While Boston sustains their dominant presence in the East and Miami drains its finances to sign a trifecta of NBA heat, do the Los Angeles Lakers really have anything to worry about?
Since winning the 2010 NBA Championship, the Lakers have only developed into a more explosive and intimidating powerhouse of a team.
The addition of Matt Barnes and Steve Blake to the Lakers organization has only made their roster deeper, faster, and more threatening on the defensive and offensive sides of the court.
Without even mentioning the best player and best center in the NBA, Los Angeles boasts a plethora of young, up-and-coming stars who continue to develop their versatility.
From the speedy, dunk-happy Shannon Brown to the colossal (soon to be healthy) Andrew Bynum, the Lakers feature an array of multi-talented players who have gained the kind of crucial experience and confidence that will undoubtedly make them the No.1 contender when next season gets underway.
The one thing that will determine whether or not the Lakers can once more assert their superiority over the NBA will be their ability to play consistently as a team, not simply relying on Kobe Bryant to "do work."