The top half of the Western Conference Playoff bracket is made up of teams that have very few weaknesses. I just hop this year we get to see them battle at full strength. It will be interesting to see which teams really care about what seed they get, and which teams rest guys and just want to get into the playoffs healthy.
Today we will talk about our projected 3rd and 4th Seeds.
If you’re wondering where your team is projected, check out benchpointsblog.com for the previews of the bubble teams and seeds 5-8 for both conferences.
4.) San Antonio Spurs
Last Year’s Finish: 6th Seed
Projected Starting Lineup:
PG: Tony Parker
SG: Danny Green
SF: Kawhi Leonard
PF: LaMarcus Aldridge
C: Tim Duncan
6th Man: Manu Ginobili, David West
You might as well pick a number out of a hat to pick how many wins the Spurs will have this year. Who knows how seriously they will take the regular season. With the additions of Aldridge and West. The Spurs have as much talent as ever. Coach Pop may rest Duncan, Parker, and Ginoblil for every road game. He may tell all his players to only shoot with their left hand during games on Tuesdays. All we know for sure is that he will give the best interviews in all the land.
Can they stay healthy? Because of the age of many of their stars, health is the biggest question for the Spurs. If Kawhi Leonard, Aldridge, and Danny Green can shoulder the load so the old men can take a few nights off, the Spurs could be healthy and dangerous come playoff time. When veterans like David West give up $10 million dollars just so they can join your team, you must be doing something right.
- Golden State Warriors
Last year’s finish: 1st seed, won NBA Championship
Projected Starting Lineup:
PG: Stephen Curry
SG: Klay Thompson
SF: Harrison Barnes
PF: Draymond Green
C: Andrew Bogut
6th Man: Andre Iguodala
The Golden State Warriors had a historic season last year. They won 67 games. They had the leagues top offense and defense. Curry won MVP. Oh and they won the Championship. No matter what they do this year, short of winning another championship, it’s going to seem a bit disappointing.
The Warriors basically bring back the same team. The only major change is David Lee is gone and Jason Thompson is in. You can look at it both ways. The same team is back so they already have the chemistry from last year. Or the same team is back and they are going to be complacent until the playoffs roll around.
X Factor? The Disease of Me. Pat Riley came up with term and I think it’s fascinating. It refers to a defending champion having a rough year because everyone that was all about the team the year before is now looking to get their own stats, or their own big endorsement deal. All this has a negative impact on team chemistry and negative impact on wins and losses. If the Warriors can avoid the Disease of Me, they look more than ready to defend their title.