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Tony tha Mavs fan
09-30-2003, 01:08 PM
Power Rankings: Week 26
Rank (Last Wk) Team Rec. Comment
1 (1) Spurs 60-22 Didn't get J-Kidd, and didn't really try to get J. O'Neal, but defending champs did get deeper ... at a reasonable cost. So Team Duncan gets its just due here, even though only five of them are back from last season.

2 (3) Lakers 50-32 Summer was more good than bad, cementing L.A.'s status as Team Everyone Loves To Hate, but even Zen Master Phil is bracing for 'one of the most challenging years I can see.' He'll be lucky if that's all it is.

3 (5) Timberwolves 51-31 If you were asking for predictions, Wolves would still fall behind Mavs and Kings. But these ain't preseason predictions, and no team had a more satisfying summer. That's even more true if KG signs that extension.

4 (12) Nets 49-33 Fret if you want about J-Kidd's ankle or Lord Byron's contract situation or K-Mart's contract situation ... or even the sale of the team. Simply re-signing Kidd, who brought Zo with him, put Jersey's summer right up there with Minny's.

5 (4) Mavericks 60-22 Approaching 25 years of operation, Mavs still waiting for first marquee free-agent signing. But they're still Team Most Likely To Swing A Blockbuster Trade, and they've still got 60-win talent.

6 (2) Kings 59-23 Talent? When healthy, Kings are indeed my No. 3 title favorite. Problem is, they open the season with C-Webb out and Peja hobbling anew. Plus they've lost a little depth.

7 (6) Pistons 50-32 More I think about it, more I believe Detroit can challenge Jersey for East title. Nothing less is acceptable, but they have the depth, size and coach to get it done.

8 (8) Suns 44-38 Didn't add anything they can count on, but Stephon and Amare got healthier. Which definitely counts for something. And even though it's too early to count on Cabarkapa, folks are raving about the rookie.

9 (13) Pacers 48-34 Assuming you believe Scot Pollard can soften blow of Brad Miller's departure (I do) -- and assuming you believe in Donnie Walsh and Larry Bird (ditto) -- you have to believe Pacers won't melt down after the All-Star Game again.

10 (10) Hornets 47-35 For first time since he was at Iowa State, Tim Floyd has a top-20 ranking. On paper he has a top-10 team, but all the pressure's on the coach to keep Hornets up here.

11 (17) Rockets 43-39 Van Gundy always gets high marks from us, and there's no concern here about Franchise, Cat and Yao playing nice. Concern is Yao's freshness and ongoing absence of vet leadership. Not so high on new R logo, either.

12 (14) Magic 42-40 In the Race To Get To The Second Round, who do you like? KG and the Wolves? Or T-Mac's Magic? McGrady, Doc and newcomer Juwan will have to get higher than this.

13 (11) 76ers 48-34 Worried about AI's body holding up for length of that new contract extension? More questions here about Ayers' big shoes to fill, Kenny Thomas' big contract and whether AI can break Big Dog in.

14 (16) Celtics 44-38 Anyone who's seen that new picture of a trim Vin Man has to be very curious, at the very least, about his comeback potential. If he's just half of what he used to be, he helps Paul and 'Toine ... who desperately need some help.

15 (7) Trail Blazers 51-31 Next 10 or so teams are toughest to rank, and Blazers didn't help matters with another sorry summer. It could get messy for Mo Cheeks, who didn't get an extension and lost glue guys Pippen and Sabonis.

16 (19) Warriors 38-44 It ain't Dallas, but Van Exel will soon discover it ain't Denver, either. Warriors still have plenty of guys who can play and a good, young coach. No. 8 in West (watch out, Blazers) isn't totally out of the question.

17 (23) Bulls 30-52 Computer tried to reject Bulls this high, but Pip has grown on committee over the years. His return, and promise of Curry/Chandler, puts Chicago back on NBA map.

18 (29) Cavaliers 17-65 Playoffs? Playoffs?!? We probably shouldn't get Jim Mora riled up by even suggesting Cavs have a shot at No. 8 in the East, but they're this high (for now) because no other franchise is more rejuvenated as camps open.

19 (28) Nuggets 17-65 If we're talking LeBron, Carmelo can't be far behind. So same logic applies for Nugs. They're up here (for now) on buzz, and because Kiki was smart enough to target a restricted FA (Andre Miller) he could actually get.

20 (26) Heat 25-57 No more Zo -- and, worse, no bench to speak of -- but hope? Riles' Heat does have some in the easier East, with an interesting starting lineup: Wade, Jones, Butler, Odom and Grant.

21 (22) Wizards 37-45 So many teams (like, say, Nuggets) get bashed when free agents spurn their cap millions. Thus we can't knock Wiz for overpaying Arenas. Won't even question Gilbert's playoff guarantee. For now.

