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Dime NBA Power Rankings, Vol. III: OKC Looks Worthy Of The Finals

By 01.17.12
John Wall

John Wall (photo. Rob Hammer)


Ranking the NBA from worst to first …

30. Washington Wizards (1-12)
LW: 30, —
Well, at least John Wall finally had a big game yesterday against Houston (38 points) because I was beginning to believe that the rest of the guys had brainwashed him.

29. New Jersey Nets (3-11)
LW: 28, -1
A year or two ago, I never would’ve guessed Deron Williams would one day quarterback possibly the worst team in the NBA. His numbers aren’t bad (18 and eight), but seeing him play feels like I’m watching the Discovery Channel during Big Cat Week when those lions take down a water buffalo and the thing just eventually succumbs and gives up, falling as the cats rip into him, piece by piece.

28. Charlotte Bobcats (3-11)
LW: 24, -4
You know it’s bad when even the team’s own bloggers are admitting “Yeah, we suck. We’ll be lucky in ANY game we win this year.” C’mon now, Charlotte. D.J. Augustin is your best player, and Byron Mullens – a guy who couldn’t even get on the court in OKC – is now suddenly your most promising big man. The Bobcats point differential (-10.9) is third-worst in the league, and they have yet to beat a decent team in eight tries.

27. Sacramento Kings (4-10)
LW: 22, -5
Since they beat the Lakers at home on their opening night, guess what the Queens have done? Lost every game outside of wins against Milwaukee, New Orleans and Toronto, stood idly by as DeMarcus Cousins proved he was more valuable than a coach, and watched an offense that was supposed to be as titillatingly exciting as ice cream cake turn into the second-worst producer in the league.

26. Detroit Pistons (3-10)
LW: 27, -1
Back when they had the coaches and players at each other’s throats, the guys were at least going hard. Now, they’re just getting blown out left and right: by 14 to Dallas, by 24 to Chicago, by 23 to New York, by 23 to Philly… Greg Monroe should stage a mutiny against all of his teammates.

25. New Orleans Hornets (3-10)
LW: 29, +4
If they didn’t have a pulse, this would be the worst team in the league. Thankfully, Monty Williams cares, and the players like him enough to not go into the fetal position. They’re No. 12 in defensive efficiency, which is more than just about anyone else on this page can say.

24. Phoenix Suns (4-8)
LW: 17, -7
At least the other teams here know they suck. The Suns are floating in a ship wreck, and yet won’t put out a distress signal. They’re lucky Steve Nash is such a good dude or he’d be throwing people to the sharks. To think, what was one of the best offenses in NBA history has now been reduced to a unit just .01 percentage points better than Portland – only the league’s slowest offensive squad of the last few seasons…

23. Toronto Raptors (4-10)
LW: 23, —
The Dinosaurs have flipped this season: from offensive defense to decent defenders (No. 15 in defensive efficiency), and from a team that perennially played in triple figures to one that struggles to put points up. But at least their investment in Andrea Bargnani is finally paying off.

22. Golden State Warriors
LW: 25, +3
What the hell happened to Dorell Wright? His numbers have been cut in half, he’s shooting like Edward Scissorhands would’ve (35 percent, 27 percent from the arc) and he’s losing minutes to everyone from Brandon Rush to Nate Robinson. At least Monta Ellis is doing is thing, still giving nearly 24 a night but also now dishing 7.6 assists per game. But mama that man still ain’t going to the All-Star Game because the Warriors can’t win.

21. Milwaukee Bucks (4-8)
LW: 26, +5
I still can’t believe Milwaukee is this bad. Brandon Jennings has improved (PER is up to 18), Andrew Bogut grinds out 14 and 10 every night, and even if Stephen Jackson left his game in Charlotte, he’s still dangerous enough to throw up the occasional 34-point night like he did against San Antonio last week. But they’ve yet to win a road game, and have trips to New York, Miami, Chicago and Houston coming up this month. Ugh.


Continue Reading 'Dime NBA Power Rankings, Vol. III: OKC Looks Worthy Of The Finals' »
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