The NBA season is almost upon us and that means it’s time to put predictions on paper so we can be reminded of them and embarrassed eight months from now when the season is over. This week, the Dime staff will be participating in five roundtables and dishing out their predictions for all things NBA in 2017-18.
We will start with our NBA awards predictions, which are always an exercise in futility, trying to give our best guesses on who will take home the MVP, MIP, ROY, COY, DPOY, and 6MOY awards come June. We asked each writer for their pick and an explanation; duplicate picks will only feature one explanation from one writer at an attempt at brevity. We’ll start with the Sixth Man of the Year Award, which had the most different choices on the staff.
Sixth Man Of The Year
J.R. Smith (Robby Kalland, Konata Edwards)
The Cavs backcourt is crowded, but outside of Kyle Korver, Smith is the best shooter of the bunch. Dwyane Wade is going to start, but Smith still should see plenty of minutes. The Sixth Man Award typically goes to the guy who scores the most off of the bench in the NBA or scores a lot for a good team. I think Smith (who has won the award before for the former reason) will win this year for the latter. He’s going to get buckets, because that’s what he does, and will do so for one of the best teams in the NBA. — RK
Tristan Thompson (Brad Rowland)
Everyone is going to talk about Tristan Thompson as the Sixth Man of the Year and that matters. Will he put up massive numbers? No. Will he make a huge impact? Yes. Maybe it’s unrealistic to think he’ll win it based on the shortcomings of Andre Iguodala in the same category, but unlike his counterpart from Golden State, Thompson actually wants the hardware.