NBA Power Rankings: Suns To the Top, Mavs and Hawks Take Tumble

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NBA Power Rankings: Suns To the Top, Mavs and Hawks Take Tumble
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Ok, so it looks like I've just randomly inserted a photo of a hot chick, but hear me out. 

I think it sums up life for the Phoenix Suns right now.

They are smokin' hot and it's smiles all around and besides, she's got much better hair than Steve Nash.

The Golden State Warriors won only once this week, but it was a biggy—against the Dallas Mavericks who appear to retain some mental scars from that 2007 playoff defeat to Golden State .

At least the Mavericks had a better week than Tiger Woods , who apparently scored one birdie too many recently.

Ok, enough silly jokes, onto The Daily Hurt's weekly power rankings.

  1. PHOENIX SUNS - The Suns have won four straight and by an average margin of 21 points. Steve Nash says that he reads every negative article that's written about him saying that he is too old and too slow and uses it for motivation. So, as someone who loves watching him play, Steve, you're too old and too slow.
  2. ORLANDO MAGIC - The Magic were a Michael Beasley dunk away from being on a nine game winning streak. Sunday's win at New York was Orlando's sixth straight on the road, which suggests they are in good shape for a stretch where they play four of the next five away from Amway Arena.
  3. LA LAKERS - You know everything is going well in the Lakers camp when Phil Jackson's biggest concern was the color of Ron Artest's underwear during his appearance on Jimmy Kimmel last week. 
  4. BOSTON CELTICS - By their own admission , the Celtics haven't been playing their best basketball lately, but they've been winning, which is all that counts, especially as they play six of the next seven on the road.
  5. ATLANTA HAWKS - I could excuse the home loss to the Orlando Magic last Thursday, but Sunday's loss at Detroit was the Hawks third in the last four games. Atlanta plays six of their next eight at home and only one (Utah) has a record over .500.
  6. SAN ANTONIO SPURS  - Even the Spurs need a little help occassionally. San Antonio has won five straight and while it wasn't their toughest week in terms of opponents, they used it to gather momentum just in time for a week in which they host the Celtics and Nuggets.
  7. DENVER NUGGETS - 'Melo had a party against the Knicks going for a career high 50 on Saturday night, but Minnesota delivered the hangover on Sunday when they overcame a 17-point deficit to shock the Nuggets...and well pretty much any sane basketball mind quite frankly. 
  8. CLEVELAND CAVALIERS - Last week I asked the question whether or not the Cavs were better without Shaq . Cleveland went 5-1 with Diesel sitting out and lost to the Bobcats in his return, before beating the Mavs. Make of it what you will, but I'm certainly not convinced that O'Neal makes them better than they were last year.
  9. OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER - If you're still not overly impressed by the Thunder's 9-8 record, it's worth noting that they haven't faced the Nets, Grizz, T'Wolves, Sixers or Warriors yet which gives you some idea of how tough Oklahoma's early schedule has been and why I have them this high.
  10. DALLAS MAVERICKS - What made the Mavericks loss to the Warriors so bad was that two of Golden State's six healthy players were Mikki Moore and Vladimir Radmanovic, hardly all-star talent. It begs the question, is Dallas mentally strong enough?
  11. PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS - Just how do the Blazers explain the 31-2 run they allowed the Memphis Grizzlies to go on during the home loss on Friday night? Head coach Nate McMillan had every right to call out Blazers captains Brandon Roy and LaMarcus Aldridge after that performance.
  12. UTAH JAZZ -Jerry Sloan rarely gets excited at the best of times, but even he had to be impressed with his team after they shot better than 60-percent from the field two games in a row.
  13. MIAMI HEAT - Dwyane Wade is good enough to keep the Heat in the play-off mix by himself, but he sure could use some help as Miami heads out west for a tough four-game road trip, which includes stops at Portland, Denver, and the Lakers.
  14. HOUSTON ROCKETS - The Rockets ended a tough week on a bitter-sweet note when they lost Luis Scola to an eye injury, but won at Oklahoma City. Hopefully Scola doesn't miss much time as he has been superb this season, and might be the leagues most under-rated player.
  15. MILWAUKEE BUCKS - The Bucks shouldn't be too upset with their 0-4 week. It was tough, and for the most part they were competitive. In case you missed it, check out Brandon Jennings on PTI this week. The kid's got a solid head on his shoulders to match his game.
  16. INDIANA PACERS - Remember when Danny Granger predicted the Pacers would beat the Celtics and they went out and did it? Why doesn't he predict wins more often?
  17. MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES - I was just about to write how the Grizzlies had won three of their last four and were starting to earn some respect. Then on Sunday they get outscored 33-7 in the fourth quarter against the Clippers and "stuff" if all up.
  18. SACRAMENTO KINGS - Maybe the Kings felt sleighted that they were pegged as the team most likely to lose to the Nets, but Sacramento held firm. They also went 3-0 versus the "New" teams last week.
  19. NEW ORLEANS HORNETS - When Chris Paul returns, he'll expect nothing less than the effort he's seen from his team during his absence. If the Hornets can keep it up, there's no reason why they can't be considered a playoff team again.
  20. LA CLIPPERS - After the 0-4 start, the Clippers have gone 8-6 since. It's not quite time to start the talk of them toppling the Lakers as LA's No. 1 team, but the signs are there that the Clips are improving.
  21. CHARLOTTE BOBCATS - Gerald Wallace was a beast this week. He went for 25 points and 14 rebounds and the Bobcats won all three games, including one over the Cavs and have four straight overall. I still have never found out who came up with the name "Bobcats."
  22. GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS - The dubs only went 1-2 for the week, but the victory over the Mavs warrants a rise in the rankings. While I wish Don Nelson a speedy recovery, I can't ignore the fact that Monta Ellis looks free in his absence.
  23. TORONTO RAPTORS - The Raptors keep harping on about how they are an improved team defensively, then they go out and give up 116 points to the Charlotte Bobcats. There's just no backbone to this team.
  24. CHICAGO BULLSChicago only played twice last week but lost both games by a combined 43 points. The Bulls have lost four straight overall and the circus road trip still isn't over; they are at Milwaukee on Monday night.
  25. PHILADELPHIA 76ERS - Yes, Lou Williams  broken jaw was a devastating blow to the already shorthanded Sixers, but it doesn't mean they should bring back Allen Iverson . Philly has lost six straight and it doesn't get any easier as they are at Dallas, OKC and Charlotte this week. 
  26. WASHINGTON WIZARDS - Antawn Jamison is back and Gilbert Arenas is healthy, yet the Wizards still can't get it together. My prediction: One of the big three is traded before February's deadline.
  27. DETROIT PISTONS - Detroit needed something special to halt their seven game slide and Ben Wallace delivered it. Big Ben grabbed 18 boards in the win over the Hawks on Sunday. Was anyone else expecting just a little more out of Rodney Stuckey this year? 
  28. NEW YORK KNICKS -The Knicks have lost four straight, but at least they're finally shown some fight. They're still only better than the Wolves and the Nets though.
  29. MINNESOTA TIMBERWOLVES - With Lawrence Frank gone, the coaching spotlight turns to Kurt Rambis. Minnesota was only one win better off than the Nets and the T'Wolves had a worse points differential (-4.1 through Sunday) than New Jersey when Frank was gunned. Overcoming a 17 point deficit to rock the Nuggets in Denver on Sunday was a good start though.
  30. NEW JERSEY NETS - It had to happen. Regardless of the injuries, Lawrence Frank somehow had to scratch out a victory to save his job and he just couldn't do it.

Questions, comments or suggestions, email:

thedailyhurt@hotmail.com

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