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The Mass Media

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Three NBA Questions Going Into 2012

Image courtesy of Keith Allison on Flickr

Image courtesy of Keith Allison on Flickr

 

 

 

 

Will the Big 4 in Laker-land (Kobe, Dwight, Steve Nash, & Pau Gasol) work well together this coming season?

People are easily forgetting that this is a team made up of veterans: men who know their roles and haven’t forgotten them overnight. Dwight Howard coming onto this team doesn’t have to worry about his game or how it will be played. He knows that he will be the one and only inside man and no one is taking that from him.

Steve Nash, too, knows his role in LA, and that is to get the ball anywhere and everywhere for the easy basket. Nash is not a Russell Westbrook-type of point guard. He doesn’t try to score a basket on his own every play up the court. Nash is a pure PG. He likes to spread the floor and thread the ball around for open opportunities. The man ended last season with 10.7 assists per game, but that number will improve upon his arrival to LA.

As for Kobe, he knows what this team is. This team is his ticket to the NBA finals and for an opportunity at ring number six. The new guys and the old know this is Kobe’s team. He will be the first option going into many of the games. There will be no question in LA as there was in Miami as to who will be taking a last-second shot—100 percent of the time Kobe is taking that shot. Unlike last year he won’t be forcing up bad shots. Nash will be able to get the ball in Kobe’s favorite spots just about every game.

How will the Brooklyn Nets, in their new arena and with plenty of new faces, do this season?

I’m going to give the Nets the benefit of the doubt and say that they will do well enough this season to reach the playoffs even though they lost their opportunity during the off season to acquire Dwight Howard. Last season they ended the year with a 22-44 record. With the addition of Joe Johnson and a healthy Brook Lopez, Brooklyn should be a slight threat in the Eastern conference as it isn’t as difficult as the West when it comes to the teams.

I believe Deron Williams can bring his team wins night in and night out. As long as they all stay healthy, including big man Kris Humphries, they will be able to match up with most teams.

They should at least end up with the 47 wins needed to reach the seventh or eighth seed.

Their interaction as a team will be more interesting to watch this season. The interaction between the guards, Williams and Joe Johnson, will be interesting, because they both enjoy making big plays. It will be an intriguing year for the Brooklyn Nets.

Can The Heat Repeat?

Lebron James, Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh, and newly acquired Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis will make up the core five. Can these guys get another Larry O’Brien trophy this coming season?

I believe it won’t be as easy for them this season as it was last season. The Heat undeniably control the East. The Celtics, Bulls and Knicks can only do so much against them on paper. On the floor it will only get proven game by game. The Heat do lack strength in the center position, which I believe a lot of teams will be able to take advantage of in certain games. Lebron, however, can change the outcome of any game. Miami does have to worry about the Western Conference team it will face in the finals.

The Lakers, Thunder, Clippers and Spurs match up well against them. The West will prove to be more dominant than the East this year. Whoever comes out as the Western Conference Champion won’t make it easy on Miami. Can the Heat repeat? Sure. Will they repeat? Doubtful.