NBA Week 20 Power Rankings: I’m Talking Stephen Curry

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Slightly less boring week, with just a stagnant top three, and once again (unfortunately for me), the Warriors hold the top spot, and I went through the ringer again to find an appropriate pop culture reference. This week, we decided to go with the terrible song titled “Stephen Curry” in which it was made very clear they weren’t talking about Stephen Curry but managed to use his name about twenty times. For the second week in a row, I’m really sorry.

 1:gsw Golden State Warriors (52-13)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 1   

Nope nope nope nope nope. I don’t believe it.

 2:atl Atlanta Hawks (52-14)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 2   

Less Hawkward moment of the week:

This is beautiful.

 3:cle Cleveland Cavaliers (43-25)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 3   

Who really needs LeBron anyway? Kyrie averaged 45 points on 68 percent shooting (32/47), including an alarming 12/13 from three in the last two games. Woah.

 4:por Portland Trail Blazers (44-20)Ellipse 1 copy 32   Last Week: 6   

In my eyes, LaMarcus Aldride is the only remaining challenge for Anthony Davis to overcome to become the best power forward in the NBA. I think Aldridge has left his main challengers, Kevin Love and Blake Griffin, in the dust, and Davis has followed suit. I will repeat, it’s a real shame that the Blazers lost Wes Matthews, because with him, I’d say this was definitely a championship-caliber team.

 5:mem Memphis Grizzlies (46-20) Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 4   

Another unsexy week for the Grizzlies, who also may have the title of most unsexy team of all time, probably a function of when almost no one on the roster can go off from three or jump more than two feet in the air.

 6:hou Houston Rockets (44-22)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 5   

James Harden takes the title of “Most Painful Superstar to Watch”. Over the last ten games, Harden is averaging 24.4 points per game (good) on 38.7 percent shooting (bad) and is turning the ball over four times a game (Yikes.).

 7:sas San Antonio Spurs (41-24)  Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 7   

Things are pretty decent in San Antonio right now. They would have been peachy if they could have held off Cleveland.

http://i.imgur.com/o4Uuice.gifv

 8:lac Los Angeles Clippers (42-25)   Ellipse 1 copy 31   Last Week: 9   

The Clippers followed up a 12 point road win at Oklahoma City with a 30 (yes, THIRTY) point home loss to the Mavs in which they gave up 129 points in regulation. The biggest news, though, is that Blake is back. In light of that, we present you with our “Blake Face of the week”, the famous playoff interview with little Chris.

H/T: nbagif on tumblr
H/T: nbagif on tumblr

 9:dal Dallas Mavericks (42-25)  Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 8   

The Mavericks also strung together inconsistent performances this week, losing by 33 to the Cavaliers at home and then throttling the Clippers by 30 (view above) at Staples. It’s probably good they got the rest of the week off after Friday so they can really think hard about who they want to be.

10:okc Oklahoma City Thunder (37-29)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 10

Serge Ibaka is now also out indefinitely. Thunder starting five: Westbrook-Roberson-Singler-Collison-Kanter. Westbrook is now under watch for back spasms from having to carry the team for too long.

11:nopNew Orleans Pelicans (36-30)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 11

Anthony Davis is DEFINITELY back. Too bad no one else helped.

12:ind Indiana Pacers (30-35)Ellipse 1 copy 32   Last Week: 14

PG13 update of the week:

The super slow-motion means IT CAN’T BE TOO LONG FROM HERE.

13:bos Boston Celtics (29-36)Ellipse 1 copy 34   Last Week: 17

An inaugural appearance in the top half of the rankings due to the formerly done-and-dusted Celtics being now a half-game out of a sweep by the Hawks. At their current pace, I expect them to sneak in as the eighth seed.

14:chi Chicago Bulls (40-28) Ellipse 1 copy 3 #22   Last Week: 12

The second coming of “The Hero Chicago Needs”:

There was REALLY not a lot to cheer about this week.

15:tor Toronto Raptors (39-27)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #22   Last Week: 13

The Raptors apparently feel hopelessly lost after getting “casually drilled” by the Trail Blazers 113-97 on Sunday. Lost is an understatement right now. #WeTheLost

16:phx Phoenix Suns (35-33)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 15

The best thing the Suns have done recently is give Brandan Wright starting minutes he deserves. The man shot 75 percent from the field in limited minutes with Dallas and 57 percent from the field in slightly less limited minutes with the Suns. The Suns have been terrible since the All-Star break and at this point, the playoffs are just a glimmer of light from the setting sun and no longer a realistic dream.

