Power Ranking: Western Conference Contenders and Pretenders

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15. Phoenix
14. Utah
13. Kings

April 14, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) reacts after he was called for a technical foul in the first quarter against the Houston Rockets at the Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The #TankForWiggins campaign is already starting, and while the 76ers hold the early lead, the Suns are a certain dark-horse candidate. No one is sure how the Dragic-Bledsoe back court will fair, while Michael Beasley may be on his way out after another arrest for drug-related charges. If Beasley leaves, their #1 scoring option from last season is gone, leaving a starting line-up of Dragic-Bledsoe-Butler-Morris-Gortat. That’s #1 pick material


For the Jazz, they took on the massive contracts of Richard Jefferson and Andris Biedrins for a draft pick. Nothing says “We’re tanking” more than that. Their young core could provide them with some solid play, but their lack of depth will bite them. With multiple first-rounders and cap space next summer, they could mold themselves back into contenders.


The Kings finally rid themselves of the Maloof brothers and immediately started making smarter decisions. They swapped Tyreke Evans for Grevis Vasquez, who is a better fit into the offense. However, they just aren’t that talented and can use an influx of talent. The high draft pick they’ll likely end up with will be a good start.

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