Another week of NBA action means more movement in our weekly Power Rankings. The Thunder defeated the Warriors (but lost to the Pelicans, Pistons, and Mavericks), the Celtics finally saw their win streak come to an end, and the 76ers are rolling right now. Take a look at where we’ve got teams this week.
- Boston Celtics (18-3): Their long winning streak snapped at 15, but this team is still rolling. It’s hard to imagine how could they would be if Gordon Hayward was healthy.
- Houston Rockets (15-4): Chris Paul is back and the Rockets are playing like they never skipped a beat. It looks like James Harden might finally win that MVP he’s been dying for.
- Golden State Warriors (15-5): After a slow start to the season the Warriors are rolling. However, their struggles in the first quarter might come back to haunt them at some point.
- Detroit Pistons (12-6): The Pistons seem to be the real deal. Reggie Jackson is poised and ready to lead his own team.
- Cleveland Cavaliers (12-7): I’m ecstatic about the turn around for the Cavs. After a horrible start they are finally playing up to their potential. Cleveland will be back to dominating the East in no time.
- San Antonio Spurs (12-7): The Spurs are a really intriguing team to me. Coach Pop knows exactly what to do with the talent around him. It seems like the Spurs will always be contenders.
- Toronto Raptors (12-7): The Raptors are climbing the standings in the East. They could be a tough matchup in the Eastern conference playoffs for whoever they face.
- Philadelphia 76ers (11-7): Could trusting the process finally be paying off? The 76ers look like they are on the right track after years and years of no success.
- Portland Trailblazers (12-8): Portland always causes trouble for the West. The amount of talent they have is insane. If it all comes together, watch out!
- Minnesota Timberwolves (12-8): I’m glad to see the Timberwolves having success as well. They’ve struggled losing five out of their last ten. It’ll be interesting to see how the young guys bounce back from that.
- Boston Celtics (18-3): After 16 wins a row, the Celtics finally dropped a game to the Heat in Miami, but Boston has won two since that loss. They still look like the best team in the league right now.
- Houston Rockets (15-4): Since Chris Paul’s return, the Rockets have won four in a row by an average of 23 points. Looking at their schedule, they might not lose for a while.
- Golden State Warriors (15-5): The Thunder was able to get a win against the Warriors in Oklahoma City, but Golden State is still rolling over the competition, despite dealing with some injuries.
- Cleveland Cavaliers (12-7): With the league’s longest-active winning streak at seven games, Lebron has the Cavs right back on track. They have a brutal schedule of eight games in 13 days coming up, so they will have a pretty good idea of where they’re at after that.
- San Antonio Spurs (12-7): 19 games in and still no sign of Kawhi Leonard. This last week, Greg Poppovich said he has “never seen an injury” like Leonard’s. Still, the Spurs are holding strong at the three-spot in the West.
- Detroit Pistons (12-6): In a weak that featured only two games, the Pistons lost to the Cavs, but they beat the Thunder in Oklahoma City. Time will tell how good this team really is.
- Philadelphia 76ers (11-7): The Process is coming along quite nicely. Joel Embiid is having fun, and Philadelphia is off to its best start since going 10-7 in the 2012-13 season. Look out, Eastern Conference.
- Portland Trail Blazers (12-8): A week on the road went pretty well for the Blazers. Portland finished 3-1, and they’re one game away from a nice four-game homestand.
- Toronto Raptors (12-7): Three road games for the Raptors amounted to two losses, but they have a slow week with two home games.
- Minnesota Timberwolves (12-8): 5-5 in their last 10 games is not that great, but Minnesota’s schedule hasn’t exactly been cake.
3 To Watch
- Denver Nuggets (11-8): The Nuggets have been pretty consistent this year. Hovering around .500 for the entire season so far, Denver will be a team to keep an eye on.
- Washington Wizards (10-9) : The Wizards have a ton of potential to be one of the best teams in the East. They’ll need to stay healthy in order to make this happen.
- Miami Heat (10-9): Dion Waiters and Hassan Whiteside have been leading the way for the Heat. It’s nice to see the Heat finally heading in the right direction again.
- Indiana Pacers (11-9): A 5-game win streak was ended by the Boston Celtics, but the Pacers are still on the brink of breaking into the top 10. They’re hot right now.
- New Orleans Pelicans (11-9): Losing to the Warriors in Oakland is nothing to hang your head on, especially when the rest of your week featured wins against the Thunder and the Spurs. The Pelicans are starting to click.
- Denver Nuggets (11-8): Paul Millsap had to have surgery on his wrist, and he’s out for three months, but the Nuggets are still a capable team.
- Chicago Bulls (3-15): The Bulls are playing just about as well as everyone assumed they would. Having a major team fight in pre-season doomed this team from the start.
- Atlanta Hawks (4-16): I didn’t see the Hawks playing this bad this season. I guess when you have no star talent it’s hard to win games.
- Sacramento Kings (5-14): The Kings have ton of potential and will likely be a solid team in years to come. However, this is simply not their time yet.
- Dallas Mavericks (5-15): The Mavs picked up a solid win against the Thunder. If Dirk can continue to play at a high level, they might pick up more wins.
- Brooklyn Nets (7-12): This is another example of a team doomed by injuries. It could be another rough year for Nets fans.
- Chicago Bulls (3-15): The Bulls have lost five in a row, but they’ve got some opportunities coming up. They host the Suns and the Kings this week, so maybe they can pick up a win or even two.
- Atlanta Hawks (4-16): The Hawks lost to the Clippers, who were on a 9-game losing streak. Oh, and they were in Atlanta. They’re really bad, guys.
- Phoenix Suns (7-14): The Suns have lost three games in a row, but they play the Bulls in Chicago on Tuesday. Phoenix has seven wins, but only two of those are against teams with winning records.
- Sacramento Kings (5-14): A win against the Lakers and a close to the Clippers may be a sign of some improvement. Maybe.
- Dallas Mavericks (5-15): The Mavs have won three of their last four. Maybe they’re figuring some things out and will break out of the Bottom 5 next week.
Article written by Craig Hofeld and Zack Low. Follow @TheThunderGuys on Twitter, Instagram, and give us a like on Facebook.