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Miami takes over top spot in The Times' NBA rankings

Lakers hang on at No. 6.

January 08, 2011|Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
  • LeBron James and the Heat started the season 9-8 but are now The Times' top-ranked team.
LeBron James and the Heat started the season 9-8 but are now The Times'… (Steve Mitchell / US Presswire )

RANKINGS, COMMENTS THROUGH SATURDAY?

HEAT INDEX BACK IN TOWN
?1. MIAMI (29-9) All together, "We never lost faith in you!" 20-1 since 9-8 start. (2)
?2. BOSTON (28-8) Home-court advantage they worry about isn't vs. Lakers anymore. (3)
?3. SAN ANTONIO (30-6) Lost in New York and Boston, had to come from 15 down vs. Pacers. (1)
?4. ORLANDO (25-12) Won nine in a row with new guys, even if they're not all new. (5)
?5. DALLAS (26-10) Lost five of seven with Nowitzki out, Butler gone for good. (4)
?6. LAKERS (26-11) Best news in a while. Closing in on Dallas, or vice versa. (6)

NEXT-BEST THINGS
?7. OKLAHOMA CITY (25-13) Started 5-4, won 14 of 18, but has leveled off. (9)
?8. CHICAGO (24-12) Lost to Nets and 76ers, beat Celtics, but overall won 14 of 18. (7)
?9. ATLANTA (25-14) Back from elbow surgery, Johnson gets 29-29-28-24 as they go 4-0. (14)
10. UTAH (25-13) At 16 points, 8.6 rebounds, he's not the Al Jefferson of old. (8)
11. NEW YORK (21-14) A 121-96 win in Phoenix settles question of which team made out. (15)

LET'S MAKE A DEAL
12. DENVER (20-15) In denial: Asked for Blake Griffin, now spurn all offers for Anthony. (10)
13. NEW ORLEANS (21-16) Deal that hurt everyone: Ariza's 17-7-6 shows Lakers what they miss. (11)
14. PORTLAND (20-17) Vintage Nate McMillan: After all their lickings, still ticking. (12)
15. MEMPHIS (17-20) Not doing bad for a team with Randolph, Mayo on way out. (16)
16. HOUSTON (16-20) Supplanted by Kyle Lowry and hurt again, Aaron Brooks available. (13)
17. PHILADELPHIA (15-22) No. 8 in East, just went 12-9 without Iguodala in last seven. (19)
18. GOLDEN STATE (15-21) One for Keith Smart: Won six of nine after falling to 9-18. (22)
19. MILWAUKEE (14-21) Beat Nets with Ilyasova-Maggette-Mbah a Moute front line. (20)
20. INDIANA (14-20) Name your Pacer, he's available, including Danny Granger. (17)
21. CLIPPERS (11-24) Went 6-3 with Jordan blocking 19 shots in last three. (21)
22. PHOENIX (14-20) When Stoudemire, Nash reunite next season, may be teammates. (18)

YOUR TIRED, POOR, HUDDLED MASSES
23. CHARLOTTE (13-21) Sound familiar? Tyrus Thomas scores 14-5-22-6. (23)
24. TORONTO (12-24) Breakout: DeRozan averaged 16 last month, just put up 37-27-18. (24)
25. DETROIT (12-24) Rebuilding project? McGrady, Prince, Hamilton, Wallace in rotation. (25)
26. NEW JERSEY (10-27) Now he warms up? Vujacic averaging 11, 41% on threes as a Net. (27)
27. WASHINGTON (9-26) Getting it? Nick Young averaged 18 last month. (28)
28. SACRAMENTO (8-25) 3-2 as Evans makes belated debut. Oh, he was there all along? (30)
29. MINNESOTA (9-28) With last season's 2-29 finish, they've lost 57 of 68. (26)
30. CLEVELAND (8-28) Could be awhile for title Gilbert promised: 1-19 since 7-9 start. (29)

-- Mark Heisler

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