It has been a great week of NBA action so far, we’ve seen good teams lose and bad teams lose more. We also have three teams looking outstanding despite missing a piece or two from their key rotation.
Here’s my second installment of the power rankings:
1. Boston Celtics (3) - For having the reputation of a trouble maker, Sheed is fitting in quite nicely.
2. Denver Nuggets (5) - Melo is setting the pace for the MVP race. Even without J.R., Denver is looking dangerous.
3. Orlando Magic (6) - Depth has allowed the Magic to survive without Shard or Vince—not traveling West until December helps, too.
4. Los Angeles Lakers (1) - We know they can win without Bynum, but L.A. doesn't look like the Champs without Pau.
5. San Antonio Spurs (4) - Old bones looked brittle in back-to-back against Chicago.
6. Cleveland Cavaliers (2) - 0-2 start was inexcusable. The talent is there but the team doesn't have the same swagger as last year.
7. Dallas Mavericks (8) - After a 14-point victory in L.A., Howard's return only makes them that much more dangerous.
8. Atlanta Hawks (11) - Rotation lacks size, something their games in the next two weeks will expose.
9. Miami Heat (13) - Forget Wade, Jermaine O'Neal's double-double average has this team undefeated...OK, Wade is good, too.
10. Portland Trail Blazers (7) - Wins against Atlanta and San Antonio at home will help us forget about Houston.
11. Washington Wizards (14) - They can win big games without Jamison. Fans are just hoping they won't have to try to without Gilbert.
12. Phoenix Suns (12) - Haven't lost but haven't played anybody. Will play Miami, Orlando, Boston, Washington, and Philly by this time next week all on the road.
13. Houston Rockets (22) - Two key road wins means this team is more than hungry, they are capable.
14. Utah Jazz (9) - Talent on the roster is much better than their 1-2 record.
15. Toronto Raptors (15) - Shocker against Cleveland then shocked at Memphis, the Raptors are as two-faced as they come.
16. Chicago Bulls (17) - So easy to like, did you know they are shooting .413 from the field and .163 from three?
17. Oklahoma City Thunder (21) - Kevin Durant is good enough to put this team on his back. Green and Westbrook are good enough that he may not have to.
18. Philadelphia 76ers (19) - Lou Williams has a 7.5 A/T and A.I. dishes out 6.7 assists per game, who needs a traditional PG?
19. New Orleans Hornets (10) - Just not clicking right now, they seem prime candidates for a midseason trade.
20. Milwaukee Bucks (27) - Down goes Redd, up comes Jennings, down go the Pistons.
21. Detroit Pistons (16) - @CharlieV wuz last seasons production all about the Benjamins?
22. Indiana Pacers (20) - Must win game against the Knicks this week. If they lose, they fall.
23. Los Angeles Clippers (18) - Without Blake Griffin, this is the same Clippers, minus Z-RO. If I did my math right that equals the same old Clippers.
24. Charlotte Bobcats (28) - Good defense will always beat bad teams.
25. Golden State Warriors (23) - They'll win some, they'll lose some, they'll shoot a lot of threes along the way.
26. New York Knicks (26) - They will shoot even more threes—especially Gallinari.
27. Sacramento Kings (29) - They're hurting, but at least there is the future.
28. Memphis Grizzlies (24) - Iverson will sell a few more tickets but will he inhibit Mayo's progression?
29. Minnesota Timberwolves (30) - Al Jefferson's rehab mission is painful to watch.
30. New Jersey Nets (25) - Harris goes out for the first time this year. It won't be the last.