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Week Three of the NBA Power Rankings: Pacers on Top, Jazz on the Bottom

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The Pacers suffered their first defeat by the Bulls and the Jazz got their first win. Where do they fall in this week's rankings?

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

In this week's edition we are focusing on some different stats than we normally do. Instead of focusing on player stats (we do a couple of times), we take a bit deeper look at the overall team concept.

The first and last team on the list did not change, but there is quite a bit of movement in the middle. I think we are finally seeing some trends develop and hopefully we can start to make heads or tails out of this season.

Previous weeks:
Preaseson | 1 | 2

Rank

Last Week

Team

W-L

1

1

Pacers_logo_medium

9-1

Despite getting a beat down by the Bulls on Saturday night, the Pacers are still the best team in the league to this point and still give up the least amount of points per game.

2

3

Spurs_logo_medium

9-1

The Spurs continue to come out and do Spurs things. All the attention is on the Pacers, Heat and Clippers, but San Antonio just keeps winning. Spurs have the second best defense in the league and second best point differential at +9.3.

3

5

Trailblazers_logo_medium

8-2

No one is taking Rip City seriously yet. Damian Lillard looks better each and every game. The Blazers are undefeated against teams with sub .500 records and have given the Spurs their only loss this season. They have two tough games back to back to end the week against the Bulls and Warriors.

4

6

Clippers_logo_medium

7-3

Clippers are winners of four in a row. All four were against teams expected to make the playoffs and potentially win a series. Chris Paul has scored at least 10 points and dished out 10 assists in all 10 games so far this season.

5

9

Heat_logo_medium

7-3

LeBron James is a leading MVP candidate (again). In the three wins this week James averaged 34 points an outing. Rashard Lewis even showed some life again this week, leading the Heat in rebounding in their win over the Bobcats.

6

2

Timberwolves_logo_medium

7-4

In wins Kevin Love averages 29-13, but in losses he averages 23-14. He's still my front-runner for MVP. The young Timberwolves will have two easy games this week (Wizards, Nets), but the real tests will come against Clippers and Rockets.

7

12

Warriors_logo_medium

7-3

The Warriors had a huge win against Oklahoma City this week, which propelled them up the rankings. The blowout wins against the Pistons and Jazz reaffirm this is a good team. You have to enforce your will against weaker teams and the Warriors did just that.

8

14

Bulls_logo_medium

5-3

In their blowout win over the Pacers, the old Bulls showed up. They held Indiana to 40% shooting from the floor, and didn't allow any Pacer to score 15 points. Derrick Rose also came to play, scoring 20 points, hitting 6-11 from three, and had four assists and ZERO turnovers against the league's best defense.

9

4

Okc-thunder-logo_medium

6-3

The Thunder are 2-3 against teams with winning records (all losses coming on the road) and are 4-0 against teams with a combined record of 8-30. Though Washington really should have beat them last week.

10

13

Mavericks_logo_medium

6-4

Wins against Washington and Orlando are decent road wins for a Mavericks team looking to build continuity. A six point loss on the road to Miami is nothing to be ashamed of either. They were in the game until the final buzzer. Monta Ellis continues to buy into the Mavs system.

11

11

Rockets_logo_medium

7-4

There are a few things to worry about in Houston. Barely beating a bad Toronto team at home is one, then losing to a now struggling Philadelphia team is another. Barely beating a very bad Knicks team is... right now, outright shameful.  Houston definitely has a few things it needs to work on. Getting Ryan Anderson is one and getting James Harden and his beard to play defense is the other.

12

8

Suns_logo_medium

5-4

You can't say the Suns don't try hard every time they go out there. They had a nice win against New Orleans, then dropped back to back heartbreakers against the Blazers and Nets. This team isn't showing signs of slowing down like the 76ers.

13

15

Grizzlies_logo_medium

5-5

This Grizzlies team is so hard to figure out. I picked them to finish second in the West, but they lose to teams they should beat and beat teams they should lose to. I don't get this team at all. If I was a die hard fan of the Grizzlies I would bash my head against the wall constantly.

14

23

Hawks_logo_medium

6-4

Another one of those teams that is hard to figure out. They lost to the Knicks at home, then go to MSG and completely crush Carmelo and company. The Hawks should have been undefeated for the weekend.

