While the start of the NBA season has not gone as smoothly as some of the elite power teams would have liked for it to been, it’s been a pretty entertaining start to the season. The season is two weeks old, and there are several surprises both at the top of the power rankings and at the bottom.
Let’s take a look at my first NBA Power Rankings of the 2017 – 2018 season.
1. Golden State Warriors (3-2) — Despite their 2 losses early on – the Warriors are still the best team in the league. This is the Warriors title until someone takes it from them.
2. Los Angeles Clippers (4-0) — Blake Griffin and company are off to a great start. The folks in LA are asking – Chris Paul Who?
3. San Antonio Spurs (4-0) — No Kawhi Leonard has been no problem for the Spurs. This team still wins.
4. Houston Rockets (4-1): Houston has won four out of five games, despite losing Chris Paul in the opener. The good news – this team has started to play better defense.
5. Cleveland Cavaliers (3-2): While they have two losses, and lost to the Nets – when push comes to shove – this team is still the best in the Eastern Conference.
6. Oklahoma City Thunder (2-2): The Thunder will take some time to mesh and gel. When they do – look out to the rest of the league.
7. Boston Celtics (3-2): The win in Milwaukee on Thursday was a good sign for Brad Stevens team. Boston’s Jayson Tatum is a really good player.
8. Milwaukee Bucks (3-2): How good is the Greek Freak? The question – will he get enough help throughout the season?
9. Washington Wizards (3-1): A little disappointing that the Wizards trash talk to a young Lakers team, then lose. Wall and Beal – still really good.
10. Memphis Grizzlies (4-1) — Memphis will be able to contend every night on the court as long as Marc Gasol stays healthy.
11. Orlando Magic (3-1): How in the world have the Magic won three out of their first four games? Aaron Gordon is off to a red hot start.
12. Portland Trail Blazers (3-2): The Trail Blazers have a great guard combination, and a bunch of other guys that can play their role in the league.
13. Toronto Raptors (2-2) — Toronto starting on the West Coast is a good test of the guard duo in Toronto. At this point – we can’t be surprised that the Raptors are pretty good.
14. Minnesota Timberwolves (2-3) — Minnesota found out pretty quickly they are not nearly the team without Jimmy Butler as they are with Jimmy Butler.
15. Charlotte Hornets (2-2) — If only Charlotte could play all 82 games this season at home. Kemba Walker still a solid scorer.
16. Philadelphia 76ers (1-4 ) — Which team is more fun to follow, the 76ers or the Lakers? Both have a bright future.
17. Miami Heat (2-2) — The Heat are going to get Hassan Whiteside back and healthy, and will actually be a pretty talented basketball team.
18. Utah Jazz (2-3): Quin Snyder once again has a team that can defend.. The problem is – Quin Snyder once again has a team that can’t score enough.
19. Los Angeles Lakers (2-2) — Los Angeles is fun to watch. There is no doubt in my mind, Lonzo Ball is going to fit right in with this league.
20. Detroit Pistons (3-2): Andre Drummond is big, Andre Drummond is strong, Andre Drummond is good.
21. Indiana Pacers (2-3) — The Pacers have a bunch of tough, scrappy players. The Pacers are not going to be a good team, but will be a tough team to beat on a nightly basis.
22. Brooklyn Nets (3-2): The Nets with three wins before the month of November arrives has got to be the upset of the league.
23. New Orleans Pelicans (2-3): Is there a bigger pain in the butt to follow than Anthony Davis? One day he dominates, the next day he sits.
24. Phoenix Suns (2-3): The new coach in Phoenix makes it look easy. Two games – Two wins. Where is Eric Bledsoe going to end up?
25. Denver Nuggets (1-3): It seems this is becoming re-occuring theme for the Nuggets. They’ve played four games, and already appear out of the playoff picture.
26. Sacramento Kings (1-4) — The Kings lost out on the chance to spoil the DeMarcus Cousins reunion party on Thursday. Did they even try to guard him?
27. Chicago Bulls (1-3) — The Bulls rival the Knicks for the biggest NBA dumpster fire. The good news is – the Bulls were able to play the Hawks in Chicago.
28. Atlanta Hawks (1-4) — The Hawks were bad with Dennis Schroeder in the lineup. Check out this team with Dennis Schroeder OUT of the lineup.
29. Dallas Mavericks (1-5) — Dennis Smith Jr is really good, and Harrison Barnes will provide scoring. Other than that, Dallas is a pretty bad basketball team.
30. New York Knicks (0-3) — If there is a bigger dumpster fire other than the Cleveland Browns in all of sports, I would like to see it.
NBA Power Rankings from Rodney Knuppel. Rodney is a part time ESPN on air personality based out of Peoria Illinois. Rodney is the co-owner of Knup Sports, and has been featured numerous places with his NBA, MLB, NFL and other sports writing. Follow Rodney on Twitter @KnuppelRodney.