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Jason Jones: Ranking the League

Published: Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014 - 11:03 pm
Last Modified: Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014 - 11:27 pm

Records and statistics through Friday’s games

• 1. Indiana Pacers (39-10, Last week 2): George Hill could be the key to whether the Pacers win an NBA championship.

• 2. Oklahoma City Thunder (40-12, LW 1): Even one of the best teams can’t have fundamental slip-ups. OKC didn’t get back on defense and lost to Orlando on a dunk at the buzzer.

• 3. Miami Heat (35-13, LW 4): Chris Bosh might not put up big numbers every night, but he’s vital.

• 4. Los Angeles Clippers (35-18, LW 5): Chris Paul’s return is imminent, and the Clippers are still leading the Pacific Division.

• 5. San Antonio Spurs (36-14, LW 6): Manu Ginobili joins Kawhi Leonard among the many injured Spurs.

• 6. Portland Trail Blazers (35-15, LW 3): Losers of six of their last 10, including blowing a game late and falling in overtime at Indiana.

• 7. Houston Rockets (33-17, LW 7): Still chasing the Spurs in the Southwest Division with hopes of not finishing fifth in the West.

• 8. Phoenix Suns (29-20, LW 8): Will the surprising Suns pull off a trade to aid their postseason push?

• 9. Warriors (30-20, LW 9): Injuries continue to test the depth, which was a big concern before the season.

• 10. Dallas Mavericks (30-21, LW 10): A four-game winning streak isn’t enough to move the Mavericks up in the West.

• 11. Memphis Grizzlies (26-22, LW 12): A six-game winning streak put the Grizzlies back in the mix for a playoff spot.

• 12. Toronto Raptors (26-24, LW 11): Kyle Lowry might be the biggest snub from the All-Star Game in the East.

• 13. Atlanta Hawks (25-23, LW 13): Already down Al Horford, big man Pero Antic is now out because of a stress fracture in his right ankle.

• 14. Denver Nuggets (24-24, LW 18): Injuries have made Brian Shaw’s first season as a head coach even tougher.

• 15. Chicago Bulls (24-25, LW 14): All things considered, the Bulls should be happy to have this record.

• 16. Washington Wizards (24-25, LW 15): They have the talent to be better but struggle to stay above .500.

• 17. Brooklyn Nets: (22-26, LW 16): In case you missed it, Kevin Garnett STILL does not like playing center.

• 18. Minnesota Timberwolves (24-26, LW 17): Inconsistency has been their trademark this season.

• 19. New Orleans Pelicans (22-27, LW 21): Anthony Davis is playing like an All-Star for the Pelicans, who have been slowed by several injuries.

• 20. Charlotte Bobcats: (22-28, LW 19): The Bobcats already have surpassed last season’s win total of 21.

• 21. New York Knicks (20-30, LW 20): Reports of ownership meeting with Carmelo Anthony about coach Mike Woodson is the latest drama.

• 22. Detroit Pistons (20-29, LW 22): Are Joe Dumars’ offseason moves enough to get the Pistons to the postseason or does more need to be done?

• 23. Boston Celtics (18-33, LW 28): Jared Sullinger is stepping up lately to take pressure off an offense that relies heavily on perimeter players.

• 24. Los Angeles Lakers (18-32, LW 26): The Lakers continue to use the D-League to help their injury-depleted roster.

• 25. Kings (17-33, LW 25): The Kings have had to adjust to injuries lately after being healthy most of the season.

• 26. Cleveland Cavaliers (17-33, LW 24): A team that thought it could make the playoffs has been underwhelming, and it cost GM Chris Grant his job.

• 27. Utah Jazz (16-33, LW 23): Four-game losing streak has kept the Jazz from getting out the cellar in the Western Conference.

• 28. Orlando Magic (15-37, LW 29): Quietly, Tobias Harris is proving to be a solid pickup from Milwaukee as part of last season’s deal involving J.J. Redick.

• 29. Philadelphia 76ers (15-36, LW 27): The 76ers have dropped their last five games, and memories of their good start are long gone.

• 30. Milwaukee Bucks (9-40, LW 30): Rookie Giannis Antetokounmpo has been a bright spot.

Read more articles by Jason Jones

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