By Jason Wojciechowski on December 13, 2008 at 2:00 PM
I was looking at Cleveland's schedule so far this, trying to figure out how on earth they have a 13.5 point differential for the season, and I realized that they haven't beaten anyone yet this year. Of the other nine teams with a .600 or better winning percentage: they lost to Boston on opening night; they don't play the Lakers until January 19th; they don't play Orlando until January 29th; they don't play Houston until December 23rd; they play San Antonio on February 27th; they play Portland on January 21st; they lost to Detroit; they lost to New Orleans.
Of the top eleven teams in the league, the eleven with single-digit losses, they've beaten two: Utah (who were playing without Deron Williams, Mehmet Okur and Andrei Kirilenko) and Denver (good win). Let's not starting anointing these guys the best team in the world until they're better than 2-3 against the good teams. (To be fair, they have taken care of business against the bad teams while the Lakers and Celtics have slipped up against Indiana and Sacramento. But the Lakers have a 4-1 record against those .600-and-greater teams while Boston is 7-1 against them. Boston, as much as it pains me to say so, is clearly still the class of the NBA. The Lakers are probably an unfocused second that is going to have to step their game up if they want to have better than an outside shot of winning it all.)