The NBA ended Wednesday night with a showdown between the Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers. The Sixers won 135-130, but not before leading for 34 minutes in the final quarter. This has been an up and down season for both teams, so it’ll be interesting to see where they finish out of the playoffs next week.
The “nba standings” is a list of all the teams in the NBA, and their current standing.
Despite the fact that the Los Angeles Lakers are having a poor NBA season, LeBron James remains the lone bright light. On Saturday night, James overtook Karl Malone for second place on the all-time scoring record. Despite James’ achievement of yet another personal milestone, his team was defeated by the Eastern Conference’s 11th-ranked Washington Wizards. The Lakers’ chances of climbing the Western Conference rankings are dwindling. They are five games behind the No. 8 LA Clippers in the standings and seem headed for the play-in round.
In the West, the Golden State Warriors were meant to be complete again with Draymond Green’s return after a two-month absence, but Stephen Curry injured a ligament in his foot in a defeat to the Boston Celtics on Wednesday, putting him out for at least two weeks. The Phoenix Suns are nine games clear of the No. 2 Memphis Grizzlies, but the Warriors are fighting to remain in third place, two games ahead of the Utah Jazz and Donovan Mitchell, who is on a tear.
Meanwhile, the Minnesota Timberwolves, headed by Karl-Anthony Towns, are making a late-season push to get out of the play-in tournament. Last week, Towns scored 60 points against the San Antonio Spurs, the most in the NBA this season, including 32 in the third quarter.
And Kyrie Irving followed in Towns’ footsteps on Tuesday, scoring 60 points for the Brooklyn Nets, a career best and a franchise record. However, the Nets remain in the play-in round as the Eastern Conference’s No. 8 seed, only one game ahead of the Charlotte Hornets.
As the playoffs approach, our experts analyze into where each of the 30 teams stands.
Note: Throughout the regular season, our panel (Tim Bontemps, Jamal Collier, Nick Friedell, Andrew Lopez, Tim MacMahon, Dave McMenamin, and Ohm Youngmisuk) will rank all 30 teams from top to bottom, determining which teams are currently playing the best basketball and which teams are most likely to win the championship.
The Phoenix Suns had a 58-14 record in 2021-22. 1st place previously
On Sunday night, Suns coach Monty Williams lauded Mikal Bridges, comparing him to previous NBA Defensive Player of the Year winners Michael Cooper and Ron Artest for his ability to protect elite players on the outside and in the paint.
Williams said, “He should be Defensive Player of the Year, No. 1.” “He doesn’t back down from a fight. Every night, he performs. He keeps an eye on everyone. He performs for 50 minutes. On offense, he’s still a force to be reckoned with. I’m not a fan of Iron Man, but he enjoys playing and working, and he’s a winner.” Lopez’s words
2. Miami Heat: 47-24 in 2021-22. Previous position: 2
Miami has won three of their last four games and will face the 76ers on Monday night. Tyler Herro continued his scorching pace with 26 points in 28 minutes in Saturday’s victory. In nine games this month, he’s averaging 25.9 points per game, shooting 51.3 percent from the field after shooting 52.8 percent in February. Friedell’s words
