The NBA hierarchy isn't officially set in stone, but the balance of power grows more apparent by the day.
There's a clear-cut line separating the haves from the have nots, but also a group of teams floating amid a gray cloud in between. Those destinies are not yet determined, but making the right call between now and the Feb. 20 trade deadline could be the difference between crashing the championship party or making early vacation plans.
With a reportedly stacked draft class waiting in the wings, there will be no shortage of motivated sellers. There's impactful talent to be had if teams are willing to sacrifice a piece of the future to improve their present outlook.
For some teams, the decision to move or not is a delicate balancing act. For these six, though, it's a no-brainer.
The motives differ considerably, as do the degrees of the potential payoffs. No matter what the end result entails, the means of reaching that goal is the same.
This is the time of year when fortunes can change. They will, too, if these six teams realize there's never been a better time for them to buy.