One conference is going to be better than the other. This is just the way of things. But nowhere in David Stern’s wildest imagination did he ever imagine there would be more of a junior varsity/varsity feel to the whole Eastern Conference/Western Conference split.
Take away the Indiana Pacers and Miami Heat and the Eastern Conference has an aggregate record of 81-143. The third seed in the East is a .500 team. The ninth- and 10th-place squads out West have that beat. Five of the seven Western Conference teams that would currently miss the playoffs in the Western Conference would be not just in, but comfortably so, in the Eastern side.
Perhaps this illustrates it best: At 9-10, the Atlanta Hawks would be the fifth seed in the East. At 9-10, the Minnesota Timberwolves are 13th out of the 15 teams in the West.
And with that, we go to the NBA Best of the Week: