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NBA

NBA Power Rankings: Week 5

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2012-13 NBA Power Rankings: WEEK 5

NBA Power Rankings
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

It is starting to look a lot like the foundation of this year's NBA season is coming together. Excluding a few teams still looking to find an identity it looks clear that which teams will be competing for the NBA Title.

The New York Knicks, San Antonio Spurs, Oklahoma City Thunder, Memphis Grizzlies and the Miami Heat are all the clear favorites to represent in the Finals. Of course, not all can be in it, but it sure does look like it's going to be one heck of a ride.

Although, it's only December, it looks like that the Los Angeles Lakers are not even a playoff contender. They are not even the best team in Hollywood. The Los Angeles Clippers have a shot in winning their division title in their franchise history.

Speaking of the Lakers, a lot of rumors out that Pau Gasol may be traded soon. Could that change the motive of the Lakers season? Who knows?

However, whatever they decide to do they need to do it quick. Falling far in the Western Conference is not the same as it is out East.

Other than the top teams in the league there are a few teams that have had a surprising start. Both the Golden State Warriors and the Atlanta Hawks are on a great start right now. They both have the potential of making the post-season and surprise some teams along the way.

Again, it's only December and there is still a lot of basketball left to be played. I mean, it's not even Christmas yet, so anything can happen. Here is week five of this year's power rankings.




CHECK OUT THE LAST WEEKS' RANKINGS TO COMPARE THEM TO THIS WEEKS
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#30 Toronto Raptors 4-17

Raptors
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

The Toronto Raptors are just a horrible team right now. Losers of four straight games, and being blown out in their last two. At least they finish up their five game road trip tomorrow night against the Portland Trail Blazers.



LAST WEEK RANK #29
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#29 Washington Wizards 2-15

Wizards
Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

I figured that beating the Heat deserved a spot higher in the rankings this week. However, they should go back to the bottom again next week unless they beat the Heat again Saturday night.



LAST WEEK RANK #30
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#28 Cleveland Cavaliers 4-17

Cavs
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Losers of their last five, this Cleveland Cavaliers team has no chemistry. They seem to be on a road to their worse season in recent memories. Even worse than the year LeBron James left.

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#27 New Orleans Hornets 5-14

Hornets
Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

The New Orleans Hornets may not be a very dangerous team this year. Maybe the New Orleans Pelicans will have a better year next year.



LAST WEEK RANK #26
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#26 Detroit Pistons 7-15

Pistons
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Their leading scorer is Greg Monroe with 15 points per game. There's no question why the Detroit Pistons are this bad. They need to find some shooters, going forward in their rebuilding phase.



LAST WEEK RANK #25
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#25 Sacramento Kings 7-12

Kings
Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

The Sacramento Kings are on a three game winning streak, which is great for a young Kings team. Plus, a nice win against Portland to start their four game road trip.



LAST WEEK RANK #27
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#24 Orlando Magic 8-12

Magic
Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports

The Orlando Magic finish their five game road trip 3-2. Now they can rest for awhile before hosting the Hawks on Wednesday.



LAST WEEK RANK #22
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#23 Charlotte Bobcats 7-12

Bobcats
Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Well, the Charlotte Bobcats are still stuck at seven wins. That is the same amount of wins they had last year and losing seven straight has really has held them back. At least one good news for fans of the Bobcats is that they may soon be the Hornets again.



LAST WEEK RANK #18
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#22 Phoenix Suns 7-15

Suns
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The Phoenix Suns are really horrible right now. They have lost seven straight games and the Suns just look confused and this week does not look easy. They host the Memphis Grizzlies and the Utah Jazz later this week.



LAST WEEK RANK #23
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#21 Portland Trail Blazers 8-12

Blazers
Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

I predicted the Blazers to win 18 games this season and I still believe that they will be at the bottom of the West. Lets see how they do on their six game home stand which they already lost their first game.



LAST WEEK RANK #24
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#20 Indiana Pacers 10-11

Pacers
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

It's funny how they are in first in the league for rebounds per game while they are in first place in points allowed and last in points scored per game. No wonder the Indiana Pacers are clinging around the even .500 mark.



LAST WEEK RANK #20
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#19 Minnesota Timberwolves 9-9

Wolves
Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Timberwolves seem like they are on the right track now. They have won four of their last six games. Maybe they will get “hot” this month, but with a tough schedule ahead of them it may be a little hard. It will sure be a tough test, going forward.



