There has been wide speculation about player movement heading into the NBA offseason of 2019. Thoughts of Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard, Anthony Davis, and Kyrie Irving leaving their teams was entertaining, but not a certainty. That all changed on July 1, 2019, in what has been a whirlwind of an offseason so far. The NBA balance certainly has shifted and it’s safe to say we are living in the era of NBA super teams. New teammate alliances have formed, and for the Golden State Warriors, comments circulating suggest the end of a dynasty.
This is the part of my blog where opinion/bias comes in, not to mention sadness and the realization of a glimpse of continued hope for a life-long Golden State Warrior fan. The 2019-2020 season will not be a sure path to a sixth straight NBA Final, but the Warriors do have a chance to get back. For the last three years the Warriors were the premier team in the NBA, the team every franchise and non-Warrior's fan envied. We were elusive, fun to watch, and had an offense no team in sports could beat! This was all thanks to the addition of Kevin Durant, an un-guardable talent that made the Warriors the best team in basketball. Not to mention the best shooters in NBA history, aka the Splash Bros, and a great roster of premiere NBA talents.
The day I heard we acquired Kevin Durant (2016), I was ecstatic! It felt like I won the lottery. I told myself that if we won a championship with Durant, I’d buy his jersey. One NBA season later, I was a proud owner of a Kevin Durant jersey (Adidas Model). When the Warriors played with focus it was like watching the varsity basketball team play the junior varsity team (no offense 😉 ). I was blessed with the opportunity to watch Game 2 of the NBA finals in person during the 2015-16 & 2017-2018 seasons in Oakland, an NBA memory I will always keep with me. We won two championships in three years, and from my perspective would have had the hat-trick (3 titles) if we did not suffer injuries this last NBA Finals.
As a Warrior fan, my biggest fear was losing Durant to another team. I was thinking if he left, he’d head to the New York Knicks alongside Kyrie Irving. Fast-forward to July 1, 2019, sure enough, Kevin Durant was heading to New York with Kyrie Irving, but to play for the Nets. This was a tough reality to accept, but luckily time heals all wounds. One of my best friends called me around the same time to announce that Warriors picked up D'Angelo Russel (NBA All-Star), a move that I really did not expect. The toughest offseason blow for me was hearing we’d have to lose our sixth man and fan favorite, Andre Igoudala, former Finals MVP.
After all the dust has settled, retaining Klay Thompson and Kevon Looney, extending Draymond Green’s contract, and adding new players like D'Angelo Russel and Willey Cauley-Stein is great news for Warrior fans. Other players like Alfonzo Mckinnie and Damion Lee will have a chance to make a name for themselves this season. The Warriors have gotten tremendously younger and should be back in the NBA playoff hunt. My hope will be to see the Warriors back for the sixth year in a row in the NBA Finals!
It will be an interesting NBA season this October, to say the least.
I am predicting that the Los Angeles Lakers may have the best chance at claiming the 2019-2020 NBA title. They had a great offseason adding great players to their roster. I also see the Clippers, Houston Rockets, and Dallas Mavericks becoming an even greater threat for the NBA title. With all the transactions that have happened, it is not apparent what team in the East can rival the teams out West. The Milwaukee Bucks have retained most of their team and as a result a favorite in the East.
Notable Transactions This Offseason
• Boston Celtics: Kemba Walker & Enas Kanter
• Philadelphia: Tobias Harris & Al Horford
• Brooklyn: Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, & Deandre Jordan
• Miami Heat: Jimmy Butler
• Detroit: Derrick Rose
• Bucks: Khris Middleton (re-sign) & Kyle Korver
• Knicks: R.J. Barrett (2019 Draft)
• Warriors: D'Angelo Russel, Klay Thompson (re-signed), Kevon Looney (re-signed), Draymond Green (extension)
• Oklahoma City: Chris Paul
• Houston Rockets: Russell Westbrook
• Los Angeles Clippers: Kawhi Leonard & Paul George
• Los Angeles Lakers: Anthony Davis, Danny Green, Demarcus Cousins, Dwight Howard
• Memphis: Andre Igoudala & Josh Jackson
• New Orleans: Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Zion Williamson (2019 Draft), & J.J Reddick
• Dallas Mavericks: Seth Curry
• Portland Trailblazers: CJ McCollum (re-sign) & Pau Gasol
What are your thoughts on all the player movement? Let us know below!