Monday January 25th, 2010

NBA Power Rankings
11Memphis Grizzlies
Last Week: 12
Who would have thought the FedEx Forum would be one of the toughest places to play this season? The Grizz are riding a 10-game winning streak on their home floor and have won 22 of their last 33 overall. Meanwhile, if fans are questioned about their support for Tracy McGrady and Allen Iverson, then the coaches should be taken to task if they leave Zach Randolph (20.9 points, 11.4 rebounds, 50.5 percent shooting) off the All-Star roster.
12Oklahoma City Thunder
Last Week: 13
The Thunder continue to put the ball in Kevin Durant's hands late in games. Now he just has to start coming through. Last week, Durant bricked a game-winning three at the buzzer against Memphis and had a game-tying layup swatted away with three seconds left against Cleveland. "I'm learning each time I do that," Durant said. "Last year, we didn't have this many close games, or the year before that. But I'm learning, that's all I can say. I'm going to continue to be aggressive in those times, and hopefully they fall for me."
13Houston Rockets
Last Week: 16
The Rockets' penchant for falling behind is starting to irritate Rick Adelman. Houston has trailed by double digits in each of the last four games. It pulled out W's against the Bucks and Spurs last week but couldn't rally in time to beat the Bulls. "All we harped on is we can't play that way," Adelman told reporters. "We can't win that way. We can't do it. We don't have enough to come back."
14Phoenix Suns
Last Week: 11
Phoenix Suns (26-19)
Amar'e Stoudemire may be an ex-Sun as early as next month, but Alvin Gentry said Stoudemire's precarious position with the team hasn't poisoned the locker room. The coach blasted an ESPN report that Stoudemire's uncertain status has been a source of tension. "It's the biggest crock of s--- I've ever heard," Gentry told reporters. "Our locker room has been great, and that pisses me off, to be honest with you. Because there's not one thing going on in our locker room."
15Miami Heat
Last Week: 17
Miami Heat (23-20)
The Heat's Jekyll and Hyde act continues. Miami followed a 39-point pasting by the Bobcats with back-to-back blowout wins over Washington and Sacramento. Such uneven play invites speculation that, with a massive overhaul planned in the offseason, coach Erik Spoelstra could get swept out with most of the roster.
16Toronto Raptors
Last Week: 14
Wins and losses are not foremost on the minds of the Raptors right now. Multiple league sources say the Toronto front office is having serious internal discussions about the future of Chris Bosh. The belief is that if the team doesn't get indications that he will re-sign after this season, Toronto will deal its franchise forward.
17New Orleans Hornets
Last Week: 15
>The Hornets got their money's worth out of James Posey last week. Posey muscled in a game-winning layup against Memphis and followed it up with another game-winning bucket against Minnesota. "They call him 'Big Game James' for a reason," Chris Paul said. "Now he's just getting used to hitting game-winners."
18Charlotte Bobcats
Last Week: 18
There is an All-Star on the Bobcats' roster. It's just no one is quite sure who it is. Gerald Wallace (18.5 points, 11.1 rebounds) has put up the numbers, but Stephen Jackson (20.8 points with Charlotte) has been the difference. The Bobcats are 18-14 since acquiring Jackson on Nov. 15 and are averaging more than 10 points per game more with him.
19Los Angeles Clippers
Last Week: 21
Chris Kaman has openly campaigned to be an All-Star. Now, he's telling voters who shouldn't be. Kaman tagged crosstown rival Pau Gasol, saying the Lakers' power forward (who has missed 17 games) doesn't deserve to be an All-Star and that he would be "disappointed if [voters] put Pau Gasol in front of me." Meanwhile, the Clippers surpassed last year's win total with their 20th victory last week.
20Chicago Bulls
Last Week: 19
Vinny Del Negro Watch, Week 8. The Vin-Man looked like he was back on the plank after ugly losses to the Clippers and Warriors, but the Bulls rallied for road victories at Phoenix and Houston to end the week. Joakim Noah is making a compelling case for an All-Star selection. Noah (11.3 points, 12.3 rebounds) is one of eight players averaging a double-double this season.
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