Tom Ziller from SBNation built this nice chart. Personally I love this way of visualizing this offense/defense data:
The data from games in the last 3 days isn't included.
The rest of his analysis is worth reading too:http://www.sbnation.com/nba/2010/12/...nba-best-teams
I added some lines to build some easy to visualized clusters and tiers:
Tier 1 - Legit Contenders: Boston, Miami, Los Angeles, San Antonio
Boston and Miami are very similar teams - Boston slightly better defensively, Miami more efficient offensively. Miami's quality defensively is a testament to how underrated LeBron James is as a defender.
Los Angeles will improve defensively once Bynum is back but has taken advantage of an easy schedule to be crazy good offensively. Their positioning on the chart makes them look like the former D'Antoni's Suns teams.
The Spurs look a lot like the Suns too, as strange as that may seem. Graphically, San Antonio belongs here. However, I'm not ready to consider the Spurs a real contender. I think that their big man rotation leaves them permeable to high-quality offenses. They lack size and speed inside - the quicker guys are small, the bigger ones are slow and they still have the small and slow variety. Not enough versatility there, not a single elite pick'n'roll defender, a guy who can check on the Fryes of the world and make them pay on the other end. I think they need Splitter to step up and start seeing some minutes, he's exactly the type of player they need in that rotation. If Splitter keeps under-performing (or glued to the bench), they look like a team built to rack up regular season wins.
Tier 2 - Outside Contenders - Orlando, Dallas, San Antonio, Utah
I don't think Utah has a fair chance to win the title. Not enough quality on the wings, offensively or defensively. Not enough inside defense. Too reliant on Williams to construct offense. Not enough bench. Not enough rebounding. A solid playoff team but barring trades they won't win 3 playoff series in a row.
I don't put Dallas on the tier 1 because I'm not sure Beaubois can be the 2nd dynamic go-to scorer they need. Theoretically, he's a great fit. Can defend PGs and play SG offensively along Kidd. Great pick'n'roll option. Can play on or off the ball. Without him performing at a relatively high level - or a trade -, I doubt they have enough offense. Carlisle will keep playing the likes of Barea huge minutes because he desperately needs baskets.... and that type of player doesn't belong in the rotation of a championship team. I like how they match up with the Lakers though.
Orlando keeps the same problems they had last season. No shot-creators from the perimeter. Howard's supporting cast is easy to shut down for a quality defense. They're good enough to stay hot shooting the ball for 2 or 3 series, so who knows, but it's extremely doubtful.
Tier 3 - Playoff teams - New York, Denver, Oklahoma City, Atlanta, Portland, Philadelphia, Chicago, Indiana, New Orleans
Chicago and Oklahoma are the best of these teams and the ones capable of making a playoff run.
The others have solid to good chances of making the playoffs. Philadelphia is surprisingly good. Their interior defense is terrible - Brand, Hawes - one of the worst overall defenders in the league, Noccioni, Speights... and they're still average defensively. Their perimeter defense is stellar. Offensively they improved a lot with the introduction of a shooter like Meeks.
I'm starting to have doubts about Portland. Brandon Roy is looking horrible. If he's going to play like this, they need a revolution in their style of play. They can't keep depending on him to create half-court offense for their role-players. They need to speed up the tempo to allow Miller, Batum, Fernandez, Matthews to flourish (it also fits their bigs better) and probably bring him off the bench and reduce his minutes.
Special cases (red circles) - Milwaukee and Phoenix - They're like one another bizarro twin: elite defense with awful offense and vice-versa. I expect the Bucks to make the playoffs - I think their offense will eventually improve (not a lot, Skiles is coaching them) and they're capable of keeping this level of defense (actually, they'll improve it as far as Bogut starts playing regularly); things look worse for the Suns - a lot will depend on how soon Lopez returns and his level of play. They need him to be a big factor in order to pump their defense to minimally acceptable levels.
Tier 4 - Borderline playoff teams - Charlotte, Memphis, Toronto, Houston
Teams with a small chance of making the playoffs. Houston depends mostly on Yao. If they manage to get him healthy at least for the 2nd half of the season, they'll be there. The Bobcats defense is disappointing; ditto for Memphis offense.
Tier 5 - Lottery teams - New Jersey, Los Angeles Clippers, Detroit, Minnesota, Sacramento, Golden State
All of them picked in the top-8 in last season's draft too (some of them have been in the lottery for years). I can see a couple of them catching fire and going for a middle 30s record.
Tier 6 - Bad lottery teams - Cleveland and Washington
Very flawed teams that will struggle immensely to get to 30 wins.