1. Indiana Pacers (Last Week: 2)
They’re back. The Pacers got a statement win this week against Miami at home Tuesday night as their suffocating defense choked the life out of Miami’s half-court sets in the second half before weathering a late storm.
Paul George has gone from solid player to Most Improved to true MVP candidate now that he’s learned how to create his own shot and run the offense, one of the few facets of his game that needed polishing this past summer.
Offensive Rating: 102.4, Defensive Rating: 93.4
2. Portland Trail Blazers (LW: 1)
Portland relinquishes its number one spot after one week but that’s more thanks to a less impressive schedule this week. They hung 139 points and a franchise-record 21 three-pointers on the Philadelphia 76ers in one of the most staggering offensive outbursts this season. Portland scored 79 points in the middle two quarters alone.
LaMarcus Aldridge has been a rock for the Blazers this season and is rightly earning serious MVP considerations for his career year. Remember: Portland traded Tyrus Thomas for the big man.
ORtg: 110.5, DRtg: 103.4
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