NBA POWER RANKINGS: Where Every Team Stands Going Into 2015

Kevin durantKevin C. Cox/Getty ImagesThe Thunder are lurking.

Christmas is the unofficial start of the NBA season for many casual fans.

The NFL season is dying down, people are stuck inside, and there are nationally televised games on ABC.

By New Year’s Day the NBA season finally feels like it’s here, and we have a better understanding of which teams are for real, and which teams are headed for the lottery in 2015.

1. Golden State Warriors (previously: 1st)

Current record: 23-3 (1st in West)

Offensive ranking: 9th

Defensive ranking: 1st

One thing to know: There are lingering concerns (offence when Steph Curry is on the bench, Andrew Bogut's latest injury, etc.), but right now this is the most complete team in the league.

2. Memphis Grizzlies (previously: 3rd)

Current record: 21-7 (3rd in West)

Offensive ranking: 8th

Defensive ranking: 9th

One thing to know: This has always been a great defensive team, but now Marc Gasol is putting up better offensive numbers than ever.

3. Portland Trail Blazers (previously: 6th)

Current record: 22-7 (2nd in West)

Offensive ranking: 6th

Defensive ranking: 3rd

One thing to know: Damian Lillard has taken The Leap this year. He's currently fifth in the league in win shares, and he's top 10 in points per game and assists per game.

4. Houston Rockets (previously: 2nd)

Current record: 20-7 (4th in West)

Offensive ranking: 20th

Defensive ranking: 2nd

One thing to know: Even with injuries to Dwight Howard, Terrence Jones, and Patrick Beverly, they're in the top half of the West. They're also reportedly looking to sign Josh Smith.

5. Chicago Bulls (previously: 4th)

Current record: 18-9 (4th in East)

Offensive ranking: 10th

Defensive ranking: 10th

One thing to know: The Bulls are once again having injury issues, but according to's John Schumann, they're 4-1 when their starting five and Taj Gibson all play in the same game. They're also 11-5 when Derrick Rose, who says he'll dominate soon, plays.

6. Oklahoma City Thunder (previously: 18th)

Current record: 13-15 (10th in West)

Offensive ranking: 23rd

Defensive ranking: 5th

One thing to know: This is one of the best teams in the league when everyone is healthy. Durant and Westbrook have only been back for a few weeks, and they're already only two games back of a playoff spot.

7. Toronto Raptors (previously: 5th)

Current record: 22-7 (1st in East)

Offensive ranking: 2nd

Defensive ranking: 13th

One thing to know: The Toronto Raptors have gone 9-3 without DeMar DeRozan, but they have also had one of the easier schedules in the NBA so far.

8. Atlanta Hawks (previously: 16th)

Current record: 20-7 (2nd in East)

Offensive ranking: 7th

Defensive ranking: 7th

One thing to know: Whether the Hawks can keep it up or not is another question, but they're 9-1 in their last ten games, and their last three victories have been over the Bulls, Cavaliers, and Rockets.

9. Dallas Mavericks (previously: 9th)

Current record: 20-9 (5th in West)

Offensive ranking: 1st

Defensive ranking: 24th

One thing to know: The Rajon Rondo trade is a legitimate gamble.

10. Los Angeles Clippers (previously: 10th)

Current record: 19-9 (6th in West)

Offensive ranking: 3rd

Defensive ranking: 16th

One thing to know: Chris Paul is quietly having one of his best-ever years. He has a career-high percentage from three-point range, and the fewest turnovers of his career.

11. Washington Wizards (previously: 11th)

Current record: 19-7 (3rd in East)

Offensive ranking: 15h

Defensive ranking: 6th

One thing to know: John Wall has slowly put it all together, averaging a career-high 10.5 assists per game, while also becoming deadly with his midrange jumper.

12. Cleveland Cavaliers (previously: 7th)

Current record: 16-10 (5th in East)

Offensive ranking: 4th

Defensive ranking: 22nd

One thing to know: LeBron James and Kyrie Irving have switched responsibilities with success, but Kevin Love is struggling again.

13. San Antonio Spurs (previously: 8th)

Current record: 18-11 (7th in West)

Offensive ranking: 13th

Defensive ranking: 4th

One thing to know: The Spurs have yet to kick things into gear. Only four guys have played more than 25 games, and only Boris Diaw has played in every game.

14. New Orleans Pelicans (previously: 13th)

Current record: 14-13 (8th in West)

Offensive ranking: 5th

Defensive ranking: 26th

One thing to know: Anthony Davis has been the best player in the NBA, but it probably won't be enough to make the playoffs in the stacked West.

