NBA Power Rankings, Week 8

Within the span of every week, Anthony Davis considerably modified the outlook of the Los Angeles Lakers’ season. What was as soon as an underperforming assortment of growing older stars is now a scorching group able to beating the NBA elite, anchored by one of many league’s finest huge males in Davis. However the Lakers additionally bought a style of what life with out Davis could be like of their 116-102 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The opposite veteran group that underperformed to begin the season, the Brooklyn Nets, began to construct some momentum due to Kevin Durant. Durant led the Nets to a win streak in opposition to the groups on their schedule they need to beat, however did not do sufficient to drag off a win in opposition to the red-hot Boston Celtics of their most up-to-date recreation.

Then once more, only a few are beating the Celtics proper now. Boston nonetheless owns one of the best report within the NBA at 20-5, and except for a number of upsets to different contenders within the East, it appears to be like just like the Celtics are the higher group on the ground most nights.

As Boston dominates the Japanese Convention, the West appears to get a brand new potential frontrunner each week. Now the New Orleans Pelicans and Memphis Grizzlies are gaining floor on the Phoenix Suns for the highest seed within the convention.

Notice: 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 high to backside, taking inventory of which groups are taking part in one of the best basketball now and which groups are wanting most like title contenders.

Earlier rankings: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7

1. Boston Celtics
2022-23 report: 20-5
Earlier rating: 1

After sweeping a highway back-to-back in opposition to the Nets and Raptors to start a six-game journey, the league’s finest group to this point will head West for the primary time this season starting Wednesday in Phoenix, earlier than happening to Golden State Saturday after which wrapping up with a home-and-home in Los Angeles to begin subsequent week. — Bontemps


2. Milwaukee Bucks
2022-23 report: 17-6
Earlier rating: 2

Giannis Antetokounmpo, who turned 28 Tuesday, has scored no less than 30 factors in seven straight video games, the longest streak of his profession. He is averaging 36.0 factors, 10.1 rebounds and 5.7 assists throughout that span and is now tied for second within the NBA (31.9 factors) in scoring with Joel Embiid, behind Luka Doncic. — Collier


3. Phoenix Suns
2022-23 report: 16-8
Earlier rating: 3

After opening their season with a revenge win over the Mavericks, the Dallas demons reappeared for the Suns with a 130-111 loss in Dallas on Monday. Phoenix fell behind by 18 heading into the second quarter and by no means made a recreation of it, bringing to thoughts that brutal blowout loss to Dallas in Recreation 7 of the Western Convention semifinals within the spring. — McMenamin


4. New Orleans Pelicans
2022-23 report: 15-8
Earlier rating: 7

The Pelicans are on a four-game profitable streak, and Zion Williamson’s play on each side of the ground has been an enormous a part of that. Within the final 4 video games, Williamson is averaging 27 factors, 9.8 rebounds, 6.3 assists, two steals and 1.8 blocks per recreation whereas taking pictures 64.1% from the sphere. He has no less than one steal and one block in 4 consecutive video games for the primary time in his profession. — Lopez


5. Cleveland Cavaliers
2022-23 report: 16-9
Earlier rating: 5

Jarrett Allen returned from a five-game absence due to lower-back ache and wreaked havoc on the Lakers on Tuesday. Allen scored a career-best 22 factors within the first half (ending with 24 factors, 11 rebounds and three steals) and Donovan Mitchell did his injury late, scoring 17 of his 43 factors within the fourth quarter, to guide The Land to victory. — McMenamin


6. Memphis Grizzlies
2022-23 report: 15-9
Earlier rating: 6

Dillon Brooks is taking pictures a career-low 39.4% from the ground, however his impression on profitable has been evident. The Grizzlies have outscored opponents by 100 factors with Brooks on the ground, a plus-minus that ranks behind solely Ja Morant and Steven Adams on the group. Memphis permits solely 106.3 factors per 100 possessions with Brooks on the ground, nearly eight factors decrease than with out him. — MacMahon


7. Denver Nuggets
2022-23 report: 14-10
Earlier rating: 4

Longtime Denver coach Doug Moe as soon as devised a system of subtracting house losses from highway victories to find out a group’s high quality. Even after Tuesday’s last-second defeat to Dallas, this yr’s Nuggets squad ranks second to Boston in that metric, with eight highway wins and simply three house losses to this point — a byproduct, partly, of taking part in 15 highway video games already, tied with Houston for the NBA lead. — Bontemps


8. LA Clippers
2022-23 report: 14-11
Earlier rating: 9

Kawhi Leonard and Paul George are lastly again and simply in time. The Clippers and Ty Lue have been blown out by Sacramento at house, 123-96, final Saturday with out Leonard, George, Luke Kennard and Norman Powell. Leonard and George confirmed simply how a lot they imply to the group, combining on the finish to beat the Hornets with Leonard scoring the ultimate 4 factors for the Clippers, together with the game-winner on Monday. Subsequent up are video games at Orlando and Miami earlier than John Wall returns to DC for the primary time with followers within the constructing. — Youngmisuk


