Philadelphia 76ers and the 7 Most Underrated Teams in the NBA

Tim NguyenCorrespondent IFebruary 18, 2012

Philadelphia 76ers and the 7 Most Underrated Teams in the NBA

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    This lockout-shortened season has been filled with plenty of surprises. Jeremy Lin, the Philadelphia 76ers and the Knicks remain some of the biggest stories in the NBA right now.

    The topic of this article is the seven most underrated teams in the NBA, and the following includes teams that have the resources to possibly win it all this season.

New York Knicks

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    "Linsanity" cooled off Friday with the Knicks falling for the first time with Jeremy Lin playing significant minutes (he still 6-1 in his NBA as a starter, not too bad).

    The Knicks have been playing without Carmelo Anthony, who has been sitting with an injury.

    However, when he comes back, the Knicks should be a force to reckon with in the East. They have a lot of good pieces and—on paper, at least—a full team.

    They have Amar'e Stoudemire and Tyson Chandler to run the middle, a proven scorer in Anthony and now a point guard in Jeremy Lin.

    The Knicks are poised to make a great run this season.

Philadelphia 76ers

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    The biggest question heading into this season was how well the Sixers would do after making the playoffs last season.

    Despite a strong run during the middle of last year, they were only .500 for the year after some ugly losses at the end of the season.

    They couldn't figure out Miami in the playoffs and were eliminated in five games.

    They were great early in the season, surprising nearly everyone. At 20-11, they are still leaders of the Atlantic Division with a roster not much different from last year's.

    The key has been good health and good fortune, the Sixers have beaten the bad opponents and have stayed relatively healthy (with the exception of Spencer Hawes).

    They will need to keep that going to prove they are serious contenders this season.

Boston Celtics

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    The Celtics have been labeled as slow, old and just not having what it takes to win in the NBA anymore.

    They started the year off brutally but have managed to salvage some of the season, currently at 15-14 and second in the Atlantic Division.

    They will have to keep their legs fresh as their best players have a lot of miles on them.

    But if it's true that experience wins, then the Celtics may just pull off the biggest upset of them all.

Minnesota Timberwolves

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    There's a lot to like about the Minnesota Timberwolves.

    They feature Kevin Love, who made the All-Star team this season.

    Ricky Rubio has also come on strong and they look like a young team that has a lot of fight in them. They are currently 15-16 in a tightly contested Northwest Division but can pull away at any moment.

    Look out for the Timberwolves this season.

Milwaukee Bucks

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    The Milwaukee Bucks are 12-18 and looking to make the playoffs after missing out last season. They have a good group of guys in Brandon Jennings, Andrew Bogut and Stephen Jackson.

    "Young Buck" Jennings has risen his game to lead his team over victories against the Knicks and Heat, and he will need to bring that competitive fire every night if his team wants to win.

    Look out for the Bucks if they sneak into the playoffs.

Houston Rockets

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    Houston is 17-14 this season and are much improved with Kevin McHale running the show.

    Kyle Lowry is having a monster year and Luis Scola is doing his thing every night.

    They are under the radar because they lack the superstar power of a Yao Ming or Tracy McGrady, but what they have in their current roster works for them.

    The biggest question remains: If this team makes the playoffs, can they win a seven-game series?

    No one knows what will happen, but it should be interesting to watch.

Utah Jazz

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    The Utah Jazz are currently 14-14 and fourth in the Northwest Division out in the Western Conference. Despite their 3-7 record in their last 10 games, they have a lot of good players on their team.

    Devin Harris is a capable point guard who must play more consistently every night.

    They have a legitimate big man in Al Jefferson. Paul Millsap isn't too bad either.

    Factor in guys like Earl Watson and Gordon Hayward, and they have a lovable bunch.

    This team can get hot the rest of the season and possibly sneak into the playoffs as a low seed.

    After that, anything can happen.