It was a great week and we watched a thriller between Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets. Cleveland Cavaliers lost 3 games in a row, Clippers lost against Indiana (again) and why nobody talks about Toronto Raptors, they have 6 wins in a row.
Check the latest NBA Power Rankings for this week.
1. Golden State Warriors 17-3 (Previous Rank: 1)
The Warriors continue to dominate everyone they play. Their 12 game winning streak was stopped in a double-overtime thriller against the Rockets that saw Steph and Draymond foul out, which is why they lost. The team is still putting up the highest points in the league, at 119.1 per game. There are only a few teams in the league that can score with them, so there are only a few teams in the league that can beat them.
2. San Antonio Spurs 16-4 (Previous Rank: 3)
The Spurs haven’t played super well as of late, but somehow, they still have the second-best record in the league, which shows how good they are. After their 9-game winning streak was halted at home to the Magic, they turned it around with wins over Dallas and Washington. This team needs to figure out how to win at home soon because all of their losses have come in their own building. The Spurs remained perfect on the road with 11-0 so far.
3. Los Angeles Clippers 16-6 (Previous Rank: 4)
The Clippers didn’t start their east road trip very strong but had a great showing in a dominant win at Cleveland. The team is still flowing very well and should get it together when they get home and don’t have to travel so much. They lost against Pacers, but they are still one of the best teams in the league.
4. Cleveland Cavaliers 13-5 (Previous Rank: 2)
The Cavs are riding a three-game losing streak into a tough game in Toronto on Monday. That’s not a good thing as that can easily become a four-game losing streak. The team has looked bad the past week, and JR Smith’s shooting slump hasn’t helped the team at all. If he can snap out of it the team will stop losing because his shooting helps them so much.
5. Toronto Raptors 14-6 (Previous Rank: 5)
Toronto is riding a 6-game winning streak into their game against the Cavs at home. They have been playing very well during the past two weeks, as only one of their 6 wins has been by single-digits. They have looked great on both ends of the floor, and set the franchise record by beating the Hawks by 44 points on Saturday, also the highest margin of victory by any team this season.
6. Houston Rockets 13-7 (Previous Rank: 7)
The Rockets finished 4-1 on their 4-game road trip across the west with their lone loss coming to a good Jazz team. They continue to be very good at scoring the ball, and very bad at defending. it. James Harden continues to pour in triple-doubles and had a monster game in their big win over the Warriors.
7. Memphis Grizzlies13-8 (Previous Rank: 6)
Memphis has gutted out some close victories this week with wins over the Magic and Lakers by 1 and 3 respectively. The loss of Mike Conley hurts this team a lot, as he leads them in points, assists, and player efficiency rating. If they can figure out how to win without them, we’ll know they are the real deal.
8. Oklahoma City Thunder 13-8 (Previous Rank: 12)
The Thunder keep finding ways to win, and Russell Westbrook putting up triple-doubles only makes it easier. The Team currently has a 5-game winning streak and plays the struggling Hawks on Monday. If Westbrook can continue to put up stellar numbers then this team can go pretty far.
9. Chicago Bulls 11-8 (Previous Rank: 9)
The Bulls have been hit and miss the past two weeks, never putting together a winning or losing streak. They did beat the Cavs at home but lost to the Mavs on the road by 25 this week. The starters have produced very well, but the bench has caused them to lose several games now. The bench needs to step up for this team to get better.
10. Utah Jazz 12-9 (Previous Rank: 10)
The Jazz put together a 4-game winning streaks that was somehow ended at home to the Heat. Gordon Hayward continues to put up career numbers with 22.8 points per game, but George Hill is the x-factor for this team. They need to get him healthy from his current toe injury soon so they can start dominating teams on defense again.
11. Boston Celtics 12-8 (Previous Rank: 13)
The Celtics have started winning games with Al Horford back in the lineup but still haven’t played as well as they did last year. The team has only 3 wins against +.500 teams this season, and half of their losses have been to sub-.500 teams. Isaiah Thomas needs to get this team back on track for the success everyone thought they would have this year.
12. New York Knicks 11-9 (Previous Rank: 15)
The Knicks have seemed to turn it around lately, winning 6 of their last 8 games. Derrick Rose has started to increase his scoring while Kristaps Porzingis and Carmelo Anthony continue to be consistent 20+ scorers every game. If the team can keep playing solid defense they’ll be able to continue winning.
13. Charlotte Hornets 11-9 (Previous Rank: 11)
The Hornets have slowed down a lot lately, losing 2 of their last three to bad teams. Kemba Walker's production has come down, but he continues to impress. Someone needs to step up or they’ll finish as an average playoff team again.
14. Portland Trail Blazers 11-10 (Previous Rank: 14)
Portland continues to score very well and play absolutely no defense. They are 4th in the league in scoring, but 28th in points allowed. They only have a winning record because of Damian Lillard's great play, but he may not be able to keep them in the playoff hunt long if their defense doesn’t improve.
