2021 NBA Power Rankings: Are the Jazz a contender? NBA Power Rankings: Nets and Clippers rise, plus some unfortunate guesswork ... 2021 71 . Are LeBron, Lakers the 2021 title favorites? Author: Michael Shapiro Updated: Oct 18, 2020 Original: Nets (4-4, LW 1). Doesn’t matter. 2021 NBA Power Rankings: James Harden trade reshuffles league landscape What do you get when you assemble three of the world's most gifted basketball players on the same team? Hornets (2-5, LW 22). Bringing Patty Mills and Rudy Gay off the bench seems to work for the Spurs, giving Keldon Johnson and Lonnie Walker IV more run to find their games. You can check in weekly to find updated power rankings and analysis on all 30 teams. Toronto has had some close losses, and while they remain positive in point differential, they are below .500 and struggling on the road. Brown has been the best Celtic this season, averaging a team-high 26.9 points a game, shooting 42.9% from three, has a 65.4 true shooting percentage, is hitting key shots late, and is Boston’s second-best perimeter defender (behind Marcus Smart). Cavaliers (4-3, LW 13). In addition, Brooklyn has been soft on the glass, allowing more offensive rebounds by opponents than any team in the league. I wouldn’t overreact much here. After a quick turnaround after the NBA Finals in the bubble, we are up and running for the 2020-21 NBA season. The record has improved a bit as the Thunder have a year to look at what they have and begin to use their plethora of draft picks. The bigger issue is the Nets defense will not save them most nights. This gives some stability for the next few years, but LeVert has some medical issues that are far more important. Golden State Warriors Center, James Wiseman ... Keeping him out of the No. On Monday, Sportico released its valuations for every NBA franchise in 2021, and according to their numbers, the three most valuable teams in the league are now worth a combined 15 billion dollars. NBA Power Rankings: Can the League Avoid a COVID-19 Shutdown? Knicks (4-3, LW 20). Golden State’s bottom 10 defense is the biggest issue and Green alone — as special as he has played the last couple of games on that end — may not be enough to fix it. If you’re located in Pennsylvania, New York, or New Jersey, you can bet on sports. Pelicans (4-3, LW 17). Memphis has started to go on a run of late. Portland has been playing up and down this season, and the defense is a major problem. The Suns are getting stops, and it helps that defensive specialist Mikal Bridges is scoring 14.1 points per game. Through Jan. 20, 2021. Sam Presti might be able to leverage that into a trade (for more draft picks), but with Horford owed $53.5 million for two seasons after this one, it will not be easy. * * * John Schuhmann is a senior stats analyst for NBA.com. New Orleans continues to play around .500 basketball, and it seems they don’t quite have their identity just yet. By Kevin O'Connor Jan 18, 2021, 10:22am EST Share this story. What gives? The NBA G League is hosting a bubble tournament at the ESPN Wide World of Sport Complex in Florida. Cleveland’s defense may have some staying power — it remains second best in the league — but the Collin Sexton-led offense remains flat, despite his run of six 20+ point games (and a big night against the Hawks recently). He has a team-best plus-13.3 net rating in 20 minutes per game. It makes sense, given the roster is sort of jammed with misfit toys. Doncic’s assist percentage has dropped. Once … You can check in weekly to find updated power rankings and analysis on all 30 teams. There is a good chance Dallas finds their stride in the middle of the year with KP back. Toronto launched a lot of threes the past couple of seasons (42.1% of their total shots last season, 37.9% in the title season), but this season that has jumped up to half their shots (49.9%) and it’s not working (even though they are shooting a strong 36.6% on them). He’s averaging 22.1 points and 11.4 rebounds a game, but it’s the 7.4 assists a night that are the biggest surprise — Randle is assisting on 32.8% of teammates’ buckets when he is on the floor. NBA rookie of the year 2021: January Power Rankings. Add to Morant’s absence the fact Jaren Jackson Jr. (left knee surgery) and Justise Winslow (hip) are out and it’s not just that it will be hard for this team to win games, it’s slowing down the development of Memphis’ young core. Golden State has had some impressive wins of late, and Stephen Curry has turned up his play. On Monday, Sportico released its valuations for every NBA franchise in 2021, and according to their numbers, the three most valuable teams in the league are now worth a combined 15 billion dollars. It is still the Lakers on top of NBC's NBA Power Rankings, but the Brooklyn Nets are climbing fast after trading for James Harden and racking up some wins. The new NBA Power Rankings have been released for Week 4. Cleveland is a young team and was another team apart of the trade for Harden, but ended up with Jarrett Allen. Utah has sneakily been one of the best teams this season and is doing a lot of their damage on the road, given they have had nine games on the road so far this season. Taking a look at this week’s power rankings from around the web. Stan Van Gundy came in and prioritized defense, stealing a page from Milwaukee’s book of protecting the rim at all costs while allowing more above-the-break threes. Milwaukee seemingly has a lot of focus on them right now but puts up 120 points per game this season and keeps their consistency over the new season. 