1. Golden State Warriors
Stephen Curry and the Warriors are simply playing amazing basketball. Curry has a ridiculous PER of 26.9 and is leading the West for the All-Star voting. This team has proven it can win without Andrew Bogut and still dominate all forms of competition. The Warriors appear to be serious contenders.
2. Atlanta Hawks
Who would have ever thought the Atlanta Hawks would be this good this year? The team has no real superstars that really jump out at you when surveying their roster, however they are playing amazing basketball and currently hold the top seed in the Eastern Conference. They are proving to us all that a great system and the sum of a team’s parts are more important than individual players.
3. Portland Trail Blazers
Despite losing to the Hawks at home the Blazers have been playing exceptional basketball this year especially at home. Damian Lillard and LaMarcus Aldridge have really carried the team and are playing at an All-Star level. This team is playing really good basketball as of late.
4. Memphis Grizzlies
Memphis is turning into a powerhouse of a team. They did get embarrassed in Denver on Saturday, but the MVP level play of Marc Gasol is really carrying the team. He is playing out of his mind along with the highly underrated Mike Conley. The tandem should carry the team throughout the rest of the year and deep into the playoffs.
5. Chicago Bulls
The Bulls are loaded with talent and arguably the East’s deepest team. Jimmy Butler and Paul Gasol have played exceptionally and if Derek Rose can string together more consistent performances, this team has a legitimate shot at winning it all this year.
6. Toronto Raptors
The Raptors have found surprising success this year, maintaining the East’s top spot for several weeks. Despite being a game and a half out of first, the team has reason to be excited, their star SG DeMar Derozan is nearing a return from his groin injury. When he returns the Raptors will be even more dangerous.
7. Dallas Mavericks
Let’s face it their starting line up is overloaded with talent. The offense of this team is unbelievable. If they improve on the defensive end, they could be serious title contenders. The addition of ex Celtic Rajon Rondo makes these guys one of the teams to beat in the West.
8. Houston Rockets
The Rockets have been on a bit of a decline since signing PF Josh Smith of Waivers. The team still is talented and has D12 and Harden, so they are a bit of a question mark right now. The addition of Corey Brewer is looking to be a strong one, contributing to some good defense and stretching the court.
9. LA Clippers
The Clips have had some convincing wins over bottom tier teams this past week but are riding somewhat of a hot streak. They can prove themselves by this week when they take on the red-hot Atlanta Hawks. Chris Paul continues his dominance as the league’s best distributor.
10. Washington Wizards
Losers of three straight, the Wizards are looking less like contenders in the East. Despite the strong play of John Wall, the team as a whole needs to step up to turn things around and get back to their winning ways. Looking at you, Bradley Beal.
11. Oklahoma City Thunder
The Thunder have been playing well as of late winning 12 of their last 16. Westbrook is playing out of his mind and KD is playing like well, KD. If Durant stays healthy and they keep this up, look out NBA.
12. San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs have not been playing up to their standards this season, sitting in 7th place in the West. They still have enough talent and Gregg Popovich, so they should be fine going forward. The system still works.
13. Phoenix Suns
The Suns have started to look like a more cohesive team. Markieff Morris has stepped up and the whole three guard conglomerate is finding an identity. They are beginning to look like a dangerous team, despite their glut of point guards.
14. New Orleans Pelicans
Anthony Davis is a beast. Eric Gordon is coming back soon. Look out. New Orleans poses problems. Lots of them.
15. Cleveland Cavaliers
Despite poor play as of late the Cavs still have a myriad of talent and just this guy named LeBron James. They will find some way to connect the dots and elevate their play to the level it should be at. Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving need to help with that elevation.
16. Milwaukee Bucks
They are playing solid basketball in the East. They are starting to solidify themselves as a solid Eastern conference playoff team.
17. Miami Heat
The team is in a rough spot and relying on guys like Hassan Whiteside for boosts. They are not a very good team.
18. Brooklyn Nets
Not playing exceptionally as of late and recently downgraded their starting line up. Things in Brooklyn are not looking up as the team has dipped below .500.
19. Sacramento Kings
DeMarcus Cousins said it best. This team is just a different team now without Mike Malone. They have a decent amount of talent but cannot put it together. Their playoffs hopes are fleeting away into the distance.
20. Denver Nuggets
They had an impressive win at home of the Grizzlies on the third which hopefully can spark the team going forward. Playoffs chances are probably slim to none.
21. Indiana Pacers
I guess Paul George is that valuable to this team. Indiana has seen better days.
22. Utah Jazz
The Jazz really lack depth despite winning a few games recently. At least they have a few promising young players.
23. Detroit Pistons
5-0 since dumping Josh Smith! Look out Eastern conference! But seriously don’t.
24. Charlotte Hornets
Al Jefferson is done for the next month and so is his team. At least they have Kemba Walker!
25. Orlando Magic
They are a bad team that just lost three in a row. Not enough talent even for the Eastern conference.
26. LA Lakers
They are not a good team and seem to be even worse with Kobe in the line up for some reason. This is a forgettable year for them.
27. Boston Celtics
Can you say tank? This team is done and the losses should continue to pile up.
28. Minnesota Timberwolves
They may stink but at least they have Andrew Wiggins (and Anthony Bennett!).
29. Philadelphia 76ers
They stink this year.
30. New York Knicks
L,L,L,L,L,L,L,L,L,L,L ‘Nuff Said.