The NBA: Power Rankings: Week 15

Anthony Davis was justifiably named to the Western All-Star team as a replacement for the injured Kobe Bryant. Davis has been very good for the injury-plagued Pelicans. DeMarcus Cousins or Goran Dragic would have been solid replacements as well.

The All-Star Weekend is already happening this Friday. Damian Lillard of the Blazers will be playing in five (5) events! Hopefully, he does not get too tired from participating in so many events. Lillard played in 50 of 51 games and is averaging 36 minutes. Last year, Lillard was near the top of the league in minutes played.

That was a great game between the Blazers and Pacers. That could definitely be a preview of the NBA Finals. On the other hand, Clippers vs Heat will be a very entertaining and exciting series as well!

Hero team of the week: The Rockets have won 5 straight and have quietly entered the 4th spot in the West.

Sucky team of the week: The Cavs fired their GM after losing a bizarre game to the Lakers. There are multiple internal problems with the team.

The standings are current up to February 9, 2014 and the rankings from Last Week refer to Week 14.

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Anthony Davis was an excellent choice to replace
Kobe Bryant on the Western All-Star team.
(Image by: Getty Images) 

1. Indiana Pacers | 39-10 | Last Week: 2 | +1
The Pacers bested the Blazers even without Lance Stephenson and with Paul George shooting blanks. All they needed was a season high 30 points from David West and a career-high 37 points fro George Hill.

2. Oklahoma City Thunder | 20-12 | Last Week: 1 | -1
Durant has scored below 30 points in 4 of his last 5 games but his play-making and assists have jumped to 8 per game over his last 5. OKC is 19-8 without Westbrook who is scheduled to be back after the All-Star break.

3. Portland | 36-15 | Last Week: 3 | Same
Damian Lillard will be a busy man during All-Star weekend. He is currently scheduled to play in five events: Rising Stars Challenge, 3-Point shootout, Skills Challenge, Slam Dunk contest and the All-Star game.

4. San Antonio Spurs | 37-14 | Last Week: 4 | Same
The Spurs are off to their annual Rodeo road trip. So far, they are 3-1 with 5 more road games left. They normally build separation from other West contenders during this trip but this year will be tough with all their injuries.

5. Houston Rockets | 34-17 | Last Week: 7 | +2
The Rockets have won 5 straight which makes them the hottest team right now. Dwight Howard is averaging 30 points and 10 rebounds in February. James Harden is averaging 24 points since coming back from a thumb injury.

6. Los Angeles Clippers | 35-18 | Last Week: 5 | -1
Blake Griffin has elevated himself as a legitimate MVP contender without Chris Paul. Griffin has scored at least 35 points in 3 straight games, the first in Clippers' history. CP3 is expected to be back vs the Sixers.

7. Miami Heat | 35-14 | Last Week: 6 | -1
LeBron James had his worst game of the season vs the Jazz. LBJ had 13 points and 5 turnovers. Miami has lost 10 of 14 games vs teams that are below 0.500. They are continuously struggling with effort and defense.

8. Phoenix Suns | 30-20 | Last Week: 8 | Same
Goran Dragic poured in a career-high 34 points in a win vs the Warriors. He has been spectacular all year but won't be an All-Star. The Suns were rumored to be chasing Pau Gasol but those talks have been put on hold.

9. Dallas Mavericks | 30-21 | Last Week: 11 | +2
The Mavs have won 4 straight and are holding on to the last playoff spot in the West. They have a 2 game lead over the Grizzlies. Monta Ellis is shooting 46% which is his highest in the last 7 seasons. His career high is 53%.

10. Golden State Warriors | 30-21 | Last Week: 9 | -1
David Lee missed 3 of their last 4 with an injury while Andrew Bogut missed the last 2 games. The Dubs are 5-5 in their last 10. Andre Iguodala seems to be suffering lingering effects from his hamstring injury. Iggy is at 9.6 ppg.

11. Memphis Grizzlies | 27-22 | Last Week: 10 | -1
Conley missed the last 3 games and the Grizz went 2-1 in those. Zach Randolph is starting to score more and rebound more. Memphis is also defending a lot better with Gasol back. They are now 3rd in points allowed.

12. Toronto Raptors | 26-24 | Last Week: 12 | Same
Terrence Ross scored 51 points the last time he faced the Clippers. On his 2nd meeting with the Clips, he was limited to just 9 points. DeMar DeRozan is 8th in FT attempts. That's more than Melo, Wade and CP3.

13. Atlanta Hawks | 25-24 | Last Week: 13 | Same
The Hawks have lost 3 straight but are still holding on as the 4th seed in the laughable East. Jeff Teague is back from an ankle injury but his numbers haven't been the same. He is averaging 12 ppg over his last 5 games.

