#NBA2015: Power Rankings: Week 3

Three weeks done and 3 different teams have reached the #1 ranking in the Power Rankings. The games have been exciting and competitive. Buzzer-beaters that are game-winners have occurred at least once a week, maybe more.  

The standings are current up to November 20, 2014 (Manila time).

The rankings from Last Week refer to Week 2.

Please hit the comments and follow me on Twitter @rollzter

The Big Bad Grizzlies are off to a hot start
(Image from: isportsweb.com)
1. Memphis Grizzlies | 10-2 | Last Week: 3 | +2
Notwithstanding their latest loss to the Raptors, the Grizzlies are perfect at home (6-0) and they are 2nd in least points allowed. They are unbeaten in the West, however, both losses have come from the East.

2. Golden State Warriors | 8-2 | Last Week: 1 | -1
Klay Thompson's stint with Team USA has certainly improved his performance. Klay is already the early candidate for Most Improved Player. Lost in GSW's early success has been the injury to David Lee. They will need him eventually.

3. Toronto Raptors | 9-2 | Last Week:4 | +1
The Raps gave a video tribute to Vince Carter and that was sweet of them. Next, they went on to beat the West-leading Grizzlies. They've played the most games at home (8) and the true test will begin once they hit the road. 

4. Chicago Bulls | 8-3 | Last Week: 6 | +2
Impressive wins by the Bulls over the Clippers and Raps but the ongoing injuries to Derrick Rose and Pau Gasol have to be major concerns. They cannot reach their full potential with nagging injuries to their primary players. 

5. Dallas Mavericks | 9-3 | Last Week: 10 | +5
The Mavs are leading the league in points scored and have won 5 straight. Dirk is averaging only 28 minutes which is by design. That is his lowest output if you ignore his rookie season. The Mavs are also sharing the ball well even without a dominant PG.

6. Portland Trailblazers | 8-3 | Last Week: 11 | +5
The Blazers have won 5 straight including a solid win over the Pelicans. Damian Lillard has found his shooting stroke over the past 5 games. He shot 53% during that span and averaged 24 ppg to go with 8 apg and 5 rpg.

7. Houston Rockets | 9-3 | Last Week: 2 | -5
The Rockets have lost 2 straight and the injury to Dwight Howard hurts. Howard has been in the center of trash talk topics since Kevin Durant called him a wuss during a Thunder-Rockets game. Do you remember that Kobe also called him soft?

8. San Antonio Spurs | 7-4 | Last Week: 7 | -1
The Spurs continue to beat LeBron James regardless of which team he plays for. The champs had enough to beat the Cavs on the road. The Spurs are not yet at their efficient pace when it comes to offense but their defense is already in peak form (3rd-best).

9. Washington Wizards | 7-3 | Last Week: 8 | -1
Bradley Beal is back and his wrist looks fine. He immediately scored 21 points in a close loss vs Dallas. Meanwhile, John Wall is playing excellent basketball. He is 3rd in assists while also tops in steals. 

10. Los Angeles Clippers | 6-4 | Last Week: 12 | +2
The Clippers have been alternating wins and losses over the past week. They are playing inconsistently and their effort on the glass is lacking. Even with DeAndre Jordan grabbing 12 boards per game, they are 29th as a team.

11. New Orleans Pelicans | 6-4 | Last Week: 15 | +4
The early season MVP has to be Anthony Davis. He is a 25-11 guy plus #1 in blocks and #2 in steals. Davis has a PER of 36.12! More importantly, the Pelicans are winning more games than losing them. 

12. Phoenix Suns | 7-5 | Last Week: 14 | +2
Isaiah Thomas will surely win the Sixth Man award unless he gets hurt or gets elevated as a starter. The Suns have great scoring balance and depth with 6 players averaging double figures. However, who gets the ball with the game on the line?

13. Miami Heat | 6-5 | Last Week: 5 | -8
Chris Bosh struggled shooting and scoring in their last 5 games. Miami promptly dropped 3 of their past 4 especially with D-Wade already ailing this early. They're pretty thin at backup SG with Chalmers becoming the starter when Wade is out.

14. Sacramento Kings | 6-5 | Last Week: 9 | -5
Their hot start has lost some steam but they still have a solid record in the West. They battled tough vs Memphis and managed to beat the Spurs but a bad loss to OKC hurts. DMC is the other guy to average at least 20 points and 10 rebounds.

