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HomeBasketballNBANBA Power Rankings, Week 3: Celtics look unstoppable

NBA Power Rankings, Week 3: Celtics look unstoppable

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Two weeks into the season, one thing is clear: the Boston Celtics are on a mission.

Boston is the lone unbeaten team in the NBA after two weeks. The Celtics are throttling opponents, with a point differential that over a full season would be far and away the highest all time.

The Celtics so far look like far and away the best team in the league. Every other team has some issues you can see, and that will show in this week’s Power Rankings. Last week’s rankings are in parenthesis.

  1. Boston (2): wake me when the Celtics play a close game.
  2. Denver (1): only dropped from the top spot because of how scary Boston has been to start the season.
  3. Philadelphia (6): the 76ers are one of three teams, along with Boston and the LA Clippers, to have a point differential of more than 12 points per game.
  4. Golden State (5): the Warriors are 5-1 on the road. Golden State won just 11 road games all of last season.
  5. LA Clippers (7): How many games will the Clippers get out of the Kawhi Leonard/Paul George/Russell Westbrook/James Harden quarter?
  6. Atlanta (16): the Hawks have been a lot of fun but I don’t know if their style of play lends itself to sustained success. At 122.8 points per game, Atlanta has a top-2 offense. The Hawks, though, allow 115.2 points per game.
  7. Dallas (11): Dallas continues to beat up on the teams it should. The Mavericks six wins have come against teams with a combined record of 15-27.
  8. Milwaukee (8): it’s early, but the Bucks are one of the worst defensive teams in the league after being a top defensive team over the last handful of years. I wonder what changed?
  9. Minnesota (19): wolves are only team in the league currently allowing less than 100 points per game.
  10. LA Lakers (13): Lakers star Anthony Davis left Monday’s game with a groin injury. What was the over/under on games he’d play before missing time?
  11. Orlando (12): Second-year standout Paolo Banchero looks to have found his footing after a slow start. Over his last three games, Banchero is averaging 23.3 points, 6 rebounds and nearly 10 assists a game.
  12. Oklahoma City (9): the Thunder have dropped two in a row after a 3-1 start. OKC is yet to win at home this season.
  13. New Orleans (10): How will the Pelicans fare without guard CJ McCollum, who’s out for an unknown period of time with a collapsed lung?
  14. Toronto (23): after a disappointing second season, Scottie Barnes so far has shown he’s The Guy for the Raptors. Barnes is putting up 22.6 points, 9.9 rebounds and 5.9 assists a game. He’s also come up clutch in couple of late-game situations.
  15. Indiana (15): in three losses the Pacers have allowed 130.6 points per game. 
  16. San Antonio (24): pencil in Victor Wembanyama as a starter in the All-Star Game.
  17. Cleveland (21): the Cavs started the season with four of their first six games at home and went 1-3 in those games.
  18. Brooklyn (28): I’m not sure how long Cam Thomas can keep up his early run as a go-to scorer. Thomas through six games is averaging 26 points a game, good for 13th in the Association and head of the likes of Giannis, Dame and LeBron.
  19. Phoenix (4): At 3-4, Phoenix has had Devin Booker for two games and is yet to see Brad Beal suit up. Kevin Durant has to be having flashbacks to Brooklyn.
  20. Sacramento (8): The Kings really miss De’Aaron Fox, out with an ankle injury. In two games without the star guard, Sacramento is averaging just 95 points per game. In three games with Fox, The Kings put up 125.3 points per game.
  21. Miami (17): with a reputation as a solid defensive team, the Heat through six games are allowing opposing teams to shoot nearly 50% from the field.
  22. New York (18): statistically, Julius Randle has been one of the worst players in the league. The eye test backs that up.
  23. Houston (29): Houston’s big offseason acquisition has had a rough start to the season. Fred VanVleet through five games is shooting under 38% from the field.
  24. Portland (27): So far, the Blazers have the worst offensive rating in the league, at 104.1 points per 100 possessions.
  25. Detroit (14): Cade Cunningham has been a turnover machine so far. Are the Pistons asking him to do too much?
  26. Chicago (22): The Bulls aren’t particular good on either side of the floor. Chicago is bottom five in offensive and defensive rating.
  27. Utah (20): Last year seems like a long time ago. The Jazz are 2-5 and have allowed nearly 119 points per game. Utah last season started 10-3 and was a much stronger defensive team.
  28. Charlotte (25): an already bad team, Charlotte can’t afford to be without Terry Rozier for extended time. Rozier, the Hornets leading scorer, suffered a groin injury late last week and it’s unknown how long he’ll be out.
  29. Washington (26): Jordan Poole is off to a bad start with his new team, shooting under 42% from the floor and around 30% from 3.
  30. Memphis (30): Grizzlies were the last team in the league to get a win, beating Portland 112-100 on Sunday. 


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