The trade saw the Utah Jazz receive multiple draft picks and pick swaps, which gave them a significant amount of control in future drafts. In return, the Cavaliers have a high-scoring combo-guard who can elevate their offence.
However, the Cavaliers were vying for a point guard, as reported by Chris Fedor. They reportedly shot down an offer for Kemba Walker.
Fedor said that he talked to multiple people within the Cavaliers organization about Walker. The talks fell through for two reasons. First of all, Walker wasn’t excited about the role. Secondly, the Cavaliers believe Walker no longer holds the kind of on-court ability that he did a few seasons ago.
Predicting the 2022-23 NBA Western Conference standings
The NBA Western Conference is expected to have of a host of superstar players at full-strength.
The Golden State Warriors will have a significantly tougher time going back-to-back, however, are the favorites put forward by BetMGM, whereas PointsBet puts them at number four to win it all.
The LA Lakers haven’t had significant roster turnovers and are supposedly relying on their superstar trio to carry the load. So, at best, the Lakers could perhaps be a top-three seed, and at worst, finish out of the top-ten yet again.
Therefore, their predicted position at the end of the season should be taken with a grain of salt.
However, high expectations are set for the other team in LA, with Kawhi Leonard expected to return from his ACL injury. John Wall, too, will be back in action in a Clippers jersey.
The Denver Nuggets will see the return of Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr., something that puts them in immediate contention.
The Memphis Grizzlies are expected to be without Jaren Jackson Jr. for the beginning of the season. This, along with a more competitive West, is likely to see their position fall.
The most contentious position, however, will be that of the Phoenix Suns. The Suns haven’t made any roster changes that would provide any reason for them to be title favorites. According to BetMGM and PointsBet, the Suns are below at least four other teams to win the NBA Championship.
The table below shows the predicted 2023 standings. For simplicity, only predictions for the top-ten teams are listed.