The top teams stay at the top in ESNY’s NBA Power Rankings
We’re back for another week of NBA Power Rankings. There were no changes to the top or bottom of these rankings. Without further adieu, let’s dive right into it.
30. Detroit Pistons (Record: 4-22, Weekly Change: 0)
Watching the Detroit Pistons is depressing. That is all.
29. Orlando Magic (5-24, 0)
Watching the Orlando Magic is only slightly less depressing than watching the Pistons.
28. Oklahoma City Thunder (8-19, 0)
The Oklahoma City Thunder have a ton of young talent on the roster, but they aren’t going to win many games this year. That’s by design though.
27. New Orleans Pelicans (9-21, 0)
The New Orleans Pelicans beat the Thunder on a Devonte’ Graham three-quarter court buzzer-beater on Wednesday night. That might be the high point of their season this year.
26. Portland Trail Blazers (11-18, -1)
It’s time for the Portland Trail Blazers to blow it up. It’s not working with this current group and it doesn’t look like it’s changing anytime soon. They have lost nine of their last 10.
25. New York Knicks (12-16, -1)
The New York Knicks are a dumpster fire, plain and simple. After starting the season with five wins in six games, they are 7-15 in their last 22. Woof.
24. San Antonio Spurs (10-17, +2)
The San Antonio Spurs are bad, but they might not be awful. They are 18th in net rating and have won six of their last 10 games.
23. Sacramento Kings (12-17, -3)
Firing Luke Walton didn’t solve all of the Sacramento Kings’ problems. It’s another year of mediocrity for the most irrelevant team in California.
22. Indiana Pacers (12-18, 0)
The Indiana Pacers are treading water in the Eastern Conference, but a seismic shift seems likely. With Domantas Sabonis, Caris LeVert, and Myles Turner on the trade block, we expect to see some big changes in Indiana.
21. Houston Rockets (9-19, +2)
The Houston Rockets are quietly becoming one of the most fun teams in the NBA. They rebounded from a 1-16 start to the season to improve to 9-19 overall.
20. Minnesota Timberwolves (13-15, -1)
The Minnesota Timberwolves are frauds once again. They tricked me into thinking things were changing with a recent hot streak earlier this year, but they aren’t a threat in the West.
19. Toronto Raptors (13-15, +2)
The Raptors aren’t good, but they aren’t bad, if that makes sense? Scottie Barnes is one of the best rookies in the NBA.
18. Dallas Mavericks (14-14, -1)
The Dallas Mavericks should be better, but they haven’t quite figured it out yet. They need a healthy Luka Doncic to get where they want to go.
17. Washington Wizards (15-14, -1)
The Washington Wizards have gone from one of the most exciting teams in the NBA to one of the coldest. Their hot start has been completely wiped out by a stretch of lackluster play. The Wizards are at a crossroads.
16. Boston Celtics (14-14, -1)
Boston Celtics fans will think this ranking is too low. Boston Celtics haters will think it’s too high. Fight it out amongst yourselves.
15. Atlanta Hawks (14-14, -7)
The Atlanta Hawks might be the toughest team to nail down in this week’s power rankings. They aren’t playing at the level that they did in the playoffs last year, but they aren’t bad. Middle of the pack as it stands.
14. Denver Nuggets (14-14, +4)
The Denver Nuggets are incredible when Nikola Jokic is on the floor and horrible when he’s on the bench. With so many injuries in Denver, it’s truly becoming the Nikola Jokic show.
13. Charlotte Hornets (16-14, +1)
The Charlotte Hornets are still the most exciting team to watch on NBA League Pass. They rank 17th in the NBA in net rating.
12. Philadelphia 76ers (15-14, 0)
The Philadelphia 76ers have survived a few COVID scares and the Ben Simmons saga to this point in the season.
11. Cleveland Cavaliers (18-12, +2)
The Cleveland Cavaliers are winning the race for “Team That No One Expects To Hang Around But Hangs Around All Season Long.” The Cavs have won nine of their last 11.
10. Los Angeles Lakers (16-13, +1)
The Los Angeles Lakers have yet to hit full gear, but it might be coming soon. There are issues with this roster, but they have the talent to make up for it in the long run.
9. Miami Heat (17-12, -2)
The Miami Heat are keeping their heads above water despite a ton of injuries. We all know that the Heat are going to be a tough out in the playoffs. They are a top-10 team in the league without question.
8. Los Angeles Clippers (16-13, +2)
Even without Kawhi Leonard and a Paul George nursing an elbow injury, the Los Angeles Clippers are staying hot. Ty Lue deserves a ton of credit for the job he’s doing in LA.
7. Memphis Grizzlies (18-11, +2)
No Ja Morant, no problem. The Memphis Grizzlies have won nine of 10 since losing Morant to injury. This team might be ready for the big stage sooner than we all thought.
6. Chicago Bulls (17-10, -1)
The Chicago Bulls are one of the teams that are getting hit hardest by COVID right now. Despite the slight drop for Chicago, they are still a top-three team in the East.
5. Milwaukee Bucks (19-11, -2)
Even if they aren’t fully healthy, the Milwaukee Bucks are finding ways to win. They successfully drank some Gatorade and ate an egg sandwich to stave off that championship hangover.
4. Brooklyn Nets (20-8, +2)
The Brooklyn Nets beat the Raptors with Kevin Durant, Patty Mills, Blake Griffin, and a bunch of young pups. With all due respect to Nikola Jokic and Stephen Curry, Durant is the MVP right now.
3. Utah Jazz (20-7, +1)
The Utah Jazz are first in NBA.com offensive rating by a wide margin and are tied with the Warriors for the best net rating in the NBA. However, people will discount their regular-season success until they do something in the playoffs.
2. Phoenix Suns (22-5, 0)
The Phoenix Suns continue to stay hot. Although the Jazz are starting to assert themselves, it’s tough to bump the Suns out of the top two spots.
1. Golden State Warriors (23-5, 0)
Stephen Curry is the all-time leader in three-pointers. While that storyline took center stage, the Warriors still managed to sweep a road-road back-to-back.