15. Cleveland Cavaliers | 5-5 | Last Week: 13 | -2
The Cavs are only 5-5 but LBJ is already advocating to play less minutes for himself, Irving and Love. Their Big 3 is within the top 8 in minutes played. LBJ is starting to get more engaged but Love is having difficulty being relegated as the 3rd option.  

16. Milwaukee Bucks | 7-5 | Last Week: 20 | +4
The Bucks are surprising a lot of teams with early wins over the Heat and Knicks. The most important game so far was the thrilling and fulfilling win over the Nets in triple OT. Giannis has been impressive offensively with 5 straight games in double digits.

17. Atlanta Hawks | 5-5 | Last Week: 18 | +1
The multiple injuries to Horford made him a less impressive player than before. This has allowed Paul Millsap to shine and establish himself as their best player. DeMarre Carroll missed their last 4 games but he is expected back soon.

18. Charlotte Hornets | 4-8 | Last Week: 17 | -1
The Hornets faced 4 tough West teams and promptly dropped 3 of those games. Then, they suffered a goose egg vs the Pacers. Al Jefferson is not operating with his usual double-double prowess while Stephenson has struggled offensively.

19. Utah Jazz | 5-7 | Last Week: 21 | +2
Utah didn't get their 5th win last year until game 24 around mid December. It helps that they won thrilling games that could have gone either way. Kudos to Hayward for sinking the Cavs 2 weeks ago while Trey Burke hit a game-winner vs the Knicks.

20. Indiana Pacers | 5-7 | Last Week: 27 | +7
The Pacers are winning more games than expected thanks to Donald Sloan and Solomon Hill. Who knew they had bench players capable of winning games? In reality, the Pacers will still not make the playoffs.

21. Orlando Magic | 2-5 | Last Week: 25 | +4
Orlando is experiencing some injury woes with Aaron Gordon being out indefinitely and Evan Fournier is DTD. Fournier has been a great addition with his 17 ppg. Harris and Vucevic are playing extremely well. 

22. Brooklyn Nets | 4-7 | Last Week: 16 | -6
The soft schedule is over and the Nets now have a 5-game losing streak including a 3OT loss to the Bucks. Bojan Bogdanovic is starting to heat up. He made 8 threes over his last 2 games. Brook Lopez is rebounding like a SG, at only 5 rpg.

23. Boston Celtics | 4-6 | Last Week: 22 | -1
Boston almost beat the Cavs but a poor decision to have Rondo isolate against LBJ cost them the game. In any case, Rondo is threatening to average a triple-double for the year. He's getting 10 points, 12 assists and 8 rebounds.

24. Denver Nuggets | 4-7 | Last Week: 26 | +2 
The Nuggets are showing some life with wins over the Cavs and OKC. Ty Lawson has picked up his play over the last 5 games. He is getting 20 points and 10 assists during that span. They can score but these guys need to play defense.

25. Minnesota Timberwolves | 3-7 | Last Week: 19 | -6
Andrew Wiggins is starting to score more points but his passing and assists need major improvement. Wiggins is still susceptible to "wasted minutes" wherein you would forget that Wiggins is on the court due to his lackluster effort. 

26. Los Angeles Lakers | 3-9 | Last Week: 28 | +2
Kobe passed 32K points earlier in the week. He is doing it all for the Lakers with some help from the healthy NIck Young. Still, the Lakers have a miserable record and how long will Kobe wait before asking for a trade?

27. Detroit Pistons | 3-9 | Last Week: 24 | -3
Andre Drummond is off to a slow start. He played for Team USA and the expectation was a breakout season. So far, he has been okay with 9 ppg and 11 rpg but last year he averaged 13 and 13 so this season has been a down year. 

28. New York Knicks | 3-10 | Last Week: 23 | -5
The Knicks are 1-9 in their past 10 games but with games against the Sixers and OKC coming up, their fortunes might change. The 3rd most paid player on the Knicks after Melo and Amare, Andrea Bargnani might play over the weekend.

29. Oklahoma City Thunder | 3-10 | Last Week: 26 | -3
They are bravely trying to stay competitive even without Russ and KD. So far, it hasn't been working. Westbrook is still about 2 weeks away from playing while Durant still has no timetable. Reggie Jackson (20 ppg) is trying his best to win games.

30. Philadelphia 76ers | 0-11 | Last Week: 30 | Same
They are last in points scored and last in point differential which is a whopping -16.4 points. At this rate, they will finish 0-82. A bit of good news, Michael Carter-Williams is back and playing well but Nerlens Noel is struggling. 

Biggest Jump of the Week: Pacers +7

Biggest Drop of the Week: Heat -8

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