Who can stop the Golden State Warriors from being the 2018 NBA Champions?
Who will be the 2018 NBA Champions is something everyone has an opinion on. The NBA season is at our doorstep and Steph Curry's Golden State Warriors are again raging favourites.
Who are the teams that stand a chance at stopping them?
Commentator Jeff Van Gundy send an ominous warning to the NBA with seven simple words recently: "The Warriors are going to win forever".
And after claiming their second NBA championship in three seasons in 2016/17, few could argue that point - at least for the immediate future.
The blocks are all there for an ongoing dynasty, with the likes of Kevin Durant, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green forming the nucleus of a superteam on the same page as the mighty Chicago Bulls of the 1990s.
But there are 29 other teams in the NBA and seven of the games biggest names traded around in a rare flurry of market madness. In light of this, we run the rule over the contenders that can crash the Golden State Warriors party for the title of the 2018 NBA Champions.
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This season is likely to be the great LeBron James' last, as least in Cleveland colours.
And if the Cavs are going to have success this season, his fingerprints are going to have to be all over it. Because the club's other superstar Kyrie Irving is gone, requesting and granted a release to move to Boston. He was sick of living in James' shadow and wants to forge his own success, leaving James as the go-to man once again for Cleveland.
Despite that loss, Cleveland run deep and remember, they are the only team to put a fly in the ointment of the Warriors in recent years with championship success of their own.
Isaiah Thomas' recovery from a hip injury will a critical barometer for the Cavaliers, as they will need his height to complement Derrick Rose to seriously push Golden State.
The LeBron James possible movement hype will follow this team all season as well, which they need to push aside to remain focused and successful.
So much hangs on the success of their shock new signing Kyrie Irving. He has made no secret of the fact that he wants to build his own legacy, not just complement LeBron James.
Time to walk the walk here at Boston, where massive things will be expected of him. Irving can be the best ballhandler in the league and is one of the kings of clutch plays, can he be the architect of an unlikely Boston championship?
How he adapts to his new teammates will play a big role. Just four of last season's starters remain at the club so combinations need to be built quickly.
Boston run small too, with Aussie Aron Baynes the tallest at 6-foot-10. Defence and rebounding will be the issue, not scoring.
After the failed Dwight Howard experiment, the Rockets have not their the grass grow under their feet. A recruitment coup will see Chris Paul join James Harden in a lethal back court that should see Houston lift another gear in 2017/17.
The duo have a lot of talent in support, are capable of raining threes at will and should prove enough to claim top spot in the Southwest Division and give the Warriors a run for their money. The Rockets wing defence matches up against the Warriors well and there is talent to burn in this roster. Perhaps the greatest threat to the Warriors dynasty.
San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs need to head off their threat in their own division before daring to dream bigger. But could having the Rockets in their division make them stronger in the playoffs?
This is a Spurs side that won the championship in 2014, a memory washed away for many by the success of the Warriors and Cavaliers ever since.
The Spurs had a 60-win season in 2016/17, but were ultimately swept 4-0 by the Warriors. A host of new faces have been brought in to take the club to the next level, and round 1 draft pick Derrick White could be a part of this team from the first whistle.
Rudy Gay, Joffrey Lauvergne and Brandon Paul have been added. Whether they will gain or lose ground remains to be seen.
Oklahoma City Thunder
If championships were won on paper, then the off-season success of the Thunder would have put them well in contention.
Carmelo Anthony and Paul George have been welcomed to the club and superstar Russell Westbrook has been retained. But, as the pre-season match against NBL side Melbourne showed, there is still much gelling to do.
The Thunder came within an inch of being upset by little brother from Australia, and despite being a pre-season match it did highlight that this is a team that will need to build as the season goes on.
They have the big three to match the Warriors, but Anthony and George are free agents again next season.
Success must come this season to retain them and build for the future, how deep into the playoffs that run can go remains to be seen.