If there is one thing to love about the NBA, it’s that no matter what, there are always surprised. That holds true every single season. We foresaw the Philadelphia 76ers and even the Los Angeles Lakers being bad, but who saw the Detroit Pistons enter play in Week 7 with the league’s longest losing streak at 13 games and counting? The New York Knicks are similarly awful, having lost ten in a row.
Conversely, who saw the Golden State Warriors, Memphis Grizzlies and Houston Rockets taking the league by storm the way they have? How about those Toronto Raptors as well?
LeBron James and his Cleveland Cavaliers have surged toward the top of the Central Division after some surprising early season struggles, while the Atlanta Hawks have done the same in the Southeast. Sporting matching eight-game win streaks, recognition is due.
With each team playing at least 20 games at this point, it is safe to say that what you have observed thus far is no mirage. The Rockets are good without Dwight Howard and DeMar DeRozan’s loss will hurt the Raptors.
As infighting and rumors take center stage in New York City and newly signed players become trade eligible on December 15, we are giving special attention to the Oklahoma City Thunder and New Orleans Pelicans, as both are nipping at the heels of the Phoenix Suns.
Of those three trams, only one is likely to get into the playoffs out West, just like only one team can lead our weekly power rankings. They’re a familiar face up top, though, so while surprises abound, we are beginning to recognize some trends.
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- Jae Crowder to miss Phoenix Suns training camp as team works on trade
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