SportsTips’ NBA Power Rankings 2021: Week 11

SportsTips’ NBA Power Rankings 2021: Week 11
Tue 2nd March 2021

A six game winning streak has surged last year’s Eastern Conference champions into the SportsTips’ NBA Power Rankings top 10 for the first time this season. However another 3-1 week for has resulted in the Utah Jazz holding onto the #1 spot heading into Week 11. 

Here’s where all 30 NBA teams stand heading into Week 11 of the 2020-21 NBA season:

1. Utah Jazz

NBA Championship Odds: +700
Current Record: 27-7
Previous Ranking: 1

The Utah Jazz have continued their dominant first half of the season, wrapping up Week 10 with a 3-1 record to improve to 27-7 on the eve of the All-Star break. The Jazz got the better of the Hornets (22 points), Lakers (25 points) and Magic (15 points) by double digit margins last week, however suffered an eight point loss on the road to the surging Miami Heat.

Utah are playing like a well-oiled machine this season, led predominantly by their All-Star duo of Donovan Mitchel and Rudy Gobert, in fact the Jazz are 14-0 when Mitchell shoots above 50%. However, role players such as Mike Conley and Joe Ingles have been crucial to their success, with Conley averaging 14.3 points and 6.7 assists in his three games last week, while Ingles has been on fire, shooting 54% from the three point line in four games. 

2. Brooklyn Nets

NBA Championship Odds: +325
Current Record: 22-13
Previous Ranking: 2

Brooklyn extended their winning streak to eight consecutive games after winning their opening two matches last week. However a loss to the Mavericks without Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving saw the Nets conclude Week 10 with a 2-1 record to improve to 22-13.

As the only member of the Nets big three that played every game last week, James Harden continued his dominant debut season in Brooklyn averaging 26 points, nine rebounds and nine assists for the week, while Bruce Brown provided great production off the bench with 18.3 points and 5.7 rebounds in three games. The Nets are just .5 of a game behind Philadelphia for top spot in the East.

3. Milwaukee Bucks

NBA Championship Odds: +700
Current Record: 21-13
Previous Ranking: 8

Milwaukee extended their winning streak to five consecutive games after a 3-0 Week 10. The Bucks opened up their week with a comfortable win over the lowly Timberwolves, before closing it out with a four point win over the Pelicans and a five point win over the Clippers.

Giannis Antetokounmpo outscored the entire Clippers team 17-10 down the stretch on Sunday, on his way to a 36 points, 14 rebound, five assist and four block performance. The victory over the Clippers was also Antetokounmpo’s fourth straight game with at least 35 points, giving him averages of 37 points, 10.7 rebounds and 5.7 assists for the week. Khris Middleton added 21.7 points on 47% three point shooting, while the Bucks also welcomed Jrue Holiday back to their line-up after a 10 game absence.

4. Los Angeles Lakers

NBA Championship Odds: +275
Current Record: 24-11
Previous Ranking: 3

The Lakers slid in the Power Rankings for the third week in a row after starting Week 10 with a pair of losses that extended their losing streak to four games. Los Angeles were defeated by the below .500 Wizards in overtime, before suffering a blow out loss against the league leading Jazz.

However, the Lakers welcomed back Dennis Schroder for their final two games of the week and quickly brought an end to their losing streak with victories over the Blazers and Warriors. LeBron James averaged 24.3 points, 7.5 rebounds and 7.0 assists last week despite struggling from the three point line, while Dennis Schroder averaged 17 points and 4.0 assists in their two wins. The Lakers will enjoy the All-Star break, as it will give Anthony Davis more time to recover and prepare for the second half of the season

5. Phoenix Suns

NBA Championship Odds: +2800
Current Record: 22-11
Previous Ranking: 5

The Suns had a great week on and off the court. After winning three of their four games to improve to a 22-11 record, Devin Booker was elevated to an All-Star reserve on Tuesday, replacing the injured Anthony Davis.