3. Memphis Grizzlies: 49-23 in 2021-22. 3rd place before.
After a lull last month, Desmond Bane has resurfaced. In March, he is averaging 20.4 points and 62.5 percent true shooting, compared to 14.7 points and 48.9% true shooting in February. Behind All-Star point guard Ja Morant, who missed a few of games this week due to back and knee pain, Bane has emerged as the Grizzlies’ No. 2 scoring threat. MacMahon (MacMahon)
4. Milwaukee Bucks, 44-27 in 2021-22. Previous position: 5
Giannis Antetokounmpo’s chances of winning his third Most Valuable Player Award are improving. Milwaukee is tied for second place in the conference, and Antetokounmpo is a candidate for Defensive Player of the Year and is battling Joel Embiid (30.0 PPG) and LeBron James for the scoring crown (29.8 PPG) (30.0 PPG). Collier’s
5. Boston Celtics, 44-28 in 2021-22. Previous position: 7
After routing Denver on Sunday night, Boston is an incredible juggernaut. Since Jan. 23, the Celtics have gone 21-4, have the league’s top defense by almost five points per 100 possessions, and have outscored opponents by 16 points per 100 possessions. — Best wishes
6. Philadelphia 76ers, 43-27 in 2021-22. Previous position: 6
Philly had a rollercoaster week, with victories against Dallas and Cleveland wedged between defeats to Denver and Toronto. It’s a hit-or-miss league at times, but when Philadelphia is hitting 3-pointers, they seem like world-beaters. What happens if they don’t? Their offensive comes to a screeching end. — Best wishes
7. Golden State Warriors (47-24) in 2021-22 Previous position: 4
With a foot ailment, Stephen Curry will be sidelined for at least the next two weeks. Klay Thompson is still attempting to regain his rhythm after being away for 212 years, while Draymond Green is just returning from a disk condition. Another setback in James Wiseman’s recovery has resulted in knee swelling, and his comeback this season is uncertain. The Warriors’ one saving grace is that Jordan Poole is in the middle of one of his greatest streaks of the season, having scored at least 20 points in nine of his last ten games. Friedell’s words
The Dallas Mavericks had a 43-28 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 8
After winning the first three games of a five-game road trip, the Mavs ran out of steam and suffered double-digit defeats in back-to-back games against Philadelphia and Charlotte. In both Boston and Brooklyn, Spencer Dinwiddie made game-winning three-pointers. He and Chicago’s DeMar DeRozan are the only players in the league to make game-winning last-second shots in consecutive games this season. MacMahon (MacMahon)
9. Utah Jazz, 45-26 in 2021-22. Previous position: 9
Donovan Mitchell was forced to sit out Friday’s thrashing of the Clippers due to a calf injury, but he kept his hot hand going. Mitchell scored 37 points in a win against the Bulls on Wednesday and 36 points in a win over the Knicks on Sunday, both in front of a raucous Madison Square Garden crowd. Mitchell hit 16 three-pointers in the two victories, the most in Jazz history in a two-game stretch. MacMahon (MacMahon)
10. Denver Nuggets (42-30) in 2021-22 Previous position: 11
With 10 games left, the Nuggets are tied for seventh place in the West with Minnesota, and will face the Clippers in a play-in game. DeMarcus Cousins talked to the squad after Sunday’s 20-point defeat to Boston, according to Bones Hyland. Cousins warned the team that their performance is unacceptable right now. Expect the Nuggets to react, knowing how they have in the past under Michael Malone. Youngmisuk’s remark
The Chicago Bulls had a 41-29 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 10
The good news for the Bulls, who have lost eight of their last ten games after going winless on a three-game road trip, is that more aid is on the way. After damaging ligaments in his wrist in the fifth game of the season, forward Patrick Williams will return on Monday. Williams will play off the bench, and the Bulls are expected to ease him back into action, but his presence might help raise Chicago’s defense, which is ranked 20th in the NBA in defensive rating. Collier’s
12. Minnesota Timberwolves, 42-30 in 2021-22. 15th place before.
Minnesota has won four straight games and ten of their past eleven. They’re threatening to snag one of the Western Conference’s top six seeds and skip the play-in round. The Timberwolves trail the Nuggets by half a game for the No. 6 spot and the Mavericks by 1.5 games. They play the Mavs at Dallas on Monday and at home on Friday, and both games are vital. Collier’s
The Brooklyn Nets had a 37-34 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 12
Wednesday, March 23: 7:30 p.m., Nets vs. Grizzlies; 10 p.m., 76ers vs. Lakers.
Heat at Celtics, 7:30 p.m., Wednesday, March 30 At 10 p.m., the Suns will face the Warriors.
All timings are in Eastern Standard Time.
