The Kings were no higher than 17th in any of the six national polls sampled here a week ago. That was based on back-to-back wins following a home loss to New Orleans. But the Kings have since added three more wins to that modest streak and cracked the top 15 in the polls by NBA.com (12th) and ESPN (14th). Heady times, indeed.
Next week could be a different story, power rankings wise. The Kings’ upcoming four games are all against teams they have lost to this season. Pollsters could have a much different opinion of the Kings in a week. Or maybe not. Only time, and outcomes against Charlotte, Portland, New Orleans and Memphis, will determine how much higher (or lower) the Kings can move in the polls.
The Bee’s Jason Jones ranked the Kings 18th, up two spots from last week.
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NBA.com: 12th, up from 17th. From the site: “Over the course of the (five-game) winning streak, they’ve allowed just 95.2 points per 100 possessions, their best five-game defensive stretch since Feb. 2007!”
NBC Sports: 16th, up from 19th. From the site: “They have won five in a row … . They remain the eight seed in the West and it may not be easy to shake them from that spot.”
ESPN: 14th, up from 20th. From the site: “DeMarcus Cousins’ January is leaving West coaches with nothing to think about when it comes to Boogie’s All-Star spot. He’s averaging 32.5 PPG and 13.7 RPG on 50 percent shooting and 47.2 percent shooting on 3s.”
CBS Sports: 18th, same as last week. From the site: “The Kings are a hilarious, talented, fun, interesting, compelling, twisted, unstable, trainwreck of a team that could very easily make the playoffs and there’s no way to understand it … .”
SI.com: 16th, up from 19th. From the site: “Enjoy the idea of the playoff Kings as long as it lasts.”
Yahoo: 4th, same as last week. The site’s rankings are called ‘Most Interesting’ and winning, especially five games in a row, apparently counts as interesting to Yahoo. From the site: “The NBA’s most delightfully bonkers bunch has won five straight and eight of 11 since a loss to the Philadelphia 76ers had George Karl questioning their guts.”
Compiled Jeff Caraska