I wanted to write this post as one of my Sunday Updates, but I got super excited about that Jabari Parker block. It’s time for…
The RokDeez Bulls Blog Early Season Eastern Conference Power Rankings in November of 2018
1) The Toronto Raptors
Current Record: 12-2 .857
Current Standing in East: 1st
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 3rd
Kawhi Leonard is really fitting in well up North, and new head coach, Nick Nurse, has the team clicking.
2) Milwaukee Bucks
Current Record: 10-3 .769
Current Standing in East: 2nd
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 5th
Giannis Antetokounmpo is playing like an MVP. Coach Mike Budenholzer is getting the most out of every player on his team, including the Greek Freak. Milwaukee is very scary right now, and they are one of only two teams to have beaten the Toronto Raptors so far this season.
3) Boston Celtics
Current Record: 7-6 .538
Current Standing in East: 5th
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 1st
Boston has gotten off to a slow start, but I don’t think that means they should be written off. They are an incredibly talented team; as long as Kyrie Irving is playing for the Celtics, they have to be taken seriously.
4) Philadelphia 76ers
Current Record: 9-6 .600
Current Standing in East: 3rd
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 2nd
The big trade for Jimmy Butler has finally happened, and it’s the 76ers who come away with the prize. Philadelphia has struggled more than I expected to win games this season, Butler should help in that department. The question is how will Jimmy fit in? I guess we’ll find out.
5) Indiana Pacers
Current Record: 8-6 .571
Current Standing in East: 4th
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 4th
Victor Oladipo and the Pacers just keep on keeping on. They are definitely playoff bound, and definitely one of the most dangerous match-ups in the Eastern Conference right now.
6) Detroit Pistons
Current Record: 6-6 .500
Current Standing in East: 7th
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 7th
The Pistons got off to a red hot start and have since slowed down. Blake Griffin has looked good, pouring in points from all over the floor, and Andre Drummond leads the team in most defensive categories. Detroit faces a familiar problem, Ish Smith or Reggie Jackson. The team plays better with Ish running the point, but Jackson is a better all-around player. If I were the Bulls I’d see what it would take to pry Smith away from the Pistons.
7) Charlotte Hornets
Current Record: 7-7 .500
Current Standing in East: 6th
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 12th
The edition of Tony Parker as the backup point guard, leader, mentor, and on-the-court coach, cannot be overstated; He has been great. Kemba Walker has also been great this season, and the roll players have stepped up. Now it’s all about Charlotte sustaining their level of play.
8) Brooklyn Nets
Current Record: 6-8 .429
Current Standing in East: 8th
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 11th
Brooklyn has been chugging along with their talented group of try hard players. The unfortunate injury to Caris LeVert, who was having himself a breakout season, could prove costly for the Nets.
9) Miami Heat
Current Record: 5-8 .385
Current Standing in East: 10th
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 6th
It’s been a rocky start for the Miami Heat. Coach Erik Spoelstra still has players maxing their effort, it just doesn’t seem to be enough this season.
10) Orlando Magic
Current Record: 6-8 .429
Current Standing in East: 9th
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 15th
The Magic have been playing relatively well this season, but I don’t trust them to sustain their modest improvement. They are an injury or trade away from the being at the bottom of the NBA. Come January, if the team isn’t in serious playoff contention, Orlando might be looking to climb back into the Tank Race.
11) Duke Blue Devils
Current Record: 2-0 1.00
Current Rank in NCAA MB: 1st
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: Unranked
Helmed by Hall of Fame head coach, Mike Krzyzewski, and sporting 3 future NBA All-Stars (Zion Williamson, RJ Barrett, and Cam Reddish) I believe the Duke Blue Devils would be able to beat every single Eastern Conference team that appears after this power ranking.
12) The Chicago Bulls
Current Record: 4-10 .286
Current Standing in East: 12th
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 10th
Injuries. Stupid, stupid injuries.
13) New York Knicks
Current Record: 4-10 .286
Current Standing in East: 13th
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 13th
All-Star Kristaps Porzingas is still injured, and the Knicks are still tanking. ‘Nuff said.
14) Atlanta Hawks
Current Record: 3-11 .214
Current Standing in East: 14th
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 14th
The Atlanta Hawks are a young, developing team. They have some talent to work with, but they’ve suffered the inconsistencies of rookie play.
15) Washington Wizards
Current Record: 4-9 .308
Current Standing in East: 11th
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 9th
This is an ugly team that is a lot worse than their record shows. They are in the deepest depths of Basketball Hell.
16) Cleveland Cavaliers
Current Record: 2-11 .154
Current Standing in East: Last
Previous RokDeez Power Rank: 8th
Boy, were my preseason predictions about Cleveland wrong! They are injured, young, bad, and a mess. It’s almost as if one of the greatest basketball players of all time just up and left the team, generating a gaping maw of basketball misery in his wake.