Week 5 Power Rankings

Posted: 12/03/2012 by levcohen in Basketball
Tags: , ,

Time for the week 5 rankings.

(last week ranking)

#1: Oklahoma City Thunder (#3) (14-4).. The Thunder had an undefeated, 4-0 week, beating a bunch of mediocre teams, in Charlotte, Houston, Utah and New Orleans. They now have a five game win streak, and over the last 10 games, they have a +12 point differential, boosting their total to +9.8 on the season. They have had a weak schedule, but they are getting things done. Kevin Durant is back to his scoring self, as he’s averaged 27 points in the last five games and is up to 26 points, 9 rebounds, 4 assists and over 1.5 steals and blocks per game. Serge Ibaka has arguably been the second best player on the Thunder, as he’s averaging 14 points, 8 rebounds and an amazing 3+ blocks per game.

#2: Miami Heat (#4) (12-3).. The Heat are another team who have a long winning streak going, as they’ve now won six in a row. They’ve also had a very tough schedule, as the teams they’ve played have an average .600 winning percentage. This week, they beat the Spurs (a very shorthanded Spurs team, I admit) and the Nets, two great teams. LeBron is averaging a solid 25 points per game, but he’s also adding a surprising 9 rebounds and 6.5 assists, with also over a steal per game. He also isn’t turning the ball over that much, with only 2.5 turnovers per game, a good number for someone who has the ball in his hand that much.

#3: San Antonio Spurs (#2) (14-4).. Greg Popovich is amazing. He was annoyed, and he made it known. In his fourth game in five nights, facing the Heat, who were in the middle of a four game in 16 day stretch, he sent his top four players- Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker, Danny Green- home for the game. Playing his bench, they still almost beat the Heat. Two days later, the stars came back to defeat the league leading Grizzlies at home.

#4: Memphis Grizzlies (#1) (12-3).. The Grizzlies had their streak of 12 wins in 13 games broken by the Spurs on the road by four points in overtime. I don’t think it’s fair to drop them this far, but I had to.

#5: New York Knicks (#5) (12-4).. The Knicks aren’t as good as they were to start the season, but they have still scored 8 points more than they have allowed on average, but they have won three in a row. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them fall more.

#6: Los Angeles Clippers (#6) (10-6).. The Clippers broke their four game losing streak with a six point win over the Timberwolves followed by a 35 point blowout over Sacramento.

#7: Brooklyn Nets (#7) (11-5).. The Nets had a 3-1 week, winning over the Knicks, Celtics and Orlando while losing to Miami.

#8. Atlanta Hawks (#8) (9-5).. Beat Charlotte and lost to Cleveland. They have had a soft schedule.

#9. Golden State Warriors (#19) (10-6).. The Warriors have a nice three game winning streak going. They beat Denver and Indiana this week, both at home.

#10. Chicago Bulls (#15) (8-7).. The Bulls continue to play well without Derrick Rose. After losing to Milwaukee by one, they crushed Dallas and beat Philadelphia. Luol Deng and Joakim Noah are the easy team leaders with Rose out.

#11. Milwaukee Bucks (#11) (8-7).. The Bucks are still tied for the division lead with the Bulls. They have been pretty good this year. They had a 2-2 week, beating Chicago and Boston and losing to the Knicks and Timberwolves.

#12. Houston Rockets (#21) (8-8).. Houston beat Toronto and Utah, while losing to the Thunder in James Harden’s disappointing return to Oklahoma City.

#13. Los Angeles Lakers (#9) (8-9).. The Lakers have to turn it around, right? Their team is still immensely talented obviously, and they do have a +4 point differential.

#14. Denver Nuggets (#10) (8-9).. The Nuggets are an up and down team, and it’s been down recently. It seemed fitting for me to put the two disappointing Western Conference teams back to back.

#15. Philadelphia 76ers (#13) (10-7).. The Sixers are a mediocre team without Andrew Bynum, but they have a point differential in the green and are three games over .500, so they are doing something right.

#16. Boston Celtics (#12) (9-8).. This week, the Celtics went 1-2, beating Portland soundly while losing to Brooklyn and Milwaukee. Rajon Rondo needs to get under control, because he is costing his team games with his tough guy act. Kevin Garnett is still KG, and Paul Pierce is still “The Truth”.

#17. Utah Jazz (#19) (9-9).. The Jazz lost two of three, but it really wasn’t that bad, as they were all road games. They are not a good road team, as they are 3-9 on the road, compared to a perfect 6-0 at home.

#18. Dallas Mavericks (#14) (8-9).. The Mavericks are solid if unspectacular, and now signed Derek Fisher (why?), sending Darren Collison to the bench (why?). OJ Mayo is still doing well, as the Mavs tread water while waiting for the return of Dirk.

#19. Indiana Pacers (#23) (8-9).. The Pacers are slowly rebounding. 2-1 week, as they have 92 points or more in 5 of their last 6 games.

#20. Minnesota Timberwolves (#16) (7-8).. Kevin Love is in all-star form, averaging 22 and 15, and they beat Sacramento and Milwaukee, while losing by just a little to the Clippers.

#21. Orlando Magic (#24) (6-10).. The Magic salvaged a win over the Lakers. Otherwise, they’d be more like 23rd.

#22. Charlotte Bobcats (#17) (7-8).. Now the Bobcats are falling back to Earth. They have slipped of late, losing three straight, and should continue to fall.

#23. Phoenix Suns (#22) (7-11).. The Suns aren’t very good. They beat Cleveland by 13, but then fell flat. THEY LOST TO THE PISTONS BY 40. Just had to get that off my chest. They also lost to the Knicks (by 7) and the Raptors (by 4).

#24. Portland Trailblazers (#20) (7-10).. The Blazers had an awful week. They lost to two awful teams, Detroit and Washington. They gave Washington their first win of the season. Portland also were crushed by Boston and beat a bad team, Cleveland, by one point in double overtime. All these games were on the road, so I have to give them some slack. The Blazers are 3-7 on the road, and 4-3 at home.

#25. Cleveland Cavaliers (#26) (4-13).. The Cavs haven’t won many games, but they are keeping things close. They lost to the Grizzlies by 6 and the Blazers by 1, while upsetting the Hawks on the road.

#26. Detroit Pistons (#28) (5-13).. The Pistons have won five of their last 10 games, including a great 40 point win over the Suns. They are another team with a good home record, at 4-3. Their road record is 1-10.

#27. Toronto Raptors (#27) (4-13).. At least they only have a -5 point differential. They’ve won 3 of their last 10 games.

#28. New Orleans Hornets (#29) (4-11).. Aside from the surprising win over the Clippers, the Hornets have lost nine straight games.

#29. Sacramento Kings (#25) (4-12).. They have a -7 point differential. They are 8 games under .500. They have DeMarcus Cousins, Marcus Thornton, Tyreke Evans, Thomas Robinson, Jimmer Fredette, Isaiah Thomas. How do those three statements fit together???

#30. Washington Wizards (#30) (1-13).. They won! They won! I was going to move them up an honorary spot, but then they were crushed again..

Biggest risers: Golden State (+10), Houston Rockets (+9)

Biggest fallers: Charlotte (-5), LA, Denver, Boston, Sacramento, Portland, Minnesota (-4)

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