Don't write off Lakers
It's still kind of hard to write off the Lakers. You have to think a team with Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash and Dwight Howard will at some point get things together. The Lakers will be the surprise team of the second half of the season because they simply have too much talent to miss the playoffs. We've seen it in spurts, now expect them to sustain it for long stretches. The key for them, just like every other team, is staying healthy.
As for slippage, it's likely a tie between the Knicks and Nets. Both had strong starts, followed by inconsistency. The Knicks have owned the Heat but are still...