1.Memphis Grizzlies 8-1
-Wins over the Thunder, Heat, Knicks, and Bucks have highlighted the eight game winning streak. Even more impressive; four of the wins have been on the road.
2. Miami Heat 8-3
-The Heat keep on winning despite Dwyane Wade being absent with injury. The question remains though, can they handle a big team like the Grizzlies without any quality big men?
3. New York Knicks 7-1
-The loss against the Grizzlies ends the 82-0 dream New Yorkers once had, but coming right back and getting a win over Indiana proves that this team can come back strong.
4. Los Angeles Clippers 7-2
-The Clippers have quietly proven they are elite while the other team in LA continues to steal all the headlines. Having six guys averaging double figures doesn’t hurt either.
5. Oklahoma City Thunder 8-3
-Can you believe win against the Warriors was the first time Kevin Durant had a triple double in his career? Hes averaging 24 and 10 through 11 games.
6. San Antonio Spurs 8-2
-The Spurs quietly go about their business; destroying with a 126 lashing. Even more important, Ginobili looked healthy for the first time all year.
7. Brooklyn Nets 6-2
-While a win in the division is always good, a Nets/Celtics matchup won’t mean much until the Rondo is a part of it.
8. Milwaukee Bucks 6-2
-Are the Bucks the Arizona Cardinals of the NBA? This team is overachieving, but it is starting to look as though they actually matter. Games against Miami, Chicago, New York and Minnesota will give us more of an idea.
9. Chicago Bulls 5-5
-The Bulls are surviving without Derrick. Joakim Noah should be a starter in the all-star game, and Luol Deng is showing he can handle the scoring until Rose returns. But who else can help?
10. Philadephia 76ers 6-4
-Usually the 76ers would be higher, but it’s tough with the news they just heard. Andrew Bynum is quickly turning into a huge disappointment and quite frankly, needs to grow up.
11. Boston Celtics 6-5
-Just when the Celtics were going to have a great weekend with solid home winds over the Jazz and Raptors, they go and blow it with an awful loss to the lowly Pistons. Contenders simply don’t have these lapses.
12. Los Angeles Lakers 5-5
-The improvement is shown right away. Mike’s Lakers looked fluent, comfortable, and scary good on offense. Kobe playing like he’s 26 against doesn’t hurt either.
13. Minnesota Timberwolves 5-4
-So the T-Wolves have lost two straight. At the same time, they haven’t been out of any game. This team could easily be 6-3 or 7-2. Much like the Bulls, it is just hold on.
14. Dallas Mavericks 6-5
-O.J. Mayo has put himself into the all-star conversation. But with yet another team who is waiting for it’s star, the Mavericks need to start beating some teams they may see in the playoffs. They haven’t yet beat a team with a winning record.
15. Houston Rockets 4-6
-The honeymoon is over, and now it’s team to see how this team fits. Harden and Lin need to improve their team game, and stop turning the ball over so much(combined 8 turnovers a game.)
16. Denver Nuggets 4-6
-The Nuggets started slow, then got hot, and then looked helpless against San Antonio’s offense. This team needs to be more consistent before can be considered elite.
17. Utah Jazz 5-6
-The Jazz have looked….average. While the veterans they brought in our helping, Randy Foye and Gordon Hayward need to step up and be the backcourt scorers that this team is lacking.
18. Portland Trailblazers 5-5
-Damian Lillard looks unreal, and Nicholas Batum is finally filling in on that early promise of being a premier scorer in this league. This team just looks one or two years away.
19. Indiana Pacers 4-7
-The Pacers are falling, fast. Roy Hibbert(8 points/8 boards) needs to start earning that pay day soon or else this team is going to continue to struggle.
20. Atlanta Hawks 4-4
-Coming out of a road trip 2-2 isn’t a bad thing, but a four point loss to Golden State where you allowed rookie Harrison Barnes to be the leading scorer is.
21. New Orleands Hornets 3-5
-The Hornets goal this year shouldn’t be a championship. It should be finding the right pieces to build around what could be the biggest #1 pick in a long time.
22. Golden State Warriors 5-5
-While the Warriors are 5-5, we at Pick N Pop are treading lightly. They haven’t been able to keep their A unit healthy, and it could hurt them with games against teams like Brooklyn, Denver, and Minnesota coming up. Those teams love to run.
23. Charlotte Bobcats 4-4
-Who are these Bobcats?! Even though they almost blew a win in Minnesota, and lost to Memphis this past Saturday; the young guys are showing some spunk. Most importantly, Kemba Walker is finally showing the confidence in his shot that he had in college.
24. Phoenix Suns 4-7
-The Suns are literally the most boring team in basketball. I would rather read Jared Dudley’s twitter feed for three hours than watch them play basketball.
25. Cleveland Cavaliers 2-8
-If Joakim Noah isn’t the starter in the East, Varajeo better be the only other option. He could be the biggest trade piece for a contender if him and Kyrie continue to get absolutely no help.
26. Toronto Raptors 3-7
-The Raptors can’t seem to put a complete game together. And while Bargnani showed some willingness to go down low in Boston, he found himself taking jumpers when it mattered.
27. Detroit Pistons 2-9
-Just as we talk about how bad the Pistons are; they go and troll off a couple wins; including ruining a perfectly good weekend game against my Celtics. I still want my money back from League Pass.
28. Orlando Magic 3-6
-Defenses have figured out E’Twaun Moore, they can’t decide which big man to play, and Glen Davis continues to think hes a 20 point scorer. It is not looking good in Orlando.
29. Sacramento Kings 2-8
-While the Kings have some promise, it is very faint. They need to decide who the future is, and start to cut the fat to rebuild this program.
30. Washington Wizards 0-8
-Do you think if we wrote a “When will the Wizards win?” they will run off a 20 point victory against the Pacers? Probably not.
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