NBA | Matthew Bui

Aftermath of the NBA Finals, Injuries, Free Agency, & Next Season
By Matthew Bui
July 20, 2019
With the Toronto Raptors winning their first NBA Finals in franchise history, Canadians
have officially secured their first ever Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy. There’s no doubt
that with this historic win, the popularity of basketball in Canada will gain significant traction.
The 2019 NBA Finals was also consequential for the underdog Toronto Raptors, the stacked
Golden State Warriors, and for the rest of the league’s coming future. With the season long
injuries of two of the Warrior’s biggest talents, Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson, the team will
likely not return to the NBA Finals again with just Stephen Curry and Draymond Green helming
the roster.
The 2019 free agency also has implications for the league’s future to come. The signing
of new players and the trades of multiple superstars to new franchises creating new superteams
will significantly change the scope of the whole NBA. Although the West Conference is still
better, the Eastern Conference has definitely upped their talent this free agency. The Warriors are
now no longer the favorites to win the NBA Finals with the losses of Durant to the Nets and
Thompson to injury, but the recent signing of D’Angelo Russell will up their chances in playoff
contention. The biggest news to come out of free agency this year is probably the signing of both
Kawhi Leonard and Paul George to the LA Clippers, which cement the team as NBA Final
favorites. Anthony Davis, Danny Green, and Demarcus Cousins to the Lakers with Lebron and
company will make them contenders for the 2019-20 season. Durant and Irving to the Nets will
make them a great team after Durant heals, while the signing of Zion Williamson and the trade of
the Lakers young core to the Pelicans will give the team a promising future. The Celtics will get
Kanter and Walker to play with their already strong starters and bench, while the 76ers lose
Jimmy Butler to the Heat but sign Horford and Harris. The Chris Paul and Russell Westbrook
trade also sent shockwaves throughout the NBA fanbase as fans discuss how Harden and
Westbrook can possibly play together efficiently. All of this while teams like the Bulls, Grizzlies,
Thunder, and Wizards are in full rebuild mode, slowly making moves for the long run, hoping to
bring superstars to their franchises through the draft or free agency.
With the Western and Eastern Conferences a little more evenly balanced with talent, the
Warriors team fallout with Durant and Thompson, Leonard leaving the Raptors for the Clippers,
the trophy is officially up for grabs. Top contenders and favorites to win the Championship next
season are the Clippers, Jazz, Lakers, and Rockets from the West, and the Bucks and 76ers in the
East. There’s no telling how the next NBA season will play out since many teams have changed
the major composition of their teams. There is also a plan to institute challenges to calls for
coaches who feel as if the referees have missed a call or called a play wrong, so we will see how
that goes before it becomes canon. After the 2019 free agency, the NBA as we have known it
will never be the same.

copy-of-img_3528.cr2_.jpgMatthew Bui | Writing Contributor
B.A. | History | UCLA
My name’s Matthew, but you can call me Matt! I was born in the East Coast but raised in the West Coast. I’m a 3rd year transfer at UCLA majoring in History and minoring in Entrepreneurship. As an avid reader, I love trivia and watching Jeopardy!, and I usually kill time by watching late night shows and anything involving comedy. Because I’m also outdoorsy and adventurous, I plan to go hiking, skating, and swimming more this summer! Fun Fact: I live 5 minutes away from Roland back in Torrance and we’re currently roommates here at UCLA! Instagram @mattbuiii | View My Articles 

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