26. The bottom of the East has been more competitive, and that has hurt the Magic. It feels odd to talk about the most stable franchise in the NBA, the team that had a 22-year playoff streak just end, and call them “frisky” and underdog upstarts. Not a major surprise to see this roster sit at the bottom of the NBA standings. 18. 4. The lack of firepower and ceiling of a few guys might have finally shown. The Raptors have the second-worst offense in the NBA and the biggest issue is in the half court, where they have been dreadful. Kings (3-4, LW 14). It says everything you need to know about how good Giannis Antetokounmpo is that he is averaging 26.3 points, 11.3 rebounds, and 5.6 assists a game so far this season and it feels like he has not found his form or taken a real step forward yet. Blake Griffin = three-point marksman. The Kings have cooled off after a hot start, dropping a couple of games to Houston, and it’s still frustrating this team is playing at just an average pace (14th in the league in percentage of offensive possession that starts in transition). Myles Turner forces OT! 9. Lakers – Will LeBron still be on the Lakers in 2025? 20. 24. It was a bumpy start to the 2020-21 NBA season but the Golden State Warriors have cracked the top 10 in the latest power rankings. However, they will now be without CJ McCollum and Jusuf Nurkic, who both went down with injuries. And follow their progress in the rankings all season long. More than any other, this NBA season has been a tough one to gauge. Pascal Siakam continues to struggle to be an offensive centerpiece this season, hurting them in the halfcourt and putting more on Fred VanVleet and Kyle Lowry. 6. The hottest team in the league is the Utah Jazz. It’s worked so far, the Pelicans have the fourth best defense in the league (although that falls to 10th when you apply Cleaning the Glass’ garbage time filter). Thunder (2-4, LW 24). But which team improved the most on Wednesday night? 2. When looking at why Miami’s offense is 26th in the NBA to start the season, it has to start with turnovers — 18.9% of Heat possessions have ended in a turnover this season, the highest rate in the league. 1 overall and LaMelo Ball slid to the third-overall pick. Way-Too-Early 2021 NBA Power Rankings. NBA Power Rankings: The Brooklyn Nets are on the rise A few weeks into the 2020-21 NBA season, as the league continues to fight through a … Nikola Jokic continues to play at an MVP level early in the season, but when he sits teams are able to get shots at the rim and Denver is -20.2 per 100 possessions in those minutes. It’s weird to watch a Miami team be so undisciplined, but to start the season the Heat have not been dialed in like they were in the bubble. Week two of the NBC Sports power rankings, and with so few games — but plenty of blowouts, eight 30+ point games so far — there is a lot of movement up and down the board. Oklahoma City has the worst offense in the NBA so far this young season, and part of that is the Thunder do not generate easy buckets — they have the lowest percentage of plays that start in transition in the league. Minnesota has two big names but nothing to show for it. This team desperately misses Karl-Anthony Towns. Miami has been somewhat disappointing, given they were in the Finals just a few months ago. 9. Phoenix Suns. Charlotte has been a fun team to watch, and while it won’t result in a ton of wins, they are competitive, and Lamelo Ball looks like the right pick. Ranks are based on a rolling 20-game range; early in the season, this date range reaches back to regular-season games of the previous year. 2. 1; Nets climb to No. Covid issues hit Boston, but they continue to survive. Lonzo Ball draws all the headlines and highlights, but Miles Bridges has taken a big step forward this season and forms a strong bench combination with Ball. 7. That — along with Damian Lillard and the passing of Jusuf Nurkic — has ignited a Portland offense that is sixth in the league when you take garbage time out of the equation (Cleaning the Glass stats). If the Rockets can improve their bottom-10 defense they will climb the standings and these rankings fast. 3. Bulls (4-4, LW 27). Chicago’s offense can put up numbers with the best of them, especially with a red-hot Zach LaVine. While they got Victor Oladipo, I wouldn’t bank on this team emerging out of the Western Conference. Bucks (4-3, LW 6). In our latest NBA Power Rankings, we evaluate where the New Orleans Pelicans rank 10 games into the season. 