NBA Power Rankings: Week 4, Clippers, Cavaliers Keep Rolling

By Michael Karapetian
Nov. 14, 2016

               We are now at about the 10% mark of the season and the Clippers, Cavaliers keep rolling while the Warriors have put together a four game streak. Week 3 is . 

Highest rises were: Hawks (+7), Bulls/Wolves (+6)
Biggest drops were: Pistons (-9), Thunder/Magic (-6)

1] Los Angeles Clippers: 9-1 (Previous 1)
           Clippers had a busy week, with four games in seven days. They disposed of Detroit and Portland by 32 and 31, at home before embarking on a trip to Oklahoma City and Minneapolis on back to back days. They nearly lost to the Thunder, again, and went back to Clipper basketball as they demolished the Timberwolves 119-105. Before the trip, the Clippers had only allowed their opponents to hit triple digits just once, up to three now.

Week 5: vs Brooklyn, vs Memphis, @ Sacramento, vs Chicago*

2] Cleveland Cavaliers: 8-1 (Previous 2)
           Atlanta handed the Cavaliers their first loss of the year, and Cleveland bounced back with a 11-point victory in the nations capital before a tough home win against a pesky Hornets squad. LeBron has taken a step back, allowing Kyrie to be the top option, while averaging near a tripled-double for the defending champs.

Week 5: vs Toronto, @ Indiana*, vs Detroit

3] Golden State Warriors: 8-2 (Previous 5)
          Golden State followed the embarrassing loss to the Lakers with a close victory against the lowly Pelicans. Since then, they beat Dallas by 21, Denver by 24 and Phoenix by 13 with Curry and Thompson dropping 30 in the Phoenix game (Durant was at 29). It'll be interesting to see if the Dubs can keep this up as the schedule tightens. 
Week 5: @ Toronto, @ Boston, @ Milwaukee*

4] San Antonio Spurs: 7-3 (Previous 3) 
            After a big home loss to the Clippers, San Antonio is having trouble getting back to playing San Antonio ball, as they lost to Houston before getting revenge and squeaking by the Detroit Pistons. What's eerie is the Spurs are 2-3 at home but 5-0 on the road, a shocking sight to see. 

Week 5: vs Miami, @ Sacramento, @ Lakers

5] Atlanta Hawks: 7-2 (Previous 12)
           Atlanta has played six out of nine at home, and have a quality win against the Cavaliers early on. A home loss to the Lakers doesn't seem as bad anymore, while Dwight has had a bounce back year, grabbing 12.4 rebounds per night in just 28 minutes of action. Schroeder is earning his contract as well, as the Hawks average the second highest points per night. 

Week 5: @ Miami, vs Milwaukee*, @ Charlotte, @ New York

6] Toronto Raptors: 7-2 (Previous 6)
          The Raps have bounced back well from the shocking loss to the Kings with double digit victories against the Thunder and Knicks, while holding off the pesky Hornets in Charlotte. DeMar DeRozan continues his spectacular play, averaging 34 points a night, for a combined 306 points with only nine of those coming behind the arc. Just a ridiculous amount of points for a swing man without hitting any from range. 

Week 5:  @ Cleveland, vs Golden State*, @ Denver, @ Sacramento

7] Portland Trail Blazers: 7-4 (Previous 8)
           Portland had a solid 4-1 week, outside of a shellacking at the hands of the top ranked Clippers, but all of the games were within seven against sub-par competition (Grizzlies, Suns, Kings, Nuggets). Damian Lillard is still scoring over 30, while CJ McCollum is slowly coming into a groove.

Week 5: vs Chicago, @ Houston, @ New Orleans*, @ Brooklyn

8] Charlotte Hornets: 7-3 (Previous 9)
          Consecutive losses to Toronto and Cleveland hurt, but the Hornets have been playing solid to this point. Kemba Walker is having a great shooting season, hitting 47.4% from the field and 47% behind the arc. Spectacular. 

Week 5: @ Minnesota, vs Atlanta, @ New Orleans*

9] Utah Jazz: 7-4 (Previous 11)
            Utah had a great week, going 4-1 on the road, with the lone drop being a tough game in Charlotte. Since the return of Gordon Hayward, Utah has a solid record of 4-1, all of which were on the road.

