We're all well aware that the NBA season is a marathon, not a sprint.
Like any marathon however, certain legs in the race are infinitely more important. For example, if a team hits the ground running in the first three weeks of the season, they run the risk of running out of steam for the rest of the year. I'm definitely not looking at you, New Orleans.
Similarly, the halfway mark represents a rather pivotal point in the season. It is now where hot starts and cold slumps have basically negated themselves, allowing teams to fall in their rightful places. Barring major trades and injuries, teams are more or less set in stone for the remainder of the season.
Despite this relative cementing of NBA rosters, it is highly unlikely that the second half of the year will be a mirror image to the first. As demonstrated by the Boston Celtics (before they decided to try in the playoffs) wins in November and December don't necessarily translate into victories in February, March, and April.
With that, let's take a look at the ten most dangerous teams heading into the All-Star break. A mix of the usual suspects combined with some rising squads, none of these teams will be embraced with open arms when they appear on their opponent's schedules.