AOL.com's Preseason NBA Power Rankings: 2. San Antonio Spurs
We're almost home.
Just two more spots remain in our 2015-16 preseason NBA power rankings, with the season tipping off in a matter of days. At No. 3 on Thursday, we had LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, coming off an NBA Finals loss.
You might be familiar with who we have at No. 2. They tend to hang around this area of these types of rankings often.
By now, it's pretty clear: The San Antonio Spurs are going to be good forever.
Well, at least for the foreseeable future. With LaMarcus Aldridge locked up for the next four seasons, San Antonio is in amazing shape to contend once Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili call it quits, possibly as soon as next summer.
With Duncan and Aldridge, the Spurs will deploy perhaps the most offensively gifted big-man duo in the NBA. There will certainly be an adjustment on Aldridge's part, having averaged 18.6 shots per game over the last five seasons. But under Gregg Popovich, the 30-year-old should thrive in due time.
The team also added David West on a steal of a veteran's minimum contract, and re-signed Danny Green to a long-term deal. Kawhi Leonard will certainly look to build on a career-high 16.5 points-per-game season in 2014-15, adding not only efficient scoring but stellar defense as well.
San Antonio has the potential to finish as a top-five team in both offense and defense -- something they've never accomplished under Gregg Popovich. The team was seventh in offense last season and second in defense, and their personnel is even stronger this year.
They lost Tiago Splitter, which may negatively impact defense at the rim -- but Aldridge's scoring ability should be able to counteract this loss, and then some. Also gone is Corey Joseph, who signed with his hometown Toronto Raptors, which could hurt the Spurs' point guard depth should Tony Parker go down with injury for an extended period of time.
San Antonio is among the best the league has to offer -- but the rest of the West's heavyweights can say the same. How exactly the top four playoff seeds will fill out in the West is anybody's guess. But if the Spurs compete the way their roster is capable of, they'll have as good a chance as anybody.
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