Week 5: vs Memphis, vs Chicago, @ Houston, @ Denver*

10] Oklahoma City  Thunder: 6-3 (Previous 4)
            Westbrook is still putting up insane stats, averaging 32/9/10, but the Thunder haven't been providing much help as they have dropped the last three, all at home. They nearly beat the Clippers, losing by two, but then dropped a questionable decision against a struggling Orlando side.

Week 5: @ Detroit*, vs Houston, vs Brooklyn, vs Indiana
11] Chicago Bulls: 6-4 (Previous 17)
               The Bulls have been having an interesting season, having won their first three, then losing three before winning three of the past four. Wade returned to Miami and helped his new team walk out with a three-point victory, while the Bulls dominated Orlando, 112-80. A seven-game road trip looms.

Week 5: @ Portland, @ Utah, @ Clippers, @ Lakers*

12] Boston Celtics: 5-4 (Previous 13)
                 An even week, Boston is coming off consecutive victories against the Knicks and Pacers, though the loss against Washington was a questionable one, at best. The Al Horford experiment isn't working as well as Boston would have hoped, but they are still in striking range for home court. 

Week 5: @ New Orelans*, vs Dallas, vs Golden State, @ Detroit*

13] Houston Rockets: 5-4 (Previous 14)
                Houston has only played two games at home, splitting them with a win against Dallas and a defeat to the Spurs. With three of the next four at home, Houston can start to pad some wins in, though it isn't against the easiest of competition. As expected, the Rockets are putting up points but lacking any sort of defense.

14] Milwaukee Bucks: 5-4 (Previous 15)
               Pelicans beat the Bucks for their only win of the year, just an absolute shock. Game was in Milwaukee too. Bucks did ounce back with a solid win versus the Grizzlies to bounce back against consecutive bad losses. 

Week 5: @ Atlanta, @ Miami*, vs Golden State

15] Los Angeles Lakers: 6-4 (Previous 10)
                 Luke Walton still has the Lakers as an intriguing team to keep an eye on. Afterall, they came back from a 19-point hole to beat the Kings, on the road nonetheless, by 10, following it up with a 27-point win in New Orleans. However, those were sandwiched with a 12-point loss versus Dallas and a 26-point shellacking in Minneapolis. 

Week 5: vs Brooklyn, vs San Antonio, vs Chicago

16] Detroit Pistons: 5-5 (Previous 7) 
            Wow, did Detroit have a bad week. First, the Clippers obliterate them by 32, being up by 44 at one point, then Phoenix takes them by seven and San Antonio by 10. They did recuperate with an 11-point victory in Denver to complete their four-game west coast swing. Defending home-court well, at 4-0, the Pistons need to learn how to win on the road, as they are 1-4.

Week 5: vs Oklahoma City,  @ New York, @ Cleveland, vs Boston*

17] Memphis Grizzlies: 4-5 (Previous 18)
              Coming off a 1-2 week, the Grizzlies need a bit of time to  gel as Chandler Parsons looks to get back into the thick of things. While Zach Randolph may be dominating off the bench, Coach Fizdale needs to figure out how to get him and Marc Gasol on the court together as often as possible.

Week 5: @ Utah, @ Clippers, @ Dallas, vs Minnesota*

18] Denver Nuggets: 3-6 (Previous 16

19] Indiana Pacers: 4-6 (Previous 19)

20] Sacramento Kings: 4-7 (Previous 22)

21] Minnesota T'Wolves: 3-6 (Previous 27)

22] Brooklyn Nets: 4-5 (Previous 24)

23] New York Knicks: 3-6 (Previous 23)

24] Miami Heat: 2-6 (Previous 20)

25] Phoenix Suns: 3-7 (Previous 25)

26] Washington Wizards: 2-8 (Previous 28)

27] Orlando Magic: 3-6 (Previous 21)

28] Dallas Mavericks: 2-6 (Previous 26)

29] New Orleans Pelicans: 1-9 (Previous 30)

30] Philadlephia 76ers: 1-8 (Previous 29)