Connect with us


NBA Weekly Power Rankings

Covid-19 has hit the NBA hard this past week with several players and staff testing positive and entering health and safety protocols. This has led to some teams fielding a raft of young and inexperienced players, and that has then led to surprise losses and bad results. This is the reality of the world at present and we have to deal with it. With all of that being said, despite several postponements, there were still some exciting moments and these have influenced the Power Rankings.

Covid-19 has hit the NBA hard this past week with several players and staff testing positive and entering health and safety protocols. This has led to some teams fielding a raft of young and inexperienced players, and that has then led to surprise losses and bad results. This is the reality of the world at present and we have to deal with it. With all of that being said, despite several postponements, there were still some exciting moments and these have influenced the Power Rankings.

1 – Phoenix Suns (Moved up 1 spot)

Record: 24-5

The Phoenix Suns are riding high on a three-game winning streak in the NBA and they have maintained their form despite some adversity in the player-availability stakes. Devin Booker is back from injury and the Suns have just continued their roll of good form. They top the Western Conference standings and are 8-2 in their last 10 games. They are 7th in Offensive Rating and 3rd in Defensive Rating. With active hands, veteran guard Chris Paul leads the league in assists and is fifth in the NBA in steals per game (SPG). CP3 is leading from the front and the Suns are scorching right now.

2 – Golden State Warriors (Moved down 1 spot)

Record: 25-6

What a week it’s been for the Golden State Warriors. Stephen Curry broke the NBA’s all-time regular-season three-point scoring record and they are 7-3 in their last 10 games, having lost to the Spurs, 76ers, and Raptors. Ups and downs. They drop down a place in the Power Rankings due to the losses, but they are still 1st in both Defensive and Net Ratings and 4th in Offensive Rating. Steph has been in red-hot form and is 3rd in the NBA in points per game (PPG). The Warriors look good heading into Christmas but will still be without Klay Thompson who, according to reports, is likely to be back in action in January.

3 – Brooklyn Nets (moved up 1 spot)

Record: 21-9

Health and safety protocols have wreaked havoc to the Nets and they’ve even reached out to long-term absentee, vaccine-shy Kyrie Irving for backup. Irving was called back up to the roster out of the wilderness, only to test positive and enter protocols himself. There have been game postponements and turmoil galore. Despite all of that, the Nets are the best team in the Eastern Conference. An understrength Nets lost to the Magic in their last outing, one of three losses in the past 10 games. They are still 5th in both Defensive and Net ratings but they are 15th in Offensive rating. When everyone is back, they should be cooking with gas again.

4 – Utah Jazz (Moved down 1 spot)

Record: 21-9

There is very little to separate the Jazz from the Nets on paper. They have the same record but critically a two-game losing blip before getting back to winning ways is what separates the teams. Utah has quietly been good this term and their position in numerous advanced stats shows how good. They are 1st in Offensive Rating, 2nd in net rating, and 5th in Defensive rating. This is a well-rounded team lying 3rd in the Western Conference. Donovan Mitchell is 12th in PPG, 14th in steals per game (SPG), and Rudy Gobert leads the league in rebounds per game (RPG) and is 3rd in blocks per game (BPG).

5 – Chicago Bulls (moved up 1 spot)

Record: 19-10

Covid-19 was still the enemy of the Chicago Bulls this past week with two games postponed, but they are back on track and firing. They have a two-game winning streak, including a victory over the Los Angeles Lakers. The Bulls are 2nd in the East and are 6th in Offensive and Net ratings, sitting in 11th in Defensive rating. DeMar DeRozan and Zach LaVine lead the one-two scoring punch for Chicago with DeRozan 5th in the NBA in PPG and LaVine 7th. Nikola Vucevic is 11th in RPG and Alex Caruso is 3rd in SPG. The players are performing at a high level and Chi-Town is back in business.