17:utah Utah Jazz (29-36)Ellipse 1 copy 31   Last Week: 18

It may be a lost season for Rudy and the Jazz in the eyes of most, but when things like this happen, it’s difficult not to get hyped.

18:was Washington Wizards (38-28)Ellipse 1 copy 33   Last Week: 21

Are they alive? A 3-0 week has them just one game back of the Bulls and the reeling Raptors for the third spot in the East. The key for this team is really just consistent and efficient production from Bradley Beal. Additionally, it would be preferred if Nene somehow rebounded for his height. He and Roy Hibbert are the current poster boys for “not realizing they’re seven feet tall”

19:mil Milwaukee Bucks (34-32)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #23   Last Week: 16

Sure the injuries are starting to pile up, but something has to be said about the struggles of the Bucks to score points, especially after moving Brandon Knight. They were already not a very good offensive team, but employing Michael Carter-Williams as the inefficient headman to the offense has been a struggle.

20:mia Miami Heat (29-36) Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 19

Is it time for the Heat to shut it down? Probably. They’re still in the crap pack in the East (Detroit and Brooklyn are falling out fast.) but without Chris Bosh it’s hard to think they’d be anything more than an annoying pest for Atlanta or Cleveland. Goran, Wade’s creaky knees, an actually-more-productive-than-expected Deng, Udonis Haslem’s corpse, and Hassan the headcase: Is that really a playoff starting five right now? Then again, you could say the same about the other crap pack teams as well.

21:cha Charlotte Hornets (29-35)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 20

LANCE NO!

22:den Denver Nuggets (26-41) Ellipse 1 copy 35   Last Week: 27

Who are these people and where have they put the real Denver Nuggets? Wins this week against Atlanta, Golden State (albeit with both teams resting some guys), AND Anthony Davis? That’s not even bad!

23:bkn Brooklyn Nets (26-38)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 22

Oh boy…

24:det Detroit Pistons (23-43)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 23

The Pistons season has involved a lot of stumbling backward like an idiot. This was also a candidate for a “Lance, hello?” moment if the Hornets had had a good week.

25:orl Orlando Magic (21-47)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 24

Literally every time I want to be excited about the Magic they remember that they’re terrible and proceed to get throttled all week. They lost by 32 at home to Indiana. Sure, losing to Indiana isn’t a terrible result, but losing by 32 anywhere should not be allowed.

26:sac Sacramento Kings (22-43)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 26

A recent article discusses how the Kings should be patient with Nik Stauskas like they have been with Ben McLemore and wait for it to pay dividends. It would be easier to stay patient if they stopped drafting players that PLAY THE SAME POSITION.

27:min Minnesota Timberwolves (14-51)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #22   Last Week: 25

A young basketball fan in search of a new franchise to root for after the hijacking of his hometown Seattle Sonics sent out a handwritten letter to every NBA team asking why he should become a fan of their team. The Timberwolves were the only one to respond. Here’s the response:

H/T: Sibewolf on imgur
H/T: Sibewolf on imgur

It’s a classy response from Chris Wright, but I have three major qualms. Firstly, it’s a little concerning that he misspelled the name of one of his own players (Zach LaVine). Secondly, Kevin Martin is 32… I really don’t think he’s still an emerging talent. Finally, the hashtagging job is incredibly shabby.

28:phi Philadelphia 76ers (15-50)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 28

H/T: sbnation.com
H/T: sbnation.com

Well, he’s STILL not wrong. Three to five years is actually still probably generous. Maybe the fact that people involved in the organization spend their time with this should be a red flag.

29:lal Los Angeles Lakers (17-48)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1      Last Week: 29

Jordan Hill is the only Lakers starter averaging in double figures in scoring at 12.5 points per game.

H/T: elitedaily.com
H/T: elitedaily.com

30:nyk New York Knicks (13-53)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 30

Alexey Shved isn’t even allowed to make amends without paying the price. What a nightmare season.

 

Featured Image: www.foxsports.com

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Souriyo is a recent graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, an aspiring writer with a passion for just about every sport ever played. He's a tears-level fan of the San Jose Sharks, but follows the NBA, NFL, MLB, tennis, and college sports, in addition to the NHL. He is determined to continue contributing to sports coverage until he usurps Bill Simmons at Grantland as the new Sports Guy (RIP Grantland Bill 2007-2015)

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