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Western Conference Predictions

I have decided not to write a team by team analysis for this one (I know I am one lazy man). 

This year should be a wild year for the Western Conference.  To be completely honest this may be the toughest ear to pick the winner and order of the Western Conference.  The popular selection is the Oklahoma City Thunder and I have to agree with this selection.  Oklahoma City finally has playoff experience and got all the way to the Western Conference Finals a year ago. The key for Oklahoma City will be the play of Russell Westbrook, who has the potential to be one of the top two or three point guards in the game, but needs to be a little bit smarter with the basketball.

Photo of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook via Bleacher Report

However, I am not entirely confident with that selection and can see a number of teams represent the Western Conference this year.  One would be the San Antonio Spurs who had the best record in the Western Conference a year ago and if Manu Ginobili is healthy and they can get decent contributions from Tiago Splitter and James Anderson, I believe this team could make a serious title push.  And who could forget the defending champion Dallas Mavericks; they still have a good team, but will need Brendan Haywood to step his game up.  Lamar Odom was a key pick up, but Dallas will have to figure out how he and Dirk will co-exist. Barea and Chandler were huge losses, but Dallas still has enough weaponry to get back to the finals. Also both Los Angeles teams will have a shot.  Clippers I think lack some of the depth that is needed to get there, but the depth is not horrible either so if a couple guys can step their game up, I could see them in the finals especially with the addition of Paul (who should raise everybody’s game a bit). Lakers still have Kobe and as long as they have him will always be a contender for the championship, especially if he is healthy. Finally I think both the Grizzlies and the Trailblazers could be dark horses in this conference as well, with Golden State a team to watch for too.  Either way this promises to be a wild and crazy Western Conference.

Standings Predictions

  1. Oklahoma City Thunder
  2. Dallas Mavericks
  3. San Antonio Spurs
  4. Los Angeles Clippers
  5. Los Angeles Lakers
  6. Memphis Grizzlies
  7. Portland Trailblazers
  8. Golden State Warriors
  9. Houston Rockets
  10. Denver Nuggets
  11. Phoenix Suns
  12. Sacramento Kings
  13. Minnesota Timberwolves
  14. New Orleans Hornets
  15. Utah Jazz

Western Conference Finals: Oklahoma City Thunder over San Antonio Spurs in six games

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