It's possibly pointless to even talk about the 2017-18 NBA season since the Warriors — as long as Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry stay with the team and no more than one player sustains a major injury next year — will win another championship next season.
The Warriors are an unfair team. They did everything by completely legal means, and they play beautiful basketball. But if you enjoy competition and the notion of a fair fight, you can't love that part of the Warriors. You can love them for their art, but not for their sport.
So 29 teams are battling for second place next year — or more aptly, 15 Eastern Conference teams are battling for second place and the other 14 Western Conference teams are battling for the bronze.
Lest you think it's preposterous to think about the Wolves in the playoffs, an online betting site is offering even odds on Minnesota being the most likely non-playoff team in 2017 to make it next year.
Read Michael Rand's blog at startribune.com/randball. firstname.lastname@example.org.