NBA Power Rankings: Warriors remain on top

Marc J. Spears
NBA Power Rankings: Warriors remain on top
NBA Power Rankings: Warriors remain on top
Golden State
Golden State

1. Golden State Warriors (Record: 5-1; last week’s rank: 1): The Warriors are winning sloppily, averaging 22.5 turnovers per game with just one contest with less than 20.


Memphis
Memphis

2. Memphis Grizzlies (Record: 6-1; last week’s rank: 2): The Grizzlies have allowed less than 95 points per game in six straight contests. The streak should continue against the Lakers on Tuesday.


Houston
Houston

3. Houston Rockets (Record: 6-1; last week’s rank: 3): Ex-NBA big man Josh Powell is committed to his new player development coaching job with the Rockets and has turned down job offers to play overseas.


Toronto
Toronto

4. Toronto Raptors (Record: 6-1; last week’s rank: 11): Dwane Casey needs three wins to pass Lenny Wilkens (113) and become No. 2 on Toronto’s coaching wins list. Sam Mitchell is first with 156.


Los Angeles
Los Angeles

5. Los Angeles Clippers (Record: 4-2; last week’s rank: 7) While forward Blake Griffin’s jumper has improved, he has yet to reach double figures in rebounds and had one board Wednesday against the Warriors.


Chicago
Chicago

6. Chicago Bulls (Record: 5-2; last week’s rank: 6): Injuries are still haunting Derrick Rose, who is questionable for Monday’s game against Detroit and has missed the past two contests.


Miami
Miami

7. Miami Heat (Record: 5-2; last week’s rank: 9): Newcomer Luol Deng had not scored more than 20 points in a game for the Heat before exploding for 30 in a win over Dallas on Sunday.


Washington
Washington

8. Washington Wizards (Record: 5-2; last week’s rank: 14): Bradley Beal is wearing a splint on his surgically repaired wrist, but he is shooting and could be back by month’s end.


San Antonio
San Antonio

9. San Antonio Spurs (Record: 2-3; last week’s rank: 4): The reigning champs have dropped two straight games and have a tough road back-to-back starting tonight against the Clippers followed by the Warriors.


Cleveland
Cleveland

10. Cleveland Cavaliers (Record: 2-3; last week’s rank: 5): Cleveland has already dealt with adversity with tough losses, chemistry issues and Dion Waiters’ “big misunderstanding.”


Brooklyn
Brooklyn

11. Brooklyn Nets (Record: 4-2; last week’s rank: 19): Brooklyn’s Bojan Bogdanovic’s 22 points against Orlando on Sunday are the most by a rookie this season. This rookie class is starting slowly.


Portland
Portland

12. Portland Trail Blazers (Record: 4-3; last week’s rank: 10): Describing his twin brother/Nets center whom he faces Saturday, Brook Lopez playfully told the New York Post, “Robin is an idiot.”


Dallas
Dallas

13. Dallas Mavericks (Record: 4-3; last week’s rank: 8): Newcomer Chandler Parsons is off to a tough start, averaging 13.6 points on 39.1 percent shooting.


Sacramento
Sacramento

14. Sacramento Kings (Record: 5-2; last week’s rank: 17): An excellent start lost some momentum with a loss Sunday to the injury-plagued Thunder, who were without Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.


Phoenix
Phoenix

15. Phoenix Suns (Record: 4-3; last week’s rank: 13): The Suns are a hard team to figure out. They beat Golden State and San Antonio but lost to Utah and Sacramento.


New Orleans
New Orleans

16. New Orleans Pelicans (Record: 3-2; last week’s rank: 12) Perhaps an early MVP candidate matchup when New Orleans’ Anthony Davis plays against Cleveland’s LeBron James on Monday.


Utah
Utah

17. Utah Jazz (Record: 3-4; last week’s rank: 21): Keep an eye on rookie guard Dante Exum, who has played well the past two games, averaging 10 points, five assists and 2.5 rebounds.


Boston
Boston

18. Boston Celtics (Record: 3-3; last week’s rank: 22): Tradition in sports is always better left alone. Such is the case with the hard-on-the-eyes gray uniforms the Celtics unveiled last week.


Milwaukee
Milwaukee

19. Milwaukee Bucks (Record: 3-4; last week’s rank: 26): Guard Brandon Knight is quietly off to a fantastic start, averaging 17.6 points, 7.3 assists, 6.4 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game.


Atlanta
Atlanta

20. Atlanta Hawks (Record: 2-3; last week’s rank: 16): Rookie forward Adrien Payne, the 15th pick in this year’s draft, has yet to play this season because of plantar fasciitis in his left foot.


Charlotte
Charlotte

21. Charlotte Hornets (Record: 3-4; last week’s rank: 20): Newcomer Lance Stephenson is cold offensively, shooting just 30.6 percent from the field and 8.3 percent from 3-point range.


Oklahoma City
Oklahoma City

22. Oklahoma City Thunder (Record: 2-5; last week’s rank: 23): The injury-ravaged Thunder got a much-needed scoring boost with the return of Jeremy Lamb (back), who is averaging 17 points in two games.


Minnesota
Minnesota

23. Minnesota Timberwolves (Record: 2-4; last week’s rank: 25): With Ricky Rubio out indefinitely because of a bad ankle sprain, the T-Wolves have turned to veteran point guard Maurice Williams.


Detroit
Detroit

24. Detroit Pistons (Record: 2-4; last week’s rank: 28): Detroit, which is shooting 40 percent as a team, is playing its next four games on the road and has dropped 21 of its last 23 away.


New York
New York

25. New York Knicks (Record: 2-5; last week’s rank: 15): Ex-Knick Ernie Vandeweghe, who passed away Sunday, used to take late trains and planes to meet the team after medical school classes.


Orlando
Orlando

26. Orlando Magic (Record: 2-5; last week’s rank: 29): Nikola Vucevic is putting up numbers like Dwight Howard used to in Orlando with averages of 18.6 points and 12.3 rebounds.


Los Angeles
Los Angeles

27. Los Angeles Lakers (Record: 1-5; last week’s rank: 27): Kobe Bryant returns Tuesday to Memphis, where he broke his kneecap Dec. 17 in what turned out to be his final game of the 2013-14 season.


Denver
Denver

28. Denver Nuggets (Record: 1-5; last week’s rank: 18): Denver has lost five straight games and its leading scorer is Ty Lawson at a mere 13.6 points per contest. Yes, 13.6.


Indiana
Indiana

29. Indiana Pacers (Record: 1-6; last week’s rank: 24): The injured Pacers matched their worst start in 11 years; the worst start in team history is a 1-11 mark during the 1988-89 season.


Philadelphia
Philadelphia

30. Philadelphia 76ers (Record: 0-7; last week’s rank: 30): With the Lakers earning their first win Sunday against Charlotte, the rebuilding Sixers are now the only winless NBA team left.

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