How does anyone make it out of the West?


Just recently, the Denver Nuggets defeated the reigning champions, the one, and only Golden State Warriors. Nuggets’ Gary Harris led the team in scoring, with 28 points, and some clutch offensive and defensive possessions in the late fourth quarter. Before the season had started, the Nuggets placed 10th in the Official Power Rankings compared to the Warriors’ 1st place. Surprisingly, only 8 of the top 15 teams in the power rankings were from the Western Conference, but in now in the second week of play, that number has surged to 10.

This poses the great question of “How does a team make it to the playoffs in the West?”, for which the answer is a little complicated. In my opinion, the standings in the West will be as follows.

1. Golden State Warriors
2. Houston Rockets
3. Utah Jazz
4. San Antonio Spurs
5. New Orleans Pelicans
6. Denver Nuggets
7. Portland Trail Blazers
8. Los Angeles Lakers


The main reason I picked these teams includes the team’s mindset, star power, and work in the offseason. The two major teams that have been cut from the list are the Oklahoma City Thunder, and the Minnesota Timberwolves. So far, OKC has shown that they greatly rely on the stats that Westbrook and George produce, instead of improving their bench. The Minnesota Timberwolves have come into this season with a negative mindset, and the team may also reflect the potential loss of All-NBA Third Team Star Jimmy Butler. But the Western Conference is full of surprises, as we have seen with the Nuggets’ win, to possibly make the NBA Finals two new teams this year.

Arnav Hiremath
Twitter: @onlyarnav


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