9. Sacramento Kings
2022-23 report: 13-9
Earlier rating: 14

The Kings simply carry on rolling. What might have felt like an early-season fluke with their success has confirmed to be official. Simply think about if Mike Brown can insert the defensive prowess he constructed at Golden State into this Sacramento group. They may keep harmful and maintain it. — Andrews


10. Golden State Warriors
2022-23 report: 13-12
Earlier rating: 10

Every time it feels just like the Warriors are lastly exiting their early-season funk, they undergo a setback. Most just lately it was a loss to the Indiana Pacers with out Tyrese Haliburton and Myles Turner, wherein Stephen Curry had his worst recreation of the season. And when he was a no-show, nobody else was able to stepping up for him. — Andrews


11. Dallas Mavericks
2022-23 report: 13-11
Earlier rating: 16

Shifting into the beginning lineup appears to have jump-started Tim Hardaway Jr. He bought off to a sluggish begin, chipping off rust whereas getting back from foot surgical procedure that sidelined him most of final season, however Hardaway has averaged 24.4 factors on 51.9% taking pictures (54.5% from 3-point vary) within the final 5 video games. — MacMahon


12. Portland Path Blazers
2022-23 report: 13-11
Earlier rating: 13

After dropping 8-of-10 video games, the Blazers steadied themselves a bit with two huge wins over the Jazz and Pacers. Anfernee Simons continues to develop right into a budding star with 45 factors, together with 15-of-25 taking pictures and 7 made 3’s, in opposition to the Jazz. Jerami Grant retains shining as nicely. Damian Lillard returned and had 21 factors within the win over the Pacers. — Youngmisuk


13. Brooklyn Nets
2022-23 report: 13-12
Earlier rating: 17

Brooklyn has gotten again on monitor due to the brilliance of Kevin Durant. The previous MVP averaged 33 factors, 7 rebounds and 5.5 assists during the last week, incomes Japanese Convention participant of the week honors. The difficulty for the Nets is that Durant is averaging 36.9 minutes a recreation — an enormous workload this early within the season. — Friedell


14. Philadelphia 76ers
2022-23 report: 12-12
Earlier rating: 8

A weeks in the past, Philadelphia was three video games over .500, had gained seven of 9 video games and James Harden’s return was on the horizon. However after three losses on that highway journey — together with Monday’s loss in Houston — Philadelphia has now dropped again all the way down to .500 on the season as they start a two-week homestand Friday in opposition to the Lakers. — Bontemps


15. Atlanta Hawks
2022-23 report: 13-11
Earlier rating: 18

Bogdan Bogdanovic made his common season debut on Friday evening as he recovered from offseason knee surgical procedure. Hawks followers gave him a rousing ovation when he subbed in, however there was nonetheless some rust that wanted to be knocked off. In Monday’s recreation in opposition to Oklahoma Metropolis, Bogdanovic regarded extra like his previous self with 17 factors and 5 3-pointers. — Lopez


16. Indiana Pacers
2022-23 report: 13-11
Earlier rating: 11

Bennedict Mathurin has gotten many of the consideration, however fellow rookie Andrew Nembhard, who was drafted within the second spherical this yr, can also be serving to the Pacers win video games. Nembhard scored 31 factors with 13 assists and made 5 threes on 62% taking pictures in a win in opposition to the Warriors on Monday, the primary rookie to take action since Steph Curry in 2010. — Collier


17. Utah Jazz
2022-23 report: 14-12
Earlier rating: 20

Rookie heart Walker Kessler is making a case for prolonged minutes, particularly contemplating that the Jazz rank twenty fifth in defensive effectivity and twenty ninth in defensive rebounding fee. Kessler — the No. 22 general decide acquired within the Rudy Gobert commerce — is tied for seventh within the league with 1.7 blocks per recreation regardless of averaging solely 15.8 minutes. The Jazz permit solely 106.6 factors per 100 possessions with Kessler on the ground, which is stingier than the league’s finest protection. — MacMahon


18. Toronto Raptors
2022-23 report: 12-12
Earlier rating: 12

The Raptors stay at .500 as they head into Wednesday evening’s recreation in opposition to the Lakers, however Pascal Siakam continues to play on the highest stage of his profession. Throughout 14 video games this season, he’s averaging 24.5 factors, 8.9 rebounds and seven.1 assists. There is just one different participant within the league averaging 24-8-8 this season: Luka Doncic. — Bontemps


19. Miami Warmth
2022-23 report: 11-14
Earlier rating: 19

Jimmy Butler is lastly again after coping with a lingering knee harm, and he instantly delivered in Friday’s additional time win over the Celtics with 25 factors, 15 rebounds and massive performs down the stretch. Butler ought to be capable of push the Warmth again on monitor provided that 5 of their subsequent six video games are in opposition to groups beneath .500. — Friedell


