On Monday, we unveiled our projected Eastern Conference standings for 2014-15. Today, our Summer Forecast takes a look at how the Western Conference stacks up after a busy offseason. Will the defending champion Spurs finish with the West's best record again?
OUR NEW PREDICTION ENGINE
These Summer Forecast predictions are powered by ESPN Forecast.
For our results, we surveyed our ESPN Forecast panel. We'll announce one team every half-hour (from 1 to 15), starting at noon ET.
During the next two weeks, we'll also roll out our predictions for the 2013-14 rookie of the year, best newcomer, worst newcomer, MVP, conference champions and NBA champion. In addition, we'll examine which teams will make the biggest turnarounds this season and which teams could be in for the most turmoil.
Without further ado, here's how the West will shake out in the regular season:
Projected 2014-15 Western Conference standings
|RANK||TEAM||W||L||PCT||'14 W||'14 L||'14 PCT|
|Oklahoma City Thunder||58||24||.707||59||23||.720|
| @godmonusa: Good choice because the Spurs would not have been in the Finals if Ibaka did not miss the first two games.
@kylekmac: Come on. I'm an OKC fan and there's no way they can be above the Spurs.
|San Antonio Spurs||57||25||.695||62||20||.756|
| @mAhm3d90: #Spurs go 62-20 in an injury-plagued season, dismantle the Heat in 5, bring back EVERYONE and are yet again, underrated. I love it.
@mikewu43: Only way I see Spurs only winning 57 games next season is a lot of injuries. I'll take the over. This is easily a 60 win team.
|Los Angeles Clippers||56||26||.683||57||25||.695|
| @TheNextBlGThing: Won't happen. Lost depth. Got a bad pickup to backup/
side with CP3 in Farmar to replace DC. If CP3 goes down, Clips will slide.
@RilwanAmeen: Still feels like the #Clippers are one piece away from overcoming the Thunder and Spurs to get to the NBA Finals.
|Portland Trail Blazers||51||31||.622||54||28||.659|
|@Matthew_Haddock: Heck no. This team is completely overrated.
@CameronVaughan1: Definitely more than 51 wins, this is the West, and they're gonna beat up on the East.
|@dumbonmars: Mavs at 5? They should be in the top 4 if not 3. And with all this improvement, they definitely won't win only one more game.
@Los512: Not sure they will win 50 unless Parsons has an All-Star season and becomes the No. 2 option behind Ellis.
|@BrandonSimberg: Grizzlies won 50 games last year without Gasol for a long stretch. They should win at least 50 this year, maybe more.
@Committeemanken: The @memgrizz made big improvements with the pickups of Jarnell Stokes and Vince Carter. No way they're a 49-win team.
|Golden State Warriors*||49||33||.598||51||31||.622|
|@samarcusdzija: The Dubs behind the Grizzlies and Mavs? With a revamped bench and a healthy Bogut I see the W's battling for a 4/5 seed.
@27cohen30joey12: The Warriors had more talent than their 6-seed placement last year. Improved bench and Curry getting better? 3-4 seed.
|@ah1144: So the same seed as they were Harden's first year in Houston and no Howard, right? Joke.
@SleepyJordan: No chance Houston wins 49 games. They lost Parsons, Lin, and Asik. Very little talent outside of Howard and Harden.
|@SunsNationPL: Phoenix Suns and 9th seed are like Romeo and Juliet, inseparable. Hope the curse fades this season.
@ApexSteele: They're playoff bound for sure, at least second round.
|New Orleans Pelicans||39||43||.476||34||48||.415|
| @Tommydiculous: Wait what? So Portland is 10 games better than my Pelicans? We got the third-best player in the league. #48Wins
@LtKumar23: Pelicans could have won five more games last year. It's not like our best six players missed over 200 games combined or anything.
|@JuMuJazz: Looks like getting Gallinari, Hickson, McGee, Nate back from injuries isn't enough?! Nuggets were 3rd seed a year ago.
@kengyank: A healthy Nuggets team is a sleeper playoff pick.
|Los Angeles Lakers||30||52||.366||27||55||.329|
|@glanvillain: #ESPNForecast somehow thinks there could be 3 teams worse than the Lakers in the Western Conference. They are wrong.
@m_shantz: It's a sad state of affairs for franchise when it feels like everything needs to go right for #Lakers to finish 12th in West.
| @DoctorSheuss: The West is deep but the Kings are a borderline 40 win team for sure, people will be surprised.
@cliffmartinez16: At the moment, Sacramento is a 30+ win team. Kings are more improved entering this season than last year. Still need solid PF.
| @Slim_Smoochy: I'd hope for higher, but the Jazz ranking is probably spot on. Hopefully Dante progresses quickly!
@jim_neeway: One more year experience for young core, top 5 pick, & new coach with system that seems to fit personnel nets 0 wins 4 #UtahJazz.
| @Dr34mShake: The Wolves probably should be the worst team in the West, but I doubt Flip is going to let things take their natural course.
@TheTWolvesFan: Wolves are a young team but young core of Wiggins, LaVine, Rubio, Dieng & Robinson III will be VERY good in 2-3 years.
|* Teams tied in win total are ordered by decimal rankings from our experts' predictions.|