NBA Atlantic Division Preview: Shake Up At The Top

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Apr 16, 2014; New York, NY, USA; Toronto Raptors center Jonas Valanciunas (17) and New York Knicks center Cole Aldrich (45) tip off during the Knicks final game of the season at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Jim O

In a division that had been dominated by the Boston Celtics for the last decade, the past two years have seen two new champions. The 2012-13 season saw a red-hot New York Knicks team completely dominate the division, finishing with the second best record in the entire Eastern Conference. Last season, a good, young, up-and-coming Toronto Raptors team surprised everyone and won their first division title since 2007.

With such an up and down division, and a Philadelphia squad virtually trying to lose last year, this season’s division title should be completely up for grabs. Toronto went from worst to first last year, while the Knicks went from first to a really bad third (the division was horrible last season).

With a lot of the teams making key additions or suffering significant losses, so many outcomes are possible. Was last years Toronto team a fluke? Can Phil Jackson lead the Knicks to a bounce back season? Do the Nets’ veterans have enough left in the tank to make a push to a division title? Does Philadelphia’s good young nucleus put it together? Is Boston primed for a huge leap after a season of rebuilding?

Lets take a look at how the Atlantic Division could pan out this year.