NBA Power Rankings – Celtics, Grizzlies enjoying like frontrunners and Luka can solely carry Mavs up to now

For as a lot as Luka Doncic does for his staff on the court docket, his staff does that a lot much less when he is not on the court docket. The Dallas Mavericks have recentered themselves within the Western Convention playoff image courtesy of their younger celebrity, however they’ve failed to realize momentum regardless of Doncic’s nightly MVP performances.

The Mavericks are one of many few groups within the Western Convention playoff image that haven’t seen first place. The streaky West has seen 9 different groups spend a day in first place up to now this season, per ESPN Stats & Info analysis, and plenty of of which do not boast a expertise like Doncic.

Now the door is likely to be closing for Dallas to make a run to the highest of the convention, because the Denver Nuggets and Memphis Grizzlies are placing their toes on the gasoline with six and 10-game profitable streaks, respectively.

The Boston Celtics may additionally be outpacing anybody within the Japanese Convention. The staff that has spent a lot of the 12 months with the NBA’s finest file has put collectively a seven-game profitable streak and has returned to its early-season type.

Be aware: All through the common season, our panel (Kendra Andrews, Tim Bontemps, Jamal Collier, Nick Friedell, Andrew Lopez, Tim MacMahon, Dave McMenamin and Ohm Youngmisuk) is rating all 30 groups from prime to backside, taking inventory of which groups are enjoying the most effective basketball now and which groups are trying most like title contenders.

Earlier rankings: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 | Week 8 | Week 9 | Week 10 | Week 11 | Week 12 | Week 13

1. Boston Celtics
2022-23 file: 33-12
Earlier rating: 1

After being twenty seventh in offensive ranking in December, Boston has catapulted again as much as sixth in January, thanks partly to their taking pictures normalizing once more. With area opening up between them and Milwaukee and Philadelphia in second and third, respectively, it is beginning to seem like the Celtics could have the chance to run away and conceal within the race for the highest spot within the convention. — Bontemps

2. Denver Nuggets
2022-23 file: 31-13
Earlier rating: 2

Nikola Jokic is making a critical case for his third consecutive MVP with how he’s main the Nuggets, however Denver proved in opposition to the Los Angeles Clippers that they’ll nonetheless achieve success with out their triple-double machine middle. That ought to make the league frightened of what the Nuggets might proceed to do that season. — Andrews

3. Memphis Grizzlies
2022-23 file: 30-13
Earlier rating: 3

Desmond Bane desires to see how he fares when his minutes get pushed into the higher 30s earlier than declaring himself totally again from the toe damage that sidelined him for greater than a month, however Bane’s taking pictures has definitely returned to type. He has averaged 22 factors within the final 5 video games whereas taking pictures 51.9% from the ground and 59.4% from 3-point vary. The scorching Grizzlies are winners of 10 in a row and have outscored opponents by 19 factors per 100 possessions with Ja Morant, Jaren Jackson Jr. and Bane on the ground this season. — MacMahon

4. Milwaukee Bucks
2022-23 file: 29-16
Earlier rating: 5

Giannis Antetokounmpo missed his fourth straight recreation on Tuesday in opposition to the Raptors with left knee soreness as Milwaukee wished to stay cautious with their star, however the Bucks don’t play their subsequent recreation till Saturday evening. Antetokounmpo has gone by his common pregame routine regardless of not enjoying in current video games. — Collier

5. Brooklyn Nets
2022-23 file: 27-16
Earlier rating: 4

It seems like deja vu another time for the Nets, who simply aren’t the identical with out Kevin Durant. The Nets come into Thursday’s recreation in opposition to Phoenix having misplaced three straight after profitable 18 of 20 with Durant wholesome. The offensive rhythm hasn’t been there, and the protection has been inconsistent with out certainly one of its key gamers on the ground. The Nets went 5-16 with out Durant final season whereas he rehabbed an MCL damage in his left knee. They seem headed for the same destiny except issues flip round shortly as he rehabs an MCL in his proper knee this 12 months. — Friedell

