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South Lakes Sentinel

The news site of South Lakes High School.

South Lakes Sentinel

The news site of South Lakes High School.

South Lakes Sentinel

NBA 2023-24 season preview

Image via marca.com
Image via marca.com

The NBA is back! One of the world’s most thrilling, captivating, and drama-filled sports is returning for another season. The Denver Nuggets are coming off their first championship in franchise history, and aim for a possible repeat as champions. This season brings new events, award winners, and a never-before-seen in-season tournament into the mix. In this preview, we will touch on the new class of rookies, the in-season tournament, and the possible championship winners for the 2023-24 season.

This season’s rookie class is one for the history books. For some background, the Rookie of the Year award is won by the most outstanding NBA player to play for the first time that season. The winners of the award receive the Wilt Chamberlain Trophy, named after NBA legend and former Rookie of the year winner Wilt Chamberlain. This season’s race for the award is one of the most competitive ever. Players such as french phenom Victor Wembanyama, Chet Holmgren, and Scoot Henderson have the highest odds, but there are many dark-horse contenders for the award. While most players eligible for the 2024 Rookie of the Year were drafted in the 2023 draft, Chet Holmgren, who was drafted in 2022, never played their first season due to injury, so is still eligible for the award. The NBA also selects an All-Rookie 1st and 2nd team to show off the top rookies of that year.

To spice the regular season up a bit, the NBA is introducing a tournament built into the regular season. The 30 NBA teams are split up into six groups of five and each team will play the other four teams in their group once. The team with the best record of their group will advance to a knockout tournament. To fill out the other two spots needed for the knockout rounds, the teams with the best record but placed 2nd in their group from each conference, eastern and western, will be added as wildcard teams for the knockout rounds. The knockout rounds are single elimination games where the winning team proceeds to the next round and eventually the tournament championship. The semifinals and championship game will be played at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, NV. The group play goes from Nov. 3rd to Nov. 28th and the knockout rounds will be from the quarter finals on Dec. 4th to the championship game on Dec. 9th. Be sure to watch the games on TV to witness the first winning team of this new tournament.

The championship is the greatest achievement in basketball. Teams make risky trades and signings to craft the perfect team for the championship. This past off-season is a prime example of this, with the acquisitions of star player Damian Lillard for the Milwaukee Bucks and prolific scorer Bradley Beal for the Phoenix Suns. One of the consensus championship contenders for the eastern conference is the Boston Celtics with their new “Big four” of players and great depth. The other consensus contender in the east is the Milwaukee Bucks with their duo of Giannis Antetokounmpo and Damian Lillard who are considered by some to be the best duo in the league. Other playoff contenders include the Miami Heat, Philadelphia 76ers, and Cleveland Cavaliers. The consensus championship contenders in the west are the 2023 champion Denver Nuggets with their superstar Nikola Jokic and the Los Angeles Lakers with their duo of LeBron James and Anthony Davis plus their newly-acquired depth. Another championship contender are the Phoenix Suns with their lethal scoring trio of Devin Booker, Kevin Durant, and Bradley Beal. Some other playoff contenders are the Golden State Warriors and the Los Angeles Clippers. The championship winning team will receive the Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy, named after the  legendary former NBA commissioner Larry O’Brien. The most valuable player to the winning of the championship will receive the Bill Russell NBA Finals Most Valuable Player Award, named after NBA icon and only player to win 11 championships, Bill Russell. This award is considered to be the greatest individual achievement a player can ever receive.

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The NBA still has many mid-season events, so be sure to check back in March for an update on the previous events of the season, and what to look forward to while we near the start of the play-offs.

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About the Contributor
Evan Locklear
Evan Locklear, Staff Writer
Evan Locklear is a Freshman at South Lakes High School. It is Evan’s first year as a writer for the South Lakes Sentinel. In his free time, Evan loves to play sports and video games, keeping up with the latest news for his favorite sports teams, and hang out with his friends.

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