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Marv Albert picks Hornets to win Western Division

by Mel Bracht Published: October 24, 2008

The Hornets may be long gone, but they’re not forgotten. I still enjoying following the team, back in New Orleans, and TNT broadcaster Marv Albert is picking them to win the tough Western Conference. Several TNT broadcasters discussed the upcoming season on a conference call Thursday:

Marv Albert on the Hornets being his pick in the West: “I’m leaning toward the Hornets. I feel like they are at the next step where they can win in the West. I love the acquisition of James Posey. They were solid without him, but they needed some help off the bench. With the combination of Chris Paul, David West and Tyson Chandler and Peja Stojakovic, who had an excellent season (last year), I think they will be the surprise club.”

Doug Collins on his prediction for the Western Conference champions: “If the Lakers are healthy, I don’t see any weakness. The one knock on them last year was their front line, toughness, against Boston, but it’s been my understanding that (coach) Phil Jackson has put them through one of the toughest training camps that they’ve had to show them how hard it is to win an NBA championship. Unless something would drastically change, I think the Lakers are the best team.”

Collins on the Oklahoma Thunder: “Oklahoma (Thunder) has a new home (moving from Seattle) and I think they are heading in the right direction but they are too young to make a dent in the very difficult West  (Conference).”

Reggie Miller on the why he likes the Houston Rockets in the West: “Can Tracy (McGrady) and Yao (Ming) stay healthy for most of the season? Which Ron Artest is going to show up, the Ron Artest when he was first traded to Indiana when he said, ‘all I care about is winning, I don’t care what it takes?’ That is very much what he’s saying in Houston. Or is it going to be the Ron Artest where any little thing that triggers him, he’s going to be leftfield? I’ve seen both sides of him and I know what he’s capable of doing. If the ‘good’ Ron Artest shows up and those other guys stay healthy than I think they have enough scoring and defensively they’ve got two players, in Artest and Shane (Battier) you can put on Kobe to wear him down. If all these guys can stay healthy and the ‘good’ Ron shows up, I like Houston (in the West).”

by Mel Bracht
Copy Editor, Sports Media
Mel Bracht is a copy editor on the presentation desk and also covers sports media. A 1978 graduate of Indiana University, Bracht has been a print journalist for 34 years. He started his career as sports editor of the Rensselaer (Ind.) Republican...
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