Pacific Division - Where They Left Off After NBA Suspended

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The NBA is on a hiatus due to the dangers of Coronavirus. While Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell have tested positive for the virus, the remainder of the NBA rosters have yet to report another case.

What happens to the NBA from now on is totally up in the air. What happens with players, contracts, statistics, draft picks, and free agency is anybody’s guess at this point.

With just under a quarter of the season left to play, we cover the biggest questions remaining for every NBA team before the season continues. Let’s start with the Pacific Division!

5. Golden State Warriors (15-50) (5th in Pacific, 15th West)

Pace: 100.3 (14)ORtg: 105.2 (30)DRtg: 113.8 (26)NetRtg: -7.4

Top Performers

  • (G) Stephen Curry – 27.8 MPG | 20.8 PPG | 6.6 APG | 5.2 RPG
  • (F) Andrew Wiggins – 33.6 MPG | 19.4 PPG | 4.6 RPG | 1.4 BPG
  • (F) Eric Paschall – 27.6 MPG | 14.0 PPG | 4.6 RPG | 2.1 APG

Where They Left Off

The Golden State Warriors entered this season with some lower than usual expectations. After losing Klay Thompson to injury and Kevin Durant to free agency, the Warriors’ ceiling for the season was just to stay relevant.

After an early-season injury to Stephen Curry and a reliance on inexperienced pieces to drive them forward, the Warriors found themselves at the bottom of the league and out of the playoff race.

Highlights/Lowlights of the Season

High: The Warriors have seen some tremendous growth in their young players, especially Eric Paschall, Damion Lee, and Marquese Chriss.

They’ve also been able to unearth some looked-over talent in Juan Toscano-Anderson and Mychal Mulder. Wins over the Houston Rockets and Philadelphia 76ers put their promise on full display.

Low: Golden State was projected to be weaker than the previous year, but not by this much. Of 65 possible games Draymond Green has missed 22, Stephen Curry has missed 60, and Klay Thompson has missed all of them. Injuries are a part of the game, but to be at the bottom of the league with their stars both older and less match-active is a concerning sign.

What is Next for the Warriors?

At 32, 30, and 29 years old, the combination of Curry, Thompson, and Green is coming to what is likely the twilight of their run together.

With the worst record and thus one of the better chances at a top-five pick in the upcoming NBA Draft, the Warriors are in prime position to re-tool for the future.

4. Phoenix Suns (26-39) (4th in Pacific, 13th East)

Pace: 101.4 (9)ORtg: 110.5 (16)DRtg: 111.8 (20)NetRtg: -1.3

Top Performers

  • (G) Devin Booker – 36.1 MPG | 26.1 PPG | 6.6 APG | .360 3P%
  • (C) DeAndre Ayton – 33.2 MPG | 19.0 PPG | 12.0 RPG | 1.7 BPG
  • (G-F) Kelly Oubre – 34.5 MPG | 18.7 PPG | 6.4 RPG | .352 3P%

Where They Left Off

Despite a near-.500 record over the first 20 games of the season, the Phoenix Suns were not able to maintain their upward trend. Six full games out of a playoff spot, the Phoenix Suns weren’t able to capitalize on their early-season run of form to prove doubters wrong.

Highlights/Lowlights of the Season

High: Devin Booker has been the sole point of pride for the Phoenix Suns this season. After his first All-Star berth, Booker has solidified himself as a star in this league.

Certainly tired of losing, Booker has made it clear he has no future in Phoenix if it isn’t focused on winning.

Low: DeAndre Ayton got off to an excellent start to open the season. Posting 18 points, 11 rebounds, and four blocks in his 2019-2020 season debut against the Sacramento Kings. Unfortunately, after failing a subsequent drug test, Ayton was suspended 25 games by the league. While he was excellent in his return, Ayton has a lot of work to do in order to make up for his slip-up.

What is Next for the Pheonix Suns?

The future of Devin Booker seems to be in the hands of General Manager James Jones this summer.

With D’Angelo Russell’s eerie prediction of he, Towns, and Booker playing together now two-thirds of the way to being true, Booker clearly has his eye on the exit door. What Jones can build for the young star before next season is the key to their future.

3. Sacramento Kings (28-36) (3rd in Pacific, 11th West)

Pace: 98.4 (17)ORtg: 109.7 (19)DRtg: 111.6 (19)NetRtg: -2.1

Top Performers

  • (G) De’Aaron Fox – 31.7 MPG | 20.4 PPG | 6.8 APG | 1.4 SPG
  • (G) Buddy Hield – 32.0 MPG | 19.8 PPG | 4.8 RPG | .395 3P%
  • (F) Harrison Barnes – 34.9 MPG | 14.7 PPG | 4.8 RPG | 2.4 APG

Where They Left Off

The Sacramento Kings left off the suspended season within shouting distance of a playoff position.

