The Bobcats are picking up some steam after their four-game winning streak, and writers and bloggers are starting to take notice. You might be surprised where some of these big-profile writers have the Bobcats ranked, but I'm sure there are some that might have you thinking the Bobcats still aren't getting the respect they deserve.
NBA.com: 17th. John Schuhmann seems to have based much of his rankings around overall record, while factoring in the talent disparity between the two conferences. Interestingly, according to Net Rating (point differential per 100 possessions), the Bobcats rank exactly 17th, so this seems like a pretty fair ranking according to the overall numbers.
ESPN.com: 16th. Marc Stein ranks the Bobcats directly behind the Nets and Wizards, which I see as a good thing, given that Charlotte remains relatively healthy while Washington has to deal with the loss of Nene for the next four-to-six weeks. In any case: the Bobcats could fairly easily pass the two teams ahead of them if they continue their success in the upcoming weeks.
SB Nation: 15th. Here the Bobcats are ranked above both the Nets and the Timberwolves, two teams that I think are pretty comparable to the Bobcats in terms of quality. While it's hard to pin down exactly how much the talent gap between the conferences affects a team's record, I think I'd say the Timberwolves are a bit better than the Bobcats, especially given their very similar records.
Sports Illustrated: 15th. Matt Dollinger, like a few others whose posts are linked here, notes the difficulty of the upcoming Bobcats schedule, where they play at Oklahoma City, at Miami, at San Antonio, and then come back home to face the Pacers. If the Bobcats could come away with one win, that could be considered a victory for the most torrid part of their schedule.
CBS Sports: 11th. Yep, Matt Moore's ranking puts the Bobcats higher than the Trail Blazers, and regardless of whether or not I disagree, I love to see that the Bobcats are thought of as a legitimate team. Or, as Moore puts it: "Disciplined defensive team with a monster in the paint and speed on the perimeter ... every team in the East outside of Miami and Indiana should be wary of this club." So here's hoping his impression of the Bobcats is dead-on.
Other Assorted Links:
The Post-Deadline NBA -- Grantland: Zach Lowe's writing is basically required reading for NBA fans, and it's always good to see him break down the Bobcats. While the Bobcats section is brief, he breaks down an offensive possession and shows why the frontcourt duo of Al Jefferson and Josh McRoberts is so important to this team.
Byron Mullens Was Born To Be Traded To The Philadelphia 76ers -- Hardwood Paroxysm: Hey, remember our old friend Byron Mullens? He was involved in a trade at the deadline, and Andrew Lynch breaks it down for us. It was a pretty cathartic read for me, and I think you might agree.
Draft Express: 2014 Mock Draft: Mock drafts aren't everyone's cup of tea, but Jonathan Givony and the Draft Express crew typically do terrific work. The Bobcats are a young team with a lot of room for growth, and I'm always interested in what they might be looking to do in the draft. Currently, they have the Bobcats projected to take Kentucky wingman James Young with the pick acquired from the Pistons, and NC State forward T.J. Warren with the Blazers' former pick.