6 – Cleveland Cavaliers (Moved up 1 spot)

Record: 19-12

The rejuvenation of the Cleveland Cavaliers has been a thing of beauty to start this season. The Cavs had been floundering as a team for some years, but now they are a real team to watch. A six-game winning streak will put you in good standing anywhere in the world and it puts Cleveland in 3rd position in the Eastern Conference. What has underlined their performances has been hard work and excellent execution. Despite a 17th ranked offense they are 2nd in Defensive Rating and 4th in net rating. They don’t have a player in the top 40 in PPG but Darius Garland and Ricky Rubio are in the top 20 in assists per game (APG), Jarret Allen is 10th in RPG and Evan Mobley is 6th in BPG. The individual players are coming together to make the Cavs very hard to beat.

7 – Milwaukee Bucks (Moved down 2 spots)

Record: 19-13

The Milwaukee Bucks are going through the most right now. Covid protocols and absences have just ripped through this team. Yet, they are still pulling in some results when they get on the court. Crucially, Giannis Antetokounmpo has been missing and he’s the heartbeat of this team. He is 4th in PPG, 6th in RPG, and 13th in BPG. Without him, the Bucks have stumbled. They have a 5-5 record in their last 10 outings and are 10th in Offensive and 8th in both Defensive and Net ratings. They will need to welcome their stars back soon to arrest their sliding form having lost two games in a row.

8 – Memphis Grizzlies (Unmoved)

Record: 19-13

The Memphis Grizzlies have been one of the most impressive teams this campaign and have overperformed when you look at some of the players on the roster. They’d been missing rising superstar Ja Morant for some time, but weirdly his return to the team has coincided with a dip in form. The Grizz are 7-3 in their last 10 matchups, but two of those losses have been in their last two outings. Memphis plays hard and they are 5th in Offensive rating. They are 9th in Net rating and that’s largely because they are 16th in Defensive rating. As good as Morant has been, the likes of Jaren Jackson Jr., De’Anthony Melton, Steven Adams, Desmond Bane, and Dillon Brooks have all had a hand in pushing this team to victories.

9 – Denver Nuggets (Moved up 6 spots)

Record: 15-14

The Denver Nuggets are just above .500 at the moment and all praise must go to reigning MVP Nikola Jokic who has lifted his team when they’ve needed him. Jokic is 2nd in RPG, 6th in PPG, and 10th in APG. He is doing it all right now. The Nuggets are 5th in the Western Conference despite playing with an injury-plagued roster. They are 6-4 in the last ten contests and have managed to maintain some sort of form. The Nuggets are 12th in Offense and 17th in net rating.

10 – Miami Heat (Moved down 1 spot)

Record: 18-13

Miami has been in a tough spot for some time with their roster suffering through injuries and health and safety protocol issues. No Jimmy Butler, no Bam Adebayo. It’s been rough. But they’ve preserved and they have a .500 record in their last 10 games with a 5-5 wins and losses split. They’ve dropped down the rankings due to the extra loss in this period. The Heat are 7th in Net rating and 9th in both Offensive and Defensive rating. You would expect that from Miami who give it they’re all on any given night. New acquisition Kyle Lowry has continued to prove his worth in Florida.

11 – Philadelphia 76ers (Moved up 5 spots)

Record: 16-15

Joel Embiid is back and his 41-point showing in the 76ers win over the Celtics emphasized just how important he is to his team. A three-game skid before their postponed game against the Pelicans has made this a difficult time for the Sixers. They are above .500 and will want to stay there.

12 – Los Angeles Clippers (Moved down 1 spot)

Record: 16-15

The Clippers welcomed back Paul George to their line-up after he’d missed some time due to injury. He wasn’t enough to help them win the game against the Spurs but he should be able to get the Clips back into some winning form. The Clippers are 4th in Defensive Rating and the three recent losses in a row now have become a slide that is a bitter pill to swallow.

13 – Los Angeles Lekers (Unmoved)

Record: 16-15

The Lakers are managing their season as best they can. The team chemistry is not at its best and now Anthony Davis is expected to miss a few weeks due to a knee injury. The burden on LeBron James’ shoulders never lessens. The Purple and Gold had a three-game winning run followed up by a two-game losing dip. The hope is that they can pick up their offense which is rated 24th in the league and lean on their defence which is 10th in the NBA.

