Oklahoma Thunder v. New Orleans Hornets.
These two younger teams look to battle all season for playoff positioning. The Hornets have gotten off to a surprising start of the 2010-2011 season. And, everyone is picking the Thunder to move up in the West this year.
So, I expect both these two teams to battle each other fiercely. Since the Hornets went up to Oklahoma for a season after Hurricane Katrina (see picture of CP3 above), we can call this one the beginning of a rivalry.
New York Knicks v. New Jersey Nets.
While one or both of these teams might not even make the playoffs, this matchup looks to be exciting either way. That's because both teams have improved from last year.
It will be fun to watch if Manhattan or its step-sister in Jersey take top honors this year for bragging rights to the greater New York/New Jersey area. We’ll call this one the start of a rivalry, with a question mark.
Dallas Mavericks v. Houston Rockets.
This rivalry, another battle for Texas bragging rights, doesn’t make the Top 10 because we’re not sure how good Houston will be this year with returning center Yao Ming limited to only 24 minutes a game.
We know Dallas will be up there this year and, in the past, this is always a Texas-style shootout when these two teams play. We’ll see what happens this year with this Texas tradition.