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    NBA: Who's Hot/Who's Not

    HOT - 4/3 to 4/9

    Toronto G  Mike James continues to have a huge year. This week he averaged 31.8 PPG , 5.3 RPG, 6.8 APG and 3.8 three pointers and shot 57% from the field.

    NOT - 4/3 to 4/9

    Wizards F Antwan Jamison didn't have his usual kind of week. He averaged only 15.7 PPG and 4.7 RPG, and 0.8 steals while shooting 34.2% from the field.

    NBA Articles
    NBA Power Rankings
    By Eric W.
    Published: February 22, 2006, 3:15 pm
    Print    Email

    Well, it’s about halfway through the NBA season and as usual we have our scorching hot teams, and our, well, you know…  We have thirty-two teams, and thirty-two numbers for you, and here they are.

    1.    Detroit Pistons (42-9) – With their best franchise start, who’s to say this amazing team shouldn’t be at the top.  After all, their longest losing streak was an astounding two games.  The Pistons are a true show of team, and not necessarily talent.  Though every started on that team is extremely talented, they play as a team every game, and that is why they win.  Whichever team faces Detroit, is going to have a tough time winning a single game, let alone an entire series.

    2.    Dallas Mavericks (41-11) – Does a thirteen game winning streak mean anything to you?  Well, it certainly does to me.  Dirk Nowitzki has certainly made this team one of the ones to be feared for another year.  The Mavericks are probably the hottest team right now, and the only reason they aren’t at the top, is because the Pistons have done so much to earn it.  Look for the Mavericks to stay at that number one spot for the West, and cause many teams problems come playoff time.

    3.    San Antonio Spurs (40-12) – San Antonio is right there with the Mavericks, but they don’t have that extraordinary winning streak which Dallas does.  That combo of Duncan, Ginobili, and Parker doesn’t look to be giving way any time soon.  While the Mavericks do have a twelve game streak, the Spurs have a seven, not at all shabby.  San Antonio and Dallas prove a strong one-two combo in the South West Division.

    4.    Phoenix Suns (35-17) – No one really expected the Suns to be where they are without Amare Stoudemire, Joe Johnson, and Quentin Richardson.  They proved to be an elite team even without these players, as they hold the number four spot on our power rankings.  When Amare gets back, sooner or later, the Suns are going to be a force to be dealt with.

    5.    Miami Heat (33-20) – The Heat, number two in the East, are top five in the entire NBA.  The duo of Dwyane Wade and Shaquille O’Neal, have tried to do everything they can to keep Miami in a great spot for the playoffs, and we will be seeing the Heat once again come playoff time.

    6.    Cleveland Cavaliers (31-21) - The Cavaliers, led by LeBron James are going to make the playoffs.  LeBron, who is nearly averaging a triple-double, has taken this team on his shoulders, with the help of Big Z and Larry Hughes, of course.  The Cavaliers are an up and rising team in this league.

    7.    Los Angeles Clippers (30-21) – Yes, that’s right, the Clippers, number seven.  With the monster of Elton Brand on this team though, how could they not be at number seven?  The Clippers are going to be in the playoffs, and they are going to win some games as well.

    8.    New Jersey Nets (28-23) – Vince Carter’s, Jason Kidd’s, and Richard Jefferson’s nets have made the top ten of the NBA’s power rankings, but barely.  The team is just over five-hundred, yet they still rack up the wins against the big boys.

    9.    New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets (29-23) – In their last ten games, they have gone nine and one, not at all shabby for a team who was in dead last, last season.  Many thanks to the rookie, Chris Paul, who without him, this team would be at the bottom of the rankings, for a second straight year.

    10.    Denver Nuggets (28-26) – The Nuggets haven’t been so hot lately, but they are still a great team.  Carmelo Anthony and Kenyon Martin will keep this team in the running, but one would think they might be a little higher then they are currently.

    11.    Memphis Grizzlies (29-23) – Every year they manage to make the playoffs.  Not by extraordinary talent, but by team effort.  Though it may seem “corny”, this team plays as a whole, and that is the reason for their success.

