Every year, NBA.com puts out an early season survey where all the GMs across the league are asked to break down the league. The best teams, the best players, the most promising moves, the guys they’d want winning games for them, the best coaches… This year, they found 57 GMs willing to participate, and they answered questions on basically everything around the league.
While you can find the entire survey here, I’m posting some of the highlights:
Which team will win the 2012 NBA Finals?
1. Miami – 74.1 percent
2. Oklahoma City – 14.8 percent
3. L.A. Lakers – 7.4 percent
-The GMs got it right. The best fast breaking team in the league also has the most talent and potentially, the most suffocating defense. If Miami doesn’t win it all this year, it’ll be one of the larger team failures of the past decade. It’s right there for them.
Who will the division winners be?
Boston (64.3 percent), Chicago (96.4 percent), Miami (96.3 percent), San Antonio (63.6 percent), Oklahoma City (71.4 percent) and L.A. Lakers (77.8 percent)
-My picks right now (given I have the added benefit of having watched a few weeks of ball) would be: Philly, Chicago, Miami, San Antonio, Oklahoma City and the L.A. Clippers
Who will win the 2011-12 MVP?
1. Kevin Durant – 55.6 percent
2. LeBron James – 44.4 percent
-My take? LeBron (29.5 points, 8.2 rebounds, 7.4 assists per game) really doesn’t have enough competition this year. Kobe won’t keep up this pace. Kevin Durant has taken a step back statistically as the Thunder have gotten better. Same for Derrick Rose. Who else is left?
Who is the best point guard in the league?
1. Derrick Rose – 59.3 percent
2. Chris Paul – 37 percent
3. Russell Westbrook – 3.7 percent
I think at his best, CP3 is still the best lead guard in the league. The problem is he has too many games where he’ll finish with 12/8 lines. Ever since his knee issues began, Paul hasn’t consistently been the beast that he once was. The reigning MVP is too good, night in and night out.
Who is the best two guard, small forward, power forward and center in the league?
-Kobe Bryant (55.6 percent), LeBron James (77.8 percent), Dirk Nowitzki (41.1 percent), Dwight Howard (96.3 percent)
Damn, normally I would go Wade, James, Dirk, Dwight. But right now, how can you say no to Kobe? I still don’t believe he’ll be able to keep this up though.
Who will win the 2011-12 Rookie of the Year?
1. Kyrie Irving – 63 percent
2. Ricky Rubio – 18.5 percent
3. Kemba Walker, Derrick Williams – 7.4 percent
-I agree 100 percent. Irving’s only getting better, and once he’s handed the keys full-time (he’s still not even playing 30 minutes a night), his numbers will be too good to overlook.
Who is the best perimeter defender in the league?
1. Tony Allen – 26.9 percent
2. Rajon Rondo – 15.4 percent
3. LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Russell Westbrook – 11.5 percent
-They got it right again. Allen is incredible on the wings. But my top three would read like this: Allen, James, Andre Iguodala.
Which player would you want taking a shot with the game on the line?
1. Kobe Bryant – 48.1 percent
2. Kevin Durant – 30.8 percent
Eh, hard to go against the Mamba (even though he’s gone a year and a half now seemingly without making one). I’d take Wade over Durant though.
Some other highlights:
Best basketball IQ: Steve Nash
Best leader: Chris Paul
Best passer: Chris Paul (Rondo didn’t get one vote. NOT ONE!)
Toughest player: Kobe Bryant
Best at getting his own shot: Kobe Bryant
Fastest with the ball: Derrick Rose
Best head coach: Gregg Popovich
What do you think?
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