The NBA offseason is always an interesting time, with pieces moving around, and general managers looking to set their teams up for success. This offseason the Western Conference made many moves in hopes of taking down the defending champions, the Los Angeles Lakers.
Dallas Mavericks: Josh Richardson
Josh Richardson is a solid role player in the NBA and will undoubtedly contribute to the Dallas Mavericks’ success. He is a solid scorer and can help be a third option after European superstars Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis. Overall Josh will have to score well to help the Mavericks and will have to step up for the first couple of weeks with Kristaps Porzingis out recovering from an MCL tear.
Denver Nuggets: JaMychal Green
Throughout his career, JaMychal Green has been a solid role player. He has averaged 8 points and 4 rebounds off the bench and is providing solid depth for the Nuggets. If the Nuggets want to compete in the Western Conference Jamychal is going to need to pick up his game to fill in the voids that were left by players like Jerami Grant.
Golden State Warriors: James Wiseman
The most impactful addition the Warriors have made to their team is drafting James Wiseman. Over the past several years the Warriors have always lacked an all-star caliber, big man. The Warriors will now try to compete for a Western Conference playoff spot with Wiseman starting as their center. He will be a nice addition to the Warriors core and will provide a major impact on the future moving forward.
Houston Rockets: John Wall
This offseason the Rockets decided to get rid of Russell Westbrook and acquire John Wall. Wall has looked like his old self early on in the season leading the Rockets to consecutive wins. Wall has averaged 25 points so far this season and looks to be returning to his original form. If Wall keeps playing like this and James Harden decides to stay with the Houston Rockets, the Rockets can compete for a playoff spot in the Western Conference
Los Angeles Clippers: Serge Ibaka
After getting upset in the second round by the Denver Nuggets, the Clippers decided to make major changes to their roster. The Clippers brought in forward Serge Ibaka from the Raptors to become their starting power forward and to provide veteran leadership. Ibaka knows what it takes to win in the NBA finals and should help the Clippers make a deep run in the Western Conference.
Los Angeles Lakers: Dennis Schroder/ Montrezl Harrell
It is rare when an NBA championship team gets better over the offseason. The Lakers, however, decided to add new pieces to help them defend their title. They added two of last year’s sixth man of the year candidates. Montrezl Harrell is a hard worker and can grab rebounds and score buckets when needed. Dennis Schroder is a good scorer and distributor which will help take attention off Lebron James and Anthony Davis. Overall these additions will have a major impact on the Lakers. Don’t be surprised if the Lakers defend their Western Conference title.
Memphis Grizzlies: Desmond Bane
The Grizzlies didn’t make any splashy moves that will help lead them to the Western Conference playoffs this season. They did, however, draft Desmond Bane from TCU. Bane is a great shooter and will contribute off the Grizzlies bench right away. Although Bane is a solid player he isn’t as significant as other offseason additions.
Minnesota Timberwolves: Anthony Edwards
Anthony Edwards was the best shooting guard from this past draft and will look to complement D’Angelo Russell and Karl Anthony-Towns. The Timberwolves will likely not be competing for a playoff spot this season in the Western Conference. The Timberwolves still nonetheless have a bright future and many young pieces that could soon make a playoff run.
New Orleans Pelicans: Steven Adams
Steven Adams is a good rebounding presence and provides a nice big man upgrade for the Pelicans. The Pelicans have a revamped roster and a young core that will try and build on some of their success from last season. The Pelicans will look to compete for a playoff spot in the Western Conference this season and Steven Adams will only make them better.
Oklahoma City Thunder: Draft Picks
This offseason the Thunder decided to go into a full rebuild trading away most of their assets for first-round picks. Sam Presti has done a great job with the Thunder so far, building them through the draft and setting them up for future success. This season, however, will be a struggle for the Thunder in a stacked Western Conference.
Phoenix Suns: Chris Paul
Coming off an outstanding bubble run the Phoenix Suns look to only get better. They acquired Chris Paul, one of the best playmakers of our generation. Even though he is getting older, Paul will still be able to lead an offense that has a young talented core. Paul will also help take some pressure off Devin Booker, allowing him to be the main scorer while not worrying about setting up teammates. Overall the Suns will look to make a playoff run in the Western Conference.
Portland Trail Blazers: Robert Covington
One of the more underrated additions this offseason was forward Robert Covington. Covington is a solid perimeter defender and shooter who can help the Trail Blazers make another playoff run. He has always been a solid starter for every team he played on. Covington will solidify Portland as a competitive team in a competitive conference.
Sacramento Kings: Hassan Whiteside
Hassan Whiteside is a center that will provide a lot of depth to the Sacramento Kings frontcourt. He has good defensive instincts inside, which most teams would love to have off the bench. Hassan is a veteran that can provide leadership and good basketball to a young Sacramento Kings team looking to compete for a playoff spot.
San Antonio Spurs: Devin Vassell
Gregg Popovich and the Spurs didn’t make any major changes this offseason. They did still make additions in the draft. After a down season for the Spurs, whose long playoff streak ended, they went on to add wing Devin Vassell. Vassell shot well at Florida State and if he continues to transition his skills to the NBA, he should be a good player for the Spurs.
Utah Jazz: Extending Jordan Clarkson
Throughout his career, Jodan Clarkson has always provided a spark off the bench. Clarkson’s extension is huge for the Jazz who are a dark horse to compete for a Western Conference title. Jordan Clarkson is someone who can score consistently off the bench and is always a spark for the Jazz. This extension is huge for the Jazz, as it helps them keep their depth, along with one of the best bench scorers in the NBA.