I got a text from my college roommate saying “8 seed in east 30 wins, 8 seed in west 40 wins! haha” I’ve seen the articles and heard the talk and like a coward, I’ve been silent. No longer!
The NBA’s Eastern conference is better than the Western conference. Yes, I said it!
Let’s start with the simple argument: who is reining NBA Champs? Some Eastern Conference team in green (Boston Celtics) that was taken to seven games twice by Conference opponents (one of which had a losing record), and made short work of the Western Conference Champs.
Exhibit B. Yes, the eighth seed in the Western Conference has a better win total, but the assumption many people are making is that they are feasting on Easter Conference foes. This is incorrect.
The Western Conference teams’ win columns are padded by the presence of five teams that currently couldn’t beat a dog with a stick, even if their initials were Mike Vick. Clippers, T’Wolves, Kings, Grizzlies, and Oklahoma City are horrible.
If you get to play the likes of those scrubs four times a year (which the western conference teams do), then that is an automatic 20 wins.
You get 62 more games. Go .500 in those and you have just won a total of 51 ballgames folks. All you need to do is beat the worst teams in the NBA consistently.
Now that we’ve handled the argument with numbers and logic, let’s get into the subjective.
When you compare what the teams really “are” that are below the eight-seed today. In the East, you have teams that are actually close to contention and on the rise.
In the West, you have teams that have flat-out thrown in the towel (Kings, Clippers) or are two and three positions away from being an average NBA team (OKC, Minnesota, Memphis).
Surprise, they all are within two games of the eight-slot, and all these teams are one player away from being pretty good.
If I said that any of the bottom seven in the West would contend or even be .500, you would’ve laughed your butt off. Be honest. Clippers let Brand go to the 6ers, Golden State let Baron Davis go to Clippers, and the others just suck.
If you put any of these five teams (six if you count Golden State) in the Eastern Conference, it wouldn’t make a bit of difference. They would still finish with about 20-25 wins.
Lack of equal competition is why the Western Conference looks to be dominant to the untrained eye. But our highly educated Bleacher Report audience now knows better.