As he continues to rehab his back injury, Brooklyn has no clue if or when Ben Simmons will play. The Nets have no idea when the immunization restriction in New York City will be lifted, allowing Kyrie Irving to participate in home games. What they do know is that they have Kevin Durant, and they’ll always have a shot with him on the court. Since returning from an MCL injury on March 3, Durant has averaged 30 points per game. Friedell’s words
The Cleveland Cavaliers had a 41-30 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 13
The Cavaliers have won three of their last four games, just in time for LeBron James and the Lakers to visit town on Monday. James has a lifetime average of 29.1 points against his old club, which is the best of any player in the league. McMenamin, McMenamin, McMenamin, Mc
The Toronto Raptors had a 40-31 record in 2021-22. 14th place before.
With Fred VanVleet in and out of the lineup and OG Anunoby not playing at all, Toronto is back on track, having won six of seven games since Friday’s last-second setback to the Lakers. The Raptors, headed by rookie Scottie Barnes, have a roster full of big, rangy players and are shaping up to be a challenging first-round opponent in the Eastern Conference. — Best wishes
16. Charlotte Hornets (36-35) in 2021-22. Previous position: 18
Gordon Hayward’s availability down the stretch may make or break Charlotte’s season. Last week, the forward said that he will start taking contact this week and that his condition would be assessed from there. When Hayward plays, Charlotte is 26-22, while when he doesn’t, they are 10-13. — Best wishes
The Los Angeles Clippers had a 36-37 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 16
The Clippers are essentially locked into eighth place, with the Timberwolves chasing Denver for sixth place and the Lakers continuing to struggle underneath them. Ty Lue’s club, on the other hand, isn’t playing at its best right now. In reality, it’s the polar opposite. The Clippers were blasted out in Utah and have now lost six of their last eight games, with wins against the Wizards and Pistons their only victories. The good news is that the Clippers have the most practice time of the season, so Lue will aim to bring them back to scrappy ball before the play-in game. Youngmisuk’s remark
Atlanta Hawks had a 35-36 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 17
The Hawks are comfortably in 10th place in the Eastern Conference play-in race, but they are still in a tight competition with Brooklyn (two games ahead at No. 8) and Charlotte (one game ahead at No. 9). Last week, the Hawks were defeated by the Hornets, tying the season series. Atlanta will rely on Trae Young, who had his 27th 20-point, 10-assist game on Sunday night. That breaks his own club record for most in a single season, which he achieved in 2019-20. Lopez’s words
The New Orleans Pelicans had a 30-41 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 20
The Pelicans have gone 7-6 since Jaxson Hayes was inserted into the starting lineup at power forward on Sunday night, slipping to ninth place in the Western Conference standings. With Jonas Valanciunas and Hayes on the court for 216 minutes since February 17, the Pelicans have a +10.2 net rating. Hayes has averaged 15.6 points and seven rebounds in his last five games while hitting 7-of-12 from three-point range. Lopez’s words
Los Angeles Lakers (2021-22) have a 30-41 record. Previous position: 19
The Lakers followed up perhaps their most inspiring team win of the season in Toronto on Friday — featuring Russell Westbrook’s miraculous steal and game-tying 3-point sequence forcing overtime, where they pulled away — with the most impressive individual accomplishment by any player on their roster this season on Saturday, when LeBron James passed Karl Malone for second place all-time in Washington. However, the Wizards won, and L.A. is now in the last play-in berth in the West, at No. 10 with 11 games remaining. McMenamin, McMenamin, McMenamin, Mc
The Washington Wizards had a 30-40 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 21
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The Wizards’ chances of making the playoffs were severely harmed when they dropped six consecutive games, four of which came on a West Coast trip. However, the Wizards spoiled LeBron James’ historic night on Saturday, when he overtook Karl Malone for third place on the all-time scoring record by rallying from a 16-point hole to defeat the Lakers. While the victory may not have meant much in the end, the Wizards got a taste of Kristaps Porzingis’ potential in the fourth quarter, when he scored 16 of his 27 points. He had the appearance of The Unicorn, whom they had acquired at the trading deadline. Youngmisuk’s remark
