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Top Three NBA Pre-Season Storylines

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE

With training camps underway, the NBA season is less than one month away from its start, and us here at bettingsports.com couldn’t be happier about it.  It’s the last chance for teams to take inventory over their players and a chance for us to determine the team’s with the biggest surprises, the biggest expectations and the biggest egos over the past offseason.

And it’s sure been filled with surprises.  The NBA lottery slotted the league-owned New Orleans with the first pick of the draft and the selection of 19-year-old phenom Anthony Davis.  During the trade deadline, the “Linsanity” story kept on growing, but little expected Jeremy Lin to end up in Houston, let alone anywhere but New York.  Elsewhere, the Nets vision to relocate became a reality, and they’re billionaire owner Mikhail Prokhorov will field a team that looks great on paper.  But on this story, there’s only room for three top storylines heading into the NBA season.  Can you guess them?

3. The Injury Heard Round the World

Derrick Rose’s torn ACL was a heart-wrenching turn of events for the Chicago Bulls during the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs.  He is slated to return in late February, which puts him out of commission for about 40 games.  In the meantime, the Bulls have to learn how to play without their 2011 MVP, a feat that might not be so insurmountable.  Their defense remains one of the best in the league, but Luol Deng, Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer are going to need to upgrade their offensive efforts if the Bulls are to get back in the playoffs.

2. Can Ray Allen Contribute?

Soon after Ray Allen landed in Miami, his friendship with his old Celtic teammates ended.  Nevertheless, LeBron James and the Heat instantly welcomed “Jesus Shuttlesworth” into the mix, hoping he will become the sharpshooting swingman that Mike Miller never really provided during the 2011-12 season.  It will be interesting to see Allen in his new role and his ability to provide instant offense coming off the bench for the Heat, something the team lacked in last year’s campaign.

1. The Los Angeles Dwight Howard-Kobe Bryant-Steve Nashes

The Los Angeles Lakers are built as a win-now team.  The late acquisitions of Dwight Howard and Steve Nash give the team one of the best pick-and-roll combos in the NBA.  Not to mention Kobe Bryant as your official late game heroics player to be kicked into gear whenever the team falls short of expectations (or during a game).  Their chemistry, along with Howard’s nagging back injury combine for the biggest preseason storyline in the league.

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