6. Philadelphia 76ers
2022-23 file: 28-16
Earlier rating: 7

Do not look now, however Philadelphia is sitting at third within the East, and has gone 27-12 since a 1-4 begin to the marketing campaign. What was alleged to be an enormous recreation in opposition to Brooklyn subsequent week has misplaced some luster with Kevin Durant happening with an MCL sprain, however the 76ers are trying like each little bit of the menace to make a deep playoff run they hoped to be when the season started. — Bontemps

7. Cleveland Cavaliers
2022-23 file: 28-17
Earlier rating: 6

Darius Garland’s 30 factors and 11 assists in a win over an excellent, albeit Zion Williamson-less New Orleans Pelicans staff, was spectacular, however the most effective second from Monday’s recreation was hilariously captured by Richard Jefferson’s Instagram account. I suppose that is what reminiscing in regards to the 2018 NBA Finals run seems like between Kevin Love and Larry Nance Jr. — McMenamin

8. Miami Warmth
2022-23 file: 24-21
Earlier rating: 14

Miami picked up back-to-back wins in opposition to the Bucks earlier than dropping Monday’s recreation to Atlanta — in the course of a tricky week which incorporates two video games in opposition to the Pelicans and a gathering with each the Celtics and Mavericks. Jimmy Butler seems to be discovering a groove once more as evidenced by the 23 factors he is averaging in January and the 34 factors he scored in Monday’s loss to the Hawks. — Friedell

9. Sacramento Kings
2022-23 file: 24-18
Earlier rating: 12

The Kings gained all 4 of their video games final week and scored no fewer than 132 in any of their wins, which is sensible since their offense leads the league in factors per recreation. Their scoring makes up for his or her protection, but when they’ll determine that out, the Kings’ beam might shine even brighter. — Andrews

10. Dallas Mavericks
2022-23 file: 24-21
Earlier rating: 9

With half of the rotation injured, the Mavs have been operating on fumes by the top of a five-game street journey. The lone win on the journey got here in double time beyond regulation over the Los Angeles Lakers, when Doncic performed a career-high 53 minutes. He was held to a season-low 15 factors in a loss in Portland two nights later and sat out the second finish of the back-to-back, as he is finished 5 instances this season. — MacMahon

11. New York Knicks
2022-23 file: 25-20
Earlier rating: 13

New York was a few inches away from an ideal 4-0 week, with Jalen Brunson’s game-winning 3-pointer ending up simply lengthy in Monday’s wild matinee loss in time beyond regulation to Toronto. Nonetheless, the Knicks proceed to sit down in sixth within the Japanese Convention, and Jalen Brunson is averaging extra factors than anybody however Joel Embiid amongst East gamers within the month of January. Brunson may very well be representing New York within the All-Star Sport subsequent month. — Bontemps

12. New Orleans Pelicans
2022-23 file: 26-18
Earlier rating: 8

Regardless of Brandon Ingram not enjoying since Nov. 25, and Zion Williamson and Herb Jones being restricted to simply 29 video games this season due to accidents, the Pelicans are nonetheless 26-18 and in third place within the Western Convention. Staying close to the highest of the standings has lots to do with the play of CJ McCollum. Within the final 16 video games, McCollum is averaging 27.0 factors per recreation and taking pictures 47.9% from deep. In that stretch, McCollum has hit 70 3-pointers. Solely Buddy Hield and LaMelo Ball (each at 71) have hit extra. — Lopez

13. LA Clippers
2022-23 file: 23-23
Earlier rating: 15

The Clippers received Paul George again from a hamstring damage that price him 5 consecutive video games. However George’s return was not sufficient for the Clippers to beat the Sixers or a few of the points they’ve had in dropping eight of their previous 10 video games. The Clippers’ offense stalls, they flip the ball over an excessive amount of, cannot rebound at instances and lack continuity. With John Wall (stomach) out no less than two weeks and Luke Kennard (calf) nonetheless out, the Clippers want Reggie Jackson, whose again tightened up Tuesday, to remain wholesome. — Youngmisuk

