Bucks Diary NBA Power Rankings

growingupwiththeisles's picture

Some big early surprises

After one week of action I power ranked every NBA team using each team’s Team and Opposition Win Score and then adjusting it to account for their competition.  Thus the ranking order is purely objective, my opinion counts for nothing.

A couple of things to keep in mind when examining this week’s rankings.  First, there is not a lot of data I could use to adjust the numbers.  The most any one team has played is 5 games.  Second, I did not adjust the numbers to account for home and away games.

Here’s how each team’s adjusted number is calculated, using the Memphis Grizzlies as my example.  First I calculate Memphis’ raw Team and Opposition Win Score averages.  They are 41.18 and 48.48.  Then I average their opponents’ Team and Opposition Win Score averages.  Those are 42.34 and 38.87.  Then I compare the Grizzlies Team Win Score average to their opponents’ Opponent Win Score average and I get (-1.16).  Then I compare the Grizzlies Opponent Win Score average to their opponents’ Team Win Score average and I get (+9.60).  Then I put them together to get a cumulative number of (-10.76).  Note that (+) is bad when comparing Opponent Win Score to opposition Team Win Score.

With that background, here are this week’s rankings with comments below:

1. Boston Celtics…+19.25

2. Portland Trailblazers…+16.28

3. Dallas Mavericks…+14.31

4. Orlando Magic…+12.42

5. Philadelphia Sixers…+12.37

6. Denver Nuggets…+9.18

7. Los Angeles Lakers…+7.28

8. Washington Wizards…+6.94

9. OKC Thunder…+4.14

10. Cleveland Cavaliers…+3.35

11. Miami Heat…+3.05

12. Chicago Bulls…+2.50

13. Phoenix Suns…+1.16

14. Atlanta Hawks…-0.39

15. Houston Rockets…-0.43

16. Milwaukee Bucks…-1.02

17. Los Angeles Clippers…-1.03

18. San Antonio Spurs…-1.31

19. Toronto Raptors…-2.65

20. Utah Jazz…-3.68

21. New Orleans Hornets…-4.61

22. Detroit Pistons…-5.08

23. New York Knicks…-10.14

24. Charlotte Bobcats…-10.71

25. Memphis Grizzlies…-10.76

26. Indiana Pacers…-11.00

27. Minnesota Timberwolves…-12.23

28. New Jersey Nets…-12.77

29. Sacramento Kings…-13.13

30. Golden State Warriors…-18.02


Some stunners this week.  I think this is probably the first time OKC has ever been ranked in the top 10 of anyone’s power rankings.  They are doing it with defense.  Their adjusted defense is better than the Bucks.

Another stunner is how low the Spurs are ranked.  There absolute numbers are very good, but when you adjust them for competition, they become mediocre, especially their defense.

Portland is only 2-2 so far, yet they rank second.  Its almost exclusively because of their defense, which when adjusted looks even better than the Boston Celtics defense does.

Another team on the rise is the Washington Wizards.  Their offense is improved because of the return of key personnel, and they are also playing better defense.

Golden State is by far the worst team in the NBA at the moment.  They are neither playing efficient offense nor any sort of defense.


I will rank the team’s offenses and defenses in my next post.  Then I will answer all of the comments that have come in recently.