D-League Power Rankings: February 6, 2008

by Matthew Brennan, D-League.com

Cory Violette and the Idaho Stampede have won 17 straight games.
Ned Dishman/Getty Images/NBAE
The Idaho Stampede (who else) maintain the top spot in this week's D-League Power Rankings after moving into the D-League record books with their record 16th straight victory on Saturday. The Stampede's streak currently stands at 17 games after a win on Monday, and Idaho also holds the D-League's best record at 22-5. They will meet their main competition for the top of the Power Rankings and the West Division when the Los Angeles D-Fenders visit Boise this week. The D-Fenders have the league's second best record at 18-8. The other division leaders at the moment make up the third and fourth spots in the Power Rankings. The defending champion Dakota Wizards lead the Central Division by three games with an 18-11 record, while the Austin Toros are the team to beat in the Southwest Division with an 18-10 record and a two-game lead.

The Stampede are not the only team in the D-League on a long winning streak, as the Tulsa 66ers and the Sioux Falls Skyforce have won six and seven games, respectively. Both teams have recovered from mediocre starts to the season and have moved into striking distance of first place in their divisions. The 66ers have lost only two games in 2008 after entering the new year with a 4-9 record.

The D-League All-Star Game and D-League Dream Factory Friday Night are scheduled for next week, so there will be no regular season games scheduled for next Friday and Saturday. Click here for complete information on the All-Star Teams and events that will be taking place in New Orleans.

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    TEAM (LAST WK) REC. BREAKDOWN
    1 Idaho (1) 22-5 The Stampede won their 17th straight game on Monday and will return to Qwest Arena, where they are undefeated this season. The Los Angeles D-Fenders, who trail Idaho by 3.5 games in the West Division will visit Boise for two games this weekend. Idaho is 3-0 against the D-Fenders this season.
    2 Los Angeles (3) 18-8 The D-Fenders played only one game over the past week, extending their winning streak to three games with a win over Anaheim. Los Angeles will try to end Idaho's winning streak and their perfect home record with two games in Boise on Friday and Saturday. Head coach Dan Panaggio will coach the D-League All-Star Blue Team after the D-Fenders clinched the league's second best record by the cutoff date of February 1.
    3 Austin (4) 18-10 Austin continues to lead the Southwest Division, although both Tulsa and Colorado are close behind. A trip south to visit Rio Grande Valley is the only game on the slate for the Toros this week. Ian Mahinmi has returned to the team after a short recall by San Antonio without actually missing a D-League game.
    4 Dakota (2) 18-11 The Wizards had a disappointing week, losing to Bakersfield and dropping a game at home to Austin. They will now face a crucial stretch with their next three games against surging Sioux Falls, who has closed the Wizards' lead in the Central Division to three games.Dakota and Sioux Falls are scheduled to meet seven more times this season.
    5 Tulsa (6) 15-11 The 66ers have maintained their amazing turnaround from a 4-9 start. Tulsa has won the first six games of a ten-game homestand, with the Albuquerque Thudnerbirds scheduled to visit this weekend. With three of their last four wins over first-place Austin, the 66ers have closed to two games of the Toros in the Southwest Division.
    6 Sioux Falls (7) 15-14 The Skyforce continue to excel in the new year, as their winning streak now stands at seven games. Sioux Falls will face Dakota five times this month, which will give them a great chance to make a move on first place in the Central Divison. They currently trail Dakota by three games heading into this weekend's road trip to Des Moines to face the Energy.
    7 Colorado (5) 15-12 The 14ers snapped a three-game losing streak with Tuesday's win over Utah, but have dropped to third place behind Austin and Tulsa in the Southwest Division. The 14ers should still be a threat this season with all of the talent assembled on the roster, as a league-high four players from Colorado were named to the D-League All-Star Red Team, including D-League Player of the Month Elton Brown.
    8 Utah (8) 15-15 The Flash continue to hover around the .500 mark, and their week was highlighted by Morris Almond's D-League record 53 points in last Wednesday's win over Bakersfield. The Flash will host Anaheim on Friday before Idaho comes to Orem on Monday night. The Flash are 4-1 against the Arsenal this season.
    9 Iowa (11) 12-15 The Energy enjoyed a big win on Friday night when they left Colorado with an overtime victory. Next up is a two-game homestand against division rival Sioux Falls. The contests between the Energy and the Skyforce have been heated this season, with one game going to overtime and another being decided by only two points.
    10 Albuquerque (10) 11-14 The Thunderbirds have been hovering a few games below .500 for most of the season, and are still looking to put together a winning streak of longer than two games. After a win over Bakersfield yesterday afternoon, the T-Birds will be challenged with back-to-back visits to division rivals Tulsa and Colorado.
    11 Anaheim (10) 9-17 The Arsenal are coming off of two tough losses to Idaho where they held leads late in the game only to see a victory slip away. GATORADE Call-Up Guiillermo Diaz has returned to Anaheim, who has now lost five of their last six games.
    12 Fort Wayne (12) 9-17 The Mad Ants have lost eight of their last nine and head coach Kent Davison has resigned for a position overseas, leaving assistant and former NBA player Jaren Jackson to lead the team. Pistons' assigned player Cheikh Samb entered the D-League record books on Saturday in a loss to Sioux Falls, recording a single-game record 11 blocks. Samb also scored 12 points and grabbed 12 rebounds for a triple-double.
    13 Rio Grande Valley (13) 10-19 The Vipers have now lost eight straight and 15 of their last 16 games. A tough back-to-back set against Austin and Colorado this weekend will not make the going any easier. Desmon Farmer has been a bright spot with 17.2 points in his first 12 games with the Vipers.
    14 Bakersfield (14) 6-25 The Jam have shown that they can be a tough out on their home court, as they knocked off the Dakota Wizards over the weekend. They fell back to earth with a road loss to Albuquerque yesterday, dropping their road record to 1-17 on the season. Scott Roth's club will be away from Bakersfield for five of their next six games.