NBA free agency in 2019 has been wild. A record number of All-NBA players switched teams through a combination of trades, sign-and-trade deals and free agent signings in the first days of July. Away from the biggest names, plenty of other significant moves were made with many NBA teams overhauling their rosters.
Shifting Leonard to the Western Conference alters the balance of power once again. The East is relatively weak, or so it seems.
As they rode off into the sunset the Warriors took stock of their losses, especially on their injury list. Klay Thompson tore his ACL in game 6, and the NBA’s pantomime villain Kevin Durant suffered a torn Achilles in game 5. A harsh sense of schadenfreude surrounded the Durant injury. After all, the prevailing opinion was that he had left the Oklahoma City Thunder to join a 73-9 superteam and ease to multiple titles.
On the surface, the 2019 Western Conference Finals match-up between the Portland Trail Blazers and Golden State Warriors seems like a done deal. Warriors in 4 right? While this may well be the case, but if you scratch the surface, there is a lot more on offer in this meeting than what first appears.