MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! Yesterday, we had some solid Christmas Day match-ups. It’s only been six days since my last power rankings, so not quite a week. But, I felt the need to get my latest one out as I have some teams making some moves, both up and down. Check it out!
**NR DENOTES NOT RANKED**
1. Denver Nuggets (21-10) ↔️
Still the best team in the NBA. They’ve won 7 out of 10 and haven’t shown signs of slowing up!
2. Los Angeles Lakers (20-14) ⬆️7️⃣
Whoa, HOT TAKE! Yes, probably a pretty questionable pick at #2. However, the Lakers are starting to put the NBA on notice. Remember when everyone thought they’d be a long-shot at being a playoff team? Well, pump the brakes on that. They’re sitting at 4th in the West and just throttled the defending champs in the Warriors by 26 last night WITHOUT LeBron. Watch out for the Lakers.
3. OKC Thunder (21-12) ⬇️1️⃣
The Thunder are easily one of my favorite teams to watch. Russell Westbrook plays at 100 MPH all the time and they are well coached under Billy Donovan. They lost their last 2 this week, one of them being a great game to the emerging Rockets who are finally getting back to their old ways. I still like the Thunder in my top-3.
4. Milwaukee Bucks (23-10) ⬇️1️⃣
The Bucks have a better record than both the Lakers and the Thunder, however, they haven’t been playing that well over the course of the week. Yesterday in the first half of their Christmas Day game against the Knicks they looked like they were going to mess around and get drilled by 20+. They managed to get their shit together and escape with a win. I do also want to mention that I really like how the media is trying their hardest to make Giannis into a superstar. The headline on the ESPN ticker last night was “Giannis takes over MSG.” Little too strong for my liking, but FEAR THE DEER!
5.Indiana Pacers (22-12) ⬆️2️⃣
The Pacers continue to climb every single week in my power rankings. They’ve won 9 of 11 and 2 in a row this past week. I love this team and the pose a threat to just about everyone in the Eastern Conference.
6.Toronto Raptors (25-10) ⬇️1️⃣
Still not buying what everyone is selling on the Raptors. Yes, they’re the best team in the East but personally, not overly impressed. They’ve been .500 over their last 10, and our Milwaukee Bucks are only a game out of first in the East.
7.Houston Rockets (18-15) ⬆️3️⃣
I watched the Rockets yesterday and I finally feel like they’re back to what they used to be. James Harden (as much as I really don’t like him, and I’m not sure why) is one of the best pure scorers in the game. They’ve won 7 out of 10, and three in a row.
8.Golden State Warriors (23-12) ⬇️4️⃣
What the hell just happened to the Warriors last night? They trailed by 23 points with over 3 minutes left to a Los Angeles Lakers team that had played without LeBron James for much of the second half. Golden State got a good ole’ fashioned Christmas Day beat down at Oracle Arena. The 26-point loss was the Warriors’ fourth 20-plus point loss at home this season. This concerns me as I’ve mentioned before about Golden State’s focus, team chemistry, all of the ego’s, and whether or not the defending champions have stooped down to the same sense of complacency that haunted them last season. They better get it together if they want to make another run at a ring because LeBron and co. are right on their tails.
9. Boston Celtics (20-13) NR
Kyrie went OFF yesterday, scoring 40 against the ‘Sixers on Christmas Day. The C’s have won 7 of 10 and 2 in a row this last week. They have been somewhat under achieving this year, but I see them sliding up my power rankings in weeks to come.
10. Philadephia 76ers (22-13) ⬇️4️⃣
I really can’t cheer for these guys. I keep them in at #10 but they dropped 4-spots only because I was feeling generous and in the Holiday Spirit last week. They’ve been .500 over their last 10 and dropped 2 in a row, letting yesterday slip against the Celtics. Still not sold on the 76ers.
Portland Trail Blazers (19-15) 8️⃣
Might have been a little aggressive putting the Trail Blazers in last week, but I like this team and there are times they beat teams the shouldn’t and play really well! Until they finally play in prime time last night on Christmas and get their doors blown off by the Jazz. The Blazers have only won 6 of their last 10.
MY OUTSIDERS LOOKING IN
Charlotte Hornets Sacramento Kings
Los Angeles ClippersMiami Heat