NBA Power rankings: Warriors keep dominating, Rockets freefall – Metro US

NBA Power rankings: Warriors keep dominating, Rockets freefall

NBA Power rankings: Warriors keep dominating, Rockets freefall
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1. Golden State Warriors (11-0) Last week: 1

Everybody wants to talk about the Patriots possibly going undefeated. Well, the Warriors are almost 1/7 of the way there and showing no signs of slowing down. But seriously, they’re awesome. Not much else to say.

2. Cleveland Cavaliers (8-2) Last week: 2

Cleveland had its eight-game winning streak snapped in double OT by the Milwaukee Bucks, but an 8-2 record to start the year without Kyrie Irving and Iman Shumpert is pretty darn impressive. They remain the team to beat in the East.

3. San Antonio Spurs (7-2) Last week: 3

If not for the Warriors, many NBA pundits would be locked into the Spurs right now. They’ve been in cruise control since a buzzer-beating loss to the Wizards almost two weeks ago.

4. Los Angeles Clippers (6-4) Last week: 5

Doc Rivers has plenty of small forward options, but in the team’s recent win over the Pistons, Lance Stephenson wasn’t one of them. He played less than two minutes. It’s not a problem yet, but something tells me Stephenson won’t be a “pro’s pro” about it if it happens regularly.

5. Oklahoma City Thunder (6-4) Last week: 6

It was a shame that Kevin Durant injured his hamstring in D.C., but it looks like it’s not too serious and he should be back in a couple games. The Thunder couldn’t get past the Celtics without him, though.

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6. Atlanta Hawks (8-4) Last week: 7

Two losses in a row at the hands of the Celtics and the Jazz. Atlanta had a chance to beat Utah, but Paul Millsap’s jumper missed the mark. That said, Jeff Teague injured his ankle vs. the Celtics and missed the game against Utah. The Hawks will be just fine.

7. Toronto Raptors (7-4) Last week: 8

The Raptors may have just blown a late fourth-quarter lead to lose to the Kings, but it’s not all bad news as the Raptors and Drake have collaborated on a new Raptors clothing line. Just $64.99 for a T-shirt!

8. Miami Heat (6-3) Last week: 10

News re-surfaced recently that the Heat intend on making a pitch to Kevin Durant once the star hits free agency. I just don’t see Durant and Miami as a match. Plus, Dwyane Wade isn’t going to take another big discount to make it work, is he?

9. Houston Rockets (4-6) Last week: 4

We have found our streaky NBA team. Three losses, four wins, three losses. It appears the loss at home to the Nets really sent this team back into a tailspin – and who can blame them?

10. Washington Wizards (4-4) Last week: 11

After three straight losses, the Wizards took care of business against the Magic. The cool story out of D.C. is that Kris Humphries has become a three-point shooter. After an entire career inside the three-point line, Hump is now averaging 3.5 attempts a game. He hit five of them against the Magic.

11. Chicago Bulls (6-3) Last week: 13

Derrick Rose is seeing double – literally. The Bulls point guard is still having vision problems after suffering a fracture to his left orbital bone. Head coach Fred Hoiberg said he could even have blurry vision for up to three months. Yeesh.

12. Dallas Mavericks (6-4) Last week: 14

Well, Mark Cuban got his win over the Clippers, so you can already call this season a success. That guy knows how to hold a grudge. But you know what? I don’t blame him. He had verbal agreement from DeAndre Jordan. Jordan backed out and really messed up their offseason. Hold that grudge, Mark!

13. Utah Jazz (5-5) Last week: 12

The offense may not be where they want it yet, but the Jazz are allowing just 91.8 points per game, tied for the second-lowest in the league with the Spurs, and behind the Heat. They’ve got some scorers, so you have to think the points will follow.

14. Indiana Pacers (6-4) Last week: 19

The Pacers are winners of six of their last seven after starting off the season 0-3. Paul George is really starting to come on, averaging 24.3 points per game. Monta Ellis dropped 24 points in their recent win over the T-Wolves. That’s an even better development.

15. Boston Celtics (5-4) Last week: 21

Now THIS is more along the lines of what people expected to see from the Celtics this season. Big wins over the Wizards, Hawks, and Thunder and it seems as if guys are beginning to slide into their roles. Give it up for Jared Sullinger, who has turned things around fast.

16. Detroit Pistons (5-5) Last week: 9

What started out as a good west coast road trip with two wins, ended poorly with four losses. That includes a 12-point loss to the lowly Lakers to cap things off. Nobody has ever been happier to head back to Detroit.

17. Phoenix Suns (5-4) Last week: 20

Scoring isn’t an issue for these guys, as they average 104.2 points per game, good for fourth in the NBA. Eric Bledsoe leads the way with 23.3 points per game.

18. Memphis Grizzlies (5-6) Last week: 15

They’re averaging just 93.4 points per game, good for 29th in the NBA. The “grit and grind” mentality isn’t very obvious this year either, as they’re allowing 101.1 points per game.

19. Milwaukee Bucks (5-5) Last week: 16

Finally, a win the Bucks can hang their hats on. Milwaukee outlasted the Cavaliers in double OT, despite Giannis Antetokounmpo fouling out. Seven Bucks scored in double figures. That’s just a good team win that they can hopefully build on.

20. Orlando Magic (5-6) Last week: 18

France’s Evan Fournier obviously has a lot more on his mind right now than basketball after the terrorist attack that occurred in France on Friday. The fourth-year swingman is leading the Magic in scoring with 18.8 points per game.

21. Portland Trailblazers (4-7) Last week: 17

Oh boy. Five straight losses for the Blazers heading into Monday’s game against the Spurs. Old friend Nicolas Batum scorched them for 33 points in Charlotte’s win most recently.

22. Charlotte Hornets (5-5) Last week: 23

It’ll be Charlotte visiting the Knicks tonight at Madison Square Garden. That means Jeremy Lin returns to where it all began. Man, Linsanity was a fun time.

23. New York Knicks (5-6) Last week: 24

Fine, I’ll take the Knicks slightly more seriously than I have the last couple seasons. And any team that doesn’t do the same will probably get dunked over by Kristaps Porzingis.

24. Sacramento Kings (4-7) Last week: 25

The wild card team strikes again! You just don’t know what you’re going to get from these guys on a nightly basis. But right now they’re getting a ton of production from DeMarcus Cousins and Rajon Rondo during a three-game winning streak.

25. Minnesota Timberwolves (4-6) Last week: 22

It’s official: The Timberwolves are a fun team to watch. This young team could be a force in a couple seasons. That’s a sentence I never thought I’d write.

26. Denver Nuggets (5-5) Last week: 26

A three-game winning streak was wiped away by a blowout loss to the Suns. But there’s good news as they can get back on track against a Pelicans team that can’t get it together.

27. New Orleans Pelicans (1-9) Last week: 27

Well, the Pelicans finally won a game. So there is that. Unfortunately, there’s not much else other than that. There’s just not enough talent around Anthony Davis, which is a shame.

28. Los Angeles Lakers (2-8) Last week: 28

It’s kind of sad to watch Kobe Bryant end his career this way. The guy just physically isn’t where he needs to be to really help the Lakers. Sore legs. Sore back. Tough spot for the Lakers to be in.

29. Brooklyn Nets (1-9) Last week: 29

On the bright side, the Nets took things to overtime against the Warriors. The problem? They blew a big double-digit lead earlier in the game. They also failed to execute down the stretch. This team basically stinks.

30. Philadelphia 76ers (0-10) Last week: 30

We can’t talk about the Warriors going undefeated without talking about the 76ers going . . . defeated. Boo this team. Boooooo!!