In a three-way tie for ninth with the Trail Blazers and Pelicans, the Kings are scratching at the ceiling, trying to make the post-season. Their inconsistencies on both ends are at the forefront of their issues.

Highlights/Lowlights of the Season

High: De’Aaron Fox continues to improve and the early-season contract issue with Buddy Hield was quickly resolved.

While they didn’t get off to the strong start that they wanted to, they’ve shown impressive resolve for a young team, piecing together on and off win-streaks to make up for some devastating losing streaks.

Low: Luke Walton has been a disappointment to this point in the NBA season.

While he was supposed to build upon the success of last year’s Sacramento Kings team, Walton has struggled to implement his style with the group. Once one of the leagues fastest offenses, they sit near the bottom third this season.

What is Next for the Sacramento Kings?

The Sacramento Kings are sitting dangerously in no-man’s land at the moment.

Not very promising are their chances to make the playoffs, and a less than competitive outlook in the West. On the plus side, they are likely to own a top ten pick in this coming NBA Draft.

2. LA Clippers (44-20) (2nd in Pacific, 2nd West)

Pace: 101.8 (8)ORtg: 113.6 (3)DRtg: 107.2 (5)NetRtg: 6.4

Top Performers

  • (F) Kawhi Leonard – 32.3 MPG | 26.9 PPG | 7.3 RPG | 5.0 APG
  • (G) Paul George – 29.1 MPG | 21.0 PPG | 5.7 RPG | .399 3P%
  • (G) Lou Williams – 29.3 MPG | 18.7 PPG | 5.7 APG | .363 3P%

Where They Left Off

The LA Clippers are sitting near the top of the Western Conference and the NBA.

As expected of a team owning their talents, the Clippers have been difficult to match by any. Kawhi Leonard and Paul George have proven themselves as a true duo of concern across the NBA.

Highlights/Lowlights of the Season

High: The LA Clippers bench has been fantastic this season. Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell are true leaders for LA, and Doc Rivers doesn’t even play them with the starting unit.

While their other complementary pieces have also propped them up – Zubac, Patterson, Morris – the play of the reserves as a whole has helped LA overcome the lack of having Leonard and George in the lineup.

Low: Speaking of not having Leonard and George in the lineup, the two have been excellent on the court. Unfortunately, they’ve missed a combined 37 games at this point in the season.

While they have only one loss when they’re in the lineup together, performing on the court at the same time is what they need to defeat the top of the NBA.

What is Next for the Clippers?

The LA Clippers are one of the favorites for the NBA title.

They still need to prove they can overcome the Lakers and the Bucks, but improved health will certainly be a benefit. The additions of Reggie Jackson and Marcus Morris were excellent moves that push LA into a “win or die” attitude for the Championship.

1. Los Angeles Lakers (49-14) (1st in Pacific, 1st West)

Pace: 100.9 (3)ORtg: 113.0 (4)DRtg: 105.6 (3)NetRtg: 7.4

Top Performers

  • (F) Anthony Davis – 34.3 MPG | 26.7 PPG | 9.4 RPG | 2.4 BPG
  • (F) LeBron James – 34.9 MPG | 25.7 PPG | 10.6 APG | 7.9 RPG
  • (F) Kyle Kuzma – 24.6 MPG | 12.5 PPG | 4.3 RPG | 1.3 APG

Where They Left Off

The Los Angeles Lakers left off the season on an excellent run. They won three-straight games against the Sixers, Bucks, and Clippers, right before the day of suspension where they lost to the Brooklyn Nets by just two points. At the top of the West and with a playoff position clinched, the Lakers have checked all the boxes.

Highlights/Lowlights of the Season

High: The transition between last year’s team and this year’s team with LeBron James has been seamless. With massive turnover and a new star to defer to, the Lakers could have very easily gone in the wrong direction.

But with renewed vigor and a team of his choosing, LeBron James seems to be leading the Lakers back to the promised land.

Low: The Lakers’ supporting cast can be hot and cold.

Not exactly loaded with shooters, a streaky night for the likes of Danny Green and Avery Bradley can cost them matches. Kyle Kuzma has also disappointed in his third year, showing that his scoring lacks serious efficiency.

What is Next for the Lakers?

The NBA Championship is all that LeBron James and Anthony Davis are interested in playing for.

They wholesaled their future, signed veterans to short-term contracts, and hired Frank Vogel all in the hopes of bringing a championship back to Los Angeles. There is no other option for the Lakers than winning the title.

NBA FAQs

When will the NBA resume play?

The NBA is hoping to resume play in mid-to-late June or early August.

How will the season/playoffs change when the NBA season resumes?

Nobody is 100% sure yet. At the moment, only four teams have clinched the playoffs. Best case scenario, the regular season is picked up where it left off.

Who are the favorites to win the NBA Championship?

The Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Lakers are the betting favorites to win the NBA Championship this season.

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