It’s never too early to look ahead. Who will be in the 2023 NBA Finals?
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Celtics-Warriors rematch in the 2023 NBA Finals?
Matthew Bassin: If you’re asking me to predict next year’s NBA finals, I think we’re going to see who we’re seeing right now. I think we’re going to see the Boston Celtics and the Golden State Warriors running this back next year.
Ryan Griffin: So next year in the West, I think I would take the Clippers because I really liked a lot of the moves they made after Paul George went down, obviously Kawhi Leonard didn’t play, but I think Kawhi is still amazing. And then for the East, it’s the same thing.
I have to take the Nets. I think Ben Simmons really fits in well with Kyrie and Kevin Durant. And I think Kyrie next year, they’re not going to have the mandates. I don’t think they will anyway at the start of the NBA season. So Kyrie is going to be able to play. Well, theoretically, he should be able to play all those games that he missed.
We’ll see if there’s another excuse that comes out of the water where he misses 53 games again or however many games he missed this year. And Kevin Durant’s obviously amazing by himself. But you’re right. There’s so much competition, at least on paper, in both of these conferences where you do, out west, have the Suns.
We don’t know what’s going to happen with Deandre Ayton yet, but there’s the Suns, and there’s the Clippers. Who, again, I think they’re really like, if Kawhi and Paul George are back, it’s a really deep team. And they probably shouldn’t have trouble attracting free agents.
Or some wiley vets to come in there, being that they’re in LA. And then if you have healthy, Kawhi, Paul George, you’re going to have a shot at rank. Not that the Warriors are going to have any trouble with that either. If that’s the route they decide to go.
Who else do you have? You have Memphis was on the come up too, Jaren Jackson did Desmond Bane. They’re bringing, I think all of those guys back. And then in the east, you mentioned all the teams and you still have Philadelphia.
Where I know what you think of James Harden, but if you have a year of Harden and Embiid. And they get a year to figure it out. And then you still have Tyrese Maxey. I think that it could be a really good team.
And then you still have Doc Rivers who is still a good coach, despite, maybe the Sixers have stopped listening to them at this point. But still a pretty good coach. And I just think the competition, at least on paper will be tougher. It all comes down to health and certainly, the Celtics and Warriors will be in that mix.
As long as all those guys stay healthy because we could be looking back a year from now and say, oh Steph broke his hand again. And now the Warriors are poop. So they might not even be in the playoffs like they were the last two seasons.
And we don’t know, I don’t think it’s going to be a rematch though. I don’t think either of these teams are going to be back. But if I had to choose one, I’d probably choose the Warriors over the Celtics.
Matthew Bassin: I get that. It’s just the defense matters to me. And this defense of the Celtics play is, really good. And you saw them coming. To me, it’s obviously about Tatum and Brown being able to play together, going forward. There’s been so much made about how do you keep both of these guys? It’s not working, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.
And then Marcus Smart has his blow-up moment with them back in November. And that’s when things started to turn around. We didn’t even discuss Minnesota who’s on the incline. There are definitely contenders out there and it’s not going to be an easy road for either team.
I just think what each of these teams bring to the table, make it very difficult to knock them out of the post season. I think the Celtics have figured it out and they have a lot of the right pieces. Al Horford is already guaranteed his contract for next year, based off of how he’s played in this post season. That news came out last week.
So he’ll be back and he brings a lot to the table as far as what the Celtics need as far as defensively and just having that great veteran, that’s gonna, he’s, you know what he’s going to give you and it usually helps you guys win. Like you said, it’s hard to predict if I was going to make that prediction.
I liked what these two teams are brought to this table this year. And I don’t see it stopping that doesn’t mean these other teams that they beat along the way, Memphis, played Golden State really well. Boston obviously had a really hard time. With Milwaukee, without Khris Middleton.
So obviously with him being back, it’s going to change things, but the whole team changes when you have your second star in there and other guys, might not step up as much as they did this year with Khris Middleton being out, you never know what you get from the role players. And that plays a big factor in how teams go as well.
But there’s a lot out there that is going to change how this, how next season is going to look altogether. We’re obviously assuming everyone’s going to stay healthy. And I just think what the Warriors have from the young guys coming. And, getting a lot of growth this year in this run and getting to the NBA finals and seeing what it takes to get there.
If they are the right kind of players, they’re going to internalize that and up their game for the next years to come. And these guys are only going to get better. Jordan Poole should only get better. Jonathan Kuminga and moody obviously should only get better Wiseman. Like you said, completely forgotten at this point, he’s a heck of a talent and if he can put it all together, he can absolutely be a difference maker.
Ryan Griffin: And you know how he is sweet. Forgot about shading sharp coming in to the pistons average and 35 points a game.
A podcast dedicated to discussing all of the week's trending basketball news with a focus on the Detroit Pistons.
Ryan and Matt recap Game 3 of the NBA Finals, Draymond drama, Warriors press conference lamenting Boston fans, and Steph's Legacy.
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