22 (25) Clippers 27-55 Like the Lakers, summer was more good than bad, but only by a hair. Heartwarming as it was to see The Donald finally spend on Brand, Maggette and Dunleavy, just as much talent left w/out compensation.

23 (27) Raptors 24-58 If Vince is back to his best, Raps should be back in East playoff mix. But it'll take more than 10 games on a starry Olympic squad to confirm that.

24 (21) Knicks 37-45 No. 1 in the payroll rankings at a tidy $85 million, and still league's best arena atmosphere, but they'll need a healthy Dice to crack our top 20 and stop folks from cracking Knicks jokes.

25 (20) Hawks 35-47 Happy to leave playoff guarantees to Arenas after interminable sale saga froze them out of the offseason. Not so happy to have more people trying to buy the team than fans in the stands.

26 (24) Grizzlies 28-54 Gasol's big summer at the European Championships with Spain can't obscure fact that Jerry West's attempts to acquire a legit center (Olowokandi was first choice) have all been rebuffed.

27 (18) SuperSonics 40-42 Seattle surprisingly accounted for 20 percent of the Olympic team: Ray Allen and Nick Collison. Of course, those two (and Rashard Lewis) represent like 95 percent of a thin Sonics squad.

28 (15) Bucks 42-40 There aren't many teams you can totally rule out of the East playoff chase. In fact, there's only one. Which is why rebuilding Bucks are looking to buy out perpetually cranky Mase.

29 (9) Jazz 47-35 Is it finally safe to write these guys off? Poor Sloan and the Jazz faithful are in for a culture shock, but there are worse fates than starting over as heavy favorites to win next lottery ... and with lots of cap space for trades, if not signings

u2sarajevo
09-30-2003, 01:21 PM
I don't understand New Jersey being ranked above us. And the Timberwolves number 3?

ESPN likes their shock value obviously.

dirno2000
09-30-2003, 01:46 PM
3 (5) Timberwolves 51-31 If you were asking for predictions, Wolves would still fall behind Mavs and Kings. But these ain't preseason predictions, and no team had a more satisfying summer. That's even more true if KG signs that extension.

I don't get this. Is he ranking off seasons, or team strength?

Murphy3
09-30-2003, 01:57 PM
apparently he does know what the rankings are based on either.

Hitman
09-30-2003, 02:27 PM
Again, to reiterate what has been said:

The Nets are not better than the Mavs.

The Wolves are not better than the Mavs.

You can make a case for the Kings, Spurs and Lakers being better...but thats it.

And the Kings is pushing it a bit at this point, IMO.

dirno2000
09-30-2003, 02:40 PM
The confusing thing is that he basically admits that the Mavs are better then the Wolves and Nets, but he ranks them lower.

superheadcat
09-30-2003, 02:43 PM
actually, i alway doubt the significance of "power rankings" or such, besides their value of making certain people paid and other people who are not really interested in nba entertained.

ultimately, teams are evaluated by w-l column, which should be the only standard weighing the "power" of teams.
for those more insightful and delicate development going on continuously in each and every team, there are way too many intricacies to be captured by the subtleties of "power rankings" as such.

mavsfanforever
09-30-2003, 07:51 PM
I agree with #1 and #2. #3 should be either kings or mavs. Ywolves are an unproven entity. They have an overrated pg(cassell ) and a diminshing talent in Screw Well. These rankings make no sense after #1 and #2

Bayliss
09-30-2003, 08:03 PM
Power Rankings are nothing more than a "what way is the wind blowing this week" topic. Who cares? It's like saying the Boys are ranked 13th because they are 2-1. But everyone knows they suck... and a few other teams have gotten off to a slow start.

MFFL
09-30-2003, 08:21 PM
Nets Simply re-signing Kidd, who brought Zo with him, put Jersey's summer right up there with Minny's.

How can resigning Kidd make their summer as good as Minnesota's? Kidd was not able to lead the team to a championship and they won't because they aren't close to as good as the best teams in the West.

Jeremiah
10-01-2003, 11:05 AM
Originally posted by: Bayliss
Power Rankings are nothing more than a "what way is the wind blowing this week" topic. Who cares? It's like saying the Boys are ranked 13th because they are 2-1. But everyone knows they suck... and a few other teams have gotten off to a slow start.

Yup, and that's how Stein does them, by the week. The clippers will go on a 5 game win streak beating the Lakers, Mavs, Spurs, Kings and Nets, be, 23-40, and all of a sudden be number 1 in his Power Rankings. It's not about which team is best, it's about which team is played the best relative to their expectations, strength of schedule, and whether there's a Cal-Fullerton alum on the team in Stein's Power Rankings. In conclusion, what Bayliss said.