Kings Blog

Ranking the NBA’s 30 teams


1. Golden State Warriors (67-15, last week 1): Time for the Warriors to prove their regular-season success can lead to a championship.


2. Atlanta Hawks (60-22, LW 2): Do the Hawks have a go-to player to carry them in the postseason?


3. Los Angeles Clippers (56-26, LW 5): Enter the playoffs on a seven-game winning streak.


4. San Antonio Spurs (55-27, LW 3): Their matchup against the Clippers might be the best to watch of opening round.


5. Cleveland Cavaliers (53-29, LW 4): Time to see if Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love can perform in the postseason.


6. Houston Rockets (56-26, LW 7): James Harden can elevate his stature by leading the Rockets out of the first round.


7. Chicago Bulls (50-32, LW 8): A meeting with Cleveland looms in the second round.


8. Memphis Grizzlies (55-27, LW 6): Spent much of the season looking like the top contender to knock off the Warriors, but there are doubts now.


9. Dallas Mavericks (50-32, LW 10): Is this Dirk Nowitzki’s last chance to make an impact in the playoffs?


10. Portland Trail Blazers (51-31, LW 9): LaMarcus Aldridge and Damian Lillard need to be at their best to compensate for injuries.


11. New Orleans Pelicans (45-37, LW 11): Making the postseason might have saved coach Monty Williams’ job.


12. Toronto Raptors (49-33, LW 12): DeMar DeRozan finished the season strong for the Atlantic Division champs.


13. Washington Wizards (46-36, LW 14): A first-round exit would be a disappointing end to the season.


14. Oklahoma City Thunder (45-37, LW 13): Injuries were too much to overcome, even though Russell Westbrook won the scoring title.


15. Milwaukee Bucks (41-41, LW 15): Jason Kidd led the Bucks to a 26-win improvement and a playoff berth.


16. Boston Celtics (40-42, LW 18): Avery Bradley, Marcus Smart and Isaiah Thomas give Boston a potent backcourt.


17. Brooklyn Nets (38-44, LW 17): The eighth seed in the Eastern Conference wasn’t the goal, but it’s better than where the Nets appeared headed a month ago.


18. Utah Jazz (38-44, LW 19): Will be a team to watch next season after its strong finish.


19. Phoenix Suns (39-43, LW 16): Injuries and roster changes contributed to the Suns sliding down the standings after an above-.500 2013-14.


20. Indiana Pacers (38-44, LW 20): Paul George’s injury scare (calf strain) was the last thing the Pacers wanted to see in the season finale.


21. Miami Heat (37-45, LW 21): Pat Riley expects this team to be formidable next season when at full strength.


22. Charlotte Hornets (33-49, LW 22): The Lance Stephenson signing did not work out in Year 1 and the Hornets missed the playoffs.


23. Detroit Pistons (32-50, LW 23): How soon Brandon Jennings can recover from his Achilles injury could dictate offseason moves.


24. Denver Nuggets (30-52, LW 24)

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The Nuggets will explore several coaching options, including interim coach Melvin Hunt.


25. Kings (29-53, LW 25): Time to see if the front office can regain the trust of its top players.


26. Orlando Magic (25-57, LW 26): Another team that will look to replace an interim head coach.


27. Los Angeles Lakers (21-61, LW 27): Franchise-worst record and the team will lose its draft pick to Philadelphia if it’s out of the top five.


28. Philadelphia 76ers (18-64, LW 28): Will the Sixers’ rebuilding plan lead to more wins next season?


29. Minnesota Timberwolves (16-66, LW 29): A lot of young talent needs to develop.


30. New York Knicks (17-65, LW 30): Can the Knicks lure a top free agent to help Carmelo Anthony?

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