As with the NFL, we will be checking in weekly with an NBA power rankings. The rules will be the same. The 9 teams we think are playing the best right now. So if the Lakers lose 3 strait we're not keeping them in the top 3 just because they are the Lakers. Win or go home. Besides... The Lakers suck... :P
So here you go. The Week 1 Edition..
1. Boston Celtics - They're the still the Champs and looked solid in their opener against LeBron and co.
2. Los Angeles Lakers - I try to keep objective as much as possible but I really don't like the Lakers. You can't deny their talent though. They won the west with Bynum unavailable and look to be even stronger this year.
3. New Orleans Hornets - Added James Posey to an already imposing roster. If Peja can turn back the clock they can win it all. If not I still think they're a player away.
4. Utah Jazz - Big year for the Jazz. Will the potential free agency of Carlos Boozer and Mehmet Okur be a huge distraction or will the opportunity for a big payday have them playing better than ever? As always it will come down to Kirilenko.
5. San Antonio Spurs - Everyone seems ready to write them off despite the fact they were playing without Manu down the stretch last year. I think there is plenty of firepower left.
6. Cleveland Cavaliers - Mo Williams is definitely a big pickup and arguably the best sidekick LeBron has had in Cleveland. But he's still not a legit #2. You can still beat them if you slow down LeBron.
7. Detroit Pistons - Another powerhouse that everyone seems ready to write off. I think they're still good enough for the #3 seed in the East.
8. Phoenix Suns - This one is a bit of a reach but I don't think they ever got comfortable after the Shaq trade last year. With a new system better suited to an aging roster I think the Suns surprise people. Amare, Nash and co. are too talented to fade away and if Shaq is motivated. Look out.
9. Houston Rockets - They seem to be a favorite of many in the media to make a big jump this season but I don't see it. Yao hasn't played 60 games in a season since the '04-'05 season so unless Artest is bringing some sort of special medical staff with him, I don't see how his signing puts them over the top.
Apologies to: Philadelphia 76ers, Orlando Magic, Toronto Raptors.