key Additions: Paul Pierce, DeJuan Blair, Kris Humphries

    The Washington Wizards' hopes of contending in the Eastern Conference took a quantum leap forward with the signing of Pierce. The former Boston Celtics staple represents not only an upgrade over the departed Trevor Ariza but also a crucial option in crunchtime.

    Washington was already set up front with Nene and Gortat, but it did well to add some depth with the skilled Blair and the productive Humphries.

    Position to Watch: Small forward

    It'll be weird watching Pierce jaunt around in those red-white-and-blue stripes—probably even weirder than it was to see him in Brooklyn's black and white. At least he had Garnett's familiar face close enough to remind fans of Beantown during their lone year together with the Nets.

    Oddness aside, Pierce's value to the Wizards can't be overstated. He'll be plenty valuable to the team now, but he could prove priceless to its future. Ideally, he'd spend these next two seasons tutoring Wall and Beal in the ways of superstar leadership, while teaching juniors Porter and Rice a thing or two about playing small forward in the NBA.

    What do you think of my depth charts? Tweet me your opinions!


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