2018-19 NBA power rankings: Bucks, Sixers and Raptors have East loaded after trade deadline
NBA Power Rankings
The East got a lot better at the 2019 trade deadline.
Here is a look at all 30 teams.
No. 30: New York Knicks
Last Week's Rank: 30
Why They're Here: The Knicks haven’t won a game since Jan. 4. That’s 14 straight losses. They have a real chance to be one of the worst teams of all-time.
No. 29: Phoenix Suns
Last Week's Rank: 29
Why They're Here: Tyler Johnson should prove useful for the Suns, who everyone knows need help at point guard. It will be interesting to see if he can fill the role as primary distributor.
No. 28: Cleveland Cavaliers
Last Week's Rank: 28
Why They're Here: They didn’t trade Kevin Love at the deadline and he could return soon. They better hope he doesn’t ruin their draft position.
No. 27: Chicago Bulls
Last Week's Rank: 27
Why They're Here: Otto Porter Jr. is a good fit for what Chicago is building. They could have a nice young core between him, Lauri Markkanen, Wendell Carter Jr. and whomever they net with their first round pick.
No. 26: Atlanta Hawks
Last Week's Rank: 26
Why They're Here: Kevin Huerter looks like a really nice pick for the Hawks. He’s only 20 and he’s already shooting 39.1 percent from three on 4.6 attempts. He’s got a very quick release and smooth jumper.
No. 25: Orlando Magic
Last Week's Rank: 25
Why They're Here: Great move by the Magic to take a flier on Markelle Fultz. He’s a good fit for what they need and Orlando seems like a good market for him. Maybe he can someday help them make up for trading Victor Oladipo.
No. 24: Memphis Grizzlies
Last Week's Rank: 24
Why They're Here: The Marc Gasol era is officially over, but that wasn’t the only move Memphis made. They got Avery Bradley, who is a perfect fit for their grind-on-defense style.
No. 23: Washington Wizards
Last Week's Rank: 19
Why They're Here: The Wizards arguably didn’t get enough back for Otto Porter Jr., but they had to get out of that contract at some point. Might as well do it now.
No. 22: Dallas Mavericks
Last Week's Rank: 22
Why They're Here: I thought they would be able to get more than they got for Harrison Barnes, who was flipped to the Kings for Justin Jackson and Zach Randolph. I know he’s making lots of money, but that’s it?
No. 21: New Orleans Pelicans
Last Week's Rank: 23
Why They're Here: Though the rest of the season is going to be super awkward, the Pelicans played it smart with Anthony Davis. No need to trade him now. Wait and let the price go up.
No. 20: Minnesota Timberwolves
Last Week's Rank: 20
Why They're Here: It’s surprising the Wolves didn’t become sellers at the deadline. They lost four of five before Thursday leading in and have no chance of making the playoffs.
No. 19: Detroit Pistons
Last Week's Rank: 21
Why They're Here: Knowing they wouldn’t re-sign him this summer, the Pistons traded Stanley Johnson, whom they picked eighth overall back in 2015. He just could never develop a consistent shot for them.
No. 18: Miami Heat
Last Week's Rank: 18
Why They're Here: Good on the Heat for ridding themselves of the Tyler Johnson deal. Yet another bloated contract from 2016 that has been foisted in recent years.
No. 17: Charlotte Hornets
Last Week's Rank: 16
Why They're Here: The Hornets striking out on Marc Gasol is good news for the Wizards and the other teams gunning for a playoff spot. He could have made them a top-10 defensive team.
No. 16: Sacramento Kings
Last Week's Rank: 17
Why They're Here: I think Caleb Swanigan has a chance to be a good player, but the Kings can’t exactly offer him playing time. It’s a curious fit.
No. 15: Los Angeles Clippers
Last Week's Rank: 13
Why They're Here: The Clippers did an amazing job selling high on Tobias Harris. They got two first round picks, including Miami’s unprotected first in 2021, and a really nice young player in Landry Shamet. Well done.
No. 14: Brooklyn Nets
Last Week's Rank: 14
Why They're Here: Ed Davis is averaging 8.7 rebounds in 18.3 minutes per game. That’s a per-36 average of 17.2. Um, what?
No. 13: Los Angeles Lakers
Last Week's Rank: 15
Why They're Here: I’m surprised the Lakers gave up on Ivica Zubac. I get the need for a roster spot and clearing his cap hold, but this makes the decision to let Thomas Bryant look worse.
No. 12: San Antonio Spurs
Last Week's Rank: 11
Why They're Here: San Antonio, amazingly, hasn’t made a midseason trade since 2014. Compare that to the Wizards who made five trades all in this season alone.
No. 11: Houston Rockets
Last Week's Rank: 10
Why They're Here: Chris Paul came back recently and Clint Capela should return in the next few weeks. The Rockets have also won six of eight. Ready for takeoff.
No. 10: Utah Jazz
Last Week's Rank: 12
Why They're Here: Only two teams – the Bucks and Warriors – have more wins over the past month than Utah. They are who we thought they were.
No. 9: Portland Trail Blazers
Last Week's Rank: 8
Why They're Here: It was only a matter of time before C.J. McCollum would find his outside shot. In his last 13 games, he’s shooting a ridiculous 47.4 percent from three on 7.5 attempts.
No. 8: Indiana Pacers
Last Week's Rank: 9
Why They're Here: Well, look at that. The Pacers have won four straight, showing they can indeed stay competitive without Victor Oladipo. They still probably should have added something in a trade, though.
No. 7: Boston Celtics
Last Week's Rank: 7
Why They're Here: Boston was quiet at the deadline, but by all accounts they emerged winners simply because Anthony Davis wasn’t traded. Now they could be the favorites to land him this summer.
No. 6: Philadelphia Sixers
Last Week's Rank: 6
Why They're Here: The Sixers acquired an excellent player in Tobias Harris. He should help with scoring and spacing the floor. But they needed to address their defense more.
No. 5: Oklahoma City Thunder
Last Week's Rank: 5
Why They're Here: The Thunder had to be tempted to add something at the deadline, but they are already so deep and well-rounded and they have Andre Roberson coming back at some point. Probably smart to just keep it rolling.
No. 4: Denver Nuggets
Last Week's Rank: 3
Why They're Here: – Isaiah Thomas is nearing his return, having just been sent for a rehab assignment in the G-League. I love how that is becoming a thing. It works in baseball, so might as well do it in basketball.
No. 3: Toronto Raptors
Last Week's Rank: 3
Why They're Here: The fact Masai Ujuri was able to reel in Marc Gasol without giving up Pascal Siakam or O.G. Anunoby is impressive. They are so deep that Delon Wright, a solid and young player, was expendable.
No. 2: Golden State Warriors
Last Week's Rank: 2
Why They're Here: Kevin Durant complaining about the media does not bode well for the Knicks’ chances to sign him. Imagine him with the New York media.
No. 1: Milwaukee Bucks
Last Week's Rank: 1
Why They're Here: In Nikola Mirotic, the Bucks added yet another outside shooter, which will only create more space for Giannis Antetokounmpo to carve up defenses. But I'm still not sure they beat the Raptors in a playoff series.