Week 8: NBA Power Rankings


Mar 22, 2012; New Orleans, LA, USA; Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul (3) motions to his teammates during the third quarter against the New Orleans Hornets at the New Orleans Arena. New Orleans defeated the Clippers 97-90. Mandatory Credit: Crystal Logiudice-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to Week 8 of the 2012-13 Dunking with Wolves Power Rankings. JJ Glenn breaks down every NBA team with his insight throughout the entire  NBA season.
This WeekLast WeekTeam  Notes
12L.A. ClippersJJThey’ve won 16 straight games, and have done so with the highest positive point margin of any team in the NBA. They’re the 4th best team in points allowed, and thanks to Chris Paul they’re 2nd in the NBA in Assists per game.
21Oklahoma CityJJThe Thunder are still 8-2 in their last 10 games, and have the 2nd highest winning percentage of any team in the NBA. They also have the 2nd highest + point differential of any team in the NBA. 
36San AntonioJJThe Spurs are quietly and effectively putting together a solid NBA season (as expected), they have the 3rd highest winning percentage in the NBA. The Spurs have done so with the best assist percentage and NBA. They also have the 2nd best FG% in the NBA.
43HeatJJWhile the Heat have lost 2 straight games, they still have the best winning percentage in the Eastern Conference. The Heat have the best FG%, and 3PT% in the NBA. They currently are 6th in point differential and are showing they are tops in the East.
54New York KnicksJJWhile the Knicks have gone 6-4 in the last 10 games, the most concerning number for the Knicks is the 9-7 road record. No matter how good they may be, the Knicks will need to start winning on the road to prove they are a top contender in the East.
67AtlantaJJThe Hawks have to be one of the biggest surprise teams this year. It is fair to say no one thought after the Joe Johnson trade the team would still be this good. The Hawks have posted the 3rd best win percentage in the East. They are the 7th best defense in the league and 12th in scoring, for a +2.79 point diff. 
75MemphisJJMemphis still has the best defense in the NBA; it’s the 21st ranked offense that is still keeping the Grizzlies back. Should the Grizz figure out the offense struggles, this team will undoubtedly be a tough foe come playoff time. 
88Golden StateJJIf the Hawks are the biggest surprise team in the East, the Warriors are the surprise team on the West. The Warriors have a +2.52 point diff for the season and are 7-3 over the last 10 games. The Warriors are young and talented. Marc Jackson has a team that is buying, and it has resulted in the 4th best record in the West.
910MilwaukeeJJThe Bucks are tied for the top spot in the Central Division and 4th best in the East. It continues to be great play from the backcourt that is helping out the front court. Larry Sanders continues to be a great surprise, and the Jennings and Ellis combo is sharing the ball and playing efficient.
109ChicagoJJThe Bulls are tied for the top spot in the Central Division and 4th best in the East. The Bulls are allowing the 3rd fewest points in the league and still managing to outscore opponents without Rose, this team is learning to play without Rose which makes them even more dangerous when he comes back.
1113IndianaJJThe Pacers are really starting to find their own identity without Granger; they are getting back to the Defensive team we knew last season & currently 2nd in fewest points allowed. They are 7-3 over their last 10 games and holding a +1.44 point diff. 
1214HoustonJJOne thing is for sure, the Houston Rockets are a fun team to watch. They put up points like teams from the 80’s. The Rockets (even with Asik) are breaking even in rebounds per game, and hold a minus in Blocks, steals and assists.  The Rockets are 7-3 in their last 10 games and 2 games over .500 for 6th in the West.
1315DenverJJThe Nuggets are showing signs of the team so many people thought could compete with the Thunder in the West. The Nuggets have the 10th best point diff in the NBA at +1.85. Right now the Nuggets are 7th in the West 
1412BrooklynJJThe coaching drama will now shift its focus to Brooklyn. After a hot start the Nets are 2 games over .500 & 5-5 in their last 10. The Nets are 15th in point diff at just +0.77. The Nets are currently 7th in the East, and with a possible coaching change, things may not get any easier.
