Kings Blog

Jason Jones: Ranking the NBA

By Jason Jones | jejones@sacbee.com


1. Golden State Warriors (29-5, last week 1):

Andrew Bogut made it back into the lineup, but how long can he stay healthy?


2 . Portland Trail Blazers (29-8, LW 2):

Damian Lillard is one of the best fourth-quarter players in the NBA.


3. Atlanta Hawks (28-8, LW 4):

If you aren’t taking the Hawks seriously by now, you’re missing one of the best teams around.


4. Dallas Mavericks (26-12, LW 5):

Don’t expect that the Mavs are done trying to improve their roster.


5. Houston Rockets (26-11, LW 7):

Looking to prove a team does improve by adding Josh Smith.


6. Washington Wizards: (25-11, LW 10):

Won three in a row to try to keep up with the Hawks.


7. Memphis Grizzlies (25-11, LW 3):

Addition of Jeff Green will add offense at small forward for the first time since Rudy Gay was traded.


8. Los Angeles Clippers (25-12 LW 9):

Don’t be surprised if the Clippers make a move to upgrade at small forward before the trade deadline.


9. Toronto Raptors (25-11, LW 6):

DeMar DeRozan is missed by Raptors, who have dropped their last four.


10. Chicago Bulls (26-12, LW 8):

Bulls could have three All-Stars in Jimmy Butler, Pau Gasol and Joakim Noah.


11. Phoenix Suns (22-17, LW 11):

Phoenix picked up big man Brandan Wright to help its postseason hopes.


12. San Antonio Spurs (23-15, LW 12):

Defending champions still haven’t found their groove amid injuries.


13. New Orleans Pelicans (18-18, LW 14):

Tyreke Evans has played well lately but was back on the bench with Eric Gordon healthy.


14. Milwaukee Bucks (20-19, LW 16):

One of the most improved teams in the league, even with center Larry Sanders taking time off.


15 . Oklahoma City Thunder (18-19, LW 15):

Hoping Dion Waiters can make it easier on offense for stars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.


16. Cleveland Cavaliers (19-18, LW 13):

Added J.R. Smith, Iman Shumpert and Timofey Mozgov in trades but have lost eight of 10.


17. Denver Nuggets (17-20, LW 20):

Four-game winning streak powered by Ty Lawson and Co.


18. Brooklyn Nets (16-21, LW 17):

Deron Williams will miss time with a rib injury as Nets have lost five in a row.


19. Kings (15-21, LW 18):

Shaky defense has contributed to 4-8 record under coach Tyrone Corbin.


20. Indiana Pacers (15-24, LW 21):

Indiana is playing better since George Hill returned from injury.


21. Miami Heat (15-21, LW 19):

The Heat is last in the NBA in assists and rebounding.


22. Charlotte Hornets (15-24, LW 27):

Winners of their last five, the Hornets are looking to recover from a miserable start to the season.


23. Detroit Pistons (13-24, LW 26):

Winning streak ended at seven games, but Pistons are now near the top eight in the East.


24. Utah Jazz (13-25, LW 24):

Rudy Gobert has filled in well at center for injured starter Enes Kanter.


25. Los Angeles Lakers (12-25, LW 25):

The nights Kobe Bryant rests give other players a chance to shine.


26. Boston Celtics (12-23, LW 22):

Celtics have dealt their two best players (Jeff Green, Rajon Rondo) to build for the future.


27. Orlando Magic (13-27, LW 23):

A disappointing 4-12 home record hasn’t helped.


28. Philadelphia 76ers (7-29, LW 30):

Andrei Kirilenko wants no part of this team and was suspended without pay for not reporting after a trade from Brooklyn.


29. Minnesota Timberwolves (5-31, LW 28):

If not for the Knicks, there would have been more attention paid to the T-wolves’ 15-game losing streak.


30. New York Knicks (5-35, LW 29):

The Knicks have lost 15 in a row and there’s no reason for optimism.

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