Power Rankings – 1/10

By: Devin Zanskas

  1. Golden State Warriors

On Christmas Day, the Warriors proved that they deserve to stay at the top of everyone’s rankings by defeating the healthier Suns behind 33 points from Steph and 19 from Porter


      2. Phoenix Suns

Besides being a complete team, an advantage that the Suns had was their avoidance of the H&S protocols. Sadly, they lost 2 starters in the 2 days after Christmas to the protocols


      3. Utah Jazz

Tony Jones joined The Athletic NBA Show, and the analyst suggested that the Jazz could make a splash on the trade market, which makes sense given the amount of pressure they’re under


      4. Chicago Bulls

Everyone’s favorite story right now is the Demar Derozan renaissance after he became the first player in consecutive days to hit back-to-back game winning buzzer beaters in NBA history


      5. Milwaukee Bucks

After regaining their troops from the H&S protocols, the Bucks ripped off a six-game win streak against some average-at-best competition


      6. Memphis Grizzlies

Ben Taylor of the Thinking Basketball podcast stated that he can’t see the Grizzlies losing homecourt advantage now that they’re 5.5 above the Mavericks


      7. Brooklyn Nets

Kyrie Irving was controversially slated to make his season debut until he immediately entered the H&S protocols. It will be interesting to see if he still plays once other Nets are available


      8. Miami Heat

Zach Lowe stated on his show that he still sees the Heat as having the third-most championship equity despite the Bulls’ buzz. That may not be the hottest take though given their perseverance


      9. Philadelphia ‘76ers

Joel Embiid dropped 32 or more points in five games during a six-game stretch, and is still keeping the ‘6ers on course during the continued absence of Ben Simmons 


      10. Cleveland Cavaliers

The hearts of many fans were broken when they heard the news of Ricky Rubio’s torn left ACL. However, it was a smart move on their part to act fast and find a facsimile to Rubio with Rondo


      11. Charlotte Hornets

Following LaMelo Ball’s career-high last month versus the Bucks, the Hornets winning back-to-back games against them with Giannis and Khris active is a major accomplishment


      12. Denver Nuggets

Nikola Jokic climbed into the top three of the MVP ladder after having nearly three games in a row with 20 points and 20 rebounds


      13. Dallas Mavericks

Despite Kristaps Porzingis entering the H&S protocols on January 3rd, the Mavericks haven’t lost a game since the new year


      14. LA Clippers

According to Yahoo! Sports’ Chris Haynes, Kawhi Leonard has increased his workload, and could return this season. This would reshape everyone’s projections heading into the playoffs


      15. Los Angeles Lakers

Even though the Lakers went on a 5-game losing steak within the past month, LeBron has put up 31 or more points in all but 2 games since the start of that streak, and he’s now 2nd in scoring


      16. Toronto Raptors

Beginning on New Year’s Eve, the Raptors have won six games in a row against three top-eight seeds including the Clippers, Bucks, and Jazz, and Fred VanVleet is making his Allstar case


      17. Washington Wizards

After going 1-7 over an eight-game stretch in December, the Wizards have hovered right around .500, which is closer to expectations than their recent slump or their unsustainably hot start


      18. New York Knicks

The fastest redemption arc of all-time occurred when Kemba returned from the Knicks’ bench to drop only the seventh Christmas Day triple double in the history of the league


      19. Minnesota Timberwolves

No matter what surprises life throws at fans of the association, they must find comfort in relying on the Timberwolves to respond to three consecutive wins with three losses in a row


      20. Atlanta Hawks

The hottest rumor for fans to fantasize about to date is idea of a potential John Collins and Ben Simmons swap. With a little extra sweetener from the Hawks, both teams might be in business


      21. Boston Celtics

With the voting now open, it’s becoming a closer debate between Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown related to representing the Celtics at the Allstar game. Tatum is still the favorite though


     22. Indiana Pacers

After Christmas, the Pacers went on a six-game losing streak. However, no one thought they’d see Lance Stephenson post 30 points in 2022


     23. San Antonio Spurs

Over an eight-game stretch, the Spurs went 1-7. However, that’s not the most surprising news out of San Antonio because Dejounte Murray missed four of those games


     24. Portland Trail Blazers

According to nba.com, Dame will not join the Portland on their 6-game road trip because of his abdominal injury. That has Kevin O’Conner wondering if he has played his last game of the year


      25. Sacramento Kings

Excluding a solid win over the Heat, the Kings haven’t had the best luck since the new year with a season-long five-game losing streak


      26. New Orleans Pelicans

Some impressive victories have sneakily brought the Pelicans only a half game away from a play-on spot. Although, their record will still likely rule Ingram out of another All-star selection


      27. Houston Rockets

Covering the Rockets lately must’ve be exhausting given some of the recent drama with Porter Jr. and Wood. However, the Rockets were smart to send a message with one-game suspensions


      28. OKC Thunder

Winning three games in a row against the Clippers, Grizzlies, and Nuggets might have inspired some hope for Shai’s first Allstar appearance, but then they went 2-7 over a nine-game stretch


      29. Detroit Pistons

Naturally, Cade Cunningham has become more comfortable after each game played, but the Pistons were also helped by Saddiq Bey recently scoring a career-high 34 points 


     30. Orlando Magic

At the halfway mark of the regular season, the Magic are the only team with single-digit wins. Although, they did win back-to-back games against the Nets and Hawks at the end of December