This NBA offseason could be one of the craziest summers in the history of the league. Many are saying that this is upcoming offseason could be one for the record books as the moves that will be made this summer could be league-changing. Whether it be free agent signings, draft selections, trades, and more, the predictions made here are nothing short of daring, but could very well become true by the time next season comes around. The last summer was a wild one after Kevin Durant went to the Warriors, along with other storylines like Dwyane Wade leaving the Miami Heat after so many seasons or on a lesser note, Al Horford going to Boston. But this summer could be even more league-altering. Players like Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and Stephen Curry are free agents which already has us salivating for free agency.
In this article, we will be making 15 bold predictions for the upcoming NBA offseason. Like I said, this will include things such as signings and other developments that could have some teams heading toward the bottom while sending others to the top of the standings.
Here are the top 15 bold predictions for the upcoming NBA offseason.
15 15. Markelle Fultz Will Go First Overall To The Phoenix Suns
Not many people are talking about it, but the Phoenix Suns could very well win the prized draft lottery this summer and get the first pick in the draft. They have the second highest percentage to win the lottery with 19.9%, just behind the Celtics' 25.0% chance.
With Phoenix winning the lottery, we have them selecting Markelle Fultz from Washington, completing a young but dangerous backcourt partnership of him and Devin Booker. This could be the final piece in the Suns' rebuild, making them a seriously dangerous team as early as next season. If Boston does in fact win the lottery, the East is surely on notice because a player of a caliber like Fultz would really make the Celtics a scary team. Look out, Cleveland.
14 14. Blake Griffin Signs With The Oklahoma City Thunder
Blake Griffin has appeared to be the odd man out the last few seasons for the Clippers, and a change in environment could help resurrect his career. He has had some off-the-court issues lately, and he has not been able to stay healthy long enough to help his team win a championship.
Meanwhile, Russell Westbrook had one of the greatest NBA seasons of all time. Even though the Oklahoma City Thunder won some games, they are in need of another star, preferably a big, to help complement Westbrook. That is where Griffin will come in. He will end up signing with the Thunder, and the two would form a dominant duo capable of taking down any team in the league. Griffin won't mind playing second fiddle, as there would be a lot less pressure on him to lead his team in OKC.
13 13. Chris Bosh Officially Retires From The NBA
People who make fun of Chris Bosh for looking like a dinosaur do not realize how dominant he was during his prime. A two-time NBA champion, Bosh could be an eventual Hall of Fame entrant with the accolades he has collected over his shortened NBA career. While he has not announced his retirement yet, Chris has not played in an NBA game for a long time. We predict that Bosh will officially step away from the game this summer, and would re-emerge as a coach for either the Heat or the Raptors. He most probably has learned a lot about the game since he has been observing it from the sidelines for some time now. In the interest of his health, this just seems like the right move for Bosh.
12 12. Boston Celtics Select Josh Jackson
The plan of Boston is most likely to hopefully win the first pick at the 2017 NBA Draft and take Markelle Fultz. However, we think things will go differently, which could ultimately have the Boston Celtics selecting Josh Jackson with their draft selection. Even if the Celtics win their lottery, they may go with Jackson. The Celtics are missing a strong small forward, and Josh Jackson from Kansas could be that guy for them. While they could trade the Jayhawk for a pretty solid player in this league, he might end up being an NBA superstar.
The Celtics are already a good team, and this pick will help them however they end up using it, unless Josh is a complete bust. Either way, Boston will find a way to add to their current core.
11 11. Paul Millsap Signs With The Houston Rockets
The Houston Rockets are one of the best teams in basketball this year due to the excellent leadership and talent of their superstar James Harden, who did not find any difficulty adjusting to become a point guard this season. Hitting on all cylinders, the Rockets would be a perfect fit for the effective Millsap, as he would add to what they already have going for them. Millsap was involved in a lot of trade rumors this season, and this could most likely come into play when he decides where to sign next.
We believe Millsap will go to the Rockets, as he and Harden could pull off something special, and the two could end up becoming a dominant force that is capable of beating any team in the league.
10 10. Otto Porter Jr. Signs Max Contract
Some people were starting to believe Otto Porter Jr. was a bust since he took a bit of time to develop after getting selected as the third pick at the 2013 NBA Draft. Porter came into his own this season and became one of the deadliest shooters out there. That is why he will be laughing all the way to the bank this offseason, expecting to be offered a max deal. He will be getting calls from multiple NBA teams, and while we think he will return to the Wizards, there is always a chance he goes somewhere else this summer being one of the best young players in the league. More and more NBA players are getting max contracts so there's no reason to believe there won't be another surprise or two this offseason.
9 9. Philadelphia 76ers Select Malik Monk
The Philadelphia 76ers could be the best team in the league in a few seasons time. They have some incredible young pieces they are building around on, such as Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid, and Dario Šarić.
They will be looking to add a guard using their top draft selection, and we believe the 76ers will select Malik Monk, the shooting guard from Kentucky. He could become a superstar after a few seasons, as Malik is one of the best players in this upcoming draft class. The Sixers fans have to be getting impatient at this point, but 2017-18 could offer two major additions to their team from this season, as they could get a player like Monk and a healthy Ben Simmons who sat out his entire rookie year with a foot injury.
