NBA Week 23 Power Rankings: Remember the Spurs

The ranker’s fatigue has officially taken its toll. The convincing double digit win over the previously unbeatable Warriors combined with the fact that it’s THAT time for them, the Spurs have made an appearance atop our power rankings. Remember the Spurs…

 1:sas San Antonio Spurs (51-26)Ellipse 1 copy 31   Last Week: 2   

The Spurs draw recognition for once again putting it all together and finding a way to be relevant. They aren’t the best team in the league, and probably aren’t in the top five in terms of “best team on paper” but that’s the beauty of the Spurs. You don’t expect anything and then they blow you away, even though they’ve been written off as “too old” for what seems like the fifth or sixth year in a row.

 2:gsw Golden State Warriors (63-14)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 1   

While we got a little cute and moved the Spurs to the top, the Warriors are still unquestionably the best team in the league, and Steph Curry is STILL the MVP.

 3:cle Cleveland Cavaliers (50-27)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 3   

What is there to say about the Cavs? They have the best player on the planet, they’ll win their share of games, they’ll be really hard to beat in a seven game series, and even with the criticism and stigma that surrounds every LeBron James team, no one will be surprised if they win the title.

 4:lac Los Angeles Clippers (52-27)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 4   

I’m sorry. I understand that Chris Paul is still technically the best point guard in the NBA (I’m not so sure anymore. Steph has made amazing leaps. Even still, Chris Paul falling on his ass has seemed to be a trend recently, and here we are again (in SLOW MOTION)

 5: houHouston Rockets (53-24) Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 5   

What’s cookin’ with Chef Harden:

James Harden’s averages over the last five games: 34.2-5.2-5.8 with 4 threes and 12 freethrow attempts a game.

 6:atl Atlanta Hawks (58-19)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 6   

Kyle Korver tried to do his best Tracy McGrady impression against the Bucks, and he’s on track to make money that no 34-year old one-category specialist should ever make. It’s fair to say as long as Korver is in the game, the Hawks are in it with a shot.

 7:por Portland Trail Blazers (50-26)  Ellipse 1 copy 31   Last Week: 9   

Portland has maybe exceeded expectations since unfortunately losing Wes Matthews to injury, with Arron Afflalo doing some shade of a Wes Matthews imitation. The important caveat, though, is the production off their bench that they have lacked in recent times. For that, maybe we have CJ McCollum doing his best Arron Afflalo impression?

 8:mem Memphis Grizzlies (52-25)   Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 7   

The Grizzlies have an interesting problem. Technically, the lineup that slots Jeff Green at the three in place of Tony Allen has the most upside from game-to-game, but Tony Allen is the best defensive catalyst in the league (8.3 percent lower FG percentage than normal (highest differential in the league) and a 4.1 steal percentage (also highest in the league).) given that the team outscores their opposition by 10.9 points per 100 possessions with Allen on the floor and is outscored by 3.5 points per 100 possessions when he’s not.

 9:nop New Orleans Pelicans (41-35)  Ellipse 1 copy 32   Last Week: 11

The New Orleans Anthony Davises soar into the top ten with a legitimate shot at making the postseason. There’s talk about Westbrook having to carry the team (He does.) but there’s something to be said about the Pels as well, where Anthony Davis is doing it himself because his help is either dead or just not good enough.

10:chi Chicago Bulls (46-31)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 9   

The hero Chicago needs:

11:tor Toronto Raptors (45-32)Ellipse 1 copy 32   Last Week: 13

You can’t win the game by passing it to the other team. Sorry. #WeTheDesperate

12: dal Dallas Mavericks (46-31)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 12

The issue with the Mavericks is one we’ve addressed for the last few weeks. The most important catalyst for the team is Monta Ellis’s play, and if he can’t put it together it’s hard to expect anything from this team in the postseason. Before the All-Star break (55 games), Ellis was averaging 19.8 points and 4.5 assists, and shooting 45.4 percent from the field and 32.9 percent from three point range. Since the break, Monta is averaging 17.5 points, 3.2 assists, while shooting 41.4 percent from the field and 18.3 percent from three. Not ideal.

13:okc Oklahoma City Thunder (42-36) Ellipse 1 copy 3 #23   Last Week: 10

It starting to look like Russell Westbrook’s superhuman season (eleven triple doubles, nine since the All-Star break) might come in vain with the Pelicans just a game out. Russell is also averaging a concerning 28 field goal attempts per game and shooting 35 percent over his last five games, averaging 31.4 points per game in that stretch.

