NBA Power Rankings: Kings no longer Top 20; a new No. 1
From 30 to 1...
James Ham stacks up all 30 teams...
30. Mavs (4-15)
30th in the league in field goal percentage, 3-point percentage, free throw attempts, rebounds, assists, blocks, points per game. The Mavs earned this spot in the rankings.
29. Philly (4-16)
If you can’t beat them, leave the heater on high and slick the floor. That Dario Saric crossover had sizzle. #TrustTheProcess
28. Nets (5-14)
Sean Kilpatrick is proof that even bad teams have players that score points. It’s a nice story, but this team is a train wreck.
27. Suns (6-14)
With the CBA limitations on minimum salary, it’s tough to go with a full youth movement. But the Suns have the young players to do it. No reason not to shop the few vets they have for more assets and open up time for Tyler Ulis and Dragan Bender.
26. Timberwolves (6-14)
Disappointing start for a very talented team. Minny’s middle of the pack in both offense and defense, but their inability to hold a big lead and finish off games has to kill Tom Thibodeau.
25. Wizards (6-12)
Something is missing from this group. Everything says they should be better than their record. They are a veteran team that competes every night, but they have no idea how to win. Too early to blow it up?
24. Pelicans (7-14)
The Jrue Holiday story is incredible, but this is a team that can’t find its stride or stay healthy. Tyreke Evans is close to a return, which should help. Anthony Davis is a sneeze away from missing two weeks.
23. Heat (7-13)
Caught in the middle between a complete reset and a giving it one more shot, it’s time for the Heat to hold a rummage sale. Overpriced point guard? We’ve got one right over here. Future Hall of Fame big we won’t medically clear? We have one of those. Coke machine? Yep.
22. Kings (7-13)
Fall behind early, run out of gas late. It’s a recipe for disaster. Big lineup isn’t working. The trade noise is only going to get louder if Sacramento can’t string some wins together.
21. Nuggets (7-13)
After four breakout games, rookie Jamal Murray has come back down to earth. Michael Malone’s challenge of developing young talent while trying to compete is not an easy one.
20. Magic (9-12)
Orlando has struggled with huge mood swings early in the season. One week they can’t lose, the next week they can’t win. Moving Elfrid Payton and Nikola Vucevic to the second unit looks like a solid move by Frank Vogel.
19. Hawks (10-11)
Losers of six straight and nine out of 10, the Hawks are tumbling down the rankings. They’ve lost their last two by a combined 80 points.
18. Lakers (10-12)
Injuries are derailing one of the NBA’s feel good stories of the early season. The NBA’s marketing department is crying, but not many others. Help us Swaggy P, you’re our only hope.
17. Pacers (10-10)
Consistently inconsistent. This is a talented team, but Nate McMillan hasn’t been able to push the right buttons early in the season. Paul George’s sore ankle has to be a concern.
16. Pistons (11-11)
Reggie Jackson is back. Hard to judge this team without it’s main scoring cog. Plenty of time for Stan Van Gundy to put this thing together and make a run in the east.
15. Bucks (10-8)
Jason Kidd has his team on a four-game win streak, although two of those wins are against the Nets. Converting potential into production is one of the toughest things to do in the NBA and it looks like the Bucks are on the cusp of accomplishing it.
14. Knicks (11-9)
The Knicks are like a box of chocolates - you never know what you’re going to get. Interesting stat, New York is 3-0 when Joakim Noah sits.
13. Trail Blazers (11-10)
They can score with the best of them, but the Blazers can’t stop anyone. Handing out $240+ million in long-term contracts to Meyers Leonard, Alan Crabbe, Festus Ezeli, Maurice Harkless and Evan Turner over the summer is going to turn into an NBA case study.
12. Hornets (11-9)
The Eastern Conference is littered with teams a game or two over .500. Charlotte is a strange collection of 7-footers and Kemba Walker, but it seems to work.
11. Jazz (12-9)
Utah can’t stay healthy, but it hasn’t stopped them from winning 5-of-6 or touting the league’s best defense. Rodney Hood is coming into his own at the two.
10. Bulls (11-8)
Still the most oddly constructed roster, the Bulls are finding a way to win. If they can figure out how to get Nikola Mirotic and Bobby Portis involved, Chicago might be onto something.
9. Grizzlies (13-8)
Losing Mike Conley Jr. for 6-8 weeks is the biggest test this team could possibly face. It would be shocking if the Grizzlies continue to plug away at this clip.
8. Celtics (12-8)
How much is Isaiah Thomas worth this summer in free agency? I’m asking for a friend. The 27-year-old dynamo is ninth in the league in scoring at 26.3 points per game and he’s continued to improve every season in the league.
7. Thunder (13-8)
NBA teams are going to have to invent new defensive schemes to slow Westbrook. The league hasn’t seen a stat sheet stuffer like this since the great Oscar Robertson. The Thunder have won five straight with Westbrook dropping in a triple-double in each game.
6. Rockets (13-7)
Who knew that Mike D’Antoni could piece this thing together so quickly? James Harden is the focal point, but the Rockets are averaging a whopping 14 made 3-pointers a game on 37 attempts.
5. Raptors (14-6)
We The North have won six straight and they are reeling in the Cavs. If you missed Jakob Poeltl’s dunk on Tim Hardaway Jr., the poster will be available in time for Christmas.
4. Cavs (13-5)
3 losses in a row. Time to break up the Cavs. Maybe they need more shirtless J.R. Smith mojo.
3. Clippers (16-6)
Doc nearly blew a gasket doing his best Billy Martin impersonation. J.J. Redick is proving that having a podcast makes you better at basketball. Luc Mbah a Moute - certified LeBron stopper.
2. Spurs (16-4)
The powers in the west have recaptured the top three spots in the rankings. Kawhi Leonard is having an incredible season that is being completely overshadowed by gaudy statistical numbers by other star players around the league.
1. Warriors (17-3)
Stop kicking people Draymond, this is the NBA, not the Kumite. Your team is number 1. Just stop.