LAST WEEK RANK #19
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#18 Denver Nuggets 10-11

Nuggets
Daniel Shirey-USA Today Sports

A team that was suppose to be a good team with Andre Iguodala it sure does not look that way. They have been struggling lately, losing five of their last seven. They still have two more games on their five game road trip.



LAST WEEK RANK #21
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#17 Houston Rockets 9-10

Rockets
Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

The Houston Rockets have lost two straight and against their division rivals, the Spurs and Dallas Mavericks. Let see if they can turn that around with another game against the Spurs Monday night.



LAST WEEK RANK #16
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#16 Dallas Mavericks 10-10

Mavs
Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Are the Mavs back? They are winners of their last three of four games. It could be a fluke since the wins were against under .500 teams. After a home game Monday, they are back on the road for their next three games and those are also against teams that are struggling. Still early to tell what identity that these Mavs have.



LAST WEEK RANK #17
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#15 Los Angeles Lakers 9-12

Lakers
Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

The Lakers are 1-4 in their last five games. It's almost mid-December and this Lakers team is just bad. Is it time to come to terms and say that the Dwight Howard-Steve Nash experiment has completely failed?



LAST WEEK RANK #13
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#14 Boston Celtics 11-9

Celtics
David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

The Boston Celtics face a difficult schedule ahead of them. Their next three games are against Texas teams. Mavs at home Wednesday night then back-to-back road games in Houston and San Antonio.



LAST WEEK RANK #14
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#13 Utah Jazz 12-10

Jazz
Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

A great win over the Lakers, Sunday night. I do not know if anybody has notice, but the Jazz are really good at home. They are 8-1 at home with their first home lost coming last week against the Clippers.



LAST WEEK RANK #15
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#12 Philadelphia 76ers 11-9

Sixers
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

When will Andrew Bynum return? The Philadelphia 76ers should could use him right now. They are still above .500, but who knows how long that will last.



LAST WEEK RANK #9
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#11 Milwaukee Bucks 10-9

Bucks
Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

An impressive win against the Brooklyn Nets. Maybe games against the Kings and Cavs can get the Milwaukee Bucks a few games above .500.

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#10 Chicago Bulls 11-8

Bulls
Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Bulls are winners of their last five of six games. Let see if they can keep that up with games against the Clippers, 76ers, Nets and Grizzlies ahead of them.



LAST WEEK RANK #12
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#9 Brooklyn Nets 11-8

Nets
Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

Losers of their last four games bumped them down to #9. Maybe they aren't quite there yet in the top elite. They have lost to both of last year's Conference Champions in the last few weeks.



LAST WEEK RANK #6
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#8 Golden State Warriors 13-7

Warriors
Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Warriors have won three straight all on the road. Great start to their seven game road trip with one of those wins coming against the Nets.



LAST WEEK RANK #8
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#7 Atlanta Hawks 12-5

Hawks
Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports

The Hawks have won nine of their last 10 games. Are the Hawks an elite team? They could be, but it is still early in the season to tell.



LAST WEEK RANK #10
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#6 Los Angeles Clippers 14-6

Clippers
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

After losing four straight games, the Clippers turned that around by winning six straight. Lets see if they can continue that streak with a four game road trip ahead of them.



LAST WEEK RANK #7
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#5 Miami Heat 13-5

Heat
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The Heat losing to both the Knicks and the Wizards deserved them to be bumped from #1 to #5 for the week. However, I believe that they will be just fine.



LAST WEEK RANK #1
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#4 Memphis Grizzlies 14-4

Grizzlies
Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports

The Grizzlies are one of the best defensive teams in the league right now. Only allowing opponents to score little over 91 points a game. The best in the NBA.



LAST WEEK RANK #2
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#3 New York Knicks 15-5

Knicks
Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports

A very impressive blowout win over the Heat last week. Could these Knicks actually be a championship contending team? It sure does look that way, thus far.



LAST WEEK RANK #5
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#2 San Antonio Spurs 17-4

Spurs
Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

The Spurs begin their four game road trip by demolishing the Bobcats, Saturday night. The Spurs sure do look like a team that will compete for a title at the end of the season. Just as long as they stay healthy I do not see anybody taken them down anytime soon.



LAST WEEK RANK #3
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#1 Oklahoma City Thunder 17-4

Thunder
Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

The Thunder are on a eight game winning streak and nothing seems to stand in their way. With three more games at home, the Thunder can extend their lead and push away from the Spurs and Grizzlies who are right on their tail.



LAST WEEK RANK #4