NBA

MONROE: Pacific Division capsules

Share This Story

Mike Monroe

 
   
 

KINGS

2001-02 Record: 61-21
Coach: Rick Adelman
Key Additions: , PF-C
Key Losses: None.
Projected Starters: , PG; , SG; , C; , PF; Peja Stojakovic, SF.
Key Subs: , PG; Hedo Turkoglu, SF; Scott Pollard, C; , PF-C.
Summer Review: When you've had the best record in the league and come closer to beating the in a seven-game series than any team of the past three seasons you don't need to change much, and the didn't. But their one off-season acquisition, , gives them one more big man to throw at . Of course, if the U.S. Dept. of Justice snatches off the roster, their grade will have to be amended to F-minus. Grade: B-plus.
Season Outlook: They had only one real player personnel issue to deal with over the summer, free agent , and got that done with their customary dispatch. There is no reason to believe they can't duplicate last season's record, especially considering they were minus Webber for 28 games and Peja Stojakovic for 11 games last season.
Prediction: 59-23, first in division.

LAKERS

2001-02 Record: 58-24
Coach: Phil Jackson
Key Additions: , SF; , SG; , PG.
Key Losses: , PG.
Projected Starters: , PG; , SG; , C; , SF; , PF.
Key Subs: , PF; , SG; , SF.
Summer Review: Nothing they did in the free-agent market, which was pretty much nothing unless you consider a major acquisition, could make 's big toe feel any better. Since they were unable to bring in anyone to help get them through the first weeks of the season without the league's most dominant player, their summer was a washout. Grade: D.
Season Outlook: is bigger and stronger and knows he must carry them until O'Neal is healed and ready to play again. But if O'Neal misses more than a dozen games — his recovery is going well and he reported to camp lighter than last season — winning the regular-season division title will be next to impossible.
MIKE MONROE'S BREAKDOWN

FOXSports.com's senior NBA writer shares his take on what to look out for this season.

MORE FROM MONROE:




  • |
  • |
  • |

  • Prediction: 58-24, second in division.

    TRAIL BLAZERS

    2001-02 Record: 49-33
    Coach: Maurice Cheeks
    Key Additions: , C; , PG; , SG; , SF.
    Key Losses: , PF, , SG.
    Projected Starters: , PG; , SG; , C; , , PF; , SF.
    Key Subs: , C; , SG; , PG; , SG; , SF.
    Summer Review: Talking Kemp into giving up his bloated contract and talking Sabonis out of retirement were major off-season coups for Bob Whitsitt. Signing McInnis puts pressure on to shut up and perform. Grade: A-minus.
    Season Outlook: They're deeper than they've ever been, which is saying something, and got rid of a major problem when they were able to dump Kemp. There's been some talk of playing a huge front line of Sabonis, Davis and Wallace, which probably ought to be called the "Anti-Shaq Line." Don't be surprised if McInnis ends up playing more minutes at the point than Stoudamire.
    Prediction: 52-30, third in division.

    SUPERSONICS

    2001-02 Record: 45-37
    Coach: Nate McMillan
    Key Additions: , PG; , C; Joe Forte, SG.
    Key Losses: , PF; , PG.
    Projected Starters: , PG; , SG; Predrag Drobjnak, C; , PF; , SF.
    Key Subs: , PG; , SG; , SF.
    Summer Review: They pulled off one of the bigger trades of the off-season, giving his wish and moving him back to the Eastern Conference. Of course, what they got was a point guard certain to pout when he doesn't get much time behind , a "project" swing guard and a big man who won't be able to suit up until December at the earliest. Guess that speaks to Baker's market value. They had to re-sign and did, even though owner Howard Shultz made him angry. Of course, not as angry as Schultz made . Howard, ease up on consumption of the espresso. Grade: C-minus.
    Season Outlook: It's hard to imagine they're going to be back in the playoffs again if Payton sulks his way through the season. He's still the key to where this team finishes.
    Prediction: 41-41, fifth in division.

    CLIPPERS

    2001-02 Record: 39-43.
    Coach: Alvin Gentry
    Key Additions: , PG; , PG; , PF; , PF.
    Key Losses: , SF; , PG.
    Projected Starters: , PG; , SG; , C; , PF; , SF.
    Key Subs: , SF; , SF; , C; , PG; , PG.
    Summer Review: The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. The Good: They finally got the point guard they wanted, , though they had to give up to do it. The Bad: 's summer injury is going to keep him on the shelf for the first couple months of the season: The Ugly: Owner Donald T. Sterling couldn¿t get re-signed to anything but the one-year qualifier and wouldn¿t give the extension he deserved. Grade: C.
    Season Outlook: Just when you thought it was time for this club to make a push into the playoffs misfortune and stupidity rear their ugly heads. It's nobody's fault Odom and Brand likely will start the season on the injured list. It's Sterling's fault Olowokandi likely is playing his final season for the Clips and Brand may be looking to get out, too. That's not going to create an atmosphere conducive to wining.
    Prediction: 40-42, sixth in division.