15. Milwaukee Bucks (previously: 17th)

Current record: 14-14 (6th in East)

Offensive ranking: 21st

Defensive ranking: 14th

One thing to know: Losing Jabari Parker to a torn ACL hurts the overall development of this team, but the Bucks have actually been better with Parker off the court.

16. Phoenix Suns (previously: 15th)

Current record: 15-14 (9th in West)

Offensive ranking: 11th

Defensive ranking: 17th

One thing to know: Phoenix's crowded backcourt has hurt Goran Dragic, who's scoring four fewer points per game and handing out two fewer assists than last year.

17. Sacramento Kings (previously: 12th)

Current record: 12-16 (11th in West)

Offensive ranking: 12th

Defensive ranking: 20th

One thing to know: The Kings fired their coach and now want to play 4-on-5 on defence. GO KINGS!

18. Miami Heat (previously: 14th)

Current record: 13-15 (7th in East)

Offensive ranking: 18th

Defensive ranking: 25th

One thing to know: Despite the Heat's meager season thus far, Dwyane Wade seems happy with the current era in Miami, claiming he wouldn't want to form another Big 3.

19. Boston Celtics (previously: 21st)

Current record: 10-15 (9th in East)

Offensive ranking: 17th

Defensive ranking: 15th

One thing to know: The Celtics finally traded Rajon Rondo, officially starting a rebuilding period that's seen them hoard a ton of draft picks.

20. Brooklyn Nets (previously: 19th)

Current record: 11-15 (8th in East)

Offensive ranking: 24th

Defensive ranking: 11th

One thing to know: While the defence has improved considerably, their offence has regressed, which could be a reason the front office is looking to make a change.

21. Denver Nuggets (previously: 28th)

Current record: 12-16 (12th in West)

Offensive ranking: 19th

Defensive ranking: 19th

One thing to know: With little hope of making the playoffs, they could sell off assets at the trade deadline.

22. Indiana Pacers (previously: 23rd)

Current record: 9-19 (11th in East)

Offensive ranking: 29th

Defensive ranking: 8th

One thing to know: Despite the Pacers' desperate need for offence, players are apparently against trading back for Lance Stephenson.

23. Los Angeles Lakers (previously: 29th)

Current record: 8-19 (14th in West)

Offensive ranking: 16th

Defensive ranking: 30th

One thing to know: Kobe Bryant's shooting is hitting historic levels of inefficiency.

24. Utah Jazz (previously: 22nd)

Current record: 9-20 (13th in West)

Offensive ranking: 14th

Defensive ranking: 29th

One thing to know: Bad NBA teams still having fun has been one of the themes of the season. The Jazz are a prime example.

25. Charlotte Hornets (previously: 20th)

Current record: 9-19 (12th in East)

Offensive ranking: 25th

Defensive ranking: 21st

One thing to know: In what was supposed to be one of the biggest signings of the offseason, the Hornets are already trying to trade Lance Stephenson.

26. Orlando Magic (previously: 25th)

Current record: 10-20 (10th in East)

Offensive ranking: 27th

Defensive ranking: 18th

One thing to know: The Magic are amazingly in the playoff hunt in the East, but they have lost to the Sixers, Celtics, and Jazz in their last three.

27. Minnesota Timberwolves (previously: 27th)

Current record: 5-21 (15th in West)

Offensive ranking: 26th

Defensive ranking: 28th

One thing to know: Andrew Wiggins is probably the frontrunner for rookie of the year, even though you sometimes hardly notice him on the court.

28. New York Knicks (previously: 24th)

Current record: 5-25 (14th in East)

Offensive ranking: 22nd

Defensive ranking: 27th

One thing to know: Between locker room fights and resistance to Phil Jackson's triangle system, the Knicks are already a complete mess.

29. Philadelphia 76ers (previously: last)

Current record: 3-23 (15th in West)

Offensive ranking: 30th

Defensive ranking: 13th

One thing to know: Despite obviously being set up to lose, the 76ers are still competing. We were surprised to see they're one of the top defensive teams in the NBA.

30. Detroit Pistons (previously: 26th)

Current record: 5-23 (13th in East)

Offensive ranking: 28th

Defensive ranking: 23rd

One thing to know: The Pistons' last-place rank is a punishment. Detroit is so lowly that they just spent over $US26 million to cut Josh Smith because no one would trade for him.

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