14:bos Boston Celtics (35-42) Ellipse 1 copy 32   Last Week: 16

Boston is possibly sneaking into the playoffs and turning a lost season into what they feel is a winning one. Brad Stevens is too good for his own good. “THE POINT WAS TO BE BAD THAT’S WHY WE TRADED RONDO”.

15:was Washington Wizards (44-33)Ellipse 1 copy 32   Last Week: 17

Given the Wizards fall from grace this season, maybe Barack should make the roster.

16:ind Indiana Pacers (34-43)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 15

Paul George: The return…

15 minutes, 13 points (5-12 from the field, 3-6 from three) 2 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 3 turnovers, and the hopes and dreams of thousands of fans.

17:utah Utah Jazz (35-42)Ellipse 1 copy 31   Last Week: 18

Rudy’s shot-blocking prowess got an endorsement from Jazz legend Mark Eaton. There’s not many better endorsements in Salt Lake City, and having Gobert anchor the paint for years to come could fast track the Jazz into playoff contention as soon as next year.

18:bkn Brooklyn Nets (35-41)Ellipse 1 copy 31   Last Week: 19

Credit where credit is due. The Nets have overcome old age, Joe Johnson’s contract, and an insane Russian owner to sit atop the crap pack and are now eyeing a four-game sweep at the hands of the Cavaliers.

19:mia Miami Heat (34-43)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #25   Last Week: 14

An 0-4 week drops the Heat out of the top eight in the East and they’re now at risk of losing out to next year’s coach of the year Brad Stevens and a rejuvenated, Paul George-driven Pacers squad.

20:det Detroit Pistons (30-47) Ellipse 1 copy 31   Last Week: 21

At least we still have Andre Drummond’s mom…

21:phx Phoenix Suns (39-38)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 20

The Suns took a big step back in Jeff Hornacek’s second year in charge, and part of that has to be attributed to the leap that Eric Bledsoe did not make in his second year with the team. He’s doing just about the same thing he did last year, and given that he makes more money that guys like Tony Parker, Kyle Lowry, and Rajon Rondo, we have to expect more at this point.

22:mil Milwaukee Bucks (38-39) Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 22

This is my opinion of the Michael Carter Williams trade…


23:cha Charlotte Hornets (33-43)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 23

I didn’t really prepare anything for when the Hornets stay even in the rankings, but as their playoff hopes dwindle, the most important number for the Hornets season will remain nine. Those nine million they gifted to Lance (Larry Bird you genius.) which has taken them a few steps back in their rebuild

24:orl Orlando Magic (24-53)Ellipse 1 copy 32   Last Week: 26

I guarantee I would have quit on this team if this wasn’t an April Fools’ prank.

H/T: www.theepochtimes.com

H/T: www.theepochtimes.com

25:den Denver Nuggets (28-49)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 25

As far as tank jobs go, the Nuggets did a really crappy job this year. They think they’re good but they’re just not good enough. They thought Brian Shaw was a good coach for them and he just wasn’t good enough. Now they should KNOW they’re not good but they still occasionally rip off untimely wins to hurt their chances of getting a money draft pick.

26:sac Sacramento Kings (26-50) Ellipse 1 copy 3 #22   Last Week: 24

DeMarcus Cousins ripped off two straight triple doubles (24-21-10 and 24-20-13) and the Kings lost both games. #freeboogie

27:phi Philadelphia 76ers (18-60)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 27

Well, the Sixers lost both of their favored games so I would say a quality recovery. Tank hard, my friends.

28:lal Los Angeles Lakers (20-56)Ellipse 1 copy 31   Last Week: 29

Oh how the tables have turned on the Lakers, who have now played second fiddle to the Clippers in Hollywood for three straight seasons. Their most recent matchup resulted in a 28 points rout.

H/T: sports.espn.go.com

H/T: sports.espn.go.com

29:min Minnesota Timberwolves (16-60)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #21   Last Week: 28

What did Andrew Wiggins do this week?

30:nyk New York Knicks (15-62)Ellipse 1 copy 3 #1     Last Week: 30

Ladies and gentlemen, your 2015 NEW YORK KNICKS!



Featured Image: www.fansided.com

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