Booker and Chris Paul will be the first Phoenix All-Star duo since Steve Nash and Amar’e Stoudemire in 2010. The Suns one loss last week came against the Hornets in Phoenix, with their three wins coming against the Blazers, Bulls and Timberwolves. Devin Booker dropped a season-high 43 points in Sunday’s win over Minnesota.

6. Los Angeles Clippers

NBA Championship Odds: +500
Current Record: 24-12
Previous Ranking: 4

After opening up their week with a 19 point victory over the Wizards, the Clippers were routed in their first of two back to back games against the Grizzlies in Memphis, going down by 28 points. Los Angeles got some form of vindication the following night, with a 20 point win against the Grizzlies on Saturday, before closing out Week 10 with a five point loss to the Bucks.

Although Kawhi Leonard averaged 26 points, 7.5 rebounds and 5.3 assists last week, the Clippers lack a ball handling playmaker that can create shots for their two All-Star wings (not dissimilar to the Boston Celtics). Los Angeles will certainly be on the lookout for a player in the trade or buyout market.

7. Philadelphia 76ers

NBA Championship Odds: +1500
Current Record: 22-12
Previous Ranking: 6

Philadelphia held onto the top spot in the Eastern Conference thanks to a 2-1 week that improved their overall record to 22-12. The 76’ers opened up Week 10 with a seven point win over the Raptors and a 14 point win over the Mavericks, before closing out the week with an upset overtime loss to the Cavaliers.

Joel Emiid shot just 38% from the field this week, however still scored 42 points in the loss to Cleveland. Ben Simmons also added 24 points of his own against the Cavs, but Philly could not get the win. The 76’ers simply didn’t get enough production on offense from their supporting cast with Tobias Harris unavailable.

8. Miami Heat

NBA Championship Odds: +2800
Current Record: 17-17
Previous Ranking: 18

The Heat won each of their four games in Week 10, improving to a 17-17, .500 record. The wins over the Thunder, Raptors, Jazz and Hawks elevated Miami to the fifth seed in the East, while also extending their winning streak to six consecutive games.

While Goran Dragic and Tyler Herro have missed extended periods this season, Jimmy Butler (who has also missed games) and Bam Adebayo have been the driving forces behind the Heat’s recent success. With Butler averaging 25 points, 9.0 assists and 7.3 rebounds last week and Adebayo adding 18.3 points, 12.3 rebounds and 5.3 assists per game.

9. Denver Nuggets

NBA Championship Odds: +2500
Current Record: 18-15
Previous Ranking: 11

Denver’s one loss last week was a frustrating 112-110 loss to the Wizards that saw the Nuggets leading a 3-on-1 fast break in the dying seconds of the game. Only needing a two to force the game to overtime, Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr didn’t go towards the basket, which forced Denver to settle for an attempted game winning Facundo Campazzo three pointer instead.

Despite that loss, the Nuggets added two wins to their overall record last week, largely thanks to Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokic, who each averaged 28 points on better than 50% shooting from three point range last week.

10. San Antonio Spurs

NBA Championship Odds: +6000
Current Record: 17-12
Previous Ranking: 9

Following a nine day hiatus that saw four of their games postponed, the Spurs returned to the court this week, however still without several of their key players. San Antonio suffered a three point loss to the Thunder in their first game back, however evened the ledger at 1-1 for the week thanks to a three point win over the Pelicans.

Demar DeRozan had his fourth game this season (and just the ninth of his career) with at least 20 points and 10 assists against New Orleans, adding 32 points and 11 assists. 

11. Portland Trail Blazers

NBA Championship Odds: +6000
Current Record: 18-14
Previous Ranking: 7

After propelling themselves up the Western Conference standings in recent weeks, the Portland Trail Blazers went winless from their three games in Week 10. The Blazers opened up their week with a 32 point loss to the Suns and followed that performance with a five point loss to the Nuggets and a nine point loss to the Lakers.