15

21

Magic_logo_medium

4-6

Not a good week for the Magic. They lost bad to Boston, barely beat Milwaukee and then finished up the week with another loss, this time to the Mavericks. Nikola Vucevic continues to be a beast that is worth watching every night.

16

16

Raptors_logo_medium

4-7

Yet another one of those hard to put a finger on teams. The Raptors almost beat Houston on the road, then crush Memphis and then get crushed in back to back games by the Bulls and Blazers.

17

17

Cavaliers_medium

4-7

I had high expectations for the Cavaliers this season. They are 1-3 against teams with winning records and Kyrie Irving is developing a "I don't trust my teammates at all" vibe.

18

10

Pistons_logo_medium

3-6

When Brandon Jennings leads your team in three major categories you have some serious issues. Jennings leads the team in points, assists and steals. His turnovers are down from last year, but his shot selection has appeared to get worse. Anyone interested in more of his running 22-foot air-ball floaters?

19

7

Sixers_logo_medium

5-6

These are the 76ers that we all know, love and expected. They've lost three of their last four and in those losses they've gotten their brains bashed in by an average of 23.6 points. Tony Wroten did have a nice triple-double in their win against the Rockets.

20

20

Pelicans_logo_medium

4-6

Anthony Davis has averaged a double-double this week, it's just too bad they are 1-2 during that stretch. The Pelicans did get Ryan Anderson back though and he promptly scored 26 points. He's a big difference maker for this team. Does he end up in Houston like thinks he will?

21

27

Bobcats_logo_medium

5-5

This week the Bobcats were 2-0 against teams with a losing record, winning by an average of six points. They were 0-2 against teams with winning records, losing by an average 12.5 points. As of right now they would be a playoff team. Wow.

22

28

Nuggets_logo_medium

4-5

Wilson Chandler came back this week and the Nuggets are 2-1 with him back. They have won four of their last six games, but only one of those wins came against team that was .500 or better.

23

26

Celtics_logo_medium

4-7

Jeff Green is the team's leading scorer at 15.5 ppg and the Celtics trot out the NBA's 8th best defense up to this point. It's too bad they give up three more points a game than they score.

24

18

Lakers_logo_medium

5-7

Kobe Bryant practiced for the first time this season on Saturday. Seismologists thought there was an earthquake, but it just turned out that Lakers fans were tweeting with a little too much gusto.

25

19

Nets_medium

3-6

Saturday night against the Clippers the Nets only had one regular starter in the lineup (Joe Johnson) and hung close with the Clips for a while. This team is already showing it's age. And doubts are surfacing as to whether Jason Kidd is actually worthy of being an NBA coach. I wonder how hot his seat is?

26

22

Wizards_logo_medium

2-7

This is not how things were supposed to go in Washington this year. There was talk (even by me) about the Wizards picking up some wins in the playoffs this year. Randy Whitman is going to be lucky if he can keep his job past Christmas.

27

28

Knicks_logo_medium

3-6

The Knicks are playing like... well we all know Carmelo Anthony's quote from this past week of what they are playing like. Even scarier for the Knicks, Andrea Bargnani is their second best player and probably their best defender.

28

24

Bucks_logo_medium

2-7

After the Bucks beat the Cavs on 11/6, they've lost five in a row by an average of 14 points. Nate Wolters continues to be a ray of sunshine, unlike Larry Sanders who'd rather get in bar fights and freeze his puppies than play NBA basketball.

29

29

Kings_logo_medium

2-7

Kings had a big win against the Nets, but then dropped their next two. Sacramento could make some leaps up the ladder if they can get some wins this week, but they play Phoenix twice, the Clippers twice and the Lakers on the road.

30

30

Jazz_logo_medium

1-10

The Jazz got their first victory this week, sneaking by the Pelicans. There are few bright spots for the Jazz thus far. Sadly, they are only averaging 88.7 ppg as a team. Hard to win in the NBA if you can't score.

For more power rankings from SB Nation, check below.

2013 NBA power rankings: Spurs edge Pacers for top spot - SBNation.com
There's a new No. 1 for the fourth straight week.