Between the recent success of the Boomers, Delly’s heroics and the inevitable hype that gathers every time an Aussie is touted to crack an American sporting code, locals seem to realised that the NBA is actually worth watching.
Don’t be afraid to be late to the party though. Here at D’Marge we think now is the perfect time to pull up a couch, invite a few pals over and rock a poorly-fitted jersey in preparation for the greatest season ever.
Here’s are the ten reasons why this season’s NBA will be the most exhilarating one yet.
Watching The Warriors React To The Disappointment Of 2015
The 2015/16 Season for the Golden State Warriors was probably the greatest in history. They went 73-10 (an all-time record), Steph Curry had the best individual season ever with his freakish antics beyond the three point line, and the combined efforts of Klay Thompson and Draymond Green supplemented this to create one of the most unstoppable sporting forces in recent memory.
Then they choked. Spectacularly. Which brings us to…
The Cavs Title Defence
The Cleveland Cavaliers’ title triumph TRULY shocked the world back in May and now they have to do it again while competing in one of the strongest Eastern Conferences in recent memory.
That being said, the story they wrote for themselves will go down in history as truly epic. LeBron went into God mode, Kyrie showed millions exactly what the hype surrounding his name was all about and the Warriors were left seemingly without an answer until now…
Enter Kevin Durant
As soon as the Golden State Warriors knocked Kevin Durant’s Oklahoma City Thunder out of the 2016 Western Conference Finals, the entire basketball world simultaneously slid into his DMs.
Most expected Kevin Durant to sign on for one last year with the Thunder, but in a move that will go down as one of the most salt inducing in history, he signed with the Warriors instead.
Durant is slotting into the closest thing to a true super team that has ever been seen in the NBA, yet questions are still being raised as to just how they will gel together (especially considering they lack a decent Centre).
How Will LeBron James Continue To Build His Legacy?
LeBron is now pretty much at the stage now where he’s done it all. He took his talents to South Beach, and brought them a championship.
Then the boy from Ohio came home and delivered Cleveland its first major sporting triumph in almost 50 years.
This leaves the gaping question of what exactly LBJ still has left to prove. Regardless of whether or not the Cavs repeat their finals heroics next year, this could be a season of massive personal Vindication for LeBron as he seeks to cement his name in the “Greatest of All Time” conversation once and for all.
The Implosion Of The Miami Heat
Down on South Beach, things aren’t so rosy. Dwyane Wade is now a Bull after falling spectacularly out with Miami Heat president Pat Riley, while Chris Bosh’s failed medical put an even denser blanket of doubt over the future of both himself and the rest of the heat.
Just a few years ago they were perennial title contenders, now they may be set to go into full rebuild mode.
The Rise Of The Celtics
Through some savvy work in the last couple of trade windows, the Celts have transformed themselves into probably the second best team in the eastern conference almost without anyone noticing.
By trading for Atlanta’s Al Horford and putting their faith into talents like Jaylen Brown and Isaiah Thomas, a sense of optimism has come back to Boston that’s been missing for a good few seasons. Meanwhile a few hours south…
The Derrick Rose Shit Show Rolls Into New York
As if the sad tale of Derrick Rose and his combustible knees wasn’t already long and sad enough, a few months ago the New York Knicks decided to offer him a fresh start in the Big Apple. Now though, he’s on civil trial for the rape of a girl (who incidentally wants $21.5 million in damages).
As THE shining example of tremendous talent being snuffed out by horrible injury troubles, D-Rose has some serious questions to answer to in the coming months.
Will he finally make a return to the form which made him so beloved during his early years in Chicago? Will the trial affect his game? Will his body hold out long enough to answer either of those questions? Only time will tell.
A League Without Kobe & Kevin
In their 20-year careers, Kobe Bryant and Kevin Garnett racked up a combined 6 championship rings, 33 All-Star appearances, 3 Olympic gold medals, 24 All-NBA team selections, 53,000 points, 21,000 rebounds and 11,000 assists.
Now though, two of the last true legends of the late 90’s have made their departures once and for all. Will the NBA be the same without them? Never. Could the league be better off for it? Possibly. Not least because it means…
A Fresh Start For The L.A Lakers
The 2015 NBA season boiled down to an 82-game, 9-month Kobe Bryant farewell tour for the LA Lakers, who chose to consistently bench their freshly drafted talent in favour of Kobe, no matter how god-awful he played.
Now their biggest and brightest stars are ready to take the spotlight, namely in the form of D’Angelo Russell and rookie Brandon Ingram. However, it won’t be L.A that Australia has its sights set on for the next few months.
Two Of The League’s Biggest Prospects Are Aussies
The unstoppable Ben Simmons hype train has been in full motion for a few months now. Despite being surrounded by a completely awful team at LSU and developing a serious aversion to shooting the ball, Simmons was still drafted as the #1 pick of the 2016 NBA draft by the (admittedly terrible) Philadelphia 76ers.
Simmons now faces a quest to prove that he’s finally ready to answer Philly’s prayers after a good few years of tanking and horrendous use of their high draft picks.
As well as this, 2015’s #5 pick and Australia’s own Dante Exum is finally back from the injury that ruined his rookie season with the Utah Jazz.
He has some serious catching up to do and between him and Simmons’ performances, this season is set to define Australia’s Basketball future.
EDIT: Ben Simmons is out this season with a broken bone in his foot. Maybe next year…