By Chris Mannix
February 08, 2010
NBA Power Rankings
21 Philadelphia 76ers
Last Week: 22
If these are Andre Iguodala's last games as a Sixer, he's making the most of them. Iguodala, whose name pops up in every trade rumor involving Philly, averaged 16.8 points, 9.0 rebounds and 6.3 assists during the 76ers' four-game winning streak. "How my game's seen around the league, I think I'm one of those guys who gets a lot more respect from my peers than those who don't know much about basketball," Iguodala told the Philadelphia Daily News. "I'm ready for whatever. I don't think anything is negative. I'm just trying to go out and get better every night."
22 Los Angeles Clippers
Last Week: 21
Baron Davis said the Clippers just need time to adapt to Kim Hughes, who was promoted to head coach to replace Mike Dunleavy. But time is running out on L.A., which has lost six of seven to fall 7½ games out of the final playoff spot in the West. The Clippers were outscored 28-10 in the first quarter of Saturday's home loss to the Spurs.
23 Indiana Pacers
Last Week: 26
Maybe Indiana is showcasing him for a trade. Or maybe T.J. Ford is ready to play some meaningful minutes this season. After sitting for 18 straight games, Ford chipped in 11 points and five assists in a blowout victory against Detroit on Friday. And one night later, he had 20 points and three assists in a loss at Milwaukee. Coach Jim O'Brien praised Ford's professionalism and said the veteran point guard looked sharp in his return to action.
24 New York Knicks
Last Week: 23
Maybe the Knicks shouldn't pursue LeBron this summer. Follow the logic of Cavs beat writer Brian Windhorst of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, who tweeted this after LeBron dropped 47 on the Knicks to help deal New York its fifth loss in six games: "If LeBron ever played for the Knicks his scoring average would drop ... he wouldn't get to play them."
25 Washington Wizards
Last Week: 24
Too little, too late for Caron Butler? The Wizards' one-time All-Star broke out for 31 points (on 11-of-22 shooting) and nine rebounds against Orlando, and he capped his first 30-point performance of the season with the game-winning bucket. But Butler stands as one of the most likely Wizards to be shipped out of town. "I understand it's business," Butler told reporters after Friday's game in Orlando. "You take the bitter with the sweet and try to have some magnificent moments before the deadline."
26 Minnesota Timberwolves
Last Week: 27
Could we soon be seeing the old Al Jefferson? Coach Kurt Rambis has maintained that it will take Jefferson a full year from his knee injury to round into form. That date came and went last week when, coincidentally, the Wolves picked up wins over playoff contenders Dallas and Memphis. "We're still working on his explosiveness," Rambis told the Minneapolis Star Tribune. "I see it every once in a while. There are times when he pump-fakes and does an up-and-under, where in the past that'd be easily a dunk. He's still laying the ball up. I don't know if it's a physical thing or a mental-trust thing. He hasn't broken through that yet."
27 Detroit Pistons
Last Week: 28
Two wins over the hapless Nets (sandwiched around a loss to Indiana) isn't cause for celebration. But for the injury-plagued Pistons, a week spent playing with your core in uniform is. This was one of those rare weeks in which Rip Hamilton, Tayshaun Prince and Ben Gordon were all available at the same time.
28 Sacramento Kings
Last Week: 25
The divide between point guard Beno Udrih and coach Paul Westphal may be starting to get personal, but, as the Sacramento Bee pointed out, the reason for the point guard's diminished playing time can be measured by statistics. According to, Udrih's on-court/off-court differential is plus-3.5; by contrast, fellow point guard Sergio Rodriguez's ratio is plus-19.1.
29 Golden State Warriors
Last Week: 29
The circus of a season in Golden State has put a damper on Stephen Curry's recent surge. The sharpshooting guard is averaging 19.9 points and shooting 43.1 percent from three-point range in his last 11 games. He scored 25 points in three straight during that stretch, the first Warriors rookie to accomplish that since Latrell Sprewell in 1993.
30 New Jersey Nets
Last Week: 30
Just what the NBA's worst team needs: its smallest, most inexperienced coaching staff. Del Harris quit last week, reportedly miffed that he wouldn't have a shot at the head-coaching job next season, leaving John Loyer and Roy Rogers as the only full-time assistants for Kiki Vandeweghe.
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