NBA power rankings: What happened to the Houston Rockets?

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31 PHOTOS
NBA Power Rankings 11/19
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NBA power rankings: What happened to the Houston Rockets?

30. Philadelphia 76ers (0-12)

Last week: 30

Stat: Only 10 rookie centers have scored at least 18 PPG on 48-percent shooting (Okafor: 18.8 PPG, 48.3 FG%)

(AP Photo/Michael Perez)

29. Los Angeles Lakers (2-9)

Last week: 28

Stat: Last in NBA in FGA in restricted area (22.1/G)

(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

28. Brooklyn Nets (2-10)

Last week: 29

Stat: Worst 12-game start for the franchise since 2008-09 (0-12)

(AP Photo/Chuck Burton)

27. New Orleans Pelicans (1-11)

Last week: 26

Stat: Least "clutch" minutes played in the NBA -- 8 minutes (ahead of behind by 5 or less in final five minutes)

(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

26. Portland Trail Blazers (4-9)

Last week: 24

Stat: 0-7 since 4-2 start -- 28th in net-rating in that time (-10.5)

(AP Photo/Pat Sullivan)

25. Sacramento Kings (4-8)

Last week: 27

Stat: Rondo: Hasn't logged less than 10 assists since Nov. 6

(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

24. Minnesota Timberwolves (5-7)

Last week: 25

Stat: Towns and Wiggins combining for 37.5 PPG

(AP Photo/Jim Mone)

23. Orlando Magic (6-6)

Last week: 22

Stat: 29th in FG% on two-point shots

(AP Photo/John Raoux)

22. Denver Nuggets (6-6)

Last week: 23

Stat: Gallinari: -9.4 net-rating

(AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

21. Charlotte Hornets (6-6)

Last week: 20

Stat: Six players ever have posted usage rates higher than 20 and turnover percentages under seven (Lamb: 20.9 and 6.7, respectively)

(Photo by Kent Smith/NBAE via Getty Images)

20. Milwaukee Bucks (5-6)

Last week: 18

Stat: Middleton: Team-high plus-23.4 on-off rating

(AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

19. Houston Rockets (5-7)

Last week: 8

Stat: Lawson: 31.8/25.7/67.6 shooting percentages

(AP Photo/Pat Sullivan)

18. Phoenix Suns (6-5)

Last week: 21

Stat: Top-10 in offensive and defensive efficiency

(AP Photo/Matt York)

17. New York Knicks (6-6)

Last week: 19

Stat: Won sixth game last year on Jan. 19

(AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

16. Detroit Pistons (6-5)

Last week: 12

Stat: No player has averaged at least 19 points and 18 rebounds since 1973-74 (Drummond: 19.1 PPG and 18.9 RPG)

(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

15. Indiana Pacers (7-5)

Last week: 17

Stat: Paul George: 2.58 shooting fouls drawn per game (previous career-high: 2.03)

(AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

14. Boston Celtics (6-5)

Last week: 16

Stat: 3rd in NBA in offensive rebound rate

(AP Photo/Pat Sullivan)

13. Washington Wizards (5-4)

Last week: 14

Stat: -19 total point differential

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

12. Toronto Raptors (7-6)

Last week: 9

Stat: Five of their six losses have been decided by six points or less

(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

11. Utah Jazz (6-5)

Last week: 11

Stat: 7th in offensive rebound rate, 13th in defensive rebound rate (1st in ORB% and 5th in DRB% last year)

(AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

10. Memphis Grizzlies (6-6)

Last week: 13

Stat: Chalmers: 39.4 PER since being acquired on Nov. 10

(AP Photo/Brandon Dill)

9. Dallas Mavericks (8-4)

Last week: 15

Stat: Deron Williams: 30-for-30 from the free throw line this season

(AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

8. Miami Heat (6-4)

Last week: 7

Stat: Ranked 29th in field goal attempts, 25th in free throw attempts

(AP Photo/AJ Mast)

7. Oklahoma City Thunder (7-5)

Last week: 4

Stat: 1st in offensive rebound rate

(AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

6. Atlanta Hawks (9-5)

Last week: 5

Stat: Horford: Career-high 49 three-point attempts (shooting 36.7 percent on threes)

(AP Photo/John Bazemore)

5. Los Angeles Clippers (6-4)

Last week: 6

Stat: DeAndre Jordan: 56 field goal attempts, 60 free throw attempts

(AP Photo/LM Otero)

4. Chicago Bulls (8-3)

Last week: 10

Stat: Opponents shooting a league-worst 52.9 percent in restricted area

(AP Photo/Kamil Krzaczynski)

3. Cleveland Cavaliers (8-3)

Last week: 2

Stat: Love: Taking a career-high 6.8 3PA per game but shooting just 32 percent on threes.

