I'm picking the Celtics because they should be the best defensive team in the league based on the return of Kevin Garnett, the arrival of Rasheed Wallace, the continuing improvement of Rajon Rondo — who could emerge as the top defensive point guard this season — and the Tom Thibodeau schemes that make the most of Kendrick Perkins, Paul Pierce, Marquis Daniels and others.
Celtics team has the capacity to be deeper and more reliable than the
champion of two years ago. Wallace should be an upgrade over James Posey and the same should apply to Daniels over Tony Allen, who was third on the team in minutes off the bench two years ago. They still have sniper Eddie House and a useful second big man in reserve in Glen Davis,
who proved in the playoffs last year that he can hit big shots — a
luxury from your ninth man. Unlike last season, the Celtics also have
two expiring contracts belonging to Allen and Brian Scalabrine that could be dealt in January or February for a backup point guard or additional length in the frontcourt.
As for the Lakers, I'm not one of those who believes that Ron Artest will ruin them. On the contrary: He's an upgrade over Trevor Ariza, Phil Jackson
will strike a constructive relationship with him and he's joining a
championship team that can live with his unique personality.
will improve the Lakers defensively at small forward, but the Celtics
will be stronger defensively overall, enabling them to control tempo
and overcome the Lakers' likely home-court advantage.
That Ian Thomsen is one smart dude.
Click here to read one scout's take on the Celtics. Hint: He has them winning the whole thing too.
This calls for a celebration. After the jump, pictures of our favorite supermodel wearing green.