14. Golden State Warriors
2022-23 file: 22-22
Earlier rating: 11

The Warriors are caught in a cycle: Put collectively an OK recreation and discover a method to shut out within the fourth quarter, then lose the subsequent recreation and repeat. When requested why they have not been in a position to string collectively constant play, nobody appears to know the reply. Till they determine that out, they may proceed to hover round .500 and simply hope they flip a nook quickly. — Andrews

15. Indiana Pacers
2022-23 file: 23-22
Earlier rating: 10

Indiana is already discovering out how tough life with out Tyrese Haliburton goes to be. They’ve dropped three video games in a row since Haliburton injured his elbow final Wednesday and the Pacers are going to be with out their rising star level guard for no less than two weeks. — Collier

16. Atlanta Hawks
2022-23 file: 22-22
Earlier rating: 20

With Clint Capela coping with a calf damage, Onyeka Okongwu made essentially the most of his minutes in his absence. On Friday in opposition to the Indiana Pacers, Okongwu tied his season excessive with 18 factors and set a brand new profession excessive with 20 rebounds, besting his earlier profession mark by 5. Okongwu had 18 factors and 13 rebounds within the first half, marking the primary time in his profession he had a double-double in a single half. — Lopez

17. Utah Jazz
2022-23 file: 23-24
Earlier rating: 21

In response to the Elias Sports activities Bureau, rookie middle Walker Kessler is the primary participant to common a double-double whereas taking pictures no less than 70% from the ground in his first 10 begins since starters have been first tracked on field scores in 1970-71. Along with his efficiency Monday in opposition to the Timberwolves — the staff that traded him to Utah within the Rudy Gobert deal — Kessler joined Shaquille O’Neal and Alonzo Mourning as the one rookies since 1990 to have 20/20 nights whereas taking pictures no less than 65% from the ground. — MacMahon

18. Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder
2022-23 file: 21-23
Earlier rating: 25

Oklahoma Metropolis has gained 5 of its final six video games, and Josh Giddey has performed a few of his finest basketball up to now throughout that stretch. The 20-year-old is averaging 20.2 factors, 8.2 rebounds and seven.8 assists within the final six video games and capped that off with a 28-point efficiency in Sunday’s win in opposition to the Nets. The 28 factors ties Giddey’s profession excessive which he set final February in opposition to the Knicks. — Lopez

19. Phoenix Suns
2022-23 file: 21-24
Earlier rating: 16

The wheels are beginning to come off for final season’s chief in wins in the course of the 82-game slate. Phoenix has misplaced 9 out of its final 10, together with a 29-point drilling in Denver and a 30-point blowout loss to Memphis. As if it wasn’t already pressing for the Suns to discover a commerce accomplice for Jae Crowder, assist cannot come quickly sufficient. — McMenamin

20. Minnesota Timberwolves
2022-23 file: 22-23
Earlier rating: 17

The Timberwolves are nonetheless figuring it out, however they’ve gained six of their final eight video games. The factor is, they’re nonetheless with out Karl Anthony-Cities. Sure, he’s their franchise participant, however the chemistry between him and Rudy Gobert was absent to begin the 12 months. So, how will they mesh as soon as he is returned? — Andrews

21. Portland Path Blazers
2022-23 file: 21-23
Earlier rating: 18

The Blazers halted a five-game skid on the again of Damian Lillard, who led them to back-to-back wins at house in opposition to Dallas. Lillard is heating up with 35 or extra factors in 4 straight video games. Nonetheless, Lillard’s 44-point recreation wasn’t sufficient to upset Jokic in Denver. With the subsequent six video games at house, Portland has an opportunity to make up for its slide. — Youngmisuk