23. 10. It was just pure basketball joy to watch Stephen Curry go off for 62 — we missed watching that kind of unstoppable explosion from him. The NBA season has almost reached the quarter mark and it seems each week comes with more questions than answers. The addition of James Harden certainly changes the landscape of the Eastern Conference and the NBA. The NBA will play a condensed season, shortening the year by playing 72 games. 4 this week in the Week 5 NBA Power Rankings despite a 30-point loss to the New York Knicks on Sunday. 13. There could be a couple of All-NBA Celtics this season. Heat (3-3 LW 16). That said, the top feels like it could stay this way for a while. Rudy Gobert has played at his usual All-NBA level early, but Derrick Favors‘ return has given the Jazz needed depth and consistency along the front line. NBA.com, No. What should give Golden State fans hope for a playoff berth (or, more likely, play-in games) is Draymond Green‘s return organizing the defense and doing a little shot creation. BY Mike DePrisco - USA Today Sports Images. Three teams - the Knicks, Warriors and Lakers - are now worth over $5 billion each, according to Sportico, while the average NBA … Power Rankings, Week 2: Lakers hold No. Despite a backcourt of Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal, the Wizards are struggling to win games. James Harden, whether he wants to be there or not, is going to get buckets (33 points a game this season). Nothing Personal with David Samson ... Watch Now: NBA Power Rankings: Rockets at No. Mavericks (3-4, LW 15). Houston is now sitting at the bottom of the standings and has lost their franchise player. A good young piece, but for this year, they are loaded with guards and centers. It is still the Lakers on top of NBC's NBA Power Rankings, but the Brooklyn Nets are climbing fast after trading for James Harden and racking up some wins. Grizzlies (2-5, LW 26). Off to a bubble-like fast start, Phoenix has all the pieces: an elite backcourt in Chris Paul and Devin Booker, and a rim-running big finding his lane in Deandre Ayton. We’re still figuring out how to lose. A couple of wins against weak teams has Denver at least trending in the right direction, but this is still a team with the second-worst defense in the NBA so far, although their third-best offense has bailed them out more lately. Clippers (5-3, LW 2). D'Angelo Russell put it well: “I don’t think we’re ready to win yet. The Clippers have played well, and Paul George looks to be playing to his full potential, which is great to see. In Brooklyn’s five games coming into Utah, it had a defensive rating of 113.2 (points per 100 possessions), ranking 26th in the league. Detroit Pistons. Indiana was apart of that James Harden trade and eventually landed Caris LeVert and sent Victor Oladipo packing. Spurs (3-4, LW 18). This is too talented of a roster for them not to figure it out. Congratulations to Lillard for reaching 15,000 career points this past week, the only Blazer ever to score more is Hall of Famer Clyde Drexler). Defensively, they will give up plenty of points and need to rely on the offense they have. 16. Cody Taylor. The NBA will play a condensed season, shortening the year by playing 72 games. See where all … Thanks to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, teams have been forced to postpone games and play some without their best … Determining the NBA's power structure, with the Jazz surprisingly creeping up the Western Conference standings. His efficiency has made up for a slow start from Donovan Mitchell, who may be starting to find his groove. Warriors (4-3, LW 19). NBA Power Rankings: Nets and Clippers rise, plus some unfortunate guesswork ... 2021 71 . Goin' hard in the paint these past few minutes ‍@Zionwilliamson, Pels lead | #WontBowDown pic.twitter.com/Sg6ITQBkJ0, — New Orleans Pelicans (@PelicansNBA) January 5, 2021. As pointed out by ESPN’s Bobby Marks, Griffin has taken 64.7% of his shots from three this season, and while he has knocked down 39.4% of them he is not getting to the rim the same way anymore. Philly is the only team allowing less than a point per possession so far this young season (99.8 defensive rating, via basketball-reference), and that defense has carried them as the offense still has kinks to work out (15th in the league). Despite all the buzz about a James Harden trade, what the Nets may really need to do is trade for a quality defender or two. 28. 15. Mike Conley has been the best player in Utah so far this season — a huge bounce back from his injury-filled and disappointing 2020 campaign. Lakers (6-2 Last Week No. With the James Harden trade done, the Brooklyn Nets are one of the clear favorites to win the 2021 NBA Finals. