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> NBA Power Rankings: January 22nd
NBA Power Rankings: January 22nd
Throughout the rest of the NBA Season, Mike Aurigemma will give his weekly NBA Power Rankings every Tuesday…
- Oklahoma City Thunder (1) – I have not seen anything to make me feel like this is not the best team in the NBA. Only thing they may have to worry about is if they play Denver in the playoffs. Russell Westbrook is public enemy number one after he blocked the half court attempt by the mascot and then threw the ball in the stands.
- Los Angeles Clippers (2) - The Clippers played fine with Chris Paul out of the lineup and even with the loss last night against Golden State this team looks like a true contender. You have to wonder if they will try shipping out someone like Eric Bledsoe to get another big man at the deadline though.
- San Antonio Spurs (4) - Team basketball is what the Spurs play consistently and that is why they have edged up a little bit this week. Home court may be a big deciding factor come playoff time with these top three teams out West.
- Miami Heat (3) - Will the signing of Chris “Birdman” Anderson help out their rebounding problems at all? Are we already starting to see the decline of Dwayne Wade in front of our eyes?
- Brooklyn Nets (6) - I am all aboard the Nets bandwagon right now. They have been playing great basketball and have done a great job of grinding out games and winning close ones. I think that will definitely help them out come playoff time, but I still cannot see this team knocking off the Heat, but they are definitely the second tier in the East.
- New York Knicks (7) - Losing a close one to their cross town rivals hurts, but the injuries in their old frontcourt are really starting to pile up for this team. It looks like Amare may have to find his game again if this team wants to jump to be a serious threat to the Heat
- Golden State Warriors (9) - The Warriors dodged a bullet when Curry went down with another ankle injury, but they seem to have found some rhythm again. It helps when they pull out a huge win against the Clippers during this past stretch too.
- Memphis Grizzlies (5) – My Grizzlies seems to be surrounded by trade rumors. I just have a feeling that this team will be hurt by the fact that they need to cut payroll and eliminate any chances of them making noise come playoff time.
- Denver Nuggets (10) - A huge win against Oklahoma City will definitely help this team going forward, but this team still has some concerns defensively. I was expecting JaVele McGee to make a bigger jump in his progression this season, but that has not seemed to happen.
- Chicago Bulls (8) - The play of Carlos Boozer has to have a lot of people in Chicago finally happy. We will just have to see if he can do that for the rest of the season and show that he is worth that contract.
- Indiana Pacers (14) - Paul George has to make the All-Star team this year. I think Hibbert has been disappointing so far in the season and losing Granger was a big blow, but George has had no problem picking up the slack.
- Portland Trail Blazers (15) – Portland is still battling for that playoff spot and if they can make one minor deal at the deadline to bring in some more firepower off of the bench this team should definitely be able to get that spot. The question is do they really want to stay as a mediocre team this year.
- Houston Rockets (17) – If the Rockets could somehow manage to get Zach Randolph from the Grizzlies that would be huge for this team. But I just cannot see that getting done. Still you cannot argue that this team is very exciting to watch as they put up a ton of points.
- Atlanta Hawks (12) – It just looks like it is all ready to fall apart in Atlanta. How long can this team stay mediocre for? Josh Smith is gone in the offseason and does this team really think they have a shot at landing Dwight? Come on.
- Boston Celtics (11) – So much for the Celtics looking like they turned a corner. For the first time we saw Doc Rivers suggest that change may be needed to get this team going. But who can he be talking about, no one would want Terry, Bass or Green right now. I am starting to get a feeling that Pierce and Rondo may be completely on the table at this point.
- Utah Jazz (16) – The Jazz are still in position to make the playoffs and definitely have some good players on their team. But they are still missing a star, which is now a necessity in this league.
- Dallas Mavericks (20) - There are still some serious issues on this team and really no one seems to know which direction the team is heading. One thing is for certain and that is Mark Cuban will definitely be trying to figure out a plan to get this team back into contention.
- Los Angeles Lakers (13) - Even with their ugly, ugly loss to the Raptors I still think this team makes the playoffs. But you have to start to wonder if Dwight will want to resign with this team. Is it that far-fetched to think the Lakers may be seeing what they can get for him for fear of him not resigning?
- Detroit Pistons (22) - This team may not have the best record, but I at least feel like they have a really good foundation. Drummond has continued to impress me and this team definitely will still need a perimeter scorer in the future as well, but things are starting to look up in Detroit.
- Milwaukee Bucks (18) - The Bucks are a better team than the Pistons, but they just have no potential to get out of being mediocre at this point. I do not know how long the Jennings and Ellis backcourt can last, but only time will tell.
- Philadelphia 76ers (19) - Jrue Holiday has to be the lone brightspot for this team so far this season. They were one game away from the Eastern Conference Finals and are now looking like they will be hoping the ping-pong balls bounce their way.
- Minnesota Timberwolves (21) - Ricky Rubio has struggled since he has been back, but you know he will find his rhythm again at some point. Now you just have to hope the Timberwolves will be able to see a healthy Rubio and a healthy Kevin Love in a full season.
- Toronto Raptors (23) – The Raptors have strung together a couple good games in a row, but they will still find themselves outside the playoffs again this year. This team will continue to have problems until they draft a superstar as their team is just filled with role players at this point.
- Orlando Magic (24) - Nikola Vucevic has to really be growing on Magic fans at this point as he has continued to have really impressive play so far throughout the season. I still think this team would be better off getting a higher pick to try to grab a star player, but unfortunately they are playing good enough basketball to keep them higher up in the standings.
- New Orleans Hornets (26) – With Eric Gordon maybe getting healthy, this team has shown some real signs of life. You have to wonder how much they regret taking Austin Rivers so far as he has had a historically bad rookie year for a guard.
- Sacramento Kings (27) – Seattle or Sacramento. This team is really in limbo at this point, but hey Phil Jackson may be going up to Seattle just not as a head coach if they make the move there.
- Cleveland Cavaliers (28) - Losing Varejao for the season hurts this team from the perspective that he is now untradeable. They would have been able to get some decent assets for him in a trade, but that thought is now out the window.
- Washington Wizards (30) - John Wall is back and the Wizards still will not be a great team, but at least he can possibly excite the crowd. Maybe?
- Charlotte Bobcats (29) - You really just have to wonder if this team will ever be good at this point.
- Phoenix Suns (25) – The Suns are playing some awful basketball, which led to Alvin Gentry leaving the team or at least it was mutual between the two sides. I know I would not want to coach this team either so can you blame him.
Categories: All Things Sports, NBA
Boston Celtics, Chris Paul, Dwight Howard, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks