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NBA Debates 3

Round 3, let's go.

Alright, let's go round 3 of more of these debates. True or false.

The Raptors will win the Eastern Conference. True or false?

At the beginning of the season, I predicted the Celtics to be first and the Raptors to still make the playoffs, but worse than they were last year. I know, it's only about 10 games into the season, but so far I have been dead wrong. The Raptors have been playing absolutely fantastic. Kawhi Leonard has been a perfect fit into this new system, and a new coach has not been a problem for them yet. Kawhi has been playing an MVP-caliber game and despite the coaching staff giving him days for rest, the Raptors still play fantastic without him. And with him, just wow.

I was wrong about Kyle Lowry, too. I predicted Lowry to be on the downfall. But I was absolutely wrong. He recently broke the franchise record for consecutive games with 10+ assists and he is just gonna get better. 

Acquiring Danny Green too has really helped the Raptors. He is a fantastic 3-and-D player and really improved the overall defense of the team.

As for winning the Eastern Conference? I say yes. The Celtics are doing well, but struggling as compared to last year. They'll be tough, but I don't see them getting past the Raptors. The Raptors will win the East again.

True.

Zach LaVine. Most Improved Player this year. True or false?

Oh, so true. The man has been absolutely incredible this year so far. Last year, Zach was good and I expected him to improve as he got more familiar with Chicago system, but I DID NOT expect him to average almost 28 PPG! The kid is freakishly athletic and even though the Bulls aren't doing so hot, Zach LaVine is. I think his numbers will drop a little bit, but I can see him floating around the 25 PPG range for the season. As compared to last year? Yeah, he definitely will be the most improved.

True.

Can Derrick Rose still revive his career?

Before I talk, we gotta understand what the word "revive" means in this context. If you say "revive" as in D Rose is gonna be an MVP-caliber player again, then no. Definitely not. He's changed his game lots and he doesn't have the same explosiveness as he used to have. D Rose will never be the same D Rose he used to be.

BUT if you mean "revive" as in he is gonna start becoming a relevant player again, then yes, definitely. His 50-point game showed us that if he is given the opportunity, he can be a great player again.

Shaquille O'Neal is the best Big Man of all time. True or false?

This one is tough. Really tough, but personally, I don't think so. Shaq was such a dominant player, but I think that there are are a few players in history that outdo Shaq. Wilt Chamberlain and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar are such outstanding scorers and shot blockers, that I would say they outdo Shaq. The other candidate would be Hakeem Olajuwon. One of the best all-around centers ever. MVP, DPOY, and Finals MVP in the same season is tough to beat. Shaq is top 5 for sure, but I don't think the best Big Man.

False.

Karl-Anthony Towns is a top 3 Center in the league. True or false?

This one is also tough, but as for right now, I say false. You can argue KAT is top 5 but for now, not yet top 3. The three players I think top him at the center position are Joel Embiid, DeMarcus Cousins, and Rudy Gobert. Embiid's game is something else and he has a case in the MVP-running. Boogie is an outright star at the center position and so far, KAT does not top him. And as for Rudy Gobert, defense is the deciding factor. Rudy may not be the best scorer, but his defensive ability is outstanding. If KAT was a good defensive player, then I would argue him over Gobert, but since KAT has very below par defense, I can't give it to him. And I know Anthony Davis is generally a power forward, but if you consider him in the center argument, then he tops them all.

False.

Kyrie Irving is the best ball handler of all time. True or false?

True. I have never seen a player handle the ball like Kyrie does. One strong argument would be Allen Iverson or Jamal Crawford, who each pull off fantastic moves. But I think Kyrie is on another level. The way he controls the ball is absolutely mesmerizing. That, plus his fantastic finishing ability makes him a very lethal offensive weapon.

True.