14 – Minnesota Timberwolves (Moved up 6 spots)

Record: 15-15

The Minnesota Timberwolves have been bad for a long time, but they look to have turned a corner and Anthony Edwards and Karl-Anthony Towns have been central to their rise up the Western Conference standings and the Power Rankings. A four-game winning run is something to be proud of, especially when the victories are over the Lakers, Mavericks, Nuggets, and Trail Blazers. The team is playing some excellent basketball at the moment. The T-Wolves are 7th in Defensive Rating and 14th in net rating. They still have work to do on offense but they look more threatening.

15 – Washinhton Wizards (Moved down 4 spots)

Record: 16-15

The Wizard’s form in recent weeks has jumped off a cliff, with three victories in their last 10 games, and one win in their last five. They will take some solace from beating the Utah Jazz in their most recent game. Washington needs more from Bradley Beal who is the star of this team.

16 – Boston Celtics (Unmoved )

Record: 15-16

The Celtics are back below .500 and have a 4-6 record in their last 10 games. Dynamic duo Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown have returned to act together and need to get the team back on track.

17 – Charlotte Hornets (Moved down 5 spots)

Record: 16-17

The Hornets have struggled in recent weeks and have lost three games in a row. Their form has plummeted and they need to arrest the slide quickly.

18 – Dallas Mavericks (Moved down 4 spots)

Record: 14-15

Luka Doncic hasn’t been able to get the Mavericks fired up and two losses on the trot have dampened the spirits. The Mavs are 20th in Offensive rating and need more firepower.

19 – Atlanta Hawks (Moved down 2 spots)

Record: 14-15

It’s been a strange season for the Hawks as they are 2nd in the NBA in Offensive rating but their defence is ranked 24th in the league. They need a pick-me-up.

20 – Porland Trail Blazers (Moved up 1 spot)

Record: 13-18

Portland has not been at the races this campaign. They are 16th in Offensive Rating, 27th in Defensive Rating, and 24th in net rating. Damian Lillard has been out of sorts and they need him to recapture his form.

21 – New York Knicks (Moved down 3 spots)

Record: 13-17

Fans of the Knicks have been here before as their team struggles. A record of 2-8 in their last 10 games tells the whole story.

22 – Toronto Raptors (Moved down 3 spots)

Record: 14-15

The Raptors just haven’t been able to get a run of victories together. They are 5-5 in their last 10 games. The Raps are 8th in offense but 15th in defence.

23 – Indiana Pacers (Unmoved)

Record: 13-18

Indiana has the look of a team focused on their future and not on their present. The Pacers are 11th in offense and 14th in defence. Not bad. But they can’t win games. Not good.

24 – Sacramento Kings (Unmoved)

Record: 13-19

Sacramento has been trying to get back into the playoff spots but the Kings sit just outside the Play-in places. To their credit, they are 5-5 in their last 10 games.

25 – San Antonio Spurs (Unmoved)

Record: 12-18

The Spurs have been good but not great and their position in the conference shows you that. The defence is ranked 18th in the league and will need to be better to get wins.

26 – Oklahoma City Thunder (Unmoved)

Record: 10-19

The Thunder are still learning on the job with their young team, and many of those lessons have to happen on offense. They have the worst offensive rating in the NBA.

27 – New Orleans Pelicans (Unmoved)

Record: 10-21

The Pelicans are unmoved on the Power Rankings and that is despite some impressive victories of late. They are 5-5 in their last 10 games.

28 – Houston Rockets (Unmoved)

Record: 10-21

The struggles continue for the Rockets but they are prepared for that. They have both eyes on the future and the team is playing that way.

29 – Orlando Magic (Unmoved)

Record: 6-25

The Magic have looked good in parts of games as the young players get the minutes up. Orlando has some talent that continues to blossom. The losses won’t matter as much to them this campaign.

30 – Detroit Pistons (Unmoved)

Record: 5-24

Detroit has been giving No. 1 overall pick Cade Cunningham many chances to shine and the rookie has looked good. The same can’t be said for his Pistons teammates. Detroit still props up the NBA in the Power Rankings. The long season continues.

More in Basketball