The New York Knicks had a 30-41 record in 2021-22. 22nd in the previous ranking
While New York’s season has been a disaster, RJ Barrett’s performance over the last several months is something to look forward to in the summer. Barrett has averaged over 24 points per game since January 1 and is shooting 37.8% from 3-point range. The Knicks will be happy if he can maintain this level of play for the whole season next year. — Best wishes
San Antonio Spurs had a 28-44 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 23
Since the All-Star break, Spurs forward Keldon Johnson has been playing his best basketball of his short career. Since the Spurs returned to action, he’s had three 30-point games: 32 points against the Wizards on Feb. 25, 33 points against the Hornets on March 5, and a career-high 34 points against the Timberwolves last Monday. While he didn’t reach the 30-point mark on Sunday, he did grab the game-winning putback as the Warriors were defeated. Lopez’s words
The Trail Blazers are ranked 24th in the NBA with a 26-44 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 24
The Blazers’ losing streak continued on Sunday, as they fell to Indiana for the 10th time in 11 games. Although Portland’s sole victory since the All-Star break came against Washington, the Blazers are getting a good look at Josh Hart’s abilities. In his last five games, Hart has averaged 28.6 points. Youngmisuk’s remark
The Indiana Pacers had a 25-47 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 26
T.J. Warren’s announcement that he would miss the remainder of the 2021-22 season was a depressing finale to another injury-plagued season. Warren was restricted to four games in the 2020-21 season due to stress fractures in his left foot, after a breakthrough performance in the bubble in 2020. He hasn’t appeared in a game since December 29, 2020. This summer, he will be an unrestricted free agent. Collier’s
26. The Sacramento Kings had a 25-48 record in 2021-22. They were ranked 25th in the previous season.
In Sunday’s 127-124 overtime defeat to Phoenix, Kings rookie Davion Mitchell had himself a game. Mitchell, who is renowned for his defense, went off offensively with De’Aaron Fox out with a hand injury, setting career highs in points (28) and assists (nine), and giving the Suns all they could handle. McMenamin, McMenamin, McMenamin, Mc
The Detroit Pistons had a 19-52 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 27
Marvin Bagley III has averaged 13.6 points and 6.9 rebounds on 53 percent shooting in 12 games since joining the Pistons. He’s getting more opportunities to play around the rim, and he got a couple spot starts for Detroit last week when Jerami Grant was sidelined. Collier’s
The Oklahoma City Thunder had a 20-51 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 28
Darius Bazley, a power player, has lately showed fascinating indications of scoring improvement. Over the previous six games, Bazley has averaged 21.0 points on 53.5 percent shooting, including a career-high 29-point night and two 25-point efforts. This summer, Bazley, a long-armed, dynamic athlete with flexible defensive ability, will be available for a contract renewal. MacMahon (MacMahon)
The Orlando Magic had a 19-53 record in 2021-22. Previous position: 29
Wendell Carter Jr. had another great game against the Thunder on Sunday, scoring 30 points and grabbing 16 rebounds. He has averaged over 18 points and 11 rebounds each game over the previous two months. Meanwhile, Jonathan Isaac has been ruled out for the season while he recovers from a knee injury. Since August 2020, he hasn’t played. Friedell’s words
30. The Houston Rockets had a 17-54 record in 2021-22. They were ranked 30th last year.
The Rockets have won just two of their last 20 games, giving them the league’s lowest record and a top-five selection. Jalen Green’s development as the No. 2 overall choice in last summer’s draft has been a bright spot, as he has averaged 18.2 points on.472/.375/.732 shooting splits throughout that time. However, even by tanking standards, the Rockets’ defense (NBA-worst 116.5 points allowed per 100 possessions) is terrible. MacMahon (MacMahon)
The “nba final power rankings” is a blog that ranks the NBA teams from best to worst. The article will often include a list of players and their statistics for the week.
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