    SUNS

    2001-02 Record: 36-46
    Coach: Frank Johnson
    Key Additions: Amare Stoudamire, PF; , PF; , SG.
    Key Losses: , PG; , SG.
    Projected Starters: , PG; Penny Hardaway, SG; Jake Tsakalidis, C; , PF; , SF.
    Key Subs: , PF; , SG-F; , PF-C; , PF-C.
    Summer Review: They believe they got a gem in the draft in , who will need time to develop but has all the tools to be a star. They've got enough depth at power forward to bring him along slowly, and that includes their summer acquisition of . Grade: B-minus.
    Season Outlook: If and Penny Hardaway can stay healthy all season they've got a chance to get back in the playoffs. Don't be surprised to see getting 20-25 minutes a game before the All-Star break. If he has a Rookie-of-the-Year type of season, they'll make a big jump.
    Prediction: 42-40, fourth in division.

    WARRIORS

    2001-02 Record: 21-61
    Coach: Eric Musselman
    Key Additions: , SF.
    Key Losses: , SG.
    Projected Starters: , PG; , SG; , C; , PF; , SF.
    Key Subs: , SF-SG; , SF; , SG.
    Summer Review: When you win only 21 games you probably ought to do more than hire a new coach and make a high draft pick, but not the . Guess that means they're counting on Eric Musselman to make chicken salad out of chicken ¿ er ¿ droppings. Grade: C-minus.
    Season Outlook: We like the Musselman hire because there's nothing the needed more than a big dose of discipline and work ethic, and that's what they'll get from him. They've still got marginal talent, but if Dunleavy makes a decent contribution, they'll win more games.
    Prediction: 34-48, seventh in division. Mike Monroe can be reached at his e-mail address: mmonroe@foxsports.com.
    Tagged: Celtics, Cavaliers, Warriors, Clippers, Lakers, Magic, 76ers, Suns, Trail Blazers, Kings, Spurs, Thunder, Wizards, Raptors, Vitaly Potapenko, Joe Johnson, Andre Miller, Erick Dampier, Larry Hughes, Antawn Jamison, Jason Richardson, Gilbert Arenas, Eric Piatkowski, Jeff McInnis, Michael Olowokandi, Elton Brand, Lamar Odom, Quentin Richardson, Keyon Dooling, Darius Miles, Robert Horry, Derek Fisher, Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O'Neal, Lindsey Hunter, Bo Outlaw, Shawn Marion, Rasheed Wallace, Damon Stoudamire, Dale Davis, Doug Christie, Bobby Jackson, Mike Bibby, Chris Webber, Derek Anderson, Antonio Daniels, Gary Payton, Desmond Mason, Rashard Lewis, Ruben Patterson, Vladimir Radmanovic, Vin Baker, Kareem Rush, Mike Dunleavy, Marko Jaric, Chris Wilcox, Melvin Ely

    More Stories From Mike Monroe


    More Than Sports on MSN

    Fox Sports Store

      itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
      adidas Blake Griffin Los Angeles Clippers Revolution 30 Performance Jersey - Red http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Clippers/browse/featuredproduct/491845/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_491000/ff_491845_xl.jpg&w=100 59.95 adidas Blake Griffin Los Angeles Clippers Revolution 30 Performance Jersey - Red
      adidas LeBron James Miami Heat Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey-Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Miami_Heat/browse/featuredproduct/498609/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_498000/ff_498609_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas LeBron James Miami Heat Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey-Black
      adidas Carmelo Anthony New York Knicks Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey - Royal Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Knicks/browse/featuredproduct/620470/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_620000/ff_620470_xl.jpg&w=100 49.99 adidas Carmelo Anthony New York Knicks Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey..
      Mitchell & Ness San Antonio Spurs Black Solid Script Snapback Adjustable Hat http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Antonio_Spurs/browse/featuredproduct/692239/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_692000/ff_692239_xl.jpg&w=100 25.95 Mitchell & Ness San Antonio Spurs Black Solid Script Snapback Adjustable Hat
      Majestic Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers Logo Man T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Lakers/browse/featuredproduct/851828/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_851000/ff_851828_xl.jpg&w=100 23.95 Majestic Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers Logo Man T-Shirt - Black
      Majestic Kevin Durant Oklahoma City Thunder Logo Man T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_City_Thunder/browse/featuredproduct/851842/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_851000/ff_851842_xl.jpg&w=100 23.95 Majestic Kevin Durant Oklahoma City Thunder Logo Man T-Shirt - White
      adidas Miami Heat 2012 NBA Eastern Conference Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Miami_Heat/browse/featuredproduct/890174/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_890000/ff_890174_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 adidas Miami Heat 2012 NBA Eastern Conference Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Wh..
      adidas Oklahoma City Thunder 2012 NBA Western Conference Champions Locker Room Flex Hat - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_City_Thunder/browse/featuredproduct/890384/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_890000/ff_890384_xl.jpg&w=100 19.99 adidas Oklahoma City Thunder 2012 NBA Western Conference Champions Locker Room F..