Scalabrine: Celtics lead East favorites

Denison Rey A. Dalupang - Philstar.com
Scalabrine: Celtics lead East favorites
Brian Scalabrine takes a selfie with the fans during the culmination of the NBA 3x Philippines at the MOA Music Hall, last Saturday.
NBA Philippines Pool Photo

MANILA, Philippines — Now that LeBron James is off the East Coast, Brian Scalabrine believes six teams will hotly contest for their place at the conference’s summit come 2018-19 NBA season.

The former NBA-Champion-turned-analyst last weekend said that the Raptors, Bucks, Wizards, Pacers, Sixers, his former team Celtics will figure in a dogfight for who will fill that void once filled by the Cleveland Cavaliers.

“I see Toronto obviously with the addition of Kawhi Leonard. [While ] It’s a big question mark, I want to see how that plays out,” he told the press during the culmination of the NBA 3x Philippines where he and Tim Hardaway were guests.

“I think the surprise team for this year will be Milwaukee — they got Mike Budenholzer, who I think is a terrific coach. And in another team that’s kinda sneaky is Indiana because Victor Oladipo continues to get better,” he added.

“Washington, you don’t know what kind of Dwight Howard is gonna impact John Wall and Brad Beal,” Scalabrine furthered.

But clearly, the press couldn’t take away Boston out of Brian — the team he won a title with and afforded him the moniker “White Mamba.”

“I do think the Celtics are the best team in the Eastern Conference,” he pointed out. “But it’s not gonna be a cakewalk like everyone says.”

Scalabrine suggested that the biggest threat to Celtics — who went to the conference finals in the previous season — are the Sixers.

"You can never count out Philadelphia. If you’re watching Ben Simmons on social media the guy is naked on all his jump shots and he looks perfect,” he added with a smirk. “And that’s not even to mention a guy like Joel Embiid going MVP of the week.

One thing’s for sure for Scalabrine, though: “There’s gonna be a lot of good teams on East.”

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