Every game is a gamble. So they say.
Now that news of Dwight Howard signing with the Los Angeles Lakers (albeit the non-guaranteed contract) dawned on us. The next important question is: how will this change the 2019-20 NBA season? Howard was with the Lakers in 2012-13. Hopes and expectations were high then but left abruptly after the team’s first-round loss.
This can be one of the most surprising returns throughout NBA history, especially after Howard telling the fans that he already put the Lakers behind him.
Sports analysts are also quick to note that the Howard re-sign is nothing compared with the Anthony Davis trade. The latter potentially changed the 2019-20 season by making Lakers a playoff contender now. Will Howard be an integral part of the strategic roster of LeBron James-Davis tandem?
That’s one question we have yet to answer. The same applies to how the trades, signings, re-signs, draft picks would change the coming season.
In the meantime, here are some of the most intriguing NBA offseason moves.
Riskiest: Kemba Walker leaving Charlotte Hornets
Walker left the Hornets after low-balling him for Boston Celtics, who also lost Kyrie Irving. Walker was the only franchise player and losing him would mean the next season’s chaos of a team.
Most Rewarding: Kawhi Leonard signing up with Los Angeles Clippers
Even long before the finals win for Toronto Raptors, Leonard has already eyed the Clippers. The addition of Leonard, who signed a four-year maximum deal with the players, and Paul George, among others, made the Clippers as an early favourite to win the title.
Riskiest: Hoping for Isaiah Thomas’s comeback season
The future of the Washington Wizards is bleak, with a roster of players that can be easily mistaken as a G League frontrunner. The only extenuating feature of the Wizards is Bradley Beal, its #9 first-round draft, Rui Hachimura, and the recently-signed Thomas.
Most Rewarding: Brooklyn Nets signing Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant
Irving and Durant are the duo to watch out for—a tandem that was not expected until it happened with the Nets. These two alone makes the team one of the NBA elite. DeAndre Jordan, Garrett Temple, and Wilson Chandler make the defence all the more exciting.
Riskiest: Cleveland Cavaliers losing three players but did not sign new members
Kevin Love has a disappointing performance in the 2018-19 season, and the Cavaliers is ready to give him up. This makes sense as the team is trying to shift its focus on developing the young rosters of players. It drafted three new names such as Darius Garland, Dylan Windler, and Kevin Porter Jr. And unless these players perform, the Cavs will be one of the terrible NBA teams this upcoming season.
Most Rewarding: New Orleans Pelicans signing Zion Williamson
Williamson was this season’s first pick overall. A lot is expected from him, having shown his speed and leaping ability comparable to that of Charles Barkley. Playing together with seasoned players such as JJ Redick and Derrick Favors, this can be the Pelicans success formula for this season despite losing Davis to the Lakers.