NBA Western Power Rankings Week 3: Warriors storm ahead

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Nov 14, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Clippers guard Jamal Crawford (11) reacts after an assist to forward Blake Griffin during the fourth quarter against the Detroit Pistons at Staples Center. The Los Angeles Clippers won 101-96. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

5th: Los Angeles Clippers (46 points)

By Tom West

Record: 6-4

Record last week: 2-2

The Clippers’ last week was another inconsistent one, only this time with injuries to Chris Paul and J.J. Redick thrown into the mix. They started with a narrow 92-94 victory over the Grizzlies before taking two straight losses at the hands of the angry Mavericks and the Suns. Both games involved the Clippers being totally out-shot, as Dirk Nowitzki and Wesley Matthews combined for 56 points for Dallas while the Suns’ backcourt duo of Eric Bledsoe and Brandon Knight totalled 63. And without Paul and Redick in the second game, the Clippers just couldn’t keep up. The bench still showed inconsistencies and Blake Griffin can’t carry the offense by himself every night.

Essentially, that’s been the only thing stopping the Clippers taking off so far. It’s only expected, though, so don’t worry too much, L.A. We all knew they’d need time and it’s still only been a few weeks. Doc Rivers needs to perfect his rotations so the bench aren’t abandoned by themselves and the correct perimeter players are combined with either Griffin or DeAndre Jordan at center. Plus, with Jamal Crawford, Lance Stephenson, Josh Smith and Paul Pierce all shooting below 40 percent so far, the second unit really haven’t helped out.

That being said, Crawford briefly redeemed himself with a 37 point, eight assist, six rebound explosion against the Detroit Pistons to end the Clippers’ week with a win.

Once Doc figures out how to use all his new weapons correctly, and the new guys adapt to their surroundings and start making some shots, the Clippers really can be a force. When that comes into place, Paul and Redick return, and the defense (ideally) tightens up a bit, they’ll look far more like a contender.

Next: Oklahoma City Thunder