Rodney Dangerfield Gets More Respect: Atlanta Hawks Buried Behind Miami Heat, Boston Celtics and Orlando Magic In Power Rankings

The Atlanta Hawks went through the first week of the season with three wins. They are the only undefeated team in the Eastern Conference.  But they still have some work to do if they are going to get some respect in SB Nation's Power Rankings.

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Atlanta (4-0) catapulted ahead of the Chicago Bulls (2-1) into fourth place in the latest rankings, but languish behind the Miami Heat (4-1), the Boston Celtics (3-1) and the Orlando Magic (1-1) in the race to be the elite in the East.  Obviously, our national SB Nation counterparts feel the same way that the NBA does about the Hawks.  They are an also-ran to the "elite" one-loss powers in the East.

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I don't know what else Atlanta can do to prove itself. Yes, Atlanta's wins haven't been over the best of the NBA.  Yes, the Heat, Celtics and Magic have engaged in a made-for-TNT battle royal early this season. But the Hawks are the lone team in the East that has walked through the first week of the season and beaten every foe.

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What does it take to get a little bit of R-E-S-P-E-C-T here folks?

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Cue Aretha.

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Your Atlanta Hawks walked all over the Memphis Grizzlies in the season opener before decimating the Philadelphia 76ers with a fantastic road win.  They capped the week by beating a rested Washington Wizards on the second half of a back-to-back in their home opener at the Bulb -- not exactly an easy feat for any team in the association.

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Nevertheless, they could only jump ahead of a Chicago team that they should have been ahead of to begin with.  They weren't even rewarded by jumping ahead of a Boston team that was embarrassed by the terrible Cleveland Cavaliers -- a club that Atlanta utterly dominated last night.

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Have they noticed that Joe Johnson has dropped in more than 20 points a game? Or that a young Al Horford has matured into a double-double player a night? Or that six Hawks have averaged double-digits this season? 

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Probably not.  Atlanta's not rewarded with with enough games in prime time.  They are Eastern Conference's version of Rodney Dangerfield. They don't get no respect.

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Close it out Rodney.

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