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Los Angeles continues to roll and has been tremendous on the defensive side when many thought they’d take their foot off the gas early in the season. Two games against Miami this week are an interesting test. Our Top 3 online sportsbooks are DraftKings Sportsbook, FanDuel Sportsbook & Monkey Knife Fight. However, maybe the biggest surprise in the Suns’ hot start is its defense — fifth-best in the NBA so far this young season, and better than teams like the Clippers and Heat. Derrick White, who averaged 19 points a game in the bubble, is now out indefinitely after fracturing the same toe he had surgery on during the offseason. While Jayson Tatum was getting all the preseason “he’s going to be All-NBA” love, Jaylen Brown was in the gym taking his game to the next level. 14. Philly has gotten off to a fast start against a soft schedule, that changes starting Thursday in Brooklyn, followed by Denver, Atlanta, and two against Miami. Hawks (4-3 LW 4). The new NBA Power Rankings … But the positive continues to be we haven’t seen Devin Booker play his best yet, and Deandre Ayton hasn’t quite found his legs. Then came the win in Portland, coming back from 20-points down on the road to beat an established playoff team — Chicago showed the kind of grit and maturity we haven’t seen from them. Tyrese Haliburton has been a bright spot and a steal in the draft. Kawhi Leonard and company remain the biggest threat to the Lakers. 19. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! Joel Embiid is looking like an early MVP candidate — 23.2 points and 12.3 rebounds a game while anchoring the league’s best defense. After another full week of NBA basketball, one thing so far is clear: Expect the unexpected. We have started to see the secondary pieces gel in Philly, which credit to Daryl Morey for giving the 76ers a quick fix. Zach LaVine was asked after the game if they could have won this game a year ago under Jim Boylen and his answer was simply, “no.”. I don’t think many expected the Knicks to be competitive this season, but the Thibs effect has come into play. The wounded: COVID-19 continues to terrorize, afflicting Karl-Anthony Towns and much of his extended family. Last season in Detroit it was 38.7% of his shot attempts coming from three, and his last year with the Clippers it was under 6% of his shots. Trail Blazers (3-4, LW 9). By Kevin O'Connor Jan 18, 2021, 10:22am EST Share this story. The Wizards are about to enter a brutal stretch of the schedule where wins will be hard to come by, and Scott Brooks’ seat might start to get a lot hotter if the losses pile up. That likely changes with time, especially when Porzingis returns. NBA Power Rankings: 76ers climb past Lakers for top spot; Jaylen Brown, Celtics on fire; surging Suns for real After a strange first week of the season, things are starting a look a bit more normal Of course, none of that is what anyone is talking about, thanks to Marvin Bagley III’s father — and Fox’s father back at him — casting a shadow over everything. NBA Power Rankings: Lakers, Suns lead the way. Chicago picked up some wins, but it was hard to read too much into sweeping the lowly Wizards and beating a Dallas team without Doncic. Indiana stole a win in New Orleans Monday night thanks to Victor Oladipo and Myles Turner. Zion Williamson‘s second jump is just a thing of beauty. play. Also, despite all the shooters on the roster, the Heat are 19th in three-point attempts taken per game. It’s all just so very Kings. Yet the youth movement in San Antonio is working — Dejounte Murray dropped 21 on the Clippers in a win that snapped a four-game losing streak (but two against the Lakers, so grain of salt). What's happened since our last NBA Power Rankings two weeks ago? They are going to miss going to miss TJ Warren and his 15.5 points per game (out with foot surgery), Aaron Holiday does not provide the same pop. See where the Philadelphia 76ers stack up in ESPN's latest NBA Power Rankings. Nuggets (3-4 LW 23). Gordon Hayward has also found his form being a lead guy again. The Timberwolves drafted Anthony Edwards No. The Lakers have taken advantage of a soft part of their schedule, with the toughest games coming up a set of two in Houston to start next week. Magic (5-2 LW 7). The Nuggets have to find a way to be better when the Joker gets some rest. Sounds crazy, but the way you lose says a lot about the team. Christian Wood has been a fantastic fit on offense at the five averaging 23.6 points and 10 rebounds a game (he needs to give them better paint protection, however), and John Wall is giving Houston a quality 21.3 points a night. And follow their progress in the rankings all season long. With De'Aaron Fox this team should be running all the time. It was a bumpy start to the 2020-21 NBA season but the Golden State Warriors have cracked the top 10 in the latest power rankings. pic.twitter.com/nKg5YDYwfq. They are due to get Kemba Walker back, and if he can stay healthy and deliver his career norm, Boston is a scary team with the improvement of Jaylen Brown. 17. Julius Randle is playing at an All-Star — maybe All-NBA — level to open the season; he looks lighter and more explosive. 29. 