Southeast Division Edition
The 2019 NBA offseason has been one for the record books. From unexpected signings to shocking trades, it’s safe to say that the NBA has managed to captivate the sports world without even playing a single meaningful game in over a month. We have seen seven all-stars from this past season change teams. Now that things have (seemingly) calmed down, it’s time to take a look at how each team has faired this offseason.
Orlando Magic: C-
Key Additions – Al-Farouq Aminu
Key Losses – Timofey Mozgov
Draft – Chuma Okeke
Coming off a pretty mediocre season last year, the Orlando Magic seem to be content with putting out a similar lineup again. Right now this team is made up of athletic guys who cannot shoot very well. The addition of Markelle Fultz during last season seems to be a low risk/high reward move. At this point, it is unknown what Fultz will develop into, but the chance to take on a former number one overall pick was something the Magic couldn’t pass up. There’s a very good chance this team will be in the playoffs once again, but I do not expect them to make very much noise once there.
Charlotte Hornets: F
Key Additions – Terry Rozier
Key Losses – Kemba Walker, Jeremy Lamb, Frank Kaminsky, Tony Parker.
Drafted – PJ Washington, Cody Martin, Jalen McDaniels.
If swapping Kemba Walker for Terry Rozier is exciting to you, then you may enjoy watching the Hornets next year. For the 99% of you that do not find that exciting, then watching this team will be quite a struggle. They appear to be in full tank/rebuild mode but go and completely overpay on Terry Rozier. It would not surprise me one bit to find this team at the bottom of the Eastern Conference for much of next season.
Miami Heat: B+
Key Additions – Jimmy Butler, Meyers Leonard.
Key Losses – Dwyane Wade, Hassan Whiteside, Josh Richardson, Ryan Anderson.
Drafted – Tyler Herro, KZ Okpala.
The Miami Heat were a very busy team this offseason, and they may not be done yet. They flipped Josh Richardson for Jimmy Butler, which is an improvement. The Hassan Whiteside trade was something that was going to happen eventually, so they are better off doing it now and starting fresh with former backup Bam Adebayo. Chris Paul to Miami is also a move I could see happening at some point this year. They finished 10th in the Eastern Conference last year with a 39-43 record, a mark they should have no issues on easily surpassing this year.
Washington Wizards: D-
Key Additions – Isaiah Thomas, Ish Smith, C.J. Miles, Davis Bertans, Moritz Wagner.
Key Losses – Trevor Ariza, Dwight Howard, Bobby Portis, Jabari Parker, Tomas Satoransky, Jeff Green, Jonathon Simmons.
Drafted – Rui Hachimura, Admiral Schofield.
There isn’t much positive to say about the current state of the Washington Wizards. John Wall is most likely going to miss the entire year. Accompany that with the fact that he is signed to the worst contract currently in the NBA, and you have a team going nowhere fast. For some reason, they appear to be set on not trading Bradley Beal just yet. There is some hope that this could be a possible comeback year for point guard Isaiah Thomas. The Wizards lack of depth and talent might leave the team with no option but to give Thomas a lot of court time. Expect this to be a very long and difficult season for Washington.
Atlanta Hawks: B+
Key Additions – Allen Crabbe, Evan Turner, Chandler Parsons, Damian Jones, Jabari Parker.
Key Losses – Taurean Prince, Kent Bazemore, Dewayne Dedmon, Omari Spellman.
Drafted – DeAndre Hunter, Cam Reddish, Bruno Fernando.
The Hawks had a very disappointing 2018-19 campaign when it comes to their record. Trae Young looks to be a future all-star and seeing how his game has developed from his rookie season will be something worth following. They moved up in the draft to take DeAndre Hunter with the 4th overall pick. They were also able to get sharpshooter Cam Reddish with the number ten pick. Atlanta may struggle through another season of inconsistency but I do look for them to improve on their win total from last year. The main goal for this team will be to focus on developing their young guys and hoping they can be the foundation of this franchise for years to come.