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Because people are bound to question the logic here despite the previous description, here are a few notable causes that missed the cut.
(P.S. That's a good thing.)
Nice Try, Guys
Trust me, they have a direction.
Al Horford's absence is killer, but Paul Millsap and Jeff Teague will still help this team clinch a playoff berth. Atlanta also has some nice draft selections coming its way (thanks, Brooklyn), and there's this Lucas Nogueira guy you should familiarize yourself with, too.
I get it; they're bad. They're also all-in on this season, and while they're fleeced of future assets and Brook Lopez is done for the year, they still have enough talent to contend in the woeful Eastern Conference.
Doesn't mean they will, but you get the point.
Two words: Luol Deng.
Three more words: Goodbye, LeBron James.
Josh Smith infuriates me as much as anyone, but Andre Drummond is the business.
New York Knicks
James Dolan may not have valuable first-round draft picks or any sense of how to run an NBA team, but the Knicks can still compete in this league.
Also, dreaming of 2015 counts as a plan. Unfortunately.
Not that they're in a particularly good situation, but they do have cap space coming their way and are fighting for a playoff spot in a tough Western Conference.
Also, building around Monta Ellis is an actual thing now.
Finally. No-Man's Land used to be their stomping ground. Now, they're thankfully tanking.
It's about damn time.
They most definitely tried to tank but failed. Don't listen to anyone who says otherwise. But they're also in a unique situation where they can play for the present while planning for the future.
Big things are coming Phoenix's way. Big, big things.