Similar story with Denver. Lots of athletic guys (Lawson, Galinari. Igoudala, Brewer) who can score and fly on the court, plus a great nickname and all-time hustle guy, Kenneth "The Manimal" Faried.

There's also the crazy and freakishly talented JaVale McGee, who is a blessing to the NBA. Google him and you will be filled with hours of endless entertainment.

But the most intriguing of the bunch? The Rockets. Clutch City finally has a clutch guy again in James Harden.

The Beard has been a beast (26 PPG, 5 APG, 5 RPG), but Houston has five more guys who average double figures and even some dude named Jeremy Lin is having a nice season.

This group is learning to play together and will only get better. Imagine Houston or the Lakers as 7 and 8 seeds in the West? Madness.

That's it for Part 1. Friday's Part 2 will focus on the West contenders, and include me inserting my foot into my mouth. Stay tuned!