NBA Power Rankings: S&M Power Poll


Welcome to the inaugural release of the Serra-Melnick NBA Power Poll, which will be furthermore known as the S&M Power Poll.  Don’t worry though, we promise to always keep it clean and there will be no safe-word required.  Check back every Wednesday throughout the season for the updated rankings from the HtD team.  The top four teams will come as no surprise to anyone as the Lakers, Heat, Celtics and Magic lead the way.  The rest gets a little fuzzy and there is much room for debate.  Leave a comment and tell us where you disagree and where you would make changes.  The full preseason S&M Power Poll is available after the jump!

2010-2011 Preseason S&M Power Poll

1Los Angeles Lakers (0-0)
Back to back champs. Enough said
2Miami Heat (0-0)
Paper champs. LeBron now has Wade, Bosh and Anthony. Go Canada!
3Boston Celtics (0-0)
The C’s signed a pair of O’Neal’s this offseason. Unfortunately it’s not 2001.
4Orlando Magic (0-0)
Can Dwight Howard’s improved offensive game propel the Magic to the top?
5San Antonio Spurs (0-0)
A healthy Tony Longoria and Manu helps the Spurs back to the top of the West.
6Oklahoma City Thunder (0-0)
OKC and Durant are probably the most fun team in the league to watch outside of Miami.
7Chicago Bulls (0-0)
Boozer’s early injury will be tough, but a much improved bench and improved health make Chicago a force.
8Dallas Mavericks (0-0)
Great regular season team that must put it together in the playoffs. Dirk is still a top 10 player.
9Utah Jazz (0-0)
Key to the season is the health and knees of Al Jefferson. Deron Williams and his hair will be great as always.
10Atlanta Hawks (0-0)
How long will the chemistry last? Prediction: Less than 40 games before Joe Johnson’s contract is mailing it in.
11Denver Nuggets (0-0)
The Melo trade drama will unfortunately engulf a very good team and make them an average team.
12Milwaukee Bucks (0-0)
Fear the Deer is back.  Scoring was upgraded with Corey Maggette now Brandon Jennings must keep growing.
13Portland Trail Blazers (0-0)
Not sure that this team will ever overcome the plateau that they are currently at. B-Roy is not a superstar.
14Phoenix Suns (0-0)
Most underrated subplot of the new season is how the Suns will play all 5 of their Small Forwards.
15New York Knicks (0-0)
Never trust a team that is starting Ronny Turiaf at Center.
16Houston Rockets (0-0)
If Yao can give them 25 minutes a game this year then the Rockets can be a real sleeper. Watch out.
17Charlotte Bobcats (0-0)
Can they overcome the loss of Felton and the demoralizing playoff loss to the Magic? Um. No.
18New Orleans Hornets (0-0)
A weak bench will likely be the undoing of the Hornets this year. CP3 trade rumors could pick back up too.
19Indiana Pacers (0-0)
Darren Collison is a huge upgrade at PG but Josh McRoberts is still starting for this team. That is a problem.
20Philadelphia 76ers (0-0)
Jrue Holiday looked great in summer league but this team still lacks an identity.  Doug Collins should help.
21Memphis Grizzlies (0-0)
The Griz are a PG away from being a playoff team.
22New Jersey Nets (0-0)
The team is definitely upgraded from last season but to say they are weak defensively, is being kind.
23Los Angeles Clippers (0-0)
X-Factor: Blake Griffin. Will be fighting neck and neck with John Wall and Cousins all season for ROY.
24Golden State Warriors (0-0)
This team is small and has no depth. At least they can shoot!  Let the Jeremy Lin show begin.
25Washington Wizards (0-0)
John Wall and the return of the Hibachi will at least make the team fun to watch.
26Sacramento Kings (0-0)
The Kings might have the worst starting lineup in the league.  Hopefully Tyreke doesn’t go crazy and start tanking.
27Detroit Pistons (0-0)
The Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva contracts will continue to haunt this franchise for many years.
28Cleveland Cavaliers (0-0)
Remove LeBron and insert Jamario Moon. That shouldn’t be that big of a problem…………
29Toronto Raptors (0-0)
Spain, Brazil, Lithuania, Italy and Australia. Five international players on the roster. Which means… LOTTERY.
30Minnesota Timberwolves (0-0)

Brian Serra is a contributing blogger at Howard the Dunk and the founder of  You can follow/add him on Twitter and on Facebook.

Andrew Melnick is Howard the Dunk’s lead blogger, a contributor on the Fansided Front Page, and co-host of CB Sports Radio from 5-7 pm week days ( Subscribe to his RSS feed, follow him on Facebook and add him on Twitter to follow him daily. You can download the HTD app here.