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Yesterday we unveiled our NBA Eastern Conference Preview: Teams Explained By Classic Hip-Hop Songs. Today, we continue our look at the Western Conference. Will the Lakers make the finals? Are the Thunder the team to beat? Is Mark Cuban really a government experiment? Here are our predictions for the season and some classic hip-hop videos that sum each team up perfectly.
Memphis Grizzlies: "Danger" - Mystikal
There is no better song to describe this team. Dangerous. Everyone's back but O.J. Mayo, and that won't hold this steam-train back. Much like Mystikal, this team represents the Dirty South and they'll continue to show how deep they dig for wins.
Houston Rockets: "My Name Is" - Eminem
Welcome to Houston, Jeremy Lin. Or should we call you "Lin Shady." Lin's new team will allow him to flourish into the PG we know he can be and lead the League in puns all at the same time.
Dallas Mavericks: "Slippin'" - DMX
It's gut check time for Mark Cuban and the Mavs. Dirk's still there, but where is this team headed? The dust is starting to pile up on that 2011 trophy as we're beginning to see that Dallas might not be the glamorous destination Cuban makes it out to be for NBA players.
New Orleans Hornets: "Ready or Not" - Fugees
It's the beginning of the Anthony Davis era and we are ready. He may not make an immediate impact, but the Hornets are drastically better with him on the team and will transition out of the CP3 era much easier now.
San Antonio Spurs: "Quality Control" - Jurassic 5
We love the Spurs. We honestly do. No matter what, they refuse to step aside and give this league over to another team (even though it's already happened, but shhh, don't tell them that).
Denver Nuggets: "Bring the Pain" -Method Man
The Nuggets seem poised to really make an impact. The trade for Iggy only increased their chances of being the third or fourth best team in the West. We're getting a Rocky Mountain contact high just from reading about them.
Minnesota Timberwolves: "Can I Kick It?" - A Tribe Called Quest
Any day now the T-Wolves will wake up and realize they are better than people give them credit for. Any day now. Yup...um...still waiting...whenever you guys are ready. Kevin? It is time.
Oklahoma City Thunder: "Da Goodness" - Redman and Method Man
We can't think of another song to perfectly assign to the Thunder. Smooth, slick and a little bit of edge. Yup. A year older, a year wiser and a little bit hungrier. An almost flawless team except for the fact the Lakers improved, like, 1000% in the Dwight trade.
Portland Trail Blazers: "Get By" -Talib Kweli
A team that held so much promise is now just kinda getting by. Almost certainly bound for the lottery, the Blazers are in transition. Stay tuned.
Utah Jazz: "Still Not A Player” - Big Punisher Ft. Joe
The Utah Jazz are starting Al Jefferson at Center with the Turk backing him up. Unless Derrick Favors makes a gigantic leap forward and Paul Millsap continues to bang the boards we don't see this team doing much down low.
Golden State Warriors: "It's Tricky" - Run DMC
Is it possible the Warriors can sneak into the playoffs as an eighth seed? Will Head Coach Mark Jackson let them run? Is Stephen Curry a true PG? This team...so many questions.
Los Angeles Clippers: "Shut 'Em Down" - Onyx
Let the games begin! CP3 and Blake are like the Cirque du Soleil of the NBA. They dazzle us with their dishes and dunks. As a team in the upper ranks, it's hard to ever imagine a generation of fans growing up and not knowing what a laughingstock this franchise used to be.
Los Angeles Lakers: "Ballin’ Out Of Control" - Jermaine Dupri Ft. Nate Dogg
Dwight Howard has arrived along with Steve Nash to go along with Kobe, Pau Gasol and Metta. This is a basketball team to be reckoned with. They’d be an odds-on title favorite if it weren't for injury issues, but this is the team that is truly scary.
Phoenix Suns: "Keep Ya Head Up" - 2Pac
Cheer up Suns fans. It was a good while it lasted. Look on the bright side. Now that Steve Nash is a Laker, you'll be able to watch him finally compete for that ring he's always wanted. It'll be like seeing your son go off to college and get his degree. We're sure he'll return when you retire his number. For now, hang in there and look ahead to the future.
Sacramento Kings: "Goin' Back To Cali" - LL Cool J
To call this team "Kings" is a huge stretch. This is a traveling reality show and we can't wait for the book about this dysfunctional season to come out in five or 10 years. The only bright spot is that the Kings will be in California for another season. However, the Seattle City Council just approved a new deal for an arena to be built there. So, um, yeah...