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NBA 2023 Offseason Grades: Atlantic Division

Atlantic NBA

Dennis Schroder
World Cup MVP signed with the Toronto Raptors this offseason. (Jonathan Hui-USA TODAY Sports)

NBA 2023 Offseason Grades: Atlantic Division

The NBA off-season is for all intent and purpose, done. The signing of Christian Wood leaves Kelly Oubre, reportedly close to signing with the Miami Heat, as the only notable free agent left on the board. Of course, we’re still waiting for the other shoe to drop on trades for Damian Lillard and James Harden, though this writer expects both standoffs to maintain the status quo until training camps convene.

That means that we have some time to fill between now and camps start so let’s hand out some grades to each and every NBA team on their off-season efforts. Let’s also give a nod to Hoopshype, whose meticulous work in tracking off-season movements makes it easy for us writers.

We’re going to tip things off with the Atlantic Division. Check back in a couple of days for our Northwest Division grades.

Boston Celtics: C+

Major additions:

Major subtractions:

Coming off a career year, the Celtics’ gamble on Kristaps Porzingis could look like a stroke of genius come next May. This being Porzingis, he could of course miss 50 games and the move looks foolish by Christmas.

Trading away Marcus Smart is, like the player he was traded for, a massive gamble. The heart and soul of the team, the C’s could fall apart without their spiritual leader. His absence could also create a vacuum that one of Jayson Tatum or Jaylen Brown fill. It will be a fascinating watch.

The Celtics added a pair of nice depth pieces in Banton and Brissett, though lost an excellent role player in Williams.

Brooklyn Nets: B

Major additions:

Major subtractions:

The Nets acquired almost two-thirds of a roster this off-season. What they plan to do with all those additions remains to be seen. Practically every player brought in is either in the fledgling stages of their career, or a young veteran with upside.

Coach Jacque Vaughn’s rotations could change on an almost nightly basis as he figures out what combinations work best around young stars Mikal Bridges and Cam Johnson. Still, general manager Sean Marks has resisted the temptation to go big, here, instead betting on the potential of youth. It should prove a wise choice.

New York Knicks: B

Major addition:

Major subtractions:

The DiVincenzo addition sustains the Knicks’ efforts to become Villanova on the Hudson. The wing, though, is a smart, tough player who reads the game fantastically well. He’s a fine acquisition.

Moving Toppin hurts, but for reasons that only coach Tom Thibodeau could explain, the athletic forward wasn’t given the chance to develop as a Knick.

Philadelphia 76ers: D+

Major additions:

Major subtractions:

Given James Harden’s uncertain status with the team, it’s tempting to give the Sixers an “incomplete” mark. However, the fact that they have mishandled their affairs so spectacularly in regards to “The Beard” gives the Sixers an instant downgrade.

Philadelphia did bring in yet another Joel Embiid backup in the perpetually tantalising Mo Bamba, as well as a pair of culture-setting veterans who couldn’t be more opposite if they tried in the serene Danny Green and the wild Patrick Beverley.

Toronto Raptors: C+

Major additions:

Major subtractions:

Sure, the Raptors should have traded VanVleet in hindsight, but picking up recent World Cup champion and MVP winner Dennis Schroder for half the price is a decent pivot. The sharpshooting Dick could usurp Gary Trent Jr as the starting two guards by as early as next season. His unfortunate name and even more unfortunate fashion sense cloud over the fact that he’s a serious talent.

Still, the biggest question around the Raptors’ offseason was what they were going to do with Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby. On that front, we still have no answers.

What are your offseason grades for the Atlantic Division? Let us know in the comments!

***

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