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Bird Feed: Moving on Up (The Power Rankings), Evans Wreaks Havoc Driving

Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports

SB Nation Power Rankings

Drew Garrison has New Orleans rising three spots to 17th this week. Watch this amazing GIF of Anthony Davis hard hedging nearly 40 feet from the basket only to recover and block Chandler Parsons behind the arc. Amazing.

It was clear Anthony Davis was on track to be the NBA's next superstar last season. He made opening night his, putting on an amazing 26-point outing with 17 rebounds and NINE blocks to go with it. His next game? Thirty-one points and 15 rebounds.

As for his defense, he's scaring opponents into making mistakes at this point. Look at how he blows up this pick-and-pop play between Chandler Parsons and Jameer Nelson. Davis traps Nelson after Parsons pops out of the screen, but Nelson manages to swing the pass to the corner. Davis immediately recovers, Parsons hesitates in fear of that gigantic wingspan and pumps once. Davis stays on the ground, squares up and easily manages to block the shot after Parsons tries to shoot over the top of him:

AD Defense Power Rankings

Pelicans fall from 18th to 20th. The Kings (ok), Knicks (ride that LeBron upset), and Celtics (umm... no) all moved ahead of New Orleans.

If OKC's injuries put them on the playoff bubble, the Pels could benefit. Anthony Davis is already putting up ridiculous numbers (28.5 points, 16.0 rebounds and 6.0 blocks), combining with Ryan Anderson and Omer Asik to grab 35 offensive boards in two games. But there's pressure on the big six, because the bench beyond Anderson is sketchy, to put it nicely.

ESPN Power Rankings

Marc Stein moves New Orleans up one spot to 18th. Read more here.

Anthony Davis' eye-popping Week 1 numbers let you know what he thinks about our fears he's been overhyped. The gaudy production, though, wasn't as filling as it should have been, because the Pels hosted and lost their first measuring-stick game of the season with Dallas in town Saturday night.

Yahoo! Power Rankings

Marc Spears moves the Pelicans up one spot to 12th overall. New Orleans moved ahead of Atlanta, who fell from 10th to 16th.

Anthony Davis is averaging 28.5 points, 16 rebounds and six blocks. He faces Memphis’ Zach Randolph next.

CBS Sports Power Rankings

Matt Moore's first batch of rankings this season places the Crescent City 16th. He has Dallas in the top three so the loss on Saturday probably looks less bad to him than others. The Southwest Division in the NBA makes the SEC West look like a dessert tray.

Horseshoes and hand grenades, but the Pelicans darn near got past Dallas. But the defense as a unit still needs work. Good barometer Monday vs. the Grizzlies to see if they can win a grind-it-out game.

Tyreke Driving Is Good

Even more data to support unleashing 'Reke. The best offense in the NBA last season (the Clippers) posted a 109.4 Offensive Rating. An Evans drive results in 115+ points per 100 drives. Even better, Tyreke attacks the basket more often than anyone else in the league.