So, with the NBA finals scheduled to commence in 2-weeks’ time, however the NBA season being no closer to re-commencing, there is a realistic chance the season could well be cancelled. Whilst I’m sure they will do everything possible to complete it in some way shape or form, it will get to a point where it’s likely to not be feasible to do so.
Now, we are all hoping this isn’t the case, and I’m sure we’ll all be hoping they can get it up and running in the coming months, but if not, who are the teams that could benefit from the season being cancelled, and who are the ones that are most impacted?
In a lot of ways, it works out perfectly for them. In a season where they had no Durant and lost Kyrie for much of the season through injury, they get the opportunity to start afresh in 20/21 with both of their stars fit and healthy and a chance to reassess their list going in to the new season.
New Orleans Pelicans:
Having missed Zion for much of the year, they were starting to get up and running, yet were still likely to miss the top 8 in the West. Their young team showed a lot, and with a chance to start next season with a fit Zion (who gets a lot long to rest that knee), another year of development in their young squad and a player like Reddick didn’t get many more miles on the clock to help them experience-wise.
In a season that was slowly becoming a train-wreck considering where they thought they’d be and where they were. Simmons was looking to be gone for the season, the team chemistry looked off and having been one of the pre-season favorites, were looking like potential first round losers. They now get a chance to re-assess the list and what went wrong and maybe look at making some moves to improve before the next season.
Golden State Warriors:
Season gets cancelled, their finals streak lives again and they get a chance to start next season with Klay, Steph and Draymond all back on court together, with Andrew Wiggins who’ll have had a chance to at least settle in a bit before next season (assuming they don’t look to trade him). Their younger players have had a taste and will now be able to help more off the bench having been starters this past season. The beauty is too, they didn’t have to worry about rushing Klay back either.
San Antonio Spurs:
Their finals streak is still alive!!! No finals this season gives them a chance to get to 23 straight when it never really looked likely after this season.
Having been a surprisingly competent team this season just gone, they now get to take that good team feel into next season with a returning John Wall, who should be back in the starting line-up having overcome his Achilles rupture. Could they push for the play-offs with Wall and Beal in the backcourt?
They were the form team of the competition, had the form player in LeBron and were looking like serious title contenders. Whilst the break will do LeBron good, like all players, he’s still going to be another year older when they are a chance to challenge for the title. It may allow them to improve their overall list, but you feel that this is a serious missed opportunity at more silverware, and they had no control over it.
They sold the farm for a 2-year crack at the title, when they recruited both Kahwi and George on 2yr deals with player options thereafter. They were again a side that looked like a serious contender, having one of the best records in the NBA despite having key players miss a lot of games to date. They would now go in to the 20/21 season with still a huge chance to take out the title, but also a huge chance to lose their two big players come seasons end, leaving them in a difficult spot to rebuild with limited assets or trade or picks to use. Would it worth either getting a commitment now from the big two or looking at trade options for them both to start their rebuild early?
Their small ball game had looked great early, having won 14-3 post the Capella trade. They then lost 4 of their last 5 games before the postponing of the season so the jury might still be out on whether it stacks up in the play-offs. Whilst it could be a chance to for them to reassess the move, they have also lost the chance to test it out in the big games to see if it does work and could have taken them to the title. Do they now back it in again and see where it takes them? Or do they go back to the tried and true and chase a big man in the offseason?
The season was looking good for them. They were well placed going into play-offs, had great team chemistry and were every chance to push for the Championship series. Yes, they were going to have to get through Milwaukee, but it looked a better option than having to try and go through them with in a Giannis contract year (and possible final year in Milwaukee) as they will next season. Add to that, Kemba seems to have a problem knee so maybe now was their chance to really push.
Their title defence was looking strong, Siakam had become a top 15 player in the competition, VanVleet was firing and their older guys like Gasol and Ibaka were holding up well. Now they must wonder if they go again with Ibaka and Gasol or look elsewhere? Does VanVleet looking at leaving now under contract and testing the market, or does he stay true to the side he played a big part in winning the title just 12mths ago?