NBA Power Rankings: Week Nine

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Dec 26, 2013; Portland, OR, USA; Portland Trail Blazers power forward LaMarcus Aldridge (12) drives to the basket against the Los Angeles Clippers at the Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

1. Portland Trail Blazers (Last Week: 2)

I could tell you how Portland are the surprise team of the season and how they are now an elite team or a contender to make it out of the West to the NBA Finals but you know that by now. Instead, I’ll highlight that the Trail Blazers stand to gain the most of anybody from Russell Westbrook’s latest injury setback. The Blazers and Thunder were set for a long duel for the division title and with it homecourt advantage in at least the first round of the playoffs. Portland can build an unassailable lead over the next couple of months.

Offensive Rating: 110.4, Defensive Rating: 104.7

2. Indiana Pacers (LW: 1)

The Pacers have been rather quiet over the holiday period, casually going about their business of dealing with the dregs of the NBA. Difficult to pick out much to criticize about Indiana, they are effectively tied-first in these rankings.

ORtg: 103.2, DRtg: 93.6

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