With the new big three Wade, James, and Bosh in Miami, Amare signing with New York, Boozer signing with Chicago, and the already strong teams of Boston, Orlando, and Atlanta, it looks to me the Eastern Conference is gonna become stronger than the West.
As the 2010 - 2011 is about to start, i've really been trying to set up a reasonable standard on the Portland Trailblazers.
Denver, Utah, Portland, Oklahoma City, and Minnesota
Denver: I don't see the Denver Nuggets as a huge threat anymore because Carmelo came out and said he believes he's gonna leave Denver by the end of the year to join Amare and the Knicks. That has got to affect chemistry, but maybe then again if George Karl is back I know the team is gonna fight extremely hard for their coach, as he fought hard through cancer. Will Portland do better than Denver? Answer: yes.
Utah: Utah is a team that is gonna be full of surprises in my opinion. They have almost a brand new team, and there's a chance Al Jefferson isn't going to be able to fill Carlos Boozer's role in Utah. As a Blazer I'm going to pray for just that. :) If that happens Portland will do better than Utah.
Oklahoma City: This is the only team that I think in the Northwest Division has a true chance of being better than Portland. If their big 3 continues to get better.... this team will be unstoppable... well at least on the offensive end of the court. This team lacks a true big man, and that's where I'm sure teams will exploit in games. This is the one team that I think will have super super close record with the Blazers.
Minnesota: Wesley Johnson is their new hope, and sadly that is their only hope.... They won't be much better than last season.... so Blazers will beat them.
All of this is assuming Portland is healthy the whole season, and I'm praying everyday for Greg Oden to come back strong, because this is potentially his last chance here in Portland.
I really think Portland will be in the top 3 in the Western Conference with a near 60 win record because the Western Conference... just isn't the same anymore and Portland is only going to get better. We are a very dangerous team if we're healthy. We may not have superstars but we do have potential superstars in Oden and Batum. As long as we do our job with cheering this team on, I know they achieve a near 60 win season.
LETS DO THIS PORTLAND!