Separating NBA Title Pretenders from Legit Contenders Heading into 2013

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Separating NBA Title Pretenders from Legit Contenders Heading into 2013
Marc Serota/Getty Images

We are but two months into the NBA season, yet the picture of who is going to end up playing in the NBA Finals is starting to look clearer and clearer.

There seem to be a few teams we can already rule out after some preseason projections had them high on everyone's list, like the Denver Nuggets, but other teams continue to look as murky as they were on day one, like the Los Angeles Lakers.

Surprises have come from everywhere, the Atlanta Hawks and New York Knicks populate the top of the Eastern Conference, and disappointments have had their fair share of time in the media, as the Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers continue to struggle.

What do we know compared to two months ago? A lot more actually.

The James Harden trade didn't kill the Oklahoma City Thunder, the Los Angeles Clippers are the best team in Hollywood and Danny Granger is more important than we thought.

However, we still don't know exactly how far the league's best teams can make it through this jumble of an NBA season.

So, instead of sitting back and waiting for it all to wash over us, it seems like a good team to take everything in and determine who can and who can't win an NBA title based on what we've seen so far.

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