14. Washington Wizards | 24-25 | Last Week: 14 | Same
The Wizards are still having a tough time staying over .500 and have dropped 2 straight. John Wall won his individual battle vs Kyrie Irving but his Wiz lost to the pathetic Cavs. Trevor Ariza is averaging 14.3 (2nd best of his career).

15. Chicago Bulls | 24-25 | Last Week: 17 | +2
Carlos Boozer complained about not getting 4th quarter minutes then he got minutes in his very next game vs the Suns. He finished with 19 and 12 and the Bulls won. Boozer followed that game up with a calf injury.

16. Denver Nuggets | 24-25 | Last Week: 16 | Same
More injury woes for the Nuggets and Ty Lawson. He suffered broken ribs vs the Pistons and his status is undetermined. The Nuggets are 27th in points allowed. They gave up 117 to NYK then 126 to the Pistons.

17. Minnesota Timberwolves | 24-27 | Last Week: 15 | -2
The season of mediocrity continues in Minny. They can't get over .500 and they have dropped 3 straight and are 6 games back of Dallas. Nik Pekovic is still injured and Kevin Love has missed 2 of the last 3 games with a quad problem.

18. New Orleans Pelicans | 22-27 | Last Week: 18 | Same
The Pelicans will send Anthony Davis to the All-Star game to represent their city and state. The "Brow" is a deserving player who averages 20 and 10 plus over 3 blocks a game. The Pelicans are 19-22 when AD plays.

19. Brooklyn Nets | 22-26 | Last Week: 19 | Same
Jason Kidd was named January Coach of the Month for the East after the Nets went 10-3 that allowed them a shot into the playoffs. Shaun Livingston has been a pleasant surprise for them. His perimeter defense and scoring have been solid.

20. Charlotte Bobcats | 22-29 | Last Week: 20 | Same
Kemba Walker was back after missing 7 games with a sprained ankle. The Bobcats were a decent 4-3 during his absence. Al Jefferson is on a scoring spree over the last week. He scored at least 30 points in 3 of his last 5.

21. Detroit Pistons | 21-29 | Last Week: 22 | +1
Brandon Jennings has been hot all week. He's averaging 31 points and 10 assists and shooting over 55% in his past 2 games. Both were wins for the Pistons. Greg Monroe is hearing some trade rumors after having a so-so season.

22. New York Knicks | 20-30 | Last Week: 21 | -1
Iman Shumpert is back as a starter after missing some games to shoulder injury. He is mired in an awful scoring slump. He has scored in double digits only twice since the New Year. Shump is shooting only 38%.

23. Los Angeles Lakers | 18-33 | Last Week: 26 | +3
The Lakers won a bizarre game vs the Cavs when Robert Sacre was forced to keep playing even after fouling out. The Lakers aren't healthy yet even with Steve Nash back. Now, Nick Young is their newest addition to the injury list.

24. Boston Celtics | 18-33 | Last Week: 27 | +3
The Celtics have won 3 straight with Rajon Rondo leading the way. Rondo played in 2 of those wins and flirted with triple-doubles. Jared Sullinger came up huge vs the Kings. He has 4 straight double-doubles.

25. Utah Jazz | 17-33 | Last Week: 24 | -1
The Jazz beat the Heat in a defensive game by limiting them to 89 points. Marvin Williams has been shooting well over his last 3 games: 22 ppg and 11-19 from downtown. Trey Burke was named Rookie of the Month for January.

26. Sacramento Kings | 17-33 | Last Week: 25 | -1
The Kings won 2 of 3 and could have won vs Boston if Rudy Gay played (illness). DMC is averaging 27 points and 14 boards since coming back from a sprained ankle. He narrowly missed being named to the West All-Stars.

27. Cleveland Cavaliers | 17-33 | Last Week: 23 | -4
The Cavs fired their GM after a horrible loss to the short-handed Lakers. This team has problems playing with intensity and effort. There are reports about disharmony in the locker room led by Waiters, Irving and Jack.

28. Orlando Magic | 15-37 | Last Week: 29 | +1
Orlando has back-to-back wins vs the Pistons and Thunder. Their win vs OKC was the biggest of the season. They battled back in the 4th quarter and won with a buzzer-beating dunk from Tobias Harris.

29. Philadelphia 76ers | 15-36 | Last Week: 28 | -1
The Sixers have lost 5 straight. They welcomed Steve Nash back with the Lakers with a win and then Chris Paul will come back with the Clippers vs them. Rookie MCW is still having a solid season with 17, 7 and 5.

30. Milwaukee Bucks | 9-41 | Last Week: 30 | Same
Nice win by the Bucks over the struggling Knicks but they have lost 2 straight since. Larry Sanders came up with his biggest game of the season: a career-high 25 points and 15 rebounds vs the Nuggets. Of course, the Bucks lost.

Biggest Jump of the Week: Celtics & Lakers +3
Biggest Drop of the Week:  Cavs -4

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