Eastern Conference: Central Division


Chicago Bulls

Additions: Carlos Boozer, Kyle Korver, Ronnie Brewer, Kurt Thomas, Keith Bogans

Losses: Kirk Hinrich, Hakim Warrick

The Bulls announced midway through last season that they would fire head coach Vinny Del Negro at the end of the season. Even with knowing their coach would be gone, the Bulls rallied to earn the eighth seed in the playoffs.

In the summer of 2010, the Bulls were in the running to land LeBron James, Dwayne Wade or Chris Bosh, but they came away with Carlos Boozer. He averaged 19.5 points and 11.2 rebounds per game last season – not a bad consolation prize.

With the addition of Boozer and the progression of Derrick Rose, the Bulls should be considered a contender in the Eastern Conference with Boston, Orlando, and Miami in 2010-11.

Prediction: First Place in Central (55- 27)

Milwaukee Bucks

Additions: Corey Maggette, Drew Gooden, Earl Boykins

Losses: Charlie Bell, Dan Gadzuric

The Bucks qualified for the playoffs last season mainly due to the production of rookie Brandon Jennings. Jennings averaged almost 16 points per game last season after a hot start.

Andrew Bogut was a surprise last season, as the seven-footer averaged 16 points per game. The addition of Corey Maggette should boost the Bucks' offensive balance, and they should return to the playoffs in 2010-11.

Prediction: Second Place in Central (44-38)

Indiana Pacers

Additions: Darren Collison, James Posey, Paul George, Lance Stephenson

Losses: Troy Murphy

The Indiana Pacers finished 32-50 last season. But with the addition of Darren Collison and a healthy Danny Granger, the Pacers will contend for one of the last playoff spots in the East.

Granger is a hidden gem who averaged 24 points-per-game last season. Collison played well behind All-NBA point guard Chris Paul last season and held his own through Paul's injury. Look for Collison to be the difference maker that this Pacers team needs.

Prediction: Third Place in Central (38-44)

Detroit Pistons

Additions: Tracy McGrady, Greg Monroe, Austin Daye

Losses: Kwame Brown

Last season, the Pistons made key moves in acquiring Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva but were unable to live up to expectations, missing the playoffs.

This season will be a different story for the Pistons if they can get the expected production from their key players. If Gordon can return to the form from his seasons in Chicago, the Pistons will contend. He averaged 13 points per game last season, a far cry from the 20 per game in 2008-09.

Prediction: Fourth Place in Central (37-43)

Cleveland Cavaliers

Additions: Samardo Samuels, Kyle Lowry, Danny Green

Losses: LeBron James, Delonte West, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

It's not often that a team that won 61 games in a season would be considered a long shot to make the playoffs the very next year. But it's also not often that a team loses a player of LeBron James' caliber.

The Cavs could compete for a playoff spot this season if players such as Antawn Jamison and Mo Williams can step up to fill the void left by "The King." But that is very unlikely.

Prediction: Fifth Place in Central (25-57)