The 2022-23 NBA season is starting soon. Teams are using the preseason to prepare for another season of 82 games. This year, more than ever, there is going to be a huge divide between the teams competing for an NBA championship and those tanking for the draft. With the emergence of Victor Wembanyama as one of the most hyped draft prospects in NBA history, there will be several teams pushing to draft him. There are going to be several teams that will have very bad records, as well as many teams with very good records.
Even though several teams will be tanking this year, it is still going to be one of the most exciting NBA seasons in recent history. Here are a few reasons why the 2022-23 is shaping up to be an exciting season.
Top Tier Shape
Many stars focused on getting in better shape (AD, Luka, Lowry, Zion, harden.) A league with healthy stars is a better league
Ever since the COVID-19 shutdown in 2020, it has seemed like more players have been getting injured. The shutdown of the 2019-20 season caused a shift in the starting time of the next season, causing many teams to have a short offseason. That likely led to a lack of full conditioning, which resulted in many injuries during the 2020-21 season.
Last season, many players were still getting injured. However, time has seemed to catch up with the NBA. Teams have adjusted to what happened a few years ago, and they are ready to move on with healthier teams this season.
The other thing that is affecting player health is an individual’s willingness to get in top-tier shape. Many NBA players have been criticized for not being in their best shape at the start of the NBA season. However, we have already seen somebody transformations that suggest these players will be healthier this season. One notable player is Zion Williamson, who missed all of last season recovering from an injury. Right now, he looks great. He should be able to miss less games this season.
Some other players that appear to be in better shape are James Harden, Luka Doncic, Kyle Lowry, and Anthony Davis. All are great NBA players, but proper conditioning was holding them back from reaching their full potential. Being in shape will also help these players be more explosive on the court.
To provide an example of what this could mean for these future stars, let’s look at what Nikola Jokic did during the COVID shutdown. Jokic transformed his body into great NBA shape. He has been a back-to-back league MVP ever since. Getting in shape doesn’t necessarily guarantee that a player will win an MVP the next season, but it will certainly help them be the best athletes that they can be.
The conditioning that many stars went through this offseason means that they will likely be available for more games this season. An NBA season with more stars available is an exciting season.
No Clear Favorite
Although the winner of the NBA championship each season isn’t certain at the beginning of the year, there is often a powerhouse team that everyone expects to win. Some examples of recent powerhouse teams were the LeBron James Miami Heat team and the Kevin Durant Golden State Warriors. If you predicted either of these teams to win the NBA championship, you had a pretty good chance of being right.
The exciting thing about this season is that there is no team like that. There are a few frontrunners, like the Warriors and the Bucks, but no clear favorite exists. Any team could win the NBA championship.
Not only is it difficult to predict the winner at this stage in the season, but there are a number of teams who have a chance to win it all. There are at least five teams in each conference who could legitimately win the title this year. Games are going to be extremely competitive. It will be a surprise to see who comes out on top this season. It could be a team that no one expects.