Media day is done, training camp has arrived and another NBA season is just around the corner, which means two things. One, the NBA season is here, and two, hope springs eternal. The standings are all 0-0 right now. Everyone’s in the best shape of their careers, every team is going to push the pace and shoot more threes, while focusing on defense more, and after all, the most important question for every team is “Why not us?”
(The answer to “Why not us?” is “The Warriors.”)
Of course, it’s then that you realize the trap of thinking about a team’s “ceiling.” Say right now you expect a team to win 47 games. You think they have the talent, coaching and chemistry to get themselves above .500 and into a mid-to-high seeding. It’s at that point, however, that you’re not considering the things that naturally drag teams down. Injuries happen to every team, to various degrees. Slumps. A team enjoys a visiting city’s nightlife for a little too long one night. An illness, which always circulates through locker rooms like wildfire, brings down execution for a week.