There is no shame in losing to any of those three teams (other than the margin against Phoenix), however three straight losses against conference rivals isn’t ideal for any team with playoff aspirations. Damian Lillard put up 28 points and nine assists per game last week, however Portland’s defense failed to get stops.

12. Golden State Warriors

NBA Championship Odds: +7000
Current Record: 19-16
Previous Ranking: 13

Golden State kicked off Week 10 with three consecutive wins (which was the first time they’ve done that this season), however closed out the week with an embarrassing loss to the Lakers on national television.

The Warriors defeated the Knicks, Pacers and Hornets, with the individual highlight for the week coming in the win over Charlotte, as Dryaond Green dished a career high 19 assists. Green Averaged 10 points, 10 rebounds and 14 assists in the three game win streak. A 26 point loss to the Lakers is not the ideal way to finish a week, however a 3-1 Week 10 has kept the Warriors above .500 and in the eighth seed in the Western Conference.

13. Dallas Mavericks

NBA Championship Odds: +5000
Current Record: 16-16
Previous Ranking: 14

Dallas improved to .500 thanks to a 3-1 Week 10. After securing victories over the Grizzlies and Celtics, the Mavericks were defeated by 14 points against the 76’ers. However, with Kristaps Porzingis back in the line-up, Dallas closed out the week with a 17 point victory over the in form (albeit undermanned) Brooklyn Nets.

Porzingis had 18 points and three blocks against Brooklyn, however it was a 16.5 point, 53% three point shooting week from Jalen Brunson that provided the necessary relief on offense for Luka Doncic.

14. Toronto Raptors

NBA Championship Odds: +3300
Current Record: 17-17
Previous Ranking: 10

The Raptors dropped their opening two games of Week 10, before closing out the week with an 11 point win over the struggling Rockets. Toronto had their final game of the week postponed due to health and safety protocols leaving them with not enough available players and coaches to compete.

Given that the Raptors two games this week are in doubt, Toronto may have to try and fit their remaining 39 regular season games into just 67 days in the second half of the season. On a positive note, Kyle Lowry successfully returned from a thumb injury, averaging 22 points, nine rebounds and nine assists from his two games last week.

15. Boston Celtics

NBA Championship Odds: +3300
Current Record: 17-17
Previous Ranking: 15

Boston’s tumultuous 2020-21 season has continued in Week 10, splitting their four games last week for a 2-2 record to remain at .500. The Celtics lost to the Mavericks by three points before being blown out by 15 points against the Hawks.

Boston responded with a pair of hard fought wins against Indiana and Washington to close out the week on a two game winning streak. Both Kemba Walker and Jayson Tatum returned to shooting form last week, with Walker averaging 24.7 points on 39% three point shooting in three games, while Tatum finished the week with a 31 point, 54% shooting performance against the Wizard, including the late game winner.

16. New York Knicks

NBA Championship Odds: +10000
Current Record: 18-17
Previous Ranking: 17

The Knicks are currently the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference thanks to a 3-1 Week 10 that improved their record to 18-17. New York lost to the Warriors in their Week 10 opener, however won their final three games against the Kings, Pacers and Pistons.

Although the Knicks are above .500 this late in the season for just the first time since the 2012-13 season, New York are far from safe in the Eastern Conference standings, currently one of seven teams in the East on 17 losses and just two games ahead of the 10th seed.

Julius Randle continued his All-Star season last week, averaging 24.8 points, 10.5 rebounds and 5.8 assists over the four games. While Derrick Rose filled in as a starter for the injured Elfrid Payton and averaged 16.3 points on 58% three point shooting to go along with 7.5 assists.

17. Charlotte Hornets

NBA Championship Odds: +20000
Current Record: 16-17
Previous Ranking: 16

Charlotte split their Week 10 games 2-2, to remain one game below a .500 record. The Hornets got their week off to a shaky start, suffering a 22 points blowout defeat against the league leading Jazz. However, Charlotte responded with arguably their best win of the season, defeating the Phoenix Suns 124-121.

