Perhaps it’s the COVID fatigue, partisan politics, or the malaise of a slumping economy, but this off-season has felt like forever. With elections ramping up in November, we need the NBA back to distract us from our country headed toward political chaos. Both sides of the aisle have become insufferable, and the league always provides a mental break for us lemmings to turn off our brains and inject basketball back into our veins.
Part of that fun is throwing darts at the projection board and seeing what sticks. Which players, coaches, and execs will have the most impact? Who will have a bounce-back year? Who will regress? Which rookie will step forward to become a household name? Which will get lost in the sauce?
We have scouted the league at-large to predict the names who will stand tall at season’s end by having the most impact on their team’s success. Some of these names are long overdue. Others are first-time honorees. Let’s see who comes out on top after the dust settles.