20. Minnesota Timberwolves
2022-23 report: 11-12
Earlier rating: 22

The Timberwolves’ depth is being examined proper now, and it is not precisely acing the take a look at. Of their win over the Grizzlies, Minnesota confirmed how they may very well be profitable with out Karl-Anthony Cities, who they are going to be with out for a few month. However it’s not sustainable. They leveraged all of their depth and just about all of their future to get Rudy Gobert, however they nonetheless aren’t meshing as a unit. — Andrews

21. Washington Wizards
2022-23 report: 11-13
Earlier rating: 15

The Wizards enter a treacherous portion of their schedule in a rut. They’ve misplaced six of their final seven video games and now play 12 of their subsequent 16 video games on the highway. Their 4 house video games throughout that stretch are in opposition to the Clippers, Nets, Sixers and Suns. — Youngmisuk


22. Los Angeles Lakers
2022-23 report: 10-13
Earlier rating: 25

Anthony Davis’ scorching streak got here to a screeching halt Tuesday in Cleveland. The Lakers star huge man was restricted to only eight minutes due to flu-like signs, and the Cavs swept the season collection in opposition to LeBron James’ group, 2-0, for the primary time of his profession. — McMenamin


23. New York Knicks
2022-23 report: 11-13
Earlier rating: 21

New York managed to snap a five-game house dropping streak with a win over Donovan Mitchell and the Cavaliers Sunday, however RJ Barrett stays in a season-long stoop, hitting simply 28.2 p.c of his makes an attempt from 3-point vary on over 5 makes an attempt per recreation. It’s the worst share of any of the 53 gamers who’ve taken no less than 125 3-point makes an attempt this season. — Bontemps


24. Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder
2022-23 report: 11-13
Earlier rating: 24

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is exhibiting no indicators of slowing down because the NBA season enters December. In a 121-114 win in opposition to the Hawks on Monday, Gilgeous-Alexander had 35 factors and was 15-of-15 from the road. It was his seventh consecutive 30-point recreation, probably the most by a Thunder participant since Russell Westbrook had eight in a row in 2016. The one participant in franchise historical past with extra consecutive 30-point video games is Kevin Durant, who had 12 in a row in 2014 and 9 in a row in 2010 (spanning the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons). — Lopez


25. Chicago Bulls
2022-23 report: 9-14
Earlier rating: 23

The Bulls have dropped three in a row and 7 of their final 10 video games. When DeMar DeRozan, Zach LaVine and Nikola Vucevic are on the ground collectively, Chicago is -6.3 factors per 100 possessions in 399 minutes this season. — Collier


26. Charlotte Hornets
2022-23 report: 7-17
Earlier rating: 26

Issues proceed to look bleak in Charlotte. LaMelo Ball’s ankle is giving him issues once more, and the protection continues to battle. At the least Kelly Oubre Jr. continues to tempo the Hornets offensively. He is averaging 23.3 factors and 5.3 rebounds a recreation over the primary three video games of December. — Friedell


27. Houston Rockets
2022-23 report: 7-17
Earlier rating: 28

No. 3 general decide Jabari Smith Jr., whose rookie season bought off to a sluggish begin, has been an impression participant through the Rockets’ stretch of 4 wins in seven video games. The 19-year-old Smith has averaged 13.9 factors and seven.3 rebounds throughout that span whereas taking pictures 47.6% from the ground. His 16-point, 11-rebound efficiency in Monday’s win over the 76ers was his fourth double-double, matching Orlando’s Paolo Banchero for probably the most within the rookie class. –MacMahon


28. Detroit Pistons
2022-23 report: 7-19
Earlier rating: 30

With Cade Cunningham sidelined, the Pistons have run their offense by way of Jaden Ivey, giving the younger guard an opportunity to shine and fail throughout this latest stretch. Ivey is second in minutes (31.8), third in scoring (15.9) and first in assists (4.3) amongst rookies. — Collier


29. San Antonio Spurs
2022-23 report: 6-18
Earlier rating: 29

San Antonio has misplaced 11 straight video games, the second-longest streak in franchise historical past (they misplaced 13 straight in 1989). One shiny spot for the Spurs off the bench this season has been the play of backup huge Charles Bassey. The 22-year-old Bassey is averaging 5.6 factors and 6.0 rebounds per recreation this season, trailing solely Jakob Poeltl for the group lead. Amongst gamers who’ve performed no less than 200 minutes this season, Bassey could be fourth within the league in rebounds per 36 minutes (14.2) trailing solely Andre Drummond, Clint Capela and Steven Adams. — Lopez


30. Orlando Magic
2022-23 report: 5-20
Earlier rating: 27

Orlando has misplaced 9 straight. It is ugly. The excellent news is that Markelle Fultz is lastly again after being out since April with a knee harm and Jonathan Isaac is beginning a rehab project within the G-League after lacking greater than two years with an ACL harm. — Friedell