The Los Angeles Lakers had a brutal week, while the Los Angeles Clippers stayed afloat while missing Chris Paul for all five of their games. Both teams dropped like a rock in the latest NBA power rankings by Tom Ziller at SB Nation. The Clippers were rated No. 5 last week, but after their 3-2 week without their all-world point guard they dropped all the way to No. 15. The Lakers lost three of four games and dropped from No. 9 to No. 16.
The Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat occupy the top two spots in Ziller's ratings, and don't be surprised if those two teams are at or near the top the rest of the way. The Denver Nuggets won four road games last week to improve to 12-5 and vault to the No. 3 spot.
The Lakers were outclassed in Miami and Orlando, and blew a home lead Sunday night against the Indiana Pacers. In their only win of the week, they scored all of 73 points in a home win over Dallas. Of the fall in Lakerland, Ziller wrote of the dysfunction, "Here's a change of pace: Pau Gasol isn't grousing about not getting the ball, he's grousing about where he's been stationed on offense. Instead of crimping on Kobe Bryant's steez, Andrew Bynum is pushing Pau to the perimeter/periphery."