NBA Power Rankings: Week 1

By Bryan Power - Covers Expert

No surprises as the defending champion Miami Heat start the season atop the Power Rankings. A healthy Derrick Rose and the Chicago Bulls figure to challenge the Heat in the East and sit third.

NBA Power Rankings

Week 1 Rank Last Week Change Team W-L
(ATS)
Power Rating Team Comments
1 same 8-1
(6-3-0)
-15 Miami
No surprise here. The two-time defending champs spent most of last season atop these Power Rankings and are likely to do the same again in 2013-14.
2 same 6-7
(4-9-0)
-13.5 L.A. Clippers
I'm not saying the Clippers will win the West, but I think they're going to finish with the best record and earn themselves a No. 1 seed.
3 same 1-4
(1-4-0)
-13.25 Chicago
The return of Derrick Rose vaults the Bulls back near the top of the rankings. No team plays Miami tougher and they have the best coach in the league.
4 same 8-5
(7-6-0)
-13.1 Indiana
It is going to be one heck of a race in the Central between the Bulls & Pacers. The only thing that scares me about Indiana is a lack of depth.
5 same 8-4
(5-7-0)
-13 San Antonio
After coming so close to a fifth NBA title last June, I'm interested to see how well the Spurs start this season. Pencil them in for another 55 wins though.
6 same 2-4
(4-2-0)
-12.5 Houston
I'm just going to come out and say it now. If Dwight Howard is your best player, you are NOT going to win a NBA Championship.
7 same 8-5
(7-5-1)
-12 Oklahoma City
The Thunder start low in the rankings due to the injury to Russell Westbrook. By season's end, I fully expect them to be higher on the list.
8 same 5-7
(6-5-1)
-10 Brooklyn
Call me crazy, but the Nets are a lot closer to the "rest of the pack" in the East then the top 3. Bringing in a bunch of old guys almost never works.
9 same 3-4
(3-3-1)
-9.5 Memphis
The most unheralded good team in the league. They made the Conference Finals and led the league in points allowed a year ago (89.3 PPG).
10 same 3-4
(5-2-0)
-9 Golden State
I see more of a plateau than a spike in wins from the Warriors this year. It all depends on how Coach Mark Jackson manages the lineup.
11 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-8.5 New York
The Knicks are coming off their best season in ages, but it really doesn't feel that way does it? I really do not like the way this roster is constructed.
12 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-8 Denver
The Nuggets lost both their coach and GM this past offseason, but can take solace in the fact that only five teams in history have won 57 games one season and failed to make the playoffs the next.
13 same 3-4
(6-1-0)
-7.5 Dallas
The return of a healthy Dirk Nowitzki should ensure the Mavs at least stay on the playoff bubble. Whether that bubble bursts remains to be seen.
14 same 6-5
(7-4-0)
-6 Washington
I am really scared of ranking the Wizards this high to start the season. Could look foolish in about a month. But they did play so much better once John Wall
15 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-5.8 Cleveland
Like the Wiz, the Cavs are another team expected to make dramatic improvement in the East. But a roster filled with injury-prone players must stay healthy.
16 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-5.75 Minnesota
Speaking of injuries, did you know that at no point last season were Kevin Love and Ricky Rubio in the lineup together? Ouch!
17 same 3-4
(3-4-0)
-5.6 Atlanta
Sorry Atlanta, but I hate the Hawks. Either be good or tank like everyone else. Stop being perpetually mediocre. That doesn't work in this league!
18 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-5.5 Detroit
This is the sleeper pick of most experts I talk to. Some even think they can challenge the Knicks for the #5 seed in the East. Seems too optimistic for me.
19 same 5-6
(3-8-0)
-5 Portland
Until I looked at last year's final power rankings, I had forgotten that the Blazers lost their final 13 games. They'll be better this year.
20 same 3-4
(2-4-1)
-4.75 Toronto
I'm not sure what to make of the NBA's version of Siberia this year. With so many teams in the East blatantly tanking, the Raptors should move up.
21 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-4.6 L.A. Lakers
How the mighty have fallen. An old roster coached by Mike D'Antoni figures to be a shell of its former self. In other words, same as last year but worse.
22 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-4.5 New Orleans
The Pelicans have a new name, but playing in the brutal Southwest Division, the results should be similar (i.e. another last place finish).
23 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-4 Boston
I realize Butler, Indiana may not be the most fun place in America, but can someone please tell me why Brad Stevens took this job?
24 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-3.5 Milwaukee
I think I'm lower on the Bucks than just about anybody. I have the other four teams in the Central Division all making the playoffs.
25 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-3 Utah
I forgot this team almost made the playoffs last year. After about two weeks, you can pretty much forget about the Jazz this year.
26 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-2.5 Sacramento
Better talent and a change in ownership (thank goodness the Maloofs are gone!) give the Kings a leg up on the Suns in the Pacific Division.
27 same 0-4
(1-3-0)
-1.5 Charlotte
The fact that three teams are lower than the Bobcats on this list should speak volumes on how bad the bottom of the league is this season.
28 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-1 Orlando
Somehow, the Magic found a way to finish below Charlotte last year. Accomplishing that feat for a 2nd straight year won't be as difficult.
29 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
-0.5 Phoenix
Robert Sarver has unseated Michael Jordan as the worst owner in the league.
30 same 0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Philadelphia
There is tanking and then there's the 2013-14 76ers. When you don't name a head coach until August, winning is clearly not a priority.
Return to the Current Week's rankings

Power Ratings compute offensive and defensive statistics into one number for each team, while accounting for factors like recent performances and strength of schedule. Power Ratings can be used as a baseline for relative spread index to compare current or future match-ups between two teams. The relative spread does not account for non-statistical factors like home-field advantage, recent injuries, game time decisions, rivalries, publicity, and weather.