NBA opening night: Warriors vs. Nets, Lakers vs. Clippers present no scarcity of sharp storylines
After a historically instant offseason, the NBA is decided to kick off the 2020-21 season on Dec. 22 with a two-sport slate. The first sport of the season will be between the Brooklyn Nets and the Golden Affirm Warriors, and the second will characteristic Los Angeles' two teams -- the Lakers and Clippers. Given those video games, there will be no scarcity of storylines on opening night. Here is a gape at 5 of the most sharp.
1. Kevin Durant makes Nets debut in opposition to his weak franchise
After missing the entirety of the 2019-20 NBA season as a result of the Achilles wound that he suffered in the 2019 Finals, Kevin Durant will ultimately plan his debut as a member of the Brooklyn Nets on opening night. Durant became once a reigning two-time Finals MVP at the peak of his powers at the time that the wound occurred, so this is able to per chance per chance also be extremely engaging to scrutinize what he feels like relieve out on the court docket for the principle time in effectively over a year. The truth that Durant's first sport as a Procure comes in opposition to his weak franchise adds a layer of intrigue to the matchup.
Durant walked faraway from the Warriors after merely three seasons, and afterwards he acknowledged that he by no formula felt fully accredited in Golden Affirm.
"I got here in there searching for to be piece of a gaggle, searching for to be piece of a household, and indubitably felt accredited," Durant acknowledged. "But I'm going to by no formula be a kind of guys. I did now not rep drafted there... Steph Curry, obviously drafted there. Andre Iguodala, won the principle Finals, first championship. Klay Thompson, drafted there. Draymond Green, drafted there. And the rest of the guys kind of rehabilitated their careers there... As time went on, I began to admire I am merely assorted from the rest of the guys. It be no longer a nasty thing. Honest my instances and how I got here up in the league. And on top of that, the media consistently checked out it like K.D. and the Warriors. So or no longer it's like no person could per chance per chance rep a plump acceptance of me there."
Given this background, or no longer it's easiest becoming that the principle sport in the next chapter of his profession comes in opposition to the Warriors.
2. First gape at Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving as a duo
To boot to the game between Golden Affirm and Brooklyn being Durant's debut with the Nets, this can even be the debut of Durant and Kyrie Irving as a duo. Both players signed with Brooklyn in free agency in 2019 but handled wound disorders all the blueprint by closing season. Durant passed over the total marketing campaign, whereas Irving became once restricted to merely 20 video games.
On paper, the mix of Durant and Irving initiatives to be one in every of the most dynamic duos in the total league, then again chemistry is generally a danger, given Irving's historical previous. Plus, like we be pleased considered over and over, throwing well-known particular person players together doesn't necessarily guarantee success. If it did, the Rockets would be pleased won a title all the blueprint by the last couple of years, and the Clippers don't be pleased misplaced in the Western Convention semifinals closing season. Only so grand will be discovered from one sport, but this is able to per chance per chance also be gigantic to ultimately rep to scrutinize Durant and Irving out on the bottom together.
3. James Wiseman will plan his NBA debut for the Warriors
James Wiseman became once one in every of the most highly-hyped possibilities heading into the 2020 NBA Draft, and he will rep to plan his pro debut in opposition to the Nets on opening night. The Warriors selected Wiseman with the second overall to find in November's draft, and he initiatives to play a position on a Warriors crew that will likely be taking a gape to climb relieve into competition in the Western Convention after a down season due to a multitude of wound disorders. It be no longer daily that a rookie will likely be pleased a probability to come in and without prolong make a contribution to a contender, but that can per chance per chance thoroughly be the case with Wiseman. Wiseman could per chance per chance play restricted minutes early on as he will get acclimated to the NBA, but this is able to per chance per chance also be engaging to rep a first gape at him in the league then again.
4. The battle of L.A.
It be stable to express that the NBA views contests between L.A.'s two teams as marquee matchups. The Lakers and Clippers played in opposition to every assorted on opening night closing season, and on the opposite hand on Christmas Day, and now here they are opening up the season playing in opposition to every assorted again. Many expected the 2 teams to fulfill in the Western Convention finals closing season, but that did now not occur because the Clippers fell to the Denver Nuggets in the convention semifinals. Both teams tweaked their rosters over the offseason, and heading into the 2020-21 season, both are again expected to be at the head of the convention. This sport will be an extraordinarily good early barometer to scrutinize how L.A.'s two teams stack up in opposition to every assorted firstly of the season.
5. Same metropolis, assorted jersey for Montrezl Harrell
After spending the closing three years of his profession with the Clippers, and blossoming into the reigning Sixth Man of the Year with the crew, ahead Montrezl Harrell defected to the Lakers in free agency. Whereas Harrell doesn't defend any sick will toward the Clippers, or no longer it's decided to him that the Clippers did no longer decide on him relieve, and that's no longer one thing he'll doubtless neglect.
"When I became once playing for the Clippers, I gave it every thing I had every night when I laced up my sneakers," Harrell acknowledged. And now that I am here with the Los Angeles Lakers, that's the identical thing I am gonna rep here," he acknowledged. "That is my job, and I am blessed to be on a crew that became once tough sufficient and deep sufficient and be pleased the expertise sufficient to employ the championship closing year... But like I acknowledged, as a long way as [if] they wanted me relieve, obviously it doesn't seem that formula, does it?"
Harrell obviously could per chance per chance no longer be pleased to relieve long to face his weak franchise. It is miles going to be engaging to scrutinize if he comes out taking a gape to ship a message.