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The Times' Rankings

December 03, 2006

MARK HEISLER'S NBA RANKINGS, COMMENTS (Last week's rank)

*--* BIG DOGS 1. DALLAS Who woke him up? Dampier averages 10-10 as Mavericks go 12-0. (1) 2. SAN ANTONIO Missing piece of puzzle/kamikaze Ginobili out again after another bad fall. (3) 3. LAKERS With no training camp, Bryant, whose career best is 46.9%, now at 49.1%. (4) 4. PHOENIX On its way: 8-1 after 1-5 start as Stoudemire gets 20-10 six times. (5) 5. UTAH Jazz levels off as reality beckons: 12-1 start now a 14-4 start. (2) 6. ORLANDO East finds someone to stand up to West as young guys start 3-0 on this trip. (8) 7. DETROIT 8-0 after 3-5 start, going a lot with Wallace at center in small lineup. (7) MEDIUM-SIZE DOGS 8. HOUSTON Besides McGrady's search for himself, Rockets have Battier averaging 8.7. (6) 9. DENVER Anthony at career-high 3.9 assists, just heard you can pass vs. double teams. (10) 10. CLEVELAND Former East kingpin has now lost games at home to Bobcats, Hawks and Knicks. (9) 11. INDIANA 2-1 on West trip. Doing OK seeing as how 12 of first 18 are on road. (12) 12. SACRAMENTO Battered Bibby, career 45% shooter, stays in lineup but shoots 36%. (13) 13. GOLDEN STATE Another comer: 6-11 Andris Biedrins, No. 4 in blocks, No. 12 in rebounds. (14) 14. CLIPPERS They're way too casual about Brand's start. It all starts with him. (16) 15. NEW ORLEANS With starting forwards, Stojakovic, West out, kids who started 8-3 go 0-5. (11) 16. NEW JERSEY Hassan Adams gets 16 as the Nets come from -15 in Atlantic showdown in Boston. (17) 17. MIAMI Oops: Schedule gave Heat nine of first 15 at home but it went 3-6 there. (18) 18. CHICAGO Bulls would also be better if Gordon hadn't scored single figures five times. (21) 19. MINNESOTA Mike James averaged 21 in Toronto, got $25 million, scored 53 in last seven. (15) 20. WASHINGTON Oops: High-scoring Wizards lose first eight on road, averaging 88 points. (19) 21. SEATTLE Thin-skinned Bob Hill laments bench scoring. Bench laments his coaching. (20) REBUILDING, KIDDING THEMSELVES, ETC. 22. PHILADELPHIA Practice? Iverson leaves early, skips team function, is fined, apologizes, etc. (22) 23. PORTLAND OK, let's start working on that draft pick: After 4-2 start, Trail Blazers are 2-9. (23) 24. BOSTON Blow 15-point lead to Nets, lose in Toronto, back in Atlantic depths. (24) 25. ATLANTA Former Laker Ty Lue averaging 16 off bench, making 41% of threes. (26) 26. MILWAUKEE Bobby Simmons making $9 million per, hasn't played, faces surgery. (25) 27. TORONTO Colangelo tells Mitchell to play Bargnani, meaning it's just a matter of time. (29) 28. CHARLOTTE Guess what comes next: Promising young team is only 4-12 in standings. (28) 29. NEW YORK Started 5-6 on road but 1-7 at home, where fans have Marbury spooked. (27) 30. MEMPHIS It's all over, Baby Blue: New owners' arrival means Jerry West's departure. (30)

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