NBA Preview 2021: Eastern Conference: Nets and 76ers Drama Challenges Bucks Champions’ Stability

NBA Preview 2021 The Nets will seek to steal the title from the BucksThe reigning champions face a difficult year in the quest to endorse the title

NBA Preview 2021 The Nets will seek to steal the title from the Bucks

The reigning champions face a difficult year in the quest to endorse the title.

Brooklyn Nets seem favorites for the title, to such a degree that James Harden considered it necessary to remember that they are not the current champions. In fact, they have never won a championship.

We are not the target. Defending champions are the targetHarden emphasized. “They are the ones who won last year and we tried to emulate their example.”

But it’s easy to forget about Milwaukee Bucks. They own the crown, but are not surrounded by the drama of other candidates in the Eastern Conference.

The situation of Ben Simmons in Philadelphia and that of Kyrie Irving in Brooklyn have made headlines in the run-up to the campaign. Those two sets finished on top of Milwaukee in the regular season. However, the Bucks kicked out the Nets in the second round of the playoffs and ended up winning their first NBA title in half a century.

Giannis Antetokounmpo traveled to his native Greece to celebrate. Khris Middleton and Jrue Holidey went to Japan, and they also won an Olympic gold medal. Now, they are together again and they work discreetly in search of revalidating the championship, in the midst of all the noise around.

The Nets will not allow Irving to play or practice with them until he is vaccinated, instead of allowing him to play only the away games while he is still unable to perform in New York, due to the order that athletes are immunized against COVID-19 there.

Kevin Durant and Harden could be weapons enough for Brooklyn, that he has other good players. But the Nets and their rivals know the team won’t be the same without Irving’s talents.

The 76ers, who held the best record in the East the previous season, have been lacking Simmons all preseason. The star guard hopes to leave through a trade, but he finally made it to Philadelphia this week.

1. Brooklyn nets – Durant and Harden have won the Most Valuable Player award and the leader in points. If they both stay healthy, the Nets won’t even need to fill out their trophy.

2. Milwaukee bucks – If Antetokounmpo dominates as he did in the Finals, he may win his third Most Valuable Trophy in four years.

3. Miami Heat – The Heat have not recovered the form they showed when they played the NBA Finals in the “bubble.” But he got more rest and is more talented after a longer hiatus.

Four. Philadelphia 76ers – The 76ers could be first with Simmons or eighth without him. So you’d better place them in the middle for now.

5. Atlanta Hawks – Trae Young and the upgraded Hawks are on the rise after reaching the Eastern finals.

6. New York Knicks. The Knicks added more scoring ability to what was already one of the best defensive teams during the first season under Tom Thibodeau.

7. Boston Celtics – The fact that Dominican Al Horford wears green again could benefit the Celtics.

8. Chicago Bulls – You have to count on Zach LaVine and Lonzo Ball to bring many spectacular plays.

9. Indiana Pacers – The Pacers would have made a good decision by having Rick Carlisle join a locker room where friction between the players and the coach abounded the previous season.

10. Charlotte hornets – The Hornets were tough on anyone last season, when Rookie of the Year LaMelo Ball and Gordon Hayward were healthy at the same time.

eleven. Toronto raptors – Being home again will improve the Raptors’ competitiveness, even without Kyle Lowry.

12. Washington Wizards– Lost the great individual talent of Russell Westbrook but could improve with newcomers like Spencer Dinwiddie and Kyle Kuzma.

13. Cleveland Cavaliers – Collin Sexton and Darius Garland will provide the shots that will yield some victories, but not enough.

14. Detroit Pistons – Cade Cunningham, the top pick, take his place in a team that has several good young men.

fifteen. Orlando Magic – The Magic gave in exchange to their best players the previous season. It seems like he’s years away from fighting.