Off-Season Upgrades Have Mavs As No. 3 in NBA's West

By my math, the Mavericks are now the third-best team in the NBA’s Western Conference.

It means with the additions of Tyson Chandler and Chandler Parsons that they should finish behind only the Spurs and Thunder in the standings and get home-court advantage in the first round of the playoffs. And it means that, yes, the bar of expectations will be raised next season.

The Spurs remain the solid No. 1 in the West, as they will return the nucleus from last year’s title team. And with the trio of Kevin Durant-Russell Westbrook-Serge Ibaka, the Thunder are legit championship contenders. But I can see Dallas leap-frogging everyone else, including the Blazers and Clippers, neither of which significantly upgraded their rosters this summer.

The Mavs have more depth than Los Angeles, and more offensive firepower than almost every other team.

Thus the bar is set: 55 wins and home-court in the first round of the playoffs. Anything else next season will be a Mavs’ disappointment.

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.

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