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New NBA Rankings

Well in the first week of the season I posted my top teams which I think was Lakers, Boston, Miami, Orlando and a few other pretenders.

Now with the All star break coming up my new rankings are quite different.

1 – San Antonio. I did not rate them before and I don’t think many people did. But right not no one is playing better ball and they once again are doing like they always have as a team. These guys don’t have any one guy that’s the man but everyone as a role and they do it well. Good starters, good bench, good coach and experienced on how to win in the playoffs. This could be the last year for these guys but they will be ready come playoff time as this is the healthiest these guys have been in a while and TD will be well rested as his minutes are down. Can win with defense and offense so match up well with any opponent.

2 – Boston. Pretty much a reflection of San Antonio and have all the traits that the Spurs have but with more star power and more swagger. These guys believe when they step on the court that they are better than you and will let you know about it. With Perkins back they will be even stronger and have the size and toughness to make other teams lose mentally before the game even begins. Like San Antonio Boston has experience, depth and ability to match up and play any style.

3. Miami – The hate are rounding into form and seem to have now realized how the big three were meant to play together. Lebron pretty much runs the point and this is dangerous for any team as he can score or deliver open shots to a team that has guys who can score. Miami also continues to be a good team defensively as Lebron and Wade are two of the best 2 way players in the L. Only weakness for these guys is still who is the guy that takes the shots in crunch time? Lebron or Wade and do they know who gets the ball. The other weakness is also that often times these guys still rely on Lebron and Wade to take tough shots and get caught in them taking turns one on one and the rest of the team taking jumpers. Boston and San Antonio will make you pay if you don’t get the rest of your team joining the party. Having said that if Mike Miller does what he does, team will only be more dangerous to stop and with Lebron, Wade and Bosh that’s scary.

4. Lakers – Like I said this is my team and on paper these guys are a scar team. However on the floor these guys are not the same team. The success of the Lakers will depend on their desire when playoff time comes around and if these guys have the will to win a 3rd title. With Phil Jackson and Kobe around I think chances are you will see the Lakers start getting in to a groove towards the end of the year.With a bench that has Odom, Barnes, Blake, Shannon Stewart there is great depth and based on talent level, experience Lakers can repeat. All these teams above have beaten the Lakers this year but we will see which Lakers team they face when its Playoff time. 3 keys for the Lakers, Pau Gasol has got to go back to being one of the best offensively skilled big men in the L and get his confidence back and not get bullied into being passive. Ron Ron has to focus on ball and being the guy who shuts down Paul Pierce, Lebron/Wade, Manu who ever need be.  Not too much Kobe time, the team becomes predictable when they play give the ball to Kobe and lets watch him do his thing.

5. Chicago – I had Dallas with these guys in the 5 spot and essentially they are the same team. Both teams have great depth. Have improved on good teams they had over last year and have a clutch guy that can carry the team. Dallas has a bit more experienced team and ability to grind out games. However Chicago are gritty too and now with Boozer have a post presence and will get even better with the return of Noah assuming he is healthy. Dallas will really miss Caron Butler who is a defensive gem who can score the ball. And that swings it for Chicago who are performing well and will gain a key player, while Dallas will really miss a key player and have to step it up.

We will soon see who will be the team to do it this year but it looks real good as the matchups will be good when playoffs roll around. Orlando has talent but too many weaknesses to go all the way. Dont see any team with a chance of getting out of the East not from Miami, Boston or Chicago. In the West after San Antonio, Lakers and Dallas, the team that has a shot is the Thunder who have energy, athleticism and KD. But don’t think they have  a team to beat Spurs and Lakers. Denver remains dangerous but pretty much are the same team they were before but talent level has slightly depreciated from last year and who knows Melo may not be there come playoffs? I love this game.

Big shouts to my raps for ending the 13 game losing streak, thought they had a shot at the 8 spot in the East in that first week too and had they not lost Barbosa and Reggie Evans and some other injuries I think they may have challenged for it. Oh well seems like we gunning for a good lottery pick now. However I did predict the end of the 3 point streak this season although injuries likely killed that too!

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