5 NBA Teams That Will Overachieve Next Season
1. Washington Wizards
This has been a quiet offseason for the Washington Wizards, except for the occasional Bradley Beal trade rumors. The Wizards drafted Rui Hachimura the Forward coming out of Gonzaga with the ninth pick in the NBA draft. Rui, who was vastly considered as an underrated prospect, can play the 3 exceptionally well. This addition addresses the Wizards small forward problem. Hachimura can also play the small ball 4 occasionally because of his athleticism and long wingspan.
The Wizards also made a underrated signing by picking up Isaiah Thomas. Although the 5’9 guard struggles defensively, he makes plays for the team. This is vital in the absence of the Wizards’ star point guard John Wall. The Wizards, through a strong team effort and going the season without injuries, could grab the seventh or eighth seed. If the Wizards can squeak into the playoffs they could be a hard first round match up for any team.
2. Dallas Mavericks
The Mavericks have spent the majority of their offseason resigning current platers to the chagrin of their fan base. The Mavericks are hopefully for Kristaps Porzingis, the big man acquired during the 2018-2019 season, to return by the middle of next season. However, there are some that think he will have to sit out this season rehabbing from injury. They have also made the lackluster sign and trade of Delon Wright with the Memphis Grizzlies. This move supplements their point guard position.
With the Mavericks in a confusion state, it is safe to say that they are going to exceed everyone’s expectations. With the rest of the Western Conference making major moves to advance their team, Dallas is left stagnant in the wake. The reason the Mavericks are going to overachieve relies solely on
Luka Doncic, the 2018-2019 rookie of the year. If he gets injured they might as well scrap their plans and tank for the 2020 NBA Draft. Luka Doncic, currently 20, is a 21 PPG scorer and has plenty of time to develop into a superstar. If Doncic can increase his scoring output, maintain efficiency and playmaking, the Mavericks will be successful. Majority of the team’s offense relies on him and his development. The Mavericks are going to be hard to beat as Doncic continues to develop his passing ability and Harden-like step-back.
3. Atlanta Hawks
The Atlanta Hawks had one of the best offseasons for a rebuilding team in recent history. They traded their 8th, 17th and 35th picks to the New Orleans Pelicans for the 4th pick in the 2019 NBA Draft. They drafted De’Andre Hunter and Cam Reddish who young wings, when they are in need of a starting caliber center. Now they have only Damian Jones and Alex Len as centers on their roster .
The Hawks now have a lineup of Trae-Huerter-Hunter-Collins-Len, this would be a very talented lineup filled with young, athletic guys. This team is ready to make a run at the 6th-8th seed in the Eastern conference.Never the less, the amount of offensive firepower and potential on the Hawks cannot be overlooked. They have the potential to take the 6th seed in the upcoming season. This is also a underdog team most sports bettors can look out for.
4. Oklahoma City Thunder
The Oklahoma City Thunder went from a contender to rebuilding mode in just one second after ESPN reporter Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted that Kawhi Leonard is signing with the Los Angeles Clippers. Thunder General Manager Sam Presti for turned two stars, Paul George and Russell Westbrook, for a future as bright as the sun (not the Phoenix Suns). The Thunder received Chris Paul, Danilo Gallinari and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and eight first round picks (some pick swaps too) for trading away Russell Westbrook, Paul George and Jerami Grant.
There have been many rumors about a potential Chris Paul trade to the Heat, but OKC is going to out perform their expectations regardless. OKC managed to acquire a “big” point guard in Shai who can be the focal point of the rebuild. He can take on a Westbrook like role by leading the team in scoring while OKC surround him with young pieces such as Terrance Ferguson, Hamidou Diallo and Darius Bazley. If the roster remains untouched, OKC can make a fight for the 8th seed in the highly competitive Western Conference.
5. Memphis Grizzlies
It was a hectic offseason for the Memphis Grizzlies, they traded away long standing franchise star Mike Conley. This plunged them into fully committed to rebuilding. They drafted college superstar point guard Ja Morant with the 2nd pick. They then acquired Brandon Clarke from the Oklahoma City Thunder with the 21st pick. In the Mike Conley trade they also received sharpshooter Grayson Allen along with Jae Crowder and Kyle Korver from the Utah Jazz.
They did equally well in Free Agency by resigning Valacunias (although he doesn’t really fit the timeline) and stole Tyus Jones from the Minnesota Timberwolves. If Morant continues to perform like he did in college on the big stage, the Grizzlies could fight for a playoff spot or maybe end up at the 9th or 10th seed.