Cleveland Cavaliers - The Cavs are the hottest team in the league having won seven straight. It wasn't too hard to fathom that they would be improved offensively with the addition of Mo Williams, but No. 1 in the NBA? If they tighten up the defense, this is a serious title contender.
Los Angeles Lakers - So the Lakers aren't perfect (Friday's loss to the Pistons was both their worst offensive and worst defensive game so far), but they'll have the opportunity to stay close to it with this stretch where they play seven of eight games at home with only one back-to-back.
Boston Celtics - After Friday's loss to the Nuggets, Doc Rivers called the Celtics "the most miserable 8-2 team I've ever seen." Beating the Bucks in OT the next night probably didn't raise their spirits. Not turning the ball over so much might.
Houston Rockets - There have been highs and lows for the Rockets so far this season. Blowing a 14-point, fourth quarter lead in San Antonio on Friday was certainly a low, but they recovered well with a comfortable, defense-fueled win over the Hornets the next night.
Phoenix Suns - Suspensions, ejections and flagrant fouls? The new Suns have an edge, and they also have Shaquille O'Neal playing at his highest efficiency since his first season in Miami. Thursday's matchup with the Lakers (in Phoenix, TNT, 10:30 p.m. ET) is a must-watch.