1. Indiana Pacers
(16-1; last week's ranking: 1): After a huge statement win at the Clippers on Sunday, Indiana owns the fifth-best start with one loss in NBA history. The 1969-70 New York Knicks
opened at 23-1.
2. Miami Heat
(14-3; last week's ranking: 3): Miami has the NBA's longest active winning streak at 10 games. Chicago hosts the Heat on Thursday and has played them tough before without Derrick Rose
3. Portland Trail Blazers
(14-3; last week's ranking: 4): Is Portland for real? The Blazers' next two home games against Indiana and Oklahoma City should say something. Portland is 6-1 at home.
4. San Antonio Spurs
(14-3; last week's ranking: 2): Tim Duncan went 19 straight games (dating to last season) without reaching 20 points until he scored 20 in a loss to Houston on Saturday.
5. Oklahoma City Thunder
(12-3; last week's ranking: 5): Oklahoma City has won seven straight games and is 9-0 at home. The Thunder's next home game is against Indiana on Sunday.
6. Houston Rockets
(13-5; last week's ranking: 7): The Rockets earned a big confidence-building win when they handed San Antonio its first home loss of the season on Saturday.
Los Angeles Clippers (12-6; last week's ranking: 6): The Clippers have turned to Willie Green to replace J.J. Redick, who is out six to eight weeks with a broken hand. Green had two points against Indiana on Sunday.
8. Denver Nuggets
(10-6; last week's ranking: 16): New coach Brian Shaw has Denver rolling with six straight wins. The Brooklyn Nets
, who hired Jason Kidd as coach over Shaw, are up next.
9. Golden State Warriors
(10-8; last week's ranking: 11): The Warriors are 2-3 since losing Andre Iguodala to a hamstring injury. The wins, against New Orleans and Sacramento, have been by one and two points.
10. Dallas Mavericks
(10-8; last week's ranking: 8): The Mavs, losers of four of their past five, play at New Orleans on Wednesday. Monta Ellis is building a case for his first-ever All-Star appearance.
11. Memphis Grizzlies
(8-8; last week's ranking: 10): Saturday's loss against Brooklyn marked the first time neither Marc Gasol (knee) or Zach Randolph (toe) played for Memphis since Randolph's 2009 arrival.
12. Los Angeles Lakers
(9-9; last week's ranking: 18): The Lakers did a nice job of not falling apart without Kobe Bryant
, who could make his season debut at Sacramento on Friday.
13. Minnesota Timberwolves
(9-10; last week's ranking: 9): The T'wolves have cooled, dropping six of their past eight games. It doesn't get easier with San Antonio and Miami up next.
14. Phoenix Suns
(9-8; last week's ranking: 14): After a surprisingly strong start, Phoenix suffered a bad home loss Saturday that gave struggling Utah its first road win of the season.
New Orleans Pelicans (8-8; last week's ranking: 17): Anthony Davis
missed last season's game in his hometown of Chicago to injury. He'll do so again after breaking his hand on Sunday.
16. Atlanta Hawks
(9-9; last week's ranking: 12): Despite not owning a winning record, Atlanta still has the East's third-best mark. Next up: San Antonio, Clippers and Oklahoma City.
17. Chicago Bulls
(7-8; last week's ranking: 13): Chicago is 1-3 since losing Derrick Rose to a knee injury for the season. The Bulls' first home game since Rose went out is Monday against New Orleans.
18. Washington Wizards
(8-9; last week's ranking: 20): The Wizards can reach the .500 mark for the first time since 2009 with a win over Orlando on Monday.
19. Charlotte Bobcats
(8-10; last week's ranking: 15): Who is Charlotte's leader in assists? Josh McRoberts, a 6-foot-10 power forward, who is averaging 4.3 per game.
20. Detroit Pistons
(7-10; last week's ranking: 21): Andre Drummond's 31 points, 19 rebounds and six steals Sunday against Philadelphia was last duplicated by Hakeem Olajuwon in 1990.
21. Sacramento Kings
(4-11; last week's ranking: 24): If Kobe Bryant returns to action against Kings on Friday, he will likely be guarded by 20-year-old rookie shooting guard Ben McLemore.
Philadelphia 76ers (6-12, last week's ranking: 19): Michael Carter-Williams' 223 points through the first 13 games of his career are the second-most by a Sixers rookie. Allen Iverson had 287.
23. Boston Celtics
(7-12; last week's ranking: 25): Two of Milwaukee's three victories this season have come against Boston. The Celtics host Milwaukee on Tuesday.
24. Toronto Raptors
(6-10; last week's ranking: 22): The Raptors have dropped three straight games. It doesn't get easier with road games up next at Golden State, Phoenix and the Lakers.
25. Orlando Magic
(6-10; last week's ranking: 26): Orlando is 1-5 on the road and begins a six-game trip Monday at Washington. The Magic won their last road game at Atlanta.
26. Cleveland Cavaliers
(5-12; last week's ranking: 23): Andrew Bynum had a possible breakout performance with 20 points, five blocks and 10 rebounds in a win over Chicago on Saturday.
Brooklyn Nets (5-12; last week's ranking: 28): Brooklyn hosts New York in the first meeting between the rivals on Thursday. The teams will have fewer than 10 wins combined at tipoff.
28. Milwaukee Bucks
(3-13; last week's ranking: 29): The Bucks and New York are tied for the East's worst record, but still remain just 3½ games out of the eighth and final playoff spot.
29. Utah Jazz
(3-15; last week's ranking: 30): The Jazz are 2-5 since rookie point guard Trey Burke debuted. While that might not sound impressive, Utah was 1-10 prior.
New York Knicks (3-13; last week's ranking: 27): The Knicks have lost nine straight games and seven straight at home, and have been hurt by Tyson Chandler's absence. New York's last win was at Atlanta on Nov. 13.
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