Here's a little secret about the NBA:
The goal is for teams (yes, even the Bucks) to win the NBA championship.
It's shocking, I know.
Now, how that gets accomplished seems to be a foggy formula. Some people think you just need to go sign the best players you can and throw them together to figure out how to work it out. Other people think you need to get strong by building through the draft to build your core. And then there is the whole concept of what market you're in and how you adjust that strength/weakness into building up your franchise.
We've seen many different strategies work over the years. The Heat went the free-agency route, while the Thunder have become contenders by just drafting intelligently and being patient with their own progress. We've seen the Lakers poach All-NBA talent from teams unable to build around their own star players.
We have no idea which teams will or won't put it together over the next five years (when the CBA will probably expire and we'll be given new tweaks to the current system). But what we can do is figure out which teams in this span have the potential to become true contenders for the NBA title and which ones have a roster that appears to be sputtering out.
Here are the teams with the best potential from 30 up to the top spot.