22. Los Angeles Lakers
2022-23 file: 20-24
Earlier rating: 19

It wasn’t the loudest of endorsements, and it nearly went unnoticed, because it got here within the aftermath of a disappointing last-second loss to Philadelphia, however LeBron James acknowledged some progress within the Lakers this week. “We’re better than the start of the season,” James stated. The Lakers are 18-14 since their 2-10 begin and may very well be getting Anthony Davis again within the lineup in a couple of week. Possibly the canine days are over. — McMenamin

23. Chicago Bulls
2022-23 file: 20-24
Earlier rating: 22

DeMar DeRozan, who missed the final three video games with a proper quad pressure, stated he plans to play in the course of the Bulls’ lone recreation this week in Paris on Thursday in opposition to the Detroit Pistons. Chicago went 1-2 with out their main scorer, who’s placing up one other season worthy of All-Star consideration, averaging 26-5-5 on 51% taking pictures. — Collier

24. Toronto Raptors
2022-23 file: 20-25
Earlier rating: 23

Toronto’s topsy-turvy season continued over the weekend, with disappointing losses in winnable video games in opposition to Atlanta and a depleted Milwaukee staff, sandwiched round an exciting time beyond regulation win over the Knicks throughout the previous few days. Time is operating out for the Raptors to salvage their season earlier than some laborious decisions should be made forward of subsequent month’s commerce deadline. — Bontemps

25. Washington Wizards
2022-23 file: 18-26
Earlier rating: 24

The Wizards have dropped 5 of their final six since Bradley Beal injured his hamstring early in Milwaukee on Jan. 3. Beal was dominated out earlier than the Wizards’ final recreation in opposition to Golden State, so he may very well be nearing a return. Washington wants Beal again quickly with six of the subsequent seven video games on the street. — Youngmisuk

26. Orlando Magic
2022-23 file: 16-28
Earlier rating: 26

Orlando is lastly house once more after an up-and-down five-game West Coast swing. Whereas Jokic broke their hearts by knocking a game-winning 3 on the buzzer on Sunday, the Magic proceed to point out indicators of enchancment. Markelle Fultz had 20 factors in Sunday’s loss and is averaging 14.1 factors, 6.3 assists and 4.1 rebounds over seven video games in January. — Friedell

27. Charlotte Hornets
2022-23 file: 11-34
Earlier rating: 28

The losses simply maintain piling up in Charlotte. The Hornets have dropped 5 straight video games and have given up a mean of 124.8 factors per recreation over that stretch. A small vibrant spot? LaMelo Ball is averaging 28 factors over his final 4 video games. — Friedell

28. San Antonio Spurs
2022-23 file: 14-31
Earlier rating: 27

The Spurs set a brand new NBA attendance file on Friday evening with 68,323 individuals contained in the Alamodome — the staff’s former house. Sadly for Spurs followers, the Warriors have been on the town and performed spoiler to San Antonio’s homecoming. The 144-113 loss narrowly prevented being the Spurs’ worst loss ever within the Alamodome (33 factors to the Raptors in Feb. 1997), but it surely was essentially the most factors the staff had ever allowed there in 354 video games. — Lopez

29. Detroit Pistons
2022-23 file: 12-35
Earlier rating: 29

Pistons guard Killian Hayes grew up in Cholet, France, and performed professionally in France for 2 years earlier than getting drafted in 2020. He returns to the court docket in his house nation for Detroit’s recreation in opposition to Chicago in Paris on Thursday. — Collier

30. Houston Rockets
2022-23 file: 10-34
Earlier rating: 30

Alperen Sengun has been a significant vibrant spot for the Rockets within the midst of an 11-game dropping streak. A couple of video games after changing into the youngest participant in franchise historical past to file a triple-double, the 20-year-old massive man had 33 factors on 14-of-17 taking pictures, 15 rebounds, six assists and 4 blocks in Monday’s loss to the Lakers. He joined Kevin Garnett, Karl Malone and Patrick Ewing as the one gamers to put up 30-15-5 strains on 80% taking pictures since 1995, in accordance with ESPN Stats & Info analysis. — MacMahon