NLSC Forum • The 2K10 & Beyond Project - Season 19/20: Monthly Report (2024)

Conference Semifinals: Playoff Tree

NLSC Forum • The 2K10 & Beyond Project - Season 19/20: Monthly Report (1)

Season Review – First Round Eliminations

16. Atlanta Hawks (39-43)
Notable upcoming Free Agents: Joe Johnson (83), Jamal Crawford (75) - Player Option

On paper, not many teams looked more well-rounded than the Hawks heading into the season. The #8 seed was certainly not where most expected them to be, and they challenged the league leading Magic to a 7th game but came up short. With most talent locked up for the next few years, the Hawks can only get better. The one piece they need to retain is their star man, Joe Johnson. With lower end contracts still on most of their upcoming talent, a large extension is on the cards.

15. Utah Jazz (42-40)
Notable upcoming Free Agents: Carlos Boozer (84), Ronnie Brewer (71)

An early exit for the Jazz, and now all focus points towards whether they retain Carlos Boozer, or officially hand over the reigns to Paul Millsap. Deron Williams earned All-NBA 2nd team honours in another great season which sees him as one of the best PG's in the league. Key defending wingman Ronnie Brewer also enters free agency, and after All-NBA Defensive 2nd team honours, is a chance of securing a lucrative deal with another contender or a team on the rise looking for a defensive boost. This offseason sees a possible chance for the Jazz to regress, or strive forward through a new pairing of Williams & Millsap with AK47 and Mehmet Okur surrounding them.

14. Indiana Pacers (43-39)
Notable upcoming Free Agents: TJ Ford (76) - Player Option

Most would say the Pacers overperformed this year, mainly due to Danny Granger playing out of his skin and earning All-NBA honours. Roy Hibbert has made progress towards potential All-Star status, but the Pacers are lacking a solid sidekick to help push them further. TJ Ford looks likely to cash in on his player option, but could see him moved for a younger replacement. Look for them to boost their SG and PF stocks in the offseason.

13. Charlotte Bobcats (44-38)
Notable upcoming Free Agents: Tyson Chandler (76) - Player Option, Raymond Felton (74), Steve Blake (72), Raja Bell (71)

Coming off the first playoff berth in Franchise history, the Bobcats are another team that is potentially a piece or two away from being a real contender. It seems, especially from his performances during the playoffs, that they have their point guard of the future in Raymond Felton, and likely will retain the services of center Tyson Chandler. The real question lies in to what extent can they rely on Gerald wallace as a first option, and if he needs a running mate?

12. Portland Trail Blazers (44-38)
Notable upcoming Free Agents: Rafer Alston (74)

The Blazers pushed their chips into the middle of the table and came up empty this season. Nash, Roy & Aldridge will need a solid offseason and preseason together to come back stronger in the 2010-11 season. The only plus they can take out of this season is the fact they did take out the Northwest Division title, in one of the tightest races in recent memory. Not much needs to change from a roster standpoint, though they look thin at center.

11. Toronto Raptors (46-36)
Notable upcoming Free Agents: None

With Chris Bosh locked up, this offseason looks to be far less damaging for Toronto. If it weren't for aquisition Caron Butler going down with a broken ankle, it wouldn't have been a surprise to see the Raptors challenge the Magic in the next round. Poor performances by Bosh and Turkoglu in Game 7 didn't go unnoticed, and may haunt them moving forward. With Bosh, Hedo & Butler leading the way, there's a true contender in Toronto for years to come.

10. Los Angeles Clippers (48-34)
Notable upcoming Free Agents: Marcus Camby (76)

Premature success for a diverse squad? The Clippers showed clear postseason rust as they dropped to an 0-3 deficit that they couldn't dig their way out of. It's expected with this Playoff experience that stalwart Blake Griffin and Eric Gordon will carry the torch for the Clippers next year. With Marcus Camby likely not re-signing, Chris Kaman will need to step up in the paint, with the continued development of DeAndre Jordan in the wings. The pressure is truly on to build on this season and deliver a solid postseason run to LA's less known franchise.

9. San Antonio Spurs (49-33)
Notable upcoming Free Agents: Manu Ginobili (83), Roger Mason (71)

A broken ankle for Tim Duncan proved more than costly to the Spurs, with ZBo and the Grizzlies shocking the basketball world. Time is the biggest enemy for the Spurs, with Tim Duncan & Ginobili aging, it becomes a point of whether the big three can continue this level of play for years to come. Ginobili looks set to sign another 1-2 year deal, with Parker and Duncan signed up for 3+ each. Young talent is still growing, with DeJuan Blair and George Hill proving valuable off the bench. Certainly not the desired result, but the Spurs don't look to be going anywhere soon.

NLSC Forum • The 2K10 & Beyond Project - Season 19/20: Monthly Report (2024)
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