    12.    Indiana Pacers (26-23) – The Pacers, coming back from a disappointing year have rebounded.  They have made a huge move, by trading Ron Artest to the Kings in exchange for Peja Stojacovik.  The Pacers are also barely above five hundred, but are ranked fifth overall in the East.

    13.    Milwaukee Bucks (27-25) – The Bucks, another one of the many surprises of this year, have been doing pretty good thus far.  Their new rookie, Andrew Bogut, and star shooting guard Michael Redd have been producing and should continue to produce throughout the season.

    14.    Washington Wizards (26-25) – The Wizards are the last team winning more then half of their games.  Gilbert Arenas and Antwan Jamison are all this team has, but apparently it is enough to lead them into the 2006 NBA Playoffs.

    15.    Los Angeles Lakers (26-26) – It looks like this year, Kobe Bryant might be doing enough to get this team into the playoffs by himself.  An eighty-one point performance is certainly going to do his team some good.  All Kobe did was prove that he himself can act as an entire NBA team.

    16.    Philadelphia 76ers (25-27) – The 76ers are the only team that if the playoffs began today, would make them, while being a sub-five hundred team.  Allen Iverson is the Kobe of the East, just not as good as a Kobe.  He has some help from Iguodala and Webber, and hopefully for the 76ers, they will keep the team in playoff contention.

    17.    Utah Jazz (25-27) – There is not much to say about the Jazz, they are just a team who is struggling to make the playoffs, just like plenty of others.  Utah can only hope for the best as the second half of the season begins.

    18.    Sacramento Kings (24-29) – After trading Peja Stojacovik for Ron Artest, the team has slightly improved, on both defense and offense.  The Kings would be a solid 8th seed with Bibby, Artest, and Miller on their squad.

    19.    Golden State Warriors (24-29) – The Warriors had a great start to the season, but they could not keep it up.  Baron Davis and Jason Richardson were proving quite the combo, but they soon lost their grip, and went spiraling downwards.

    20.    Houston Rockets (22-31) – This team, a team who might have even won an NBA Championship last year, has lost a grip.  With Tracy McGrady, the backbone of the team, constantly struggling with injury, it is to no wonder the team has been such an upset.  With McGrady and Yao both healthy now though, this team could prove much better than its record portrays.

    21.    Minnesota Timberwolves (23-29) – With the losses of Sam Cassell and Latrell Spreweel, the ‘Wolves are not going anywhere.  Kevin Garnett has not lived up to his outstanding standards, and without him overachieving, the team is nothing.

    22.    Chicago Bulls (23-29) – We all that that in a few years, the Bulls would be a top team.  If this is indeed true, that time has not yet come.  The Bulls won’t make the playoff this year, but look for them carefully next year.

    23.    Seattle Supersonics (20-33) – Yet another team who has greatly underachieved.  The Supersonics were also contending for the championship trophy last year, and this year, they are not even top twenty!  Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis have let the city of Seattle down.

    24.    Boston Celtics (20-32) – Paul Pierce has done everything he can to help this team out, but it’s just not enough.  Apparently, Boston is losing its grip on basketball, as well as football.

    25.    Toronto Raptors (20-33) – Chris Bosh, one of the younger leaders of their respective team in the league, has done all he can do for the raptors.  Though not an upset, don’t look for the Raptors to be too high any time soon.

    26.    Orlando Magic (19-32) – Even with such names as Steve Francis, Grant Hill, and Dwight Howard, the Magic have not been able to pull any magic.  Orlando is one of the weaker teams, in one of the weaker divisions, but Dwight will no doubt improve over the years, so look for good things to come, just not yet.

    27.    Portland Trailblazers (18-33) – With the loss of Abdur-Rahim, all Portland really has left is Zach Randolph, and apparently, that is not enough for this losing team.

    28.    Atlanta Hawks (16-34) – Nothing to say here, just a team who plain can’t, and won’t win in the near future.

    29.    New York Knicks (14-37) – Boy, oh boy, the Knicks.  Let me just say, nothing the Knicks do is right.  Maybe some upside is that Stephon Marbury is coming back this week, but who knows, that might be just some more downside.

    30.    Charlotte Bobcats (14-40) – What can you expect from a franchise this new.  They’ll get some nice draft picks in the next few years, and hopefully formulate a team.

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