After a dominant run by the Golden State Warriors, who reached the NBA Finals five years in a row and emerged victorious three times, the NBA appears to be balanced once again. With an injury to all-star shooting guard Klay Thompson and superstar Kevin Durant signing with the Brooklyn Nets over the summer, the NBA has an air of uncertainty around it once more.
“For the past few seasons, the NBA revolved on stability, whether it was to rebuild the team from a young core or to develop a team of improving players like Giannis and the Bucks. The upcoming season changes all of this,” senior and former basketball player Roy Bae said. “2019-2020 will be all about the star players that have moved to different teams and all the changes that I feel have brought a balance to the NBA again.”
This year features many exciting teams that have a very real chance to win the championship or at the very least contend for the title. The Los Angeles Lakers with superstars Lebron James and Anthony Davis and the Los Angeles Clippers with two-way stars Kawhi Leonard and Paul George have emerged as two front-running teams in a very heated race due to its strong composition. The battle of Los Angeles seems likely to be the leading narrative of the year with neither team having a clear advantage over the other.
The Western Conference in particular looks to be extremely competitive; the Houston Rockets have added star point guard Russell Westbrook to an already dynamic offense led by 2018 MVP James Harden. The Utah Jazz, Denver Nuggets and Portland Trailblazers, among other potential teams, could compete for a trip to the NBA Finals.
While the Eastern Conference does not have the same depth of teams as the Western, the Eastern Conference remains top-heavy with the Philadelphia 76ers and Milwaukee Bucks look to be two of the more offensive teams in the league. With defending champion Toronto Raptors losing Leonard, there is a power vacuum waiting to be filled.
The young tandem of Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons lead the 76ers while the Bucks boast the 2019 MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo, who looks to lead his team to its first Finals victory in almost 50 years.
NBA fans can watch as the season kicks off on Oct. 22 with the Pelicans vs. Raptors featuring rookie sensation Zion Williamson and the Lakers vs. Clippers serving as the first of four games between the top two teams entering the season.