Power Rankings: Nuggets, Hornets are week's high risers
By Marc Stein
Given the mammoth numbers racked up by Kobe Bryant and several others around the league on a super Sunday, a nine-spot jump in the ESPN.com NBA Power Rankings might not sound so big.
Except to the Denver Nuggets.
The Nuggets' season of suffering has taken a significant upturn, capped by Sunday's nationally televised victory in the city that put them on such a rocky path. Denver lost power forward Nene to a season-ending knee tear in San Antonio on opening night, but a 89-85 road upset of the Spurs over the weekend gave the Nuggets a 9-2 record in January. That's all without injured center Marcus Camby, who was having the season of his life at 31 before getting hurt in late December.
The shorthanded Nuggets, thanks to this Carmelo Anthony-led surge, have thus capitalized on the ongoing instability outside our top three and have vaulted from No. 14 to a season-high No. 5. Read on to see how your team ranks, and click here to send feedback. You also can click here for my latest around-the-league notebook edition of the Daily Dime.