An interesting next few months to look forward to
By Mo Hussain, Sports Reporter
Star players have been traded, teams have exceeded expectations, and some aren’t getting off to the start that they’d hoped for
As we roll into the second half of the NBA season, a lot has changed since December. Star players have been traded, teams have exceeded expectations, and some aren’t getting off to the start that they’d hoped for. The storylines heading into the second half of the season are very intriguing. Here are three developing stories to look out for:
Brooklyn Nets 2021 Champions?
The Brooklyn Nets were already projected to be in the title picture before the season started, but that reality looks a lot closer now. In addition to the blockbuster trade that landed the Nets former MVP James Harden earlier this year, they also recently acquired six-time all star Blake Griffin and are in the sweepstakes for picking up Cleveland Cavalier’s big man Andre Drummond if he gets bought out.
A starting lineup including Kyrie Irving, James Harden, and Kevin Durant already looks like a scary backcourt for the rest of the league to deal with. Sprinkle in Blake Griffin and potentially Andre Drummond in your frontcourt, and the Nets are now getting closer and closer to being the full package.
How are the Lakers going to do it again?
Considering how the Los Angeles Lakers were the favourites to win the NBA championship in the beginning of the season, we might have to start asking if that’s currently still the case. With the Nets strengthening their frontcourt and other Western conference teams like the Utah Jazz, Phoenix Suns, and Los Angeles Clippers at their neck, the Lakers have to get ready for a pretty tough road to the finals.
Add to that having to be delicate with Anthony Davis’ injury that he’s still healing from and how you also have to balance LeBron James’ playing time with making sure you don’t end up losing games; the Lakers are in for something else. However, the team is still looking to improve as they are also in the sweepstakes for picking Andre Drummond. It will be interesting to see how the team will overcome their internal challenges combined with the external competition getting better.
What is going on in Toronto?
The Toronto Raptors’ consistent success over the last number of years hasn’t necessarily carried over into this year. A combination of dealing with COVID protocols, having a season record below .500, and recent trade rumours involving long time Raptor Kyle Lowry has given the team a lot to deal with this year. The Raptors can potentially turn things around as they’re still in contention for a playoff spot, but it’ll be interesting to see how the team performs and adjusts in the coming months.