Re: 2013 NBA Offseason News
And actually, the Portland and Indiana situations highlight the one fatal weakness of the NBA. Portland and Indiana are stuck in the dreaded middle ground. They havent bottomed out to get a LeBron, Durant, or Wade in the draft, but they arent good enough to lure the top free agents. If you don't have at least one A+ player, you have almost no chance to win it all. Right now, there are only a few players that I can see leading their teams to a finals victory:
Kobe (maybe, his window might have closed)
Dwight (if he gets his head straight)
Rose (he needs more help)
Dirk (only if he sobers up from last years championship)
That is about it. I'm not sure a PG can do it (Isaiah was the last over 20 years ago). Duncan isn't that player any more. Garnett is close, but he needs a lot of help on the offensive end. Carmelo hasn't figured out the other side of the ball.
For the record, you can bring up the 2004 Pistons as a counterbalance, but that year was a massive fluke. LeBron wasn't 19. The Lakers should have run everyone over (the Karl Malone injury was actually huge. He was playing really well as a distributer in the high post playing something akin to the Lamar Odom role for the Lakers the last few years). The Pacers should have represented the East, but there was this fight thing... Manu only played 38 games.
So, if you don't have one of those guys, what do you do? Well, you sign Joe Johnson for 19 million a year or Roy Hibbert for 14.5 per year, crippling your cap flexibility and tethering yourself to B level players. That is why I admire what Daryl Morey in Houston is doing. He is going all in after Dwight, even if he says he doesn't want to stay. He is hoping that once Dwight gets there, he will like it and want to keep playing in Houston. Sometimes, you have to roll the dice.
Variatio delectat - Cicero