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Western Conference is wide WIDE open

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None of the remaining West playoff teams has made a recent Finals

Denver Nuggets v Phoenix Suns Photo by Barry Gossage/NBAE via Getty Images

Due to many factors, most of which were outside LeBron James and Stephen Curry’s control or rather in spite of their efforts, the final four teams in the Western Conference have zero experience pushing their way to the NBA Finals, let alone winning one.

It’s a passing of the torch.

None of the Utah Jazz, Denver Nuggets, Phoenix Suns or Los Angeles Clippers franchises has ever won an NBA title.

And, including the Dallas Mavericks, none of the current iterations of these West teams has ever even sniffed a Finals. The Mavericks title 10 years ago had Rick Carlisle as the coach, so they have that going for them.

Of the current rosters, only the Nuggets have made it as far as the Western Conference Finals, in fact. Compared to that team, the Nuggets are now missing Jamal Murray (knee) and Jerami Grant and even Torrey Craig, while adding Aaron Gordon and JaMychael Green to beef up their front court.

The Suns current path to the NBA Finals is through the Denver Nuggets, then the winner of the Jazz vs. Mavericks/Clippers (Game 6 is tonight, Mavericks leading series 3-2).

The Suns lost two of three games to the Nuggets in the regular season this year. The Suns win was very early in the season, and the two losses went to overtime and double-overtime.

But thanks to a better overall regular season record, the Suns will have home court advantage which is a huge boost to their chances. They host Games 1 and 2 next week in Phoenix before hitting altitude in Denver.

Most betting outlets have the Suns as favorites over the Nuggets in round two, and now have the second-best odds to win the whole West (Utah has the best odds).

Should be a fun series!