Making playoffs but not advancing far: OVERRATED – Josh Cohen’s Analysis: Today’s examples include Denver, Atlanta and Chicago. They are essentially in the playoffs every season, but get bounced in either the first or second round every year. People tend to celebrate a playoff berth, but really what is so fantastic about playing a handful of extra games every year without the prospect of getting a high draft pick or financial flexibility to make offseason improvements?
2014 Free Agency Class: OVERRATED – Cohen’s Analysis: Everyone is raving about next summer’s free agents, but really the hype is way exaggerated. LeBron could be available if he decides to opt out, but other than him, everyone else is either old, hurt or just a restricted free agent. The class of 2015, on the other hand, is underrated.
Securing the No. 1 draft pick this year – OVERRATED – Cohen’s Analysis: It’s always beneficial to have the first option in a draft, but this year there likely is no prospect that is assured to transform into a future Hall of Famer. Therefore, this draft will really come down to research, homework and foresight. In some years like 2003 when LeBron was the clear No. 1 choice, it’s all about luck. In other years, it’s all about intuition.
Defense over Offense – UNDERRATED – Cohen’s Analysis: We have heard the axiom a trillion times in the NBA; ‘defense wins championships.’ I will take it a step further; ‘defense wins playoff series.’ Indiana and Memphis are sudden contenders because of defense. Chicago beat Brooklyn because of defense. Miami is so superior because of defense, though it doesn’t hurt to have the best player in the league either.
Kings staying in Sacramento – UNDERRATED – Cohen’s Analysis: Many people outside of northern California wanted the Kings to become the Sonics and move to Seattle. But I’m telling you, when the Kings are good, which I know hasn’t been often; Sacramento is one of the more exciting places for playoff basketball. Just hit up the archives and watch the 2002 Western Conference Finals between the Kings and Lakers. Riveting!
Next year being a rebuilding year – UNDERRATED – Cohen’s Analysis: We know the Magic are already in a renovation process. And don’t be surprised if other teams follow a similar strategy. The 2014 NBA Draft class is expected to be loaded. Having an opportunity to pick high in next year’s draft may completely alter a franchise’s current status.
Lakers to offer Dwight $117 million – OVERRATED – Cohen’s Analysis: Howard needs to prove he can return to what he was before the circus began. He didn’t do that in his final year in Orlando and his first, and perhaps only, year in L.A. Dwight is a household name, for sure, but his performance has been wobbly for two years now. Would the Lakers be smart to pass on him and start saving money for other upcoming star-studded free agents (ex. LeBron)?
Durant’s commitment to OKC – OVERRATED – Cohen’s Analysis: KD is one of the most adored athletes in the world because of his mild-mannered and non-egotistic personality. As a result, people seem to assume he will be loyal to the Thunder forever and ever. But if OKC doesn’t claim a title by 2016 when Durant will become a FA, there will be enough reasons for him to take his talents elsewhere.