David Aldridge gives you the preseason edition of which teams are the Top 15 squads in the NBA at this moment.
- Cleveland Cavaliers (defending champions’ prerogative): Rookie Kay Felder has been up and down, but has a roster spot pretty much on lock.
- Golden State Warriors: Withholding judgment until the games are for real, but … man. Early signs are amazing.
- LA Clippers: On this era’s tombstone, the epitaph will no doubt read, “their kingdom for a small forward.”
- Toronto Raptors: Jared Sullinger starts at the four; Dwane Casey thinks Patrick Patterson is too important coming off the bench.
- San Antonio Spurs: Dewayne Dedmon is going to help the Spurs a lot this season.
- Indiana Pacers: We’re bullish on the Pacers. Very bullish.
- Boston Celtics: Avery Bradley looks ready to go alongside Isaiah Thomas.
- Portland Trail Blazers: Coach Terry Stotts still hasn’t named the permanent starter at small forward, with Allen Crabbe, Evan Turner and Maurice Harkless all vying to get the gig.
- Utah Jazz: Sexy pick Jazz has been strafed by preseason injuries.
- Memphis Grizzlies: We’re not encouraged by the uncertainty about Chandler Parsons’ knee, and his availability for the season opener.
- Detroit Pistons: Put me down as pro-downtown arena for the Pistons. I would not miss, at all, the 31-mile drive from the Detroit airport to Auburn Hills.
- Charlotte Hornets: Where will Steve Clifford find enough offense?
- Dallas Mavericks: Someone other than J.J. Barea is going to have to be a contributor off the bench this season.
- Houston Rockets: You see what the Rockets could potentially be offensively if they can somehow keep their core guys healthy.
- Atlanta Hawks: Did you have any idea that the Hawks have the second-longest streak of consecutive playoff seasons in the NBA at nine? I didn’t, either. (San Antonio, of course, is first, with 19 straight postseason trips and counting.)
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