Originally Posted by Legend of Josh
Next season the East will be better... and I foresee no team finishing below .500 and still making the playoffs. The bottom teams in the East will be around that 38-42 win mark (hopefully and likely including Charlotte).
I expect we'll be around the 5th seed at best, 8th at worst.
Why so quick to assume the East will be better? The salary cap/luxury tax limit is going down, squeezing teams that are already cash strapped.
*Milwaukee looks to possibly lose CV, Sessions AND their No. 1 pick, because signing just one puts them over the projected new tax limit.
*Chicago's owner refuses to go over the tax...which means they'll most likely lose Ben Gordon (mainly because Deng's contract is untradable).
*Washington is rumored to be selling their pick...again because of how close they are to the limit.
*NY? D'Antoni is saying only 3 players are safe to come back next year. Regardless, they aren't signing anyone because 2010 is their target.
*Toronto's Bosh might very well be traded to keep from losing him outright in FA.
There's only going to be a couple of "buyers", teams in a situation to help those cash strapped teams out...so most are going to end up losing contributors.
There's no reason to think the East will make a general improvement next year, whereas we will be able to take a team that has been over .500 since the trade, give them a summer to gel and then be able to attack the new season from game 1.