1511MinnesotaJJThe Wolves are still allowing the 6th fewest points a game, and have a + in the point differential. The glaring issue for the Wolves in a consistent outside shot (30th) in the NBA. Even with the Wolves great inside scoring they are 25th in FG%. The Wolves are 9th in Assist per game differential and 25th in FT%. The Wolves are going to need some consistency from the field if they will be competitive for the remainder of the season. 
1619PortlandJJThe Blazers have been 3-7 over their last 10 games, the Blazers have limited turnovers and been getting more consistent play from Aldridge, and Batum at the wing and more solid play from the bench. 
1720L.A. LakersJJThe Lakers have proven Steve Nash will be the engine that makes them go. Dwight Howard still has yet to show he is going to be the player they thought they were getting when the made the trade. He has shown glimpses, but has proven to be more ineffective then effective.
1817BostonJJThe Celtics have struggled in their last 10 games going 4-6 and are 5-10 on the road. They have lost their last 2 games on their west coast road trip. The Celtics are -1.55 in point differential and 28th in rebound diff at -4.14 and 24th in Blocks per game at -1.03.
1916UtahJJUtah has really struggled and have gone 4-6 in the last 10 games and have fallen to last in the tough Northwest Division in the Western Conference. 
2018PhiladelphiaJJThe Sixers are 2-8 in their last 10 and 3 games below .500. The Sixers miss an inside presence, and that would be Bynum. There has been no work on his return, and the Sixers need him now more than ever. They are being outscored by 2.52 per game, until they can find a way to get more points efficiently, they will continue to struggle.
2121DallasJJThe Mavericks are 2-8 in the last 10, they have Dirk back, but he is still on a minute limitation. Up to this point the Mavericks are missing an inside presence. They are last in rebound diff (-5.17), steals per game (-2.17). The Mavs will need an inside presence if they are to make some noise yet this season.
2223OrlandoJJThe Magic have lost their last 5, and have dipped to 6 games below .500.  Big Baby has been injured and missed games, I never thought I would say this, but the Magic really have missed Big Baby.
2324TorontoJJThe Raptors have gone 7-3 in their last 10 games. They have finally seen Andrea Bargnani isn’t a bust as a #1 pick and will be traded soon. Jose Calderon and Kyle Lowery are showing if this franchise is to be successful, they will be 2 of the major reasons why. 
2422PhoenixJJThe Suns point differential right now is -3.61. As in the past, the Suns defense allows a lot of points. In fact they are 26th in the NBA in points allowed at 101.3. The problem is without Nash, the Suns aren’t scoring points. 
2525DetroitJJThe Pistons beat The Heat, so there is that. The Pistons are getting good play from the inside as expected and when they get decent play from their back court, they have a decent chance to win games.
2626SacramentoJJDemarcus Cousins was suspended by the team, he has a new agent, and I’m sure there will be a trade coming soon. Cousins has said the right things on the outside, there is no doubt that is not the case on the inside. Expect to be tired of hearing Cousins rumors over the course of the next month or so. 
2728New OrleansJJEric Gordon is back, and had a solid first outing. In other news Austin Rivers will now start to get a lot less minutes.
2829ClevelandJJKyrie Irving is doing everything he can to keep this team in games, and they have been pretty competitive. Problem is they are 2-8 over their last 10 games and 7-25 for the season and solely in possession of the 2nd worst winning percentage in the NBA.
2927CharlotteJJThe Bobcats have now lost 18 straight. Funny quote from twitter “the Bobcats are a good 0-18 team” If their 0-18 how good can they be?
3030Washington D.CJJThe Wizards could get John Wall back sooner rather than later. Problem is, this season is playing for as many lottery ping pong balls is they can get, and if a team wants to have a lot of chances, they need to lose a lot of games. So far the Wizards have lost a lot of games to complete that portion of the equation correct.