After careful scientific evaluation, I have come up with the first ever KSAT Ball Hog Blog NBA Power Rankings. These rankings really don't mean a thing, but they are fun to debate and let's face it, fantasy football season is over for me so I got extra time. These are not based entirely on standings, but who is playing well and who I feel would currently win a head-to-head matchup. I now give you faithful readers, all ten of you, the first set NBA power rankings for the first part of the season. We'll count down from 12, naturally.
12. Phoenix (14-10) Early season surprise for a team I thought would be in tank mode. Eric Bledsoe is putting up nice numbers and making a case to be an All-Star, but I can't get behind a team that has Goran "The Spurs assassin" Dragic as its second best player.
11. Denver (14-10) Probably the fastest and one of the most exciting backcourts in the league with Ty Lawson and Nate Robinson, but hardly any frontcourt presence despite the best efforts of Kenneth "The Manimal" Faried.
10. Minnesota (13-13) Slow start out of the gate, but the roster is too talented for the slide to continue. The Wolves main issue is defense. 24th in points allowed, but I suspect veteran coach Rick Adelman will get the ship righted. They have more than enough offense with K-Love and Rubio.
9. Dallas (15-10) Dirk looks healthy for the first time in years and Monta Ellis has changed his ball-hogging ways enough to give the Mavs a legit one, two punch. They have played only two games against West powers, but this Coach Pop sideline imitation gets them a bump.
8. Golden State (14-12) One of the most exciting and inconsistent teams this season. Steph Curry and Klay Thompson continue to fire away from long range and David Lee has recovered from last season's injury. The schedule has been tough, but getting back a healthy Andre Igoudala helps.
7. Houston (17-9) The Rockets have some curious losses, but they appear to be rounding into form. They are second in the league in scoring, but have been atrocious and sometimes comically bad on defense. I'll be interested to see if they deal Omer Asik, but otherwise the Howard, Harden experiment appears to be going well.
6. Portland (22-5) I have them lower than most, but have been very impressed with their play. The Blazers have already beaten some of the league's best teams and the inside-outside combo of Damian Lillard and Lamarcus Aldridge makes them a tough opponent. Side note: I enjoy seeing Portland good again. The Rose Garden, er...I mean Moda Center, is one of the toughest places to play when the Blazers are legit. This team is.
5. LA Clippers (18-9) The Clips have won 5 of 6 and Chris Paul somehow continues to get better despite making terrible insurance commercials. I like this roster with the additions of Redick and Dudley, but again, it comes down to the bigs and Blake Griffin who will be tested to make tough shots and free throws down the stretch.
4. San Antonio (20-5) The Spurs continue to churn out wins, but there are questions about their struggles against the league's best. All their losses have been against top tier squads, but I doubt Coach Pop and the Big 3 care. They know the ultimate goal is to navigate through the season healthy. Big week ahead with games against Golden State, OKC, Dallas and Houston.
3. Miami (19-6) The Heat are on same boat as the Spurs. Just get through the season healthy, but the difference is Indiana poses a real threat and I feel the Pacers can beat Miami with homecourt advantage. Miami has already shown they will sit D-Wade on back-to-back nights so its on LeBron again to carry them and keep up with Indiana.
2. Oklahoma City (20-4) The Thunder are on a mission to make up for last season. One of the big differences I see from previous years is their commitment to defense. Durant and Westbrook have greatly improved on that end. OKC is first in the league in rebounds and 9th in points allowed. Their defensive improvement has made up for the lack of third scoring option.
1. Indiana (20-5) Yes, they just lost back-to-back games including the grudge match to Miami, but top to bottom, this is the league's best roster and Paul George has become elite. Adding Luis Scola in free agency was a steal and Granger is set to return. The Pacers biggest issue is point guard play. George Hill is solid, but has trouble against some of the league's better defenders.