NBA Rankings Recap
What a wild, wild race it is to finish inside the Top 6 in both the Eastern and Western Conference. The Top 6 do not have to play in the play-in portion of the NBA Playoffs. 7 will play 10, and 8 will play 9. Those teams will then match against the top 2 seeds in both conferences. It’s going to be wild. Just a couple of weeks to go. Let’s take a look at the most recent Dunkel Index NBA Rankings:
West Still Dominates
The Utah Jazz still remain in the top spot. There was a time that the Phoenix Suns caught Utah and were the top seed in the Western Conference. The Jazz now have a ½ game lead on the Suns in the Western Conference. But, outside of one team - the Top 5 is owned by the Western Conference. Utah comes in first, the Suns are 2nd, while the Clippers and Nuggets are 4th and 5th respectively. The lone Eastern Conference team in the Top 5 is the Philadelphia 76ers. Joel Embiid and company are 44-21 and just barely hold onto the top spot in the East.
Lakers Big Win Monday
The Los Angeles Lakers picked up a massive win on Monday and went from 7th to 5th in the Western Conference. LeBron James looks to be on his way back, and things are going to be interesting. The Lakers would take on the Clippers in the first round if the postseason started today. The Lakers are 8th in the most recent rankings. But Dallas and Portland still have something to say about all of this. The Mavericks are ½ game, and Portland 1 game behind Los Angeles. Dallas sits at 9th and Portland 12th in the most recent rankings.
No Change at the Bottom
The bottom of the rankings could go about any direction, and there would not be a ton of arguing about it. The good news about being the team with the worst record - the best chance at the top pick in the draft. Right now, that belongs to the Houston Rockets. The Rockets have won just 16 games all season. They are also last in the most recent rankings. Just ahead of Houston is the Timberwolves, with 20 wins. They are below Detroit, with 19, Oklahoma City and Orlando come in at 26 and 27. Cleveland at 25 is really about the only other option to sneak into the final 5.
Going to Miss
There are 6 teams that are going to miss the postseason as of right now. Of course, there will be more as the games go on, but 3 in the East and 3 in the West are eliminated. Those teams are Houston, Minnesota, and Oklahoma City in the West, along with Detroit, Orlando, and Cleveland in the Eastern Conference. The Raptors are three games back of Washington, while the Bulls are four games back for the final spot in the East. In the West - the Kings sit 4 games back of the Spurs, while New Orleans is 2.5 games back. The Wizards are 21st, the Raptors 22nd, and the Bulls 24th, while Sacramento is 23rd, and the Pelicans are 20th.
There it is. Make sure you stop by the Dunkel Index NBA Rankings and get the full order and the numbers behind the rankings.