“The NBA is so predictable.” “We all know Golden State is going to win.” “KD is a snake.” Another year, another dominant Warriors squad. In fact, this 2017-18 one might be the best yet. The Warriors were able to retain their core and key role players, while also going out and bringing in proven veterans Omri Casspi and Nick Young to add to their already deep bench. The four all-stars (Durant, Curry, Thompson, and Green) will now have a whole year of chemistry under their belts, and the team as a whole will be fueled by the goal of going back-to-back. So the Warriors are your 2018 NBA Champions, right? Not quite. During this exciting and unpredictable offseason, there is no question that opposing GMs are trying to build rosters that can compete with the Warriors. Oklahoma City, Houston, Minnesota, and Denver were all able to obtain superstars through trade or free agency. 14 of ESPN’s top 15 players are now in the Western Conference, and although these teams may not be enough to stop the Warriors, they will definitely slow them down to the point where things may get interesting. The Warriors 82 game season will be tougher than any other it has played during the last 3 years. The Western Conference is as good as it has ever been, and each team will be trying their hardest to dethrone the reigning champs, and arguably the most hated team in the NBA. The Warriors are not the youthful team that we watched in the finals just three years ago, and an injury to one of its top four players could spell major trouble. If the Warriors are going to make the NBA Finals, they’re going to have to battle their way through the Western Conference one series at a time. Imagine if they had to play the Pelicans in the first round, the Thunder in the second, and the Rockets in the conference finals. By the time they get to the NBA finals, they’re going to be exhausted and going to have to face a Cavaliers or Celtics team that just finished a cakewalk through the lousy Eastern Conference. They will be much more rested than the battle ridden Warriors. Keep in mind, the Spurs held a 23 point lead against the Warriors before their lone superstar Kawhi Leonard got hurt, sealing the sweep for Golden State, so it’s not like the Warriors were that far from a potential competitive series. We can only wonder what will happen when they go against teams that are even better, and even more motivated. So quit bumming about the Warriors and get excited, because this coming season is going to be unlike any other.