(AP Photo/Ron Schwane)

2. San Antonio Spurs (9-2)

Last week: 3

Stat: Leonard: 52.4/42.1/88.0 shooting percentages

(AP Photo/Darren Abate)

1. Golden State Warriors (12-0)

Last week: 1

Stat: League-best 48.1 percent team field-goal percentage and 40.1 three-point percentage

(AP Photo/Ben Margot)

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By JOHN DORN

Another week is in the books and more drama has unfolded in the NBA.

The Golden State Warriors still haven't lost a basketball game since June 9; Russell Westbrook might become the first player since Oscar Robertson to lead the league in scoring one year and assists in another; the Mavericks have been surprising; the Nets actually won not just one, but two games; Kristaps Porzingis jerseys are apparently sold out. That's a fact.

The biggest storyline for hoops fans, though, has to be the Houston Rockets. Many wondered how the team would react, coming off a campaign in which it posted the second-best record and traded for the talented, but troubled, point guard Ty Lawson in the offseason.

Houston quickly became a popular pick to win the NBA Finals. Three weeks into the season, the Rockets are 5-7, while rumors of internal drama involving James Harden have begun to leak. They also fired head coach Kevin McHale this week.

In our preseason poll, we had them fourth, behind title contenders like Golden State. Now, they are sitting at No. 19 in between the listless Suns and Bucks.

There's still plenty of season left, but this struggling club's future climb or continuous fall will be the most compelling story to track.

Scroll through the gallery above to see where your favorite team sits.

LISTING THE HIGHEST-PAID NBA PLAYERS:

26 PHOTOS
Highest Paid NBA Players 2015-16
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NBA power rankings: What happened to the Houston Rockets?

#25 Tobias Harris — $16.0 million

Team: Orlando Magic

Position: Small Forward

Contract: 4 years, $64.0 million

One thing to know: After making just $6.8 million in his first four NBA seasons, Harris will make that in the Magic's first 35 games this season.

(Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images)

#20t Greg Monroe — $16.4 million

Team: Milwaukee Bucks

Position: Center

Contract: 3 years, $51.4 million

One thing to know: Landing coveted big man Monroe was a big reason the Bucks were one of this off-season's biggest winners.

(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

#20t Wesley Matthews — $16.4 million

Team: Dallas Mavericks

Position: Shooting Guard

Contract: 4 years, $70.1 million

One thing to know: Matthews may have been the biggest winner in the DeAndre Jordan fiasco, with the Mavs throwing $70 million at him thinking he would be paired with a powerful inside force. Now he has a huge contract and will be leaned on even more to carry the team.

(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

#20t Kawhi Leonard — $16.4 million

Team: San Antonio Spurs

Position: Small Forward

Contract: 5 years, $94.3 million

One thing to know: Yes, Leonard is already an NBA star to those who know, but this could be the year he breaks out of the shadow of the Spurs' Big 3 and finally becomes a household name.

(AP Photo/Darren Abate)

#20t Enes Kanter — $16.4 million

Team: Oklahoma City Thunder

Position: Center

Contract: 4 years, $70.1 million

One thing to know: Kanter's $70 million contract may have been the most polarizing deal of the summer and may have been spurned by an effort to show Kevin Durant that the team is committed to winning.

(AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

#20t Kyrie Irving — $16.4 million

Team: Cleveland Cavaliers

Position: Point Guard

Contract: 5 years, $94.3 million

One thing to know: Irving is going to miss a big chunk of the first year under his new deal as there is still no timetable for his return from a fractured kneecap. 

(Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images)

#19 Russell Westbrook — $16.7 million

Team: Oklahoma City Thunder

Position: Point Guard

Contract: 5 years, $78.6 million

One thing to knowOne NBA executive thinks Westbrook will end up with the Lakers when he hits free agency in 2017.

(Photo by Layne Murdoch Jr./NBAE via Getty Images)

#18 Paul George — $17.1 million

Team: Indiana Pacers

Position: Small Forward

Contract: 5 years, $91.6 million

One thing to know: George still has three years left on his contract and it could become a problem as the Pacers experiment with a smaller lineup. The change means George will move to the power forward spot, something he is not happy about.

(Photo by Ron Hoskins/NBAE via Getty Images)

#17 Paul Millsap — $18.7 million

Team: Atlanta Hawks

Position: Power Forward

Contract: 3 years, $60.2 million

One thing to know: A 2-time All-Star, Millsap was one of the bigger bargains in the NBA each of the last two seasons when his salary was $9.5 million each year. That came to an end this summer when he re-signed with the Hawks as a free agent.

(Photo by Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images)

#16 Blake Griffin — $18.9 million

Team: Los Angeles Clippers,

Position: Power Forward

Contract: 5 years, $94.5 million

One thing to know: Griffin has two years left before he can opt out of his contract. He will be one of the bigger free agents in the summer of 2017 when he will be 28 years old.

(Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images)

#11t Marc Gasol — $19.7 million

Team: Memphis Grizzlies

Position: Center

Contract: 5 years, $113.2 million

One thing to know: Marc Gasol was another one of the top free agents this summer, but in the end, he accepted a max. contract to stay with the Grizzlies.

(Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)

#11t Kevin Love — $19.7 million

Team: Cleveland Cavaliers

Position: Power Forward

Contract: 5 years, $113.2 million

One thing to know: Love ended any speculation that he would bolt Cleveland after one season, or possibly sign a 1-year deal and bolt next summer, when he signed a 5-year deal with the Cavs. Coach David Blatt has since spent the summer figuring out how to help Love dominate again.

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

#11t LaMarcus Aldridge — $19.7 million

Team: San Antonio Spurs

Position: Power Forward

Contract: 4 years, $84.1 million

One thing to know: The Spurs signed the most coveted free agent of the summer, but coach Gregg Popovich had to promise that he will coach for at least four more years.

(Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler /NBAE via Getty Images)

#11t Brook Lopez — $19.7 million

Team: Brooklyn Nets

Position: Center

Contract: 3 years, $63.5 million

One thing to know: Lopez re-signed with the Nets after opting out of a $16.7 million salary in the final year of his old deal. The deal includes protection for the Nets in case Lopez' foot injuries keep him out of action again. He can also opt out of the third year of the deal.

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

#11t DeAndre Jordan — $19.7 million

Team: Los Angeles Clippers

Position: Center

Contract: 4 years, $87.6 million

One thing to know: In what may go down as the craziest free agency signing in NBA history, Jordan went from signing with the Mavs to re-signing with the Clippers in a span of 12 hours, all while an emoji war erupted.

(Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images)

#10 Dwyane Wade — $20 million

Team: Miami Heat

Position: Shooting Guard

Contract: 1 years, $20.0 million

One thing to know: Wade opted out of a $16 million option for the season as it seemed he was looking for a larger long-term deal. He didn't get that, but it wasn't a total failure as he signed a 1-year, $20 million deal and will still be a free agent during next summer's spending frenzy.

(Photo by Issac Baldizon/NBAE via Getty Images)

#9 Derrick Rose — $20.1 million

Team: Chicago Bulls

Position: Point Guard

Contract: 5 years, $94.3 million

One thing to know: Rose has two years left on his contract and if he can show he can stay relatively healthy, somebody will throw a lot of money at him in 2017.

(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

#8 Kevin Durant — $20.2 million

Team: Oklahoma City Thunder,

Position: Small Forward

Contract: 5 years, $89.2 million

One thing to know: With Durant set to hit free agency next summer, speculation is running wild about where he will end up. In the meantime, the Thunder finally opened the vault to show they are willing to spend, going well over the salary cap to re-sign center Enes Kanter.

(Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)

#7 Chris Paul — $21.5 million

Team: Los Angeles Clippers

Position: Point Guard

Contract: 5 years, $107.3 million

One thing to know: Chris Paul has two years left on his contract and a third year he can opt out of. But this season could be Paul's best shot at a championship, especially after the Clippers fixed their biggest weakness.

(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

#6 Chris Bosh — $22.2 million

Team: Miami Heat

Position: Center

Contract: 5 years, $118.7 million

One thing to know: Bosh surprised many when re-signed with the Heat prior to last season, but after picking up the steal of the NBA Draft, it looks like Miami is going to be good again sooner than expected.

(Photo by Issac Baldizon/NBAE via Getty Images)

#5 Dwight Howard — $22.4 million

Team: Houston Rockets

Position: Center

Contract: 4 years, $87.6 million

One thing to know: Dwight Howard can opt out of his contract after this season and enter free agency for what is likely his last big pay day at age 30.

(Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)

#4 Carmelo Anthony — $22.9 million

Team: New York Knicks

Position: Small Forward

Contract: 5 years, $124.1 million

One thing to know: Anthony re-signed with the Knicks prior to last season and now it looks like a mistake for the team as they have been unable to sign big-name free agents and now have an aging veteran with a squad that is in rebuilding mode.

(Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

#3 LeBron James — $23.0 million

Team: Cleveland Cavaliers

Position: Small Forward

Contract: 2 years, $47.0 million

One thing to know: LeBron keeps signing one-year contracts in order to take advantage of the upcoming surge in the salary cap and it's going to make him millions.

(Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images)

#2 Joe Johnson — $24.9 million

Team: Brooklyn Nets

Position: Shooting Guard

Contract: 6 years, $123.7 million

One thing to know: Johnson has made $173.8 million in his career, making him one of the 25 highest-paid NBA players of all time.

(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

#1 Kobe Bryant — $25.0 million

Team: Los Angeles Lakers

Position: Shooting Guard

Contract: 2 years, $48.5 million

One thing to know: Kobe Bryant is on the last year of his contract and there is speculation that, at 37 years old, this could be his final season. And yet, Bryant has never said this and Phil Jackson doesn't think Kobe is ready to retire. But will the Lakers want him back? Some think the team should play hard ball with Kobe if he decides to keep playing.

(Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
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