The quarter pole of the NBA season came and went recently. Here's a look at the biggest stories so far:
- You have to start with Portland. Considered a fringe playoff contender before the season, the Trail Blazers instead have emerged as the league's best team early on. Powered by the NBA's prettiest and -- more importantly -- most effective offence, Portland has surged to a 22-4 start, which has included winning streaks of 11, four and the current run of five games (before Wednesday's tilt with the Minnesota Timberwolves).