2022 NBA training camp observations, as preseason gets closer.
Hawks seem committed to defense, winning a championship
Trae Young’s championship aspirations and Dejounte Murray & Justin Holiday’s emphasis on defense were great signs for the Hawks at Media Day over the weekend.
Hornets didn’t make any upgrades, young guys need to play
Charlotte comes back with a very talented but similar roster that only made the 10th seed out East last season. So why not develop young players like James Bouknight, Kai Jones, Mark Williams, JT Thor, and Bryce McGowens?
Jalen Brunson & Derrick Rose’s poise at guard was what the Knicks were missing
Kemba Walker & Evan Fournier aren’t your slow it down and get in the offense type guards, but Jalen Brunson & Derrick Rose are. Brunson’s ball control helped take Dallas to the 2022 Western Conference Finals while a healthy Rose and his poise got the Knicks to a 4th place finish in the 2021 Eastern Conference standings.
Wizards replace older point guards (Raul Neto, Ish Smith, and Tomas Satoransky) with younger & better ones (Will Barton, Monte Morris, and Delon Wright)
Much like the Knicks last year, the Wizards needed help at point guard. After trading Spencer Dinwiddie in February, the club was left with Raul Neto, Ish Smith, and Tomas Satoransky, which isn’t your ideal point guard depth chart in 2022. However, replacing those veterans with younger and better ones in Will Barton, Monte Morris, and Delon Wright should help fill that void.
Pistons roster ready to roll and be competitive
Adding Jaden Ivey, Jalen Duren, Bojan Bogdanovic, Alec Burks, Nerlens Noel, and Kevin Knox to go along with Cade Cunningham, Saddiq Bey, Isaiah Stewart, Corey Joseph, Killian Hayes, Marvin Bagley, Hamidou Diallo, and Isaiah Livers makes the Pistons way more competitive than last year.
Jaden McDaniels’ wing defense will be much needed for Minnesota
Losing Patrick Beverley & Jarred Vanderbilt hurts Minnesota’s wing defense. So Jaden McDaniels will need to step up on that end.
Trail Blazers have a nice balance of scoring and defense now
I really like the combination of scoring and defense that Jerami Grant, Josh Hart, Gary Payton II, Nassir Little, Justise Winslow, and Trendon Watford bring. Also rookie Shaedon Sharpe has the potential to become a bucket getter much like Damian Lillard & Anfernee Simons.
Lakers made improvements, but shooting still a concern
Yes, the Lakers got Patrick Beverley & Dennis Schroder/get back a healthy Kendrick Nunn/and added a bunch of young role players, but where will their 3 point shooting come from? Two underrated shooters on the roster are Matt Ryan (non-guaranteed deal) & Cole Swider (two-way contract). So we’ll see if they can find any minutes during the season.