8 8. Kyle Lowry Signs With The Philadelphia 76ers
That’s right, Kyle Lowry of the Toronto Raptors will sign with the Philadelphia 76ers this summer. It all adds up, as Lowry is from Philly, he played at Villanova, and the Sixers are in need of an efficient point guard.
While it may not seem like the perfect fit for a young team like Philadelphia, its roster will be much improved the next season with Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons playing together, and with Malik Monk rounding out the backcourt. Kyle would man the team at the point, and in may be just a year or two, the Sixers’ process would be sped up to the point the "City of Brotherly Love" could turn out to be one of the most dominant teams when that time comes.
7 7. New York Knicks Select Dennis Smith Jr.
The Knicks will be adding another piece to their youth movement to join Kristaps Porziņģis, and that player will be Dennis Smith Jr. from NC State. Smith did not have the greatest year in college as he had trouble staying consistent. But he showed flashes of superstar talent, and could turn out as the next great New York Knick point guard.
Smith will most likely be taken around the sixth, seventh, or eighth pick, which is where the Knicks will be drafting. If New York is smart, next season will be a fresh slate for them as they can finally begin their long awaited rebuild. This offseason should be all about dealing their veteran players and starting to assemble a young core that could build them a solid future.
6 6. Los Angeles Lakers Select Lonzo Ball
The Lakers are still a few pieces away from getting out of the rebuilding phase, but Lonzo Ball is a step towards the right direction. He will add a domineering presence on the court and will most likely man the point guard position, allowing D'Angelo Russell to move to shooting guard, creating a potent backcourt combination in Los Angeles.
Ball has all the tools to become a dominant player in this league due to his scoring, passing, and rebounding. And with Brandon Ingram most likely coming into his own next season, it could be an exciting next year for the Lakers. A player like Ball, with all the headlines his father has made this summer, going to the Lakers is a dream scenario, as storylines will run rampant.
5 5. Indiana Pacers Begin Rebuild
There is no reason for the Pacers to keep trying to contend for a title anymore, as they were just swept by the Cavaliers at the first round when experts thought they would be a dominant team this year. Obviously wrong on that account, Indiana is much weaker than the best teams in the league, and the squad will never be the same as their great early-2010s iterations when they battled the talented Miami Heat for the Eastern Conference championship. Trading their star players and leaving guys like Myles Turner, the Pacers should stock up on draft picks and young players from now on. Now would be a good time for the Pacers to rebuild as they would see LeBron's era come to an end and be ready to contend once LeBron's career winds down.
4 4. Lonzo Ball Gets His Own Signature Shoe
Lonzo Ball is the most popular upcoming player for the rookie class coming in next season, as his father, LaVar Ball, has made headlines multiple times for outlandish comments and predictions he has for his son. His father's actions, even though growing the family's popularity, has hurt Ball when it comes to getting a shoe deal, as LaVar has turned off Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour with his ideas for his son and now all three companies are not interested in making a deal with the Ball family. In his meetings with all of three of the companies, LaVar talked about upstarting his own company with them in Big Baller Brand, and he already has a prototype shoe he wants Lonzo playing in for his first season in the NBA.
With the three big dogs in the shoe game out, LaVar has said he will be looking for companies in China to co-brand Lonzo a shoe. Whether LaVar somehow comes up with the money himself or partners with a smaller shoe company, I believe Lonzo will be playing his rookie season in his own signature shoe, as his father probably would not have it any other way.
3 3. Derrick Rose Signs With The Milwaukee Bucks
Derrick Rose’s season with the Knicks this year was anything but good, as the team struggled once again to win games. A rebuild should be coming sooner rather than later.
Speaking of teams on the rise, the Milwaukee Bucks are showing promise and are in need of a veteran point guard to make them more dangerous against other contenders. Rose still has some years left in him, but a lot of clubs might hesitate on signing him this offseason as he has not had a lot of success over the last few years. Whether Rose comes off the bench as a spark or starts for the Bucks, he could be actually contending for a title for the first time since his MVP year in Chicago.
2 2. Los Angeles Clippers Begin Rebuild
I have always wanted the Clippers organization to succeed as they continue to fall short every season. While they have stars like Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, and DeAndre Jordan on their roster, I do not believe all of them will be returning, which will most likely lead to the Clippers cleaning house and beginning their rebuilding process this summer. Los Angeles just does not have the championship make-up other great teams in the league has, and it is time to begin looking to the future.
The Clippers once again fell early in the playoffs this year, losing to the Jazz in the first round. This core can't come back together and it's time the Clippers embrace a rebuild instead of falling short year after year in the postseason.
1 1. Carmelo Anthony Will Be Traded To The Cleveland Cavaliers
There is no chance Carmelo Anthony would stay with the New York Knicks. The Carmelo Anthony era is over and Melo will look to play for a championship contender. The team we have him boldly going to is the Cleveland Cavaliers, where he will join with his good friend LeBron James.
Carmelo should realize that his role is not going to be as big as it was on the Knicks, but a decent 15 points per game and solid fourth quarter play would not hurt him and the Cavaliers. Whether the Cavs win the title or not, they're still going to be contenders in 2018 and having a star like Melo on their team will almost ensure another Eastern Conference Championship. We're sure LeBron would be happy.
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