DA's Morning Tip

DA's Top 15 Rankings: Toronto Raptors ride DeMar DeRozan wave into Top 5

David Aldridge

(Last week’s record in parenthesis; last week’s ranking in brackets)

1) Golden State (3-0) [1]: Steph Curry’s 45 against the Clippers Saturday was the 28th 40+ point game of his career.

2) Boston (3-0) [2]: Timely break in the schedule for Al Horford (knee) — the Cs only have one game in the next 10 days; the London game Thursday against the 76ers.

3) Toronto (3-0) [6]: Maybe the best stretch of DeMar DeRozan’s career.

4) San Antonio (2-2) [3]: Brad Pitt’s second choice, an “exclusive experience with Ed Grimley”, retailed at $6.37.

5) Minnesota (2-2) [4]: No to these unis. No. No. I mean, dear God, no.

6) Cleveland (2-1) [7]: Forget the loss to the Celtics — Isaiah Thomas’s return, seemingly back to his old self, was the only thing that mattered last week.

7) Houston (1-2) [5]: Rockets’ slide has brought the Spurs within striking distance of that crucial number two spot in the West — just two back now in the loss column.

8) Milwaukee (2-2) [8]: Jason Kidd puts Malcolm Brogdon back into the starting lineup, alongside Eric Bledsoe.

9) Washington (2-1) [10]: Mike Scott (.578 FG, .430 3-point shooting, .653 eFG, .661 TSP) continuing insanely efficient offensive season.

10) Detroit (1-2) [9]: Good to see vet guard Dwight Buycks, up on his two-way with all the Pistons’ backcourt injuries, helping out (16 points) in Detroit’s win Saturday over Houston.

11) Oklahoma City (2-1) [11]: Little noted in Thunder’s season: Jerami Grant has gotten much stronger, and contributing at both ends off the bench.

12) Denver (2-1) [12]: Time for the Nuggets to make their move: After Monday’s game at Golden State, 11 of their next 14 are at home.

13) Portland (3-1) [13]: Tough road trip this week: at OKC, at Houston, at New Orleans, at Minnesota.

14) Miami (3-0) [14]: Heat hoisting: Miami’s 3-point rate of .384 this season is fourth-highest in the NBA, up from .314 (14th) last season.

15) New Orleans (1-1) [15]: The very model of up and down, the Pels haven’t had a winning streak or a losing streak of more than three games all season.

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Longtime NBA reporter, columnist and Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer David Aldridge is an analyst for TNT. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here andfollow him on Twitter.

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