Charlotte closed out the week with a loss to the Warriors and a win over the Kings. Although Terry Rozier’s shooting streak ended, Malik Monk stepped up with 23.8 points on 38.9% three point shooting last week, while LaMelo Ball continued his Rookie of the Year season, averaging 21.8 points, 7.5 assists and 5.5 rebounds in Week 10. PJ Washington also chipped in with a career high 42 points in Sunday’s win over the Kings.

18. Memphis Grizzlies

NBA Championship Odds: +12500
Current Record: 15-15
Previous Ranking: 19

For the third week in a row, Memphis split their four games for a 2-2 record, keeping them at .500. It was an inconsistent week for the Grizzlies who lost to Dallas by 10 points, defeated the Clippers by 28 points, lost the Clippers by 20 points and finally closed out the week with a 49 point win over Houston.

The 49 point margin of victory against the Rockets was the largest in franchise history, as was Memphis’ 85 points off the bench. Jonas Valanciunas put up 13.8 points and 11.8 rebounds per game last week, while Justise Winslow got the opportunity to work into the Grizzlies system in the blowout win over Houston, scoring 20 points on 75% shooting.

19. Indiana Pacers

NBA Championship Odds: +5000
Current Record: 15-17
Previous Ranking: 12

After returning from almost one week off due to postponed games, the Pacers dropped all three of their Week 10 encounters, going down to the Warriors, Celtics and Knicks by a combined 13 points.

On a positive note for Indiana, Domantas Sabonis (who averaged 20.3 points, 9.7 rebounds and 7.3 assists per game in Week 10) was named a 2021 All-Star, replacing the injured Kevin Durant.

20. Chicago Bulls

NBA Championship Odds: +25000
Current Record: 15-17
Previous Ranking: 22

Chicago are one of the seven teams in the Eastern Conference sitting on 17 losses, meaning that there are just two games that stands between the 10th seeded Bulls and the fourth seed in the East.

Chicago won two of their three games in Week 10, defeating the Rockets and Timberwolves, before closing out the week with a loss to the Suns. Zach LaVine celebrated his debut All-Star selection with 26.7 points per game on 59% three point shooting last week. While Coby White has continued to look like a serviceable backup scorer in Chicago, adding 21 points and 7.7 rebounds per game last week.  

21. New Orleans Pelicans

NBA Championship Odds: +8000
Current Record: 14-19
Previous Ranking: 20

After defeating the Pistons in their opening game of the week, New Orleans dropped their following two games (@ Milwaukee and @ San Antonio), leaving them five games below .500. To sum up the Pelicans season quite simply, their offense is good and their defense is bad.

New Orleans led the NBA with 122.7 points per 100 possessions in February, while also giving up a league high 120.5 points per 100 possessions in February. Zion Williamson averaged almost 30 points per game on 61% shooting last week, as well as 10 rebounds. Brandon Ingram added 26.3 points per game, however their offense cannot offset their deplorable defense.

22. Washington Wizards

NBA Championship Odds: +15000
Current Record: 13-19
Previous Ranking: 24

Washington came out of a rare five game week with a 3-2 record, improving them to 13-19 for the season. The Wizard went 2-1 on their west coast road trip, defeating the Lakers, losing to the Clippers and defeating the Nuggets, before returning to the East coast to close out the week a win over the Timberwolves and a one point loss to the Celtics.

Bradley Beal was on fire last week putting up 34.8 points on 52% shooting to go along with 5.6 assists, while Russell Westbrook averaged 22.2 points, 11.6 rebounds and nine assists in Washington’s five games.

23. Atlanta Hawks

NBA Championship Odds: +10000
Current Record: 14-20
Previous Ranking: 21

Other than a 15 point victory over the struggling Celtics