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The Ringer’s 2017-18 NBA Predictions

Our NBA staff makes their picks for this season’s award and title winners

Lonzo Ball, Kyrie Irving, LeBron James, and Kevin Durant Getty Images/Ringer illustration
NBA Preview 2017

Sure, a Warriors team fresh off a 16-1 postseason run to a second title looks deeper and scarier than ever heading into this season. But there’s still plenty to figure out after one of the wildest offseasons in NBA history. The Ringer’s NBA team tries to figure it all out, a day before the 2017–18 season officially begins.

Most Valuable Player

Name Pick
Name Pick
Bill Simmons Stephen Curry
Kevin O’Connor LeBron James
Jonathan Tjarks Kawhi Leonard
Shea Serrano LeBron James
John Gonzalez Kawhi Leonard
Danny Chau Giannis Antetokounmpo
Chris Ryan LeBron James
Juliet Litman Kyrie Irving
Justin Verrier Kevin Durant
Haley O’Shaughnessy Kevin Durant
Paolo Uggetti Kevin Durant

Total: Durant (3), James (3), Leonard (2), Antetokounmpo (1), Curry (1), Irving (1)

Rookie of the Year

Name Pick
Name Pick
Simmons Lonzo Ball
O’Connor Ben Simmons
Tjarks Dennis Smith Jr.
Serrano Lonzo Ball
Gonzalez Ben Simmons
Chau Dennis Smith Jr.
Ryan De’Aaron Fox
Litman De’Aaron Fox
Verrier Ben Simmons
O’Shaughnessy Dennis Smith Jr.
Uggetti Dennis Smith Jr.

Total: Smith Jr. (4), Simmons (3), Fox (2), Ball (2)

Most Improved Player of the Year

Name Pick
Name Pick
Simmons D’Angelo Russell
O’Connor Myles Turner
Tjarks Rodney Hood
Serrano LaMarcus Aldridge (please, God)
Gonzalez Rodney Hood
Chau Myles Turner
Ryan Thon Maker
Litman D’Angelo Russell
Verrier D’Angelo Russell
O’Shaughnessy Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
Uggetti Gary Harris

Total: Russell (3), Turner (2), Hood (2), Aldridge (1), Caldwell-Pope (1), Harris (1), Maker (1)

Defensive Player of the Year

Name Pick
Name Pick
Simmons Rudy Gobert
O’Connor Draymond Green
Tjarks Draymond Green
Serrano Kawhi Leonard
Gonzalez Rudy Gobert
Chau Draymond Green
Ryan Rudy Gobert
Litman Rudy Gobert
Verrier Rudy Gobert
O’Shaughnessy Rudy Gobert
Uggetti Rudy Gobert

Total: Gobert (7), Green (3), Leonard (1)

Sixth Man of the Year

Name Pick
Name Pick
Simmons Tristan Thompson
O’Connor Rudy Gay
Tjarks Will Barton
Serrano Does Kuzbass start? If not, then him.
Gonzalez Marcus Smart
Chau Lou Williams
Ryan Norman Powell
Litman J.R. Smith
Verrier Andre Iguodala
O’Shaughnessy Tyler Johnson
Uggetti Marcus Smart

Total: Smart (2), Barton (1), Gay (1), Iguodala (1), Johnson (1), Kyle Kuzma (1), Powell (1), Smith (1), Thompson (1), Williams (1)

Coach of the Year

Name Pick
Name Pick
Simmons Steve Kerr
O’Connor Brad Stevens
Tjarks Mike Malone
Serrano Steve Kerr
Gonzalez Brad Stevens
Chau Mike D’Antoni
Ryan Brett Brown
Litman Mike Malone
Verrier Gregg Popovich
O’Shaughnessy Erik Spoelstra
Uggetti Steve Kerr

Total: Kerr (3), Malone (2), Stevens (2), Brown (1), D’Antoni (1), Popovich (1), Spoelstra (1)

Executive of the Year

Name Pick
Name Pick
Simmons Sam Presti
O’Connor Sam Presti
Tjarks Daryl Morey
Serrano R.C. Buford, after he pulls off some miraculous trade of LaMarcus
Gonzalez Sam Hinkie
Chau Daryl Morey
Ryan Sam Presti
Litman Sam Presti
Verrier Daryl Morey
O’Shaughnessy Sam Presti
Uggetti Sam Presti

Total: Presti (6), Morey (3), Buford (1), Hinkie (1)

Final Four

Name Pick
Name Pick
Simmons Thunder vs. Warriors; Celtics vs. Cavs
O’Connor Rockets vs. Warriors; Celtics vs. Cavs
Tjarks Thunder vs. Warriors; Bucks vs. Cavs
Serrano Rockets vs. Warriors; Celtics vs. Cavs
Gonzalez Rockets vs. Warriors; Celtics vs. Cavs
Chau Rockets vs. Warriors; Bucks vs. Cavs
Ryan Thunder vs. Warriors; Wizards vs. Cavs
Litman Rockets vs. Warriors; Celtics vs. Cavs
Verrier Rockets vs. Warriors; Celtics vs. Cavs
O’Shaughnessy Thunder vs. Warriors; Celtics vs. Cavs
Uggetti Thunder vs. Warriors; Celtics vs. Cavs

Total: Warriors (11), Rockets (6), Thunder (5); Cavs (11), Celtics (8), Bucks (2), Wizards (1)

East Champion

Name Pick
Name Pick
Simmons Cavs
O’Connor Celtics
Tjarks Cavs
Serrano Cavs
Gonzalez Cavs
Chau Cavs
Ryan Cavs
Litman Celtics
Verrier Cavs
O’Shaughnessy Cavs
Uggetti Celtics

Total: Cavs (8), Celtics (3)

West Champion

Name Pick
Name Pick
Simmons Warriors
O’Connor Warriors
Tjarks Warriors
Serrano Warriors
Gonzalez Warriors
Chau Warriors
Ryan Warriors
Litman Warriors
Verrier Warriors
O’Shaughnessy Warriors
Uggetti Warriors

Total: Warriors (11)

NBA Champion

Name Pick
Name Pick
Simmons Warriors
O’Connor Warriors
Tjarks Warriors
Serrano Warriors
Gonzalez Warriors
Chau Warriors
Ryan Warriors
Litman Warriors
Verrier Warriors
O’Shaughnessy Warriors
Uggetti Warriors

Total: Warriors (11)