The New Look NBA

Ahmed Choudhry, Staff Writer and Sports Editor

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The 2018-2019 offseason may have been the most impactful offseason in NBA history. Nearly every single team traded key players and most big name free agents left their teams. The most shocking free agent departure was Kawhi Leonard leaving the Toronto Raptors to go to the Clippers, after winning the first NBA title with a non-American franchise. Nearly as shocking, was the teaming up of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving in Brooklyn. Per usual, the New York Knicks failed to sign any significant talent, and also utterly disappointed on draft night. To no one’s shock, long time Warrior Klay Thompson chose to accept a max contract guaranteeing millions, after his gruesome injuries in the finals. To everyone’s shock, however, long-time Thunder guard Russell Westbrook was traded to the Houston Rockets. But, perhaps the most impactful of all, may have been Anthony Davis’ trade to the Los Angeles Lakers. Let’s look at how these trades specifically change the NBA.
For years, the NBA was unbalanced; the Golden State Warriors won the NBA finals over and over again, and they used their advantage of having up to five all-star caliber players against the twenty-nine other teams in the league. Many felt that having so many stars on one team was making the NBA lopsided. The departure of Kevin Durant and other teams making important acquisitions is ultimately the reason why balance has been restored. Many different teams have increased their chance from virtually zero to being recognized as front runners. The top two competitors are the LA Lakers and the LA Clippers. While they share an arena, they are bitter rivals, so the LeBron and Davis vs Leonard and George matchup will be fierce. One of these megateams will likely face the Brooklyn Nets in the finals.
There are also many new players who have joined the NBA via draft. While the Pelicans lost Anthony Davis, they may have drafted a future franchise superstar in Zion Williamson. He is without a doubt the most talked about rookie in NBA history, but it is yet to be seen if he can lead the NBA into the next decade much like how LeBron James picked up the torch after Michael Jordan. All in all this NBA season promises to be much more exciting than the past several years, and the new matchups will no doubt make it worthwhile to watch.