15. Atlanta Hawks 10-11 (Previous Rank: 8)
The Hawks have dropped 6 games in a row, and 9 of their last 10. The team has allowed over 100 points in 8 of those games, and only scored over 100 in two of those games. They have not been playing well together lately, and need to figure it out on the offensive end or they are in for a long season.
16. Indiana Pacers 10-10 (Previous Rank: 17)
The Pacers somehow have the Clippers number, beating them twice this in the past week. If they can figure out how to put together a solid winning streak, they’ll become the team they can be instead of the team they currently are that is on fire or icy cold.
17. Detroit Pistons 11-11 (Previous Rank: 18)
The Pistons went 3-1 on their road trip, beating the Celtics, Hornets, and Hawks, while losing to the Thunder. Reggie Jackson returning will help the team a lot over the next few weeks because they finally have a decent point guard playing.
18. Los Angeles Lakers 10-12 (Previous Rank: 16)
Lakers have lost 5 of their last 7 games. Russell’s absence has hurt this team a lot because of the scoring ability he brings to the table. When he gets back, this team should be able to get back on track and start winning again.
19. Milwaukee Bucks 10-8 (Previous Rank: 19)
The Bucks have played very well lately, winning 4 games in a row, including a blowout of the Cavs. The Greek Freak continues to put up crazy numbers and highlight plays every night. He leads the team in points, rebounds, steals, and blocks. If he can keep playing great, the team will have a chance to win every game, but being the young player he is, that likely won’t happen every night.
20. Orlando Magic 9-12 (Previous Rank: 20)
The Magic still have problems scoring the ball and are currently 29th in the league in points per game. They have won 3 of their last 4 games, but two of those wins have come against sub-500 teams. The team needs to get a shooter somewhere or they won’t improve much in the near future.
21. New Orleans Pelicans 7-14 (Previous Rank: 23)
The Pelicans go as Anthony Davis goes, and they still lose when he plays well sometimes because they don’t have enough good players. Jrue Holiday has helped the team stay in games and win some, but there is only so much he could do as a role player.
22. Denver Nuggets 7-13 (Previous Rank: 24)
Denver’s young players have not produced as well as other young players have, but the veterans on the team have helped win them some games. Mudiay, Nurkic, and Jokic all need to step it up or this team is going to keep losing a lot more than they win.
23. Miami Heat 7-13 (Previous Rank: 26)
Miami managed to pull off wins in Utah and Denver this week and lost a close one in Portland. They continue to play well on defense, but still, have a hard time putting up points. Coach Spo needs to get some plays going to pick up the offense or they’ll continue to have a hard time.
24. Sacramento Kings 7-13 (Previous Rank: 21)
The Kings have lost three in a row, even with DeMarcus Cousins playing as well as he has. He has put up over 30 points in 4 of his last 5 games and had a 36 point – 20 rebound performance in a loss against the Wizards. If the Kings decided they ever want to get better, they’ll need to move Cousins, or move someone else and find players to help him out.
25. Minnesota Timberwolves 6-14 (Previous Rank: 22)
The Wolves went on a 4-game losing streak before pulling out a close win in Charlotte. The defense has started to become a problem for the team, which is a big surprise for a Thibs coached team. Thibs needs to figure out how to get his young players to realize there are two sides of the court or they won’t improve much this season.
26. Washington Wizards 6-12 (Previous Rank: 27)
The Wizards continue to disappoint this season. They have only been able to put together one winning streak this season, which was only two games long. John Wall needs to sit this team down and demand that they play better, or sit the GM down and demand a trade. Do I see a reunion with Boogie and Bledsoe in the future?
27. Phoenix Suns 6-14 (Previous Rank: 26)
Wow, this team has great offensive weapons! Wow, this team sucks at defense! They have allowed over 100 points all but 3 games this season. It makes sense for such a young team to be bad at defense, but it is surprising that they are this bad considering how good their young players actually are.
28. Brooklyn Nets 4-12 (Previous Rank: 28)
The Nets have lost 9 of their last 10, and continue to look terrible in every game they play. The team has no weapons other than Brook Lopez on offense, and no good defensive presence at all. This team has to play perfect to win games, and their opponent is going to have to play terrible for that to happen.
29. Philadelphia 76ers 4-13 (Previous Rank: 29)
The 76ers are riding a 6-game losing streak right now. They continue to suck and will the whole season. The real question this season is which big men will stay with the team? Does Nerlens Noel get traded soon? Do they keep Jahlil Okafor?
30. Dallas Mavericks 3-13 (Previous Rank: 30)
Dallas is 2-2 over their last 4 games. Harrison Barnes has played extremely well in their wins, putting up 27.5 points in those games, and still pretty good in losses with 18.5 points per game there. Dallas needs to begin tanking to beat out the Sixers for the top draft pick so they can get better next year without having to sign a big name free agent.