18. New Orleans Pelicans
Zion Williamson puts up superstar numbers when healthy, but has only played 114 games in his four NBA seasons. The Pelicans have talent, but the Western Conference is loaded. If everything fell right, New Orleans could make a deep playoff run. The odds of it happening feel slim.
Verdict: Injuries shut their window, but a glimmer of hope remains.
17. San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs will not be in contention this season, but Victor Wembanyama is a historically great prospect. Fans have already seen his potential during the preseason, and the best is still yet to come from the 7’3 big man. The hype is real. Wembanyama will be a superstar if he can stay healthy, and San Antonio will be back in contention over the next three years.
Verdict: Small glimmer of light beneath the window, which is soon-to-be wide open.
16. Sacramento Kings
The Kings finished third in the Western Conference last season but were bounced in the first round of the playoffs by the Golden State Warriors. Sacramento fans will call this hate, but do they have a true superstar?
Domantas Sabonis and De’Aaron Fox are both All-Stars and made third-team All-NBA last season. It takes a top-ten player to win a championship, and unfortunately, the Kings do not have one.