Feb 14, 2013; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Miami Heat forward LeBron James (6) handles the ball against Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant (35) during the second half at the Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

NBA: Which Teams Are Favorites To Win the 2013 Championship?

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I’m sure many already know which teams are likely going to win the 2013 NBA championship, but there are some dark horses that could come from behind and swoop the top seeds to head for the title. In fact, the Warriors and the Grizzlies both beat the first seeds a couple years ago: the Grizzlies, however, were actually good afterwards. Which teams are likely to win it all, and which teams have a chance of getting their foots in the door?

Sorry, Spurs fans! Although the Spurs are the best team in the NBA, record-wise, I feel as if they need one last piece in order to compete for a title. Don’t worry, however, they’ll find that piece soon.

Miami Heat: FAVORITES

Defending champions. Enough said. LeBron James and his super team of Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh is one of the best players in NBA history, skill-wise, already. He’s shooting at an incredible 54% from the field, and has scored 30 or more points in his past 5 games. He’s really taking on a new level and playing as well as Jordan did when he was in his prime. Along with Wade, James is unstoppable. One of them makes the clutch shots, and the other takes over the game: they alternate with these roles. Life in Miami is great right now, and the Heat are most favored to win.

New York Knicks: DARK HORSES

The Knicks? Yes, Carmelo Anthony is actually trying this year, and has been playing incredible. Just when he comes back from injury, he scores 42 points. Melo is scoring points in bunches and is really hard to stop. Not to mention his old, but gold roster in JR Smith, Raymond Felton, and fellow all-star Tyson Chandler. The Knicks have only faltered a couple times this season, but other than that have been pretty consistent. Watch out, Miami!

Oklahoma City Thunder: FAVORITES

What most fans are hoping to see is a rematch of last year, LeBron James and Kevin Durant, two of the best players in the league. Durant is a pure scorer, and what he needs to realize is that he needs to take over in the playoffs, no questions asked. Until he usurps Russell Westbrook for control of the ball, the Thunder will not flourish. Westbrook cannot be the one to take all the big shots, it has to be Durant. Nevertheless, Westbrook is averaging a career high 8.3 assists per game and seems like a real point guard now. If he really wants to get a ring, he needs to give his teammate Durant the ball and back off.

Memphis Grizzlies: DARK HORSES

The Dark Horses! The Grizzlies are having one of their best seasons in their franchise, and ever since trading Rudy Gay, they’ve had some

Jan 2, 2013; Boston, MA, USA; Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol (33) and point guard Mike Conley (11) celebrate during the second half against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

success. Now with Zach Randolph controlling the team and guard Mike Conley not far behind, the Grizzlies are taking over and looking to be one of the best squads out there. Yes, they have to deal with the Thunder, the Clippers, and the Spurs, but I’m more than confident that they can power their way passed all those teams. The Grizzlies are going to be an interesting team to watch: let’s see how they rebound from their early exit in last year’s playoffs.

Los Angeles Clippers: SECOND FAVORITE

So far this season, the Clippers have had the longest winning streak in the NBA, which went all the way up to 16. Blake Griffin and Chris Paul is a lethal combination, but you cannot forget about Jamal Crawford or Eric Bledsoe. With all these all-stars on the Clippers roster, they will be making a very deep playoff run. They need to look out for injury, however, as it has been plaguing them all season long.

Los Angeles Lakers: FOOT IN THE DOOR

What? There’s no way the Lakers are going to make the playoffs, just no way! I know that it seems impractical that the Lakers steal the last seed from the Rockets or Jazz, but ladies and gentlemen, Kobe Bryant finally has this team organized. Now that he’s passing the ball, and the Lakers are less selfish, they’re actually winning some games. They’re not going to catch up to Golden State, but they may have just enough in the tank to catch up to Houston. Just wait, they’re coming.

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Tags: Los Angeles Clippers Los Angeles Lakers Memphis Grizzlies Miami Heat New York Knicks Oklahoma City Thunder

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