Episode 4: Your 2018-2019 Ninth Seeds
It’s worth noting that the 2017/18 Western Conference standings were extremely tight last season. Only 3 games separated the 3rd place Portland Trailblazers from the 9th place Denver Nuggets. Going from 9th place two seasons in a row to 2nd place in the highly competitive Western conference is definitely worth celebrating. The Nuggets first round match up against the Spurs will put playoff experience vs. youth to the test. Not that the Spurs are really that old of a team, but having multiple starters with playoff experience will make things uncomfortable for the Nuggets.
Jokic has been good for a while, but this year was his coming out party. First time All Star, and we have him making the NBA all first team over Joel Embid. The main reason is he’s played more games while maintaining consistency, and he’s in a more competitive conference.
Paul Pierce speaks his Truth. You can never count out the Spurs. It won’t be an easy out for the Nuggets regardless of seeding.
The Sacramento Kings were a feel good story this season. The normally inept franchise had the league watching. The emergence of DeAron Fox, was fun to watch. While firing Dave Joerger is somewhat questionable, their next hire will be the first signal if mediocrity continues. We’ll also have to keep an eye on what they do with all that young talent. Do they squander it away in a trade (like the Knicks trading for Carmelo) or do they put some smart complimentary veteran pieces around the youth?
Something tells me if the Kings aren’t clear playoff contenders by next season’s all star break, Vlade’s job will be in jeopardy despite his recent extension.
“As the Kings Turn” yes the Jump and many others view the Sacramento Kings as a soap opera. The consensus is that the product on the court looked good, but something is off. Dysfunction remains, however not as much in the open as it has been in the past, but the behind the scenes dysfunction is just as bad if not worse.
While the Pistons had some strong stretches over their season, it was mostly underwhelming. Even with a full year of Blake Griffin you don’t get the sense that getting back into the playoffs will be easy for them next season and that Griffin’s troublesome knee, wont cease to be an issue. But going from not being in the playoffs to barely making it to the playoffs is progress. That progress however will be tarnished by what I predict to be a first round ass whooping from the Bucks, and middle of pack 1st round pick.
At the :15 mark the guys on the Jump tell us what they think of the Bucks Pistons matchup.
Man missing the playoffs could not have come at a worse time for the Hornets franchise. With the impending free agency of Kemba Walker, anyone outside of Charlotte can see that he’s out the door. Standing still during the trade deadline was a bad look, and one the wreaked of Michael Jordan’s arrogance as an owner.
Kemba is the ultimate professional. He did right by Charlotte, and will be adored for eternity, but he’s not any younger and should what it feels like to go deep into the playoffs.