21. Part of the issue is Luka Doncic is not living up to the preseason MVP hype — or even playing as well as last season He is averaging 25.8 points per game but the bigger issue is Doncic’s efficiency — he is shooting 19.5% from three (31.2% a year ago). NBA Power Rankings 2021: Warriors continue climbing after four weeks Four weeks into an abbreviated season, the NBA is reeling, taking blows from more unwanted storylines than it cares to tolerate. Defensively they have shown some improvements from last season, which is a major plus. Watch a Timberwolves game and it looks even worse than that. They are a competitive bunch that has held teams to 102 points per game this season. Betting on the NBA is now legal in the US. 11. Atlanta has come back down to earth a bit, but this is still an intriguing roster with many talents. Denver is another one of those teams where I expect them to find their form in the middle of the year. The NBA will play a condensed season, shortening the year by playing 72 games. 16 Amid James Harden Trade Drama (1:39) NBA Power Rankings: Lakers ahead of pack. NBA Power Rankings 2021: Post-NBA Draft edition / by Michael Allardyce Bulls The NBA Draft is in the books and after a wild night of trades, every team has added a piece for their future. Rockets (2-3 LW 25). The Pelicans’ offense is still a work in progress despite all the talent. Los Angeles is a jump-shooting team — just 18.7% of their shot attempts have come inside the restricted area, third lowest in the NBA. Timberwolves (2-5, LW 21). Los Angeles has a top-five offense and defense this season so far. 12. 1. Trae Young has looked elite running the pick-and-roll with John Collins or Clint Capela this season, drawing more fouls (even if Steve Nash doesn’t like how) and hurting teams from three if they give him any space. It’s not translating to good offense (still bottom 10 in the league), but the ball movement in Charlotte is impressive. However, they are allowing 120 points per game, and the defense is nonexistent. Check back on Monday for an updated NBA.com Power Rankings featuring stats and notes on all 30 teams. The upcoming 2021 NBA G League season may give several players not selected in the recent NBA draft another opportunity in the pros. Milwaukee has finally crawled above .500, but with the best offense in the league right now (second best if you remove garbage time, like Cleaning the Glass) it suggests this team should have another win or two. The Spurs have been quietly a tough game for many opponents, and we are starting to see some emerging youth in San Antonio. Jerami Grant is shining, but other than that, this roster has very little to offer at the moment. There are a lot of former playoff teams that have struggled out of the gates. Suns (5-2 LW 8). The Boston Celtics come in at No. 2021 NBA Power Rankings (Updated 1-19-2021), NBA Live Streaming Reviews: Best Services to Watch NBA Games Online, NFL Live Streaming Services Review: Best Apps to Watch NFL Online. 30. NBA Power Rankings: Good Luck Stopping the Nets. NBA Power Rankings, way-too-early edition: Next for Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat and all 30 teams. Injuries have plagued the Grizzlies, even going back to last year, but a fully healthy roster can compete with anyone on any given night. Defensively they struggle, but offensively they are averaging only a few points more than the Orlando Magic this year. CJ McCollum came into this season with a focus on taking more threes — 10.8 on average a game now (up from 7.3 last season), and he’s hitting 43.1% of them. Dallas is having issues with consistency, and while Luka Doncic is putting up big numbers, he still needs to get back to game shape. Orlando is in a deep slide after a hot start, and the offense continues to be the issue as they average just 104 points per game. Al Horford is showing he has something left in the tank when healthy, averaging 9 points and 7.2 rebounds a game this season — not up to his old standards, but solid. Credit Griffin for making them, but he simply cannot blow by guys and get to the rim the same way anymore. 2021 NBA Power Rankings: How all 30 teams stack up with season in full swing Buckle up for a wild ride, NBA fans. Author: Michael Shapiro Updated: Jan 12, 2021 ... taking a look at all 30 teams as we roll through a rocky start to 2021. Former Dallas guard J.J. Barea said during an appearance on J.J. Redick’s podcast that a young Doncic doesn’t focus on his conditioning like a veteran and that is part issue. 22. ... but a roster upgrade may be necessary for the Nuggets to even sniff the conference finals in 2021. Keldon Johnson has really impressed this season. Jazz (4-3 LW 12). LeBron James‘ minutes are down (but still enough that he had his first triple-double of the season against the Spurs), coach Frank Vogel is experimenting with different lineups (closing a game with Montrezl Harrell during a loss to Portland), and all the new Lakers’ faces are still getting used to each other. 2021 Top 12.

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