I say, by product launch that nVidia will tweak the drivers to bench just above the 9700 Pro... I would say by 5%, but not more than 10%.... However, one has to remember that the R350 is scheduled for release shortly thereafter which will again top the FX (I expect).
I am actually hoping for a bandwidth/speed war. I think it is great that nVidia has competition with ATI and vice/versa. We can expect a slew of cards trying to top each other every 6 months (though some news reports say this may be shortened to 4 for a while -- that could prove interesting).