Offseason Musings: Dwight, the Dream acquisition, and where we stand in the West

Since free agency is wearing down and news has kinda slowed to a trickle, I just wanted to chime in on the Dwight signing and where we stand right now as a team. First Dwight, there are a few quotes that have come out in interviews that really stood out to me. Chris "Sources" Broussard has an ESPN interview where he points out how the Lakers shielded Dwight from their legacy of great bigs where Houston's pitch really pushed our history of great bigs upon Dwight. The Lakers were scared that the legacy would scare Dwight off and I think it's telling that Houston's legacy of big men helped us recruit him. I think that it's an indicator of where his mindset is. I believe he is thinking about his legacy and embracing greatness instead of running from it. Howard said in a sit down with Stephen A Smith that "Hakeem has never said anything bad about me," which I think indicates those years of failed pitches from Houston and those years of working with Hakeem really helped form Dwight's perception of the team and city going in to this decision.

Now, where we stand in the West. I think there is a GLARING spotlight on Lin and our power forward rotation. If the Jones and Motie combination are competent and Lin is shooting at about the same clip as he was at the end of the year I think we're easily a top 3 team in the West and should exceed 60 wins. I think Houston and GS are by far the most improved teams in the West and the Clippers (though their lack of frontcourt depth should be worrisome) third. I think all those teams are better than Memphis. I think that San An is still a top 5ish team, but I honestly think they are finally going to take a baby step back and be behind Houston in the standings (this is assuming that Manu's total lack of basketball skill in the Finals wasn't an anomaly) and I think the Thunder will really miss that elite "6th man" offense off the bench they previously got from Harden and then Martin. I also think that Houston has good defensive matchups against most of the upper tier of the West (Beverley, Parsons, Dwight, and Asik are all top tier defenders). If I had to guess I'd say the West breaks down like this:

1) Thunder (they are always a GREAT regular season team)

2) Rockets (Assuming Lin is consistently average and shoots upper 30's/low 40's from 3 and Jones/Motie aren't a total disaster)

3) Clips (would be higher if they were deeper on the frontline)

4) San An (other teams got better, this team got older)

5) GS (I think injuries keep them from being higher)

6) Memphis

7) Portland (finally a decent bench)

8) Denver (Iggy and Karl being gone make this an iffy playoff team)

(the lower 2 of the West can really be any of the following: Denver, Minny, LA, Dallas, Pelicans, and Portland)

I'd love to hear your thoughts on the offseason.... Chime in below

No cursing in title. No pirated material, such as links to online game streams. Do not cut/paste entire sections of content from other websites. Thanks.

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