NBA Top 10 Rankings: All-Star Break Addition

Parker ForteContributor IFebruary 14, 2010

OAKLAND, CA - JANUARY 11:  LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers reacts to a call during their game against the Golden State Warriors at Oracle Arena on January 11, 2010 in Oakland, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
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It’s that time of year, the All-Star break. No Brandon Roy, or Kobe Bryant. How sad.

But I'm not here to babble about the All-Star game. About a month ago I wrote my first top 10, now it is time for my second, as I promised.

I hope you enjoy.

10. Toronto

The Raptors have been playing good ball, sitting in the fifth spot in the east. Chris Bosh will lead Toronto to the playoffs, but they will not do so well. The Eastern Conference is not too strong and it does not take much to make the playoffs. But I am not trying to take any credit away from the Raptors. They deserve the 10th spot.

9. Portland

After the All-Star break, Brandon Roy and Travis Outlaw will return to the squad and put the Blazers back on track after going south against the Thunder. Portland had a great victory in Phoenix to close off the first half of their season. Even though Greg Oden and Joel Przybilla will still be missing for Portland, the Blazers will make a run after the All-Star break and clinch a spot in the playoffs.

8. Boston

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The Boston Celtics have been struggling this season, but Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, and Kevin Garnett will get things together in Boston and lead the Celtics on a journey to the playoffs. They will not win it all, but they will put up a fight.

7. Oklahoma City

I know what you’re thinking: The Thunder at the seventh spot? Yes, Oklahoma City has a very talented and promising team. Kevin Durant has been playing amazing basketball and scoring a lot of points, Russell Westbrook adds the heat to the game and helps lead the Thunder to victory. Scott Brooks is doing a great job as head coach with the young Thunder.

6. Utah

The Jazz have truly become a great team and Utah is one of the hardest places to play in the NBA. Carlos Boozer, Ronnie Brewer, and Deron Williams will lead the Jazz and finish strong in the West. But, I do not see them jumping passed the Nuggets or the Lakers.

5. Orlando

Dwight Howard and Vince Carter are building chemistry and the Magic are doing great things after a bad start to the season. The Magic sit in second in the East and will stay there throughout the season. They will make a run for the money in the playoffs.

4. Atlanta

The Hawks are playing fantastic ball, they sit in third in the East, and fourth on my list. With a record of 33-18 at the break, the Hawks will try and carry it through the season and into the playoffs. Mike Bibby and Joe Johnson will lead this team past the second round.

3. Denver

As Denver sits at second in the west, they sit at third on my list. Carmelo is playing the best ball he has ever played, young Ty Lawson is playing like the rookie of the year and Billups is playing like a true point guard. The Nuggets have the components to win it all.

2. Los Angeles Lakers

The Lakers sit on top of the West with a record of 41-13. Kobe will most likely be back after the All-Star break and the Lakers are loaded with talent. The Lakers have been playing like champions, even without Kobe Bryant and his hot shoes.

1. Cleveland

Cleveland will obviously keep their No. 1 spot on my list. With the best record in the NBA, 43-11, the Cavs have had a great season as they swept the defending champions, the Los Angeles Lakers. With the leadership of LeBron James, Cleveland may just win it all.

Well, there you are. Forte's top 10: All-Star break. I can't wait for the playoffs as all the talented basketball teams battle it out for the championship. I see Cleveland winning it all, beating the Nuggets in the Finals. But we will just have to see how it plays out.

Good luck to all in the second half of the season, it is sure to be exciting.

What do you think about my top 10? Comment and we can get some interesting conversation going.


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