Blakely's NBA Six Pack Power Rankings: Mar. 13
Blakely's NBA Six Pack Power Rankings
BOSTON — The New York Knicks bringing Phil Jackson aboard shows just how disappointing - or desperate - they are to turn things around in New York.
Or at the very least, gives the appearance that's what they're trying to do.
No matter how good your Xs and Os are, success comes down to having two things: talent and players willing to sacrifice for what's best for the team.
When the Boston Celtics won it all in 2008, they did so with a Big Three of players that put their own personal agendas to the back-burner with one goal - to win it all.
The Miami Heat are back-to-back champs and have benefited from a similar mindset in their evolution.
All the teams that continue to stay among the title-contending breed, they too possess these traits but in varying quantities, obviously.
Jackson's arrival should help New York along those lines.
"You can always use Phil Jackson's insight, or whatever," Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony told reporters before scoring a game-high 34 points in leading the Knicks to a decisive win over Boston on Wednesday. "His (Jackson) philosophy, his mindset, his resume, what he brings to the game, what he brings to the team, to the organization. That goes without even saying, so we'll see how that plays out. It's different now if he's in the front office, rather than coaching. It's a big difference."
While Jackson's role may be different, his understanding of what it takes to win remains the same.
Even with a five game winning streak, the Knicks are still a bad team with no shot at a title this season, or anytime soon based on the course they're on now.
That's where Jackson comes in.
HIs job is to make this franchise relevant in a way that extends beyond injuries, inconsistent play and inept management.
Otherwise, they'll continue to falter from a playoff team into one that's just pitiful.
Speaking of bad teams, here's our latest NBA power rankings with very little movement at the bottom with a decent amount of shuffling near the top.
THE FLAT PACK
Current Ranking (last week)
30. (30) Philadelphia — I guess if you're going to lose, lose big right? All but two of their 18 straight losses have been by 10 or more points. #badbasketball101
29. (29) Milwaukee — Perimeter defense has been bad all season, allowing teams to shoot an NBA-high 38.6 percent on 3s.
28. (28) Orlando — Plenty of young talent, the Magic need to make a bold splash in free agency this summer.
27. (23) Utah — Desperately need to add an explosive scorer, currently No. 28 (out of 30 teams) in scoring this season.
26. (25) Los Angeles Lakers — Kobe Bryant is done for this season. If only Lakers fans were that fortunate.
25. (26) Boston — Kelly Olynyk playing his way into being a member of the NBA's All-Rookie first team.
BACK OF THE PACK
24. (20) Detroit — Major disappointment, have now lost eight of last 10 games.
23. (21) Sacramento — Isaiah Thomas continues to be the best point guard that few outside of the 9-1-6 area code are talking about this season.
22. (22) New Orleans — Having just turned 21 years old earlier this week, Anthony Davis continues to evolve into the next great player in the NBA.
21. (27) Denver — Treacherous schedule with nine of their next 10 games against teams currently in the playoffs.
20. (19) Cleveland — Hard to believe as bad as the Cavs have been this season, they're only 3.5 games out of the eighth and final playoff spot.
MIDDLE OF THE PACK
19. (17) Minnesota — Even though they have more wins (32) now than all of last year (31), their playoff drought - 10 years and counting - will continue.
18. (18) Atlanta — No matter how hard they try, the Hawks just can't sink into the lottery this year.
17. (15) Phoenix — Even as they slide their way out of the playoffs, Suns still one of the better feel-good stories this season.
16. (16) Charlotte — Al Jefferson. Playoffs. Two things that rarely, like once in his nine NBA seasons, ever mix.
15. (24) New York — Phil Jackson's arrival coincides with five-game winning streak. Zen Master has won everywhere. Will New York be any different?
14. (13) Dallas — One of the more stealth but strong coaching jobs done this year has been by Rick Carlisle.
13. (12) Memphis — Is there any top seed that wants to see Memphis in the first round?
12. (11) Washington — Based on his play and Washington's much-improved veteran, John Wall has played his way into the conversation as the best point guard in the East.
11. (10) Golden State — Hiring of Phil Jackson in New York likely means Mark Jackson is staying put in the Bay.
RUNNING WITH THE PACK
10. (8) Toronto — The Raptors will have a few tough decisions this summer. Among them, whether to open up the vault for Kyle Lowry who has played exceptionally well all season.
9. (7) Portland — We'll see if a team meeting after a fourth straight loss will be what it takes to snap the Blazers out of their recent slump.
8. (9) Chicago — Joakim Noah has no shot at winning the league MVP award, but his impact on his team and the league for that matter is undeniable.
7. (14) Brooklyn — It took a while, but the Nets have been playing like one of the best teams in the East of late.
LEADERS OF THE PACK
6. (3) Indiana — Pacers are undergoing what happens when you integrate new players midseason. #growingpains
5. (5) Oklahoma City — The Thunder look mentally fatigued; playoffs can't arrive soon enough for this club.
4. (2) Miami — Dropped last three road games, including a 24-point thumping at San Antonio.
3. (1) Houston — The Rockets no longer sputtering with wins in seven of their last nine games.
2. (4) L.A. Clippers — Clippers should keep on rolling with their next six games against teams with a losing record.
1. (6) San Antonio — Again, Father Time is thinking like, 'What the hell just happened?' Spurs have ran off eight straight wins and now have the best record in the NBA.