The Portland Trail Blazers are 14-3 on the season after a 2-1 week that included wins over the New York Knicks and Los Angeles Lakers and a loss to the Phoenix Suns.
Here's how the Blazers stack up in the various NBA power rankings following week five of the 2013-14 season. Last week, the Blazers ranked from No. 3 to No. 5. This week, Portland is ranked between No. 3 and No. 6 with minor movement both directions in the various rankings.
No. 3 (Last week: 3): Marc Stein, ESPN.com
You keep dissing Portland's start with cracks about a soft schedule. And I keep ignoring you. Too many wins on the road, plus too much Wes Matthews in addition to the stuff we've come to expect from Aldridge/Lillard/Batum, to call this a mirage. (Let's see, though, if Matthews' hip holds up.)
No. 3 (Last week: 4): Marc Spears, Yahoo! Sports
Is Portland for real? The Blazers' next two home games against Indiana and Oklahoma City should say something. Portland is 6-1 at home.
No. 6 (Last week: 5): Matt Dollinger, SI.com
When is the rest of the NBA going to learn not to leave Wesley Matthews open? The sharpshooter is benefiting from teams keying in on LaMarcus Aldridge and Damian Lillard, hitting a ridiculous 51 percent of his three-pointers and leading the league in true shooting percentage (70.5).
No. 3 (Last week: 3): Matt Moore, CBSSports.com
Do you see what happens when you commit to, and stick with, an offensive game plan?
No. 3 (Last week: 4): Kurt Helin, Pro Basketball Talk
This is currently your No. 1 seed in the West. Count me in the group that doesn't think Portland can sustain this (not with the 21st ranked defense in the NBA) but this fast start gives them a cushion in a very deep Western Conference.
No. 6 (Last week: 4): John Schuhmann, NBA.com
Counting preseason, the Blazers are 1-3 against the Suns and 18-2 against the rest of the league. Fortunately for Portland, they don't see Phoenix again until April. Fortunately for us, they host the Pacers and Thunder this week. And maybe it's the Indiana defense that can slow down Wesley Matthews, who doesn't seem to understand that human beings are not supposed to shoot this well.
No. 5 (Last week: 4): David Aldridge, NBA.com
Blazers are now 9-0 in back-to-backs so far this season, but they face a doozy tonight at home against 16-1 Indiana after beating the Lakers at Staples Sunday night.
No. 5 (Last week: 4): Jason Patt, SB Nation
As long as the Blazers don't play the Suns, everything is fine. Portland has lost just three games all year, with two of those losses coming against Phoenix. The latest defeat snapped an 11-game winning streak.
No. 4 (Last week: 4): USA Today Sports
Wesley Matthews has new nickname, and shot blockers everywhere want to stuff the "Ballot."
No. 6 (Last week: 4): Hollinger Power Rankings
- Offensive Efficiency: No. 3 (Last week: No. 4)
- Defensive Efficiency: No. 23 (Last week: No. 13)
- Rebound Rate: No. 5 (Last week: No. 6)
- Pace: No. 21 (Last week: No. 20)
-- Ben Golliver | firstname.lastname@example.org | Twitter