After the successful acquisition of All-Star center Anthony Davis last summer, the Los Angeles Lakers have managed to turn themselves from one of the worst NBA teams in the league to a legitimate title contender in the Western Conference. Before the NBA suspension due to the spread of coronavirus, the Lakers were establishing an impressive performance on both ends of the floor and held the No. 1 spot in the Western Conference with a 49-14 record. However, despite having the two best active players in the league, Davis and LeBron James, together with quality veterans, the Lakers’ road to winning the 2020 championship title won’t be easy.
The Golden State Warriors may have weakened, but there are still plenty of teams who are seriously aiming to bring home the Larry O’Brien Trophy in the 2019-20 season. In a recent appearance on Take It There with Taylor Rooks, via Youtube, veteran shooting guard Danny Green, who signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Lakers last summer, named some of the teams he considered the toughest competition for the Purple and Gold this season.
“I think there’s more than one,” Green said, as quoted by Lakers Nation. “In the West, I think there’s a lot of them. In the East, of course, Milwaukee is very tough, Philly is good when they’re healthy. Boston is very tough, you’ve seen that matchup… it’s a very tough matchup. That could be a Finals, you never know, preview.”
When Kawhi Leonard left the reigning NBA champions Toronto Raptors last summer, the Milwaukee Bucks and the Philadelphia 76ers emerged as the top favorites to fully dominate the Eastern Conference in the 2019-20 NBA season. So far, the Bucks are living up to expectations as one of the best NBA teams in the league and their main man, Giannis Antetokounmpo, is once again a front-runner to win the Most Valuable Player award.
The Sixers may have gone through plenty of ups and downs this season, but with the current talent on their roster, they are still expected to be a tough team to face in a best-of-seven series. Meanwhile, the Celtics proved that they aren’t an NBA team that can be underestimated in the Eastern Conference. Despite losing Kyrie Irving and Al Horford, the Celtics are performing better compared to the previous year, and their rising superstars, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, continue to show massive improvement with their game.
Before thinking about the teams they could potentially face in the 2020 NBA Finals, Green and the Lakers should first find a way to conquer the Western Conference. As of now, the Lakers aren’t the top favorite to represent the Western Conference in the 2020 NBA Finals as their Staples Center co-tenant, the Los Angeles Clippers, are also doing well.