Wednesday, August 26, 2009 Updated: September 14, 3:33 PM ET
Summer Forecast: Team Turnaround
If Gilbert Arenas returns to form, there will be plenty of high-fiving in Washington this coming season.
We've broken down who we think will be the best and worst newcomers in 2009-10. Now it's time to name Team Turnaround -- the squad that could see vast improvement this season. (Also, check out the vote for Team Turmoil.)
Here's the voting breakdown:
Also receiving votes: POR (3), TOR (2), DAL (1), GS (1), MIN (1), NJ (1), NO (1), SA (1)
Wizards (23 votes)
Washington won 19 games last season after four straight seasons with 41 wins or more. There was an easy explanation, of course: Two of the Wizards' starters -- Gilbert Arenas and Brendan Haywood -- played a total of eight games combined.
With those two healthy again -- along with newly acquired firepower (Randy Foye, Mike Miller, Flip Saunders) joining the mix -- the Wizards are hoping to be like the Celtics team that went from last place in the East in 2006-07 to NBA champs two seasons ago. Although that may prove to be wishful thinking in the top-heavy East, the Wizards certainly could be the team nobody wants to face come springtime.
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Thunder (11 votes)
In Kevin Durant, Jeff Green, Russell Westbrook and James Harden, the Thunder have arguably the best young squad in the NBA. But if the Thunder are to be Team Turnaround, it begins and ends with Durant's continuing his ascension to superstardom. If he makes the leap, the Thunder very well could jump up the standings.
Clippers (8 votes)
What a difference a Blake Griffin makes. In 2008-09, the Clippers clearly were a team in turmoil -- they had injury woes, an underachieving roster and front-office drama. This season, many believe Griffin's arrival could catapult the Clips into the West playoff race. But even if that doesn't end up being the case, there's renewed hope in Clipper Nation, which already is a huge reversal for the league's laughingstock.
• Click here to check out Team Turmoil
Henry Abbott (ESPN.com TrueHoop senior writer), J.A. Adande (ESPN.com senior writer), Kevin Arnovitz (ESPN.com TrueHoop Network editor), Andrew Ayres (ESPN.com NBA editor), Jon Barry (ESPN NBA analyst), Bruce Bernstein (ESPN NBA Studio Production), Alfredo Berrios (ESPN Deportes editor), Dwayne Bray (ESPN Studio Production), Jordan Brenner (ESPN Insider editor), Lisa Brooks (ESPN Stats & Information), Maurice Brooks (ESPN.com NBA editor), Chris Broussard (ESPN The Magazine senior writer), Ric Bucher (ESPN The Magazine senior writer), Michael Bucklin (ESPN Interactive Games), Kevin Calabro (ESPN NBA broadcaster), Kevin Conlon (ESPN Stats & Information), Jay Corbin (ESPN The Magazine editor), Chad Ford (ESPN Insider senior writer), LZ Granderson (ESPN The Magazine senior writer), John Hollinger (ESPN Insider senior writer), Jade Hoye (ESPN Multimedia), Michael Jackson (ESPN Stats & Information), Scoop Jackson (ESPN Page 2 columnist), Avery Johnson (ESPN NBA analyst), Eric Karabell (ESPN.com senior writer), Rob King (ESPN.com editor-in-chief), Seth Landman (ESPN Fantasy basketball writer), Tim Legler (ESPN NBA analyst), Nancy Lieberman (ESPN NBA analyst), Keith Lipscomb (ESPN Fantasy basketball analyst), Patricia Lowry (ESPN NBA Event Production), Mike Lynch (ESPN Stats & Information), Eric Neel (ESPN.com senior writer), Pete Newmann (ESPN Stats & Information), Chris Palmer (ESPN The Magazine NBA writer), Greg Pike (ESPN NBA Studio Production), Chris Ramsay (ESPN.com NBA coordinator), Dr. Jack Ramsay (ESPN NBA analyst), Adam Reisinger (ESPNDB editor), Jalen Rose (ESPN NBA analyst), Bob Salmi (ESPN NBA analyst), Chris Sheridan (ESPN Insider senior writer), Marc Stein (ESPN.com NBA senior writer), Patrick Stiegman (ESPN.com VP/executive editor), Otto Strong (ESPN The Magazine NBA editor), Mark Summer (ESPN NBA Studio Production), David Thorpe (ESPN Insider NBA analyst), Justin Verrier (ESPN.com NBA editor), Bill Walton (ESPN NBA analyst), Royce Webb (ESPN.com NBA editor), Josh Whitling (ESPN Fantasy basketball writer), Matt Winer (ESPN NBA anchor) and Matt Wong (ESPN.com NBA editor).