NBA Power 16 - Week 5

Kevin Durant

1

Golden State Warriors (18-0) (Last week: 1)

They’re good.

2

San Antonio Spurs (14-3) (Last week: 2)

Tim Duncan is 39 years old and grabbed 18 rebounds the other night, all while taking a backseat to Kawhi Leonard, who is now a full-on legitimate superstar.

3

Cleveland Cavaliers (13-4) (Last week: 3)

The Cavs are this good and they’re still missing Kyrie Irving. Another thing people are forgetting: Iman Shumpert hasn’t played a game this season either. The regular season is essentially serving as rehab time for the Cavs.

4

Oklahoma City Thunder (11-6) (Last week: 4)

This Just In: Kevin Durant is good. He won WC Player of the Week, and the Thunder are miles better when he’s on the court. If OKC can get consistent contributions from the role players, as they have recently, then watch out. This team is scary.

5

Indiana Pacers (11-5) (Last week: 7)

It’s awesome to see Paul George doing what he’s doing after that nasty leg break. It’s also somewhat baffling that the Pacers are 11-5 with a roster that, outside of Paul George, looks like it was constructed through a raffle. Frank Vogel deserves a ton of credit.

6

Toronto Raptors (11-7) (Last week: 5)

Losing Valanciunas for a few weeks will hurt more than people are realizing. Enter Bismack Biyombo.

7

Chicago Bulls (9-5) (Last week: 4)

Bulls are pushing through some injuries, as always, but they’re doing a fantastic job staying afloat. They’re not flashy, but they get it done. How can we get Jimmy Butler to OKC?

8

Miami Heat (10-5) (Last week: 8)

Hassan Whiteside is playing 29 minutes per game and blocking 4.8 shots per game. That’s ridiculous.

9

Utah Jazz (8-7) (Last week: 11)

After getting blown out by the Thunder, they went to LA and beat the Clippers in a game where Blake Griffin had 40 and 12; regardless of the Clippers’ woes, that’s pretty impressive.

10

Atlanta Hawks (11-8) (Last week: 12)

Atlanta is a candidate to make a big trade this season, in my opinion. They need a bit more help when it comes to consistency. The loss of DeMarre Carroll is hurting, I think.

11

Dallas Mavericks (10-7) (Last week: 10)

After winning six in a row, the Mavs have now lost 3 of 4, coming back down to earth a bit. They’re still looking for Wes Matthews to be Wes Matthews.

12

Charlotte Hornets (10-7) (Last week: 16)

JEREMY LAMB!!!!!!!!!!

13

Memphis Grizzlies (10-8) (Last week: NR)

The Grizz are beginning to catch their stride a bit, as many knew they would. 10-8 is still worse than everybody predicted, but there have been a ton of Western Conference surprises this year. This team automatically gets deducted 2 spots in the rankings for having Matt Barnes on the roster, too.

14

Los Angeles Clippers (9-8) (Last week: 13)

Even with Blake Griffin playing at an MVP-type level, this team is struggling. I can’t help but wonder if there’s any part of DeAndre Jordan that regrets not going to Dallas.

15

Boston Celtics (9-8) (Last week: 9)

This team reminds me a lot of the Jazz, in a sense that they have a ton of good, solid players, but no real superstars. A roster like that can lead to an above-.500 record, but not much more than that.

16

Phoenix Suns (8-9) (Last week: NR)

Keep an eye on T.J. Warren. Dude can ball.

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