Coming off a week in which the Philadelphia 76ers suffered a home overtime loss to the Denver Nuggets and a blowout road loss to the Miami Heat, people are still questioning the validity of their 11-5 record. Naturally, after two losses the Sixers slid a bit in the major media outlets' NBA Power Rankings, but remain relatively high while everyone still tries to figure this team out.
John Schuhmann, NBA.com - 7th (4th in East)
The Sixers came back to earth a little last week, but they've still won nine straight with Spencer Hawes. They play 10 of their next 11 at home, and it could be a feast-then-famine stretch. It starts with the Wizards, Nets, Bobcats and Pistons. Then come the Magic, Bulls, Heat, Hawks, Lakers, Spurs and Clippers.
Tom Ziller, SB Nation - 4th (3rd in East)
The Sixers went 2-2 last week, but the losses -- a squeaker to the Nuggets, a road blowout to the Heat -- are forgivable. This remains a wildly good team with an easy-to-watch offense.
Chris Sheridan, Sheridan Hoops - 6th (4th in East)
Reality check with losses to Nuggets (in OT) and Heat (by 21)? Perhaps. But an easy week awaits them with four home games against bad team, with a very difficult week to follow. It includes rematch vs. Miami. FYI: LBJ is 16-1 career vs. Andre Iguodala. In Saturday night beatdown, Heat scored 26 more than Philly had been allowing (87). At 99.2 ppg, 76ers still third in the NBA in scoring.
John Hollinger, ESPN - 2nd (2nd in the East)
Marc Stein, ESPN - 5th (3rd in the East)
Villanova-ex Kyle Lowry looks like the early MIP favorite, but Spencer Hawes' growing importance to the Sixers is tangible even when he's not out there. Philly lost by 21 in Miami without its improving center (Achilles) after suffering its first four L's by only 17 points combined.
Composite: 4.8 (3.2 in East)