Sports Illustrated predicts Warriors fourth in Pacific Division, 11th in Western Conference

Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE

Sports Illustrated predicts that the Golden State Warriors will finish fourth in the Pacific Division and 11th in the Western Conference in its annual NBA Preview issue.

Sports Illustrated has released the predictions from its October 29th 2012-13 NBA Preview issue and offer a far more pessimistic outlook for the Golden State Warriors than many fans have been hoping for.

Ian Thomsen predicts that the Warriors will finish fourth in the Pacific Division and 11th in the Western Conference.

WESTERN CONFERENCE

Northwest Division

Pacific Division

Southwest Division

Oklahoma City Thunder (1)

Los Angeles Lakers (2)

San Antonio Spurs (3)

Denver Nuggets (4)

Los Angeles Clippers (5)

Memphis Grizzlies (6)

Utah Jazz (8)

Phoenix Suns (10)

Dallas Mavericks (7)

Minnesota Timberwolves (9)

Golden State Warriors (11)

New Orleans Hornets (12)

Portland Trail Blazers (13)

Sacramento Kings (15)

Houston Rockets (14)

The Dwight Howard will grace the cover of the issue and Thomsen predicts that the Lakers will beat the Oklahoma City Thunder to represent the West in the 2013 NBA Finals though falling to the defending champion Miami Heat.

What might stand out in these predictions are the Dallas Mavericks and Minnesota Timberwolves: with injuries to what Zach Lowe of Grantland has called "tentpole superstars" he suggested that the Warriors could be one of the big winners of the preseason.

And I would find it rather disappointing if the Warriors finished behind the Phoenix Suns, but there's enough uncertainty around how good that team can be this season that I'll just shrug and move on - ultimately, the Warriors' standing in the Western Conference, with or without fallen tentpoles in other cities, depends on the health of center Andrew Bogut and point guard Stephen Curry.

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