Wild Wild West or Weak Weak East?

9 02 2012

The Western Conference is – once again – looking to be much more competitive than the Eastern Conference.

The East currently has seven teams above .500 and the other eight teams (including the New York Knicks) haven’t shown any sort of consistency all year. The West, conversely, has 11 teams with a record of .500 or better. While the 11th seed in the East (New Jersey Nets) is 13 1/2 games back from the top-ranked Chicago Bulls, the 11th seed in the West (Minnesota Timberwolves) only sits 7 1/2 games back from the top-seeded Oklahoma City Thunder.

This discrepancy between the two conferences can’t seem to change. The past four NBA seasons, the Western Conference’s eighth seed has averaged 10 more wins than the Eastern Conference’s eighth seed. If that comparison is expanded to the past ten seasons, they still average 6.6 more wins. During these 10 years, the West has always had an eighth seed with a winning record (including two years when all eight playoffs teams reached at least 50 wins) while the East has had six seasons when a team with losing records represented their eighth best team in the conference.

I don’t understand the reason behind these odd statistics, but it can’t be denied that a pattern is occurring every year. Unless some radical player movement to the dreaded bottom of the East (New Jersey, Toronto, Detroit, Washington, Charlotte) takes place this next summer, expect this imbalance to continue for many years to come.

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One response

9 02 2012
Drew

Wow, I did not know it was this bad! Crazy how dominant the West has been… great stats!

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