Live BlogThe third team takes the throne as number one in this weeks power rankings. With so many teams still bunched at the top record-wise, many teams are trying to separate themselves from the pack. Teams like the Hawks have jumped inside the top
fifteen along with the Utah Jazz. With another big week the Clippers continue to shock many. Come see who else jumped and fell inside the top fifteen this week.
15. Utah Jazz
One of the most crowded frontcourts in the league became a little clearer as coach Ty Corbin has finally elected to start Derrick Favors at power forward and move Paul Mislap down to small forward. This makes Utah much tougher and bigger as Mislap is an undersized power forward. Utah will continue to be a great rebounding team, third in the league, and even better as this new lineup is set.
Last Week: 20
14. Chicago Bulls
After a hot start, the Bulls are starting to show their true colors. This being that they are not as great as we first believed. This team misses Derrick Rose and as seen in their losses to the Clippers and Trail Blazers, their lacking a go-to-guy when needed. The return of Derrick Rose can not come any sooner for Chicago.
Last Week: 11
13. Dallas Mavericks
Dallas has continued to be great on offense as they are ranked fourth in the league in points-per-game, but they show their age on defense as they are allowing nearly 100-points to their opponents. Darren Collison has filled the point guard slot very nicely in place for Jason Kidd with his up-tempo play.
Last Week: 14
12. Atlanta Hawks
The Hawks continue to win despite the loss of Joe Johnson in the offseason. Although they are doing it without their projected star player Josh Smith, as his sub-par numbers are not going unnoticed. The Hawks even have listened to offers from the Lakers about Pau Gasol, but the Hawks have resisted the deal as of now. For the Hawks to keep up this great play Smith has to start pulling more slack.
Last Week: 16
11. Philadelphia 76ers
The one beneficial development coming out of the on-going Andrew Bynum saga is that Jrue Holiday is becoming a star in this league. Although, Holiday can only do so much as it showed when the Sixers fell to the Pistons at home by 18. Now that Bynum may be set back even further with his knee injury, the Sixers must continue to have their role players play at such a high level of play.
Last Week: 10
10. Boston Celtics
At the start of the week, it was clear that this team runs through Rajon Rondo. With Rondo out, the Celtics offense was stagnant and did not flow as efficiently as when the former Kentucky standout is in the game. The Celtics suffered a shocking loss though to the Pistons by 20 even with the point guard in the lineup, which is a definite cause for concern for Doc Rivers and his staff.
Last Week: 8
9. Brooklyn Nets
Their schedule may have been easy, but the Nets are 6-2 and respect must be given. Brook Lopez is slowly becoming a solid rebounder for his stature and Deron Williams continues to run this offense to its finest. The return of Gerald Wallace and Marshon Brooks will benefit their roster along with great bench play from Andray Blatche and Jerry Stackhouse. The Nets are on a west-coast road trip that includes games against the Lakers and then they come home to play the Clippers on Friday, this will be a telling week for Brooklyn.
Last Week: 13
8. Milwaukee Bucks
The Bucks have been one of the best teams in the league this season to many peoples surprise. The backcourt of Monta Ellis and Brandon Jennings has been phenomenal this year and Larry Sanders has carried the frontcourt averaging nearly a double double thus far. This team can cause nightmares for many teams throughout the season.
Last Week: 12
7. Los Angeles Lakers
You can tell that Kobe Bryant is sick of losing. The Black Mamba posted a triple double over the weekend and in Mike D’Antoni’s new offense the Lakers are scoring at all costs. D’Antoni is still in the locker room though rehabbing his knee so it will be interesting to see how Bernie Bickerstaff calls the shots in a tight game.
Last Week: 7
6. Oklahoma City Thunder
The loss to Memphis on Wednesday was a telling game because it showed how much the Thunder misses James Harden. Even though Kevin Martin is not playing so bad, Harden changed the Thunder’s game plan, for Russell Westbrook can become a scorer which is his natural ability.
Last Week: 6
5. Miami Heat
The Heat lost in LA on Wednesday to the streaking Clippers, but besides that the Heat have continued to be a dominant figure in the East. Even with Dwayne Wade out with an injured foot, the Heat will continue to be a top dog in the East.
Last Week: 4
4. San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs had quite the week that started with a nail biting win over the Lakers to losing to the Clippers on Monday. In between the Spurs rolled past the Nuggets by 26. Now Kawhi Leonard and Stephen Jackson are both out with injuries so Greg Popovich will have to make some more magic down in the Alamo.
Last Week: 2
3. Los Angeles Clippers
The Clippers continue to be one of the hottest teams in the NBA that was featured with a win over the defending champion Heat and another win over the Spurs. Chris Paul is putting up MVP numbers along with Jamal Crawford being a force on offense and as of now the runaway Sixth Man of the Year right now. The Clippers charisma and style of play can put them over any team right now.
Last Week: 5
2. New York Knicks
The Knicks finally lost to a team yet to come on this list, and it was not pretty. The Knicks were finally exposed on the defensive end as Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol pounded the interior and surged past the Knicks. Otherwise, the Carmelo-led Knicks have continued to shoot the lights out and one of the most feared teams in basketball.
Last Week: 1
1. Memphis Grizzlies
The Grizzlies took down possibly the two best teams in each conference beating the Thunder and Knicks this week. With arguably the most dominant frontcourt this season, Rudy Gay, Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol clog the paint on defense and can shoot outside of it on offense. With youth and versatility on their side, the Grizzlies take the cake as the number one team in this week’s power rankings.
Last Week: 3