With the calendar now flipped to 2014, we could be entering one of the most transformative years in NBA history.
In February, David Stern, who's been at the helm of the league for the past 30 years, will be stepping down as commissioner. Replacing Stern, who's widely considered to be the best commissioner in all of professional sports, will be no easy task for Adam Silver, his current deputy.
We also may bear witness to the first three-peat since the early-2000s Los Angeles Lakers, and, conversely, an unparalleled race to the bottom among the league's "tanking" teams. The 2014 NBA draft class, presumably starring Andrew Wiggins, Julius Randle and Jabari Parker, is shaping up to be the most loaded infusion of young talent for the NBA since 2003.
After looking back on the best and worst of 2013, it's time to look ahead. These eight storylines, ranked in reverse order in terms of lasting impact on the league and surprise potential, will be the ones to watch for in 2014.
Note: All statistics are current through games played on Jan. 1, 2014; all records are current through games played on Jan. 2.