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Fantasy basketball bold predictions: Damian Lillard for MVP

Bonus: Warriors and Cavaliers will meet in the Finals and one of them will win!

NBA: Utah Jazz at Portland Trail Blazers Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

Here are 30 bold, sorry, BOLD! predictions for the upcoming NBA season. We’re goin’ fantastical AND non-fantastical in this piece. As Samuel L. Jackson said in his most-akin-to-his-real-life role, “Hang onto your butts, because I’m about to [data] dump!” Later in that documentary Mr. Jackson is disarmed by a velociraptor, which is the basis for the Toronto Raptors.

(Can I ask you a question? Outside of the Utah Jazz, is that the stupidest name in sports? First of all, their mascot is a dinosaur. The velociraptor is a dinosaur. So, fine. But, “raptor” usually means “bird.” So, why aren’t the Toronto Raptors either A) called the Toronto Velociraptors, or B) have a bird mascot? Because. That’s the reason: because. The Minnesota Timberwolves have a long name, so it can’t be because of the length. And, the Mighty Ducks in the NHL are based on a stupid (GASP! You mean AWESOME!!) Disney movie, so it can’t be because they want to distance themselves from Jurassic Park. Dinosaurs are traditionally tennis fans, while birds are well known basketball enthusiasts (they like the netting), so it can’t be because of the species’ predilections. It’s seriously JUST BECAUSE. Now, is this a big deal? Can teams have stupid names and everything is fine, just fine? Of course. But, it’s stupid and I wanted to point it out.)

On to the predictions. Fair warning: sooth sayin’, this ain’t. But, I’ma try my best.

  1. The NBA regular season will last 82 games!
  2. The over/under for the entire league will be .500!
  3. The Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers will meet in the Finals! (Bonus Bold Prediction: one of them will win!)
  4. Rudy Gobert will be the Defensive Player of the Year!
  5. Dame Lillard, basketball maestro, will be MVP!
  6. The Brooklyn Nets will win 22 games!
  7. The Detroit Pistons will form a [BLEEEEP!] wall and President Trump will claim credit for it!
  8. The players, led by LeBron James and the rest of the Team USA crew, will kneel for the anthem during opening week! NBA fans will kneel with them! Adam Silver clearly released his memo reminding players that they MUST stand for the anthem because players in the WNBA Finals discretely asked him if they could kneel and he said “No, our WNBA brand is too fragile and we can’t afford to insult anyone, but I feel you, and, I’ll make the men stand, too.”
  9. The Cavs won’t have the best record in the East!
  10. The, ugh, Toronto Raptors will trade for Boogie Cousins! And, Raptors-Wizards in the second round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs will be the best series in the postseason BY A MILE!
  11. The Lakers will stink and Nick Young will thrive in Golden State!
  12. Billions of dollars will be rewarded to the noble people of Flint, Michigan as recompense for the government poisoning their water supply, leading to one of the highest rates of miscarriage IN THE COUNTRY, and forever disabling many Flint children (lead is one of the absolute worst things that you can put in your body). Unfortunately, this prediction will not happen. Did you know that Flint water is still not safe to drink? And, that the people of Flint are being forced to pay for it? Why doesn’t anyone demand justice for the literal poisoning deaths of babies and children in Flint? Where’s their FEMA aid? Here’s how you can help. Stay strong, Flint, we love you.
  13. The Houston Rockets miss the playoffs!
  14. Both CP3 and James Harden finish outside of the top 10 in fantasy rankings!
  15. Joel Embiid plays 55 games and the Philadelphia 76ers make the playoffs!
  16. The Bulls will NOT have the worst record in the league!
  17. Anthony Davis gets traded! (Phoenix? Washington? Could you get The Brow for Kevin Love, JR Smith, Iman Shumpert & a 1st round draft pick? Could you trade Wiggins, Dieng and a pick for AD? I actually want New Orleans to keep Boogie and the Brow, I think it actually kinda sorta surprisingly somehow works.)
  18. Boogie Cousins is a top 10 player in fantasy!
  19. Kemba Walker is also a top 10 player in fantasy!
  20. More than one player averages 10+ three-point attempts! (Five players averaged 9+ post-All-Star game last season: Westbrook, Klay Thompson, Kemba Walker, Harden, Curry.)
  21. Last year, 10 players eligible at point guard were worth double-digits on the ESPN player rater; 4 eligible at shooting guard; 7 at small forward; 7 at power forward; and, 7 at center. Overall, 27 players held double-digit player ratings. This number will DECREASE to 20 this season.
  22. The Cavs will NOT trade Iman Shumpert, but WILL trade Derrick Rose and Tristan Thompson! (Again, Phoenix? Clippers? Memphis?)
  23. The first coach fired will be from a team that made the playoffs last year! (Steve Kerr! Haha, just kidding. He’s trash, though. Get Real Question: would you trade Klay Thompson for James Harden? I...kinda don’t think you would. Klay’s defense is maybe more important than Harden’s offense in the post-season? Only because of the rest of the Warriors, obviously, but...yeah, I mean, I don’t think I would make that trade if I was Golden State. Tough one, though.)
  24. At least ONE of the Golden State Warriors’ Death Lineup has a lengthy injury absence!
  25. Corey Kluber experiences a “feeling!” His CPU will immediately shut down after reporting this malfunction to the Kluber hivemind!
  26. LeBron James does NOT leave Cleveland but he DOES guide the necessary events which lead to Dan Gilbert having to surrender the team to a consortium that has, um, “ties” to LeBron. Eventually, LeBron retires and transitions into the front office! And, does a great job! Which sucks if you’re a Pistons fan! Hey, King! Want Stanley Johnson?? He’s rilly, rilly good!
  27. Isaiah Thomas produces top-10 fantasy numbers from February through the end of the regular season! He will literally tell LeBron to sit down and chill out, because IT needs the reps and LeBron needs the rest.
  28. Mike Conley, Ricky Rubio, and DeChozen will end the season as top-25 fantasy players!
  29. Carmelo Anthony is a better fantasy player than Paul George! My thinking is: Melo’s strength, and sole purpose to be alive, is scoring (see: his recent love life); PG13’s an actual all around player, and so will focus on his defense this season since he’s ABSOLUTELY bouncin’ for LA next season; and, Melo is historically excellent when he actually plays power forward. I think Melo will have an excellent SCORING season.)
  30. All of the previous predictions come true! ALLA THEM.
  31. Austin Rivers begins, and ends, the season as my primary fantasy point guard! His father will trade for him wherever he ends up being hired after he’s fired from the LA Clippers! Austin Rivers on the Orlando Magic while his father “coaches” (again) would be the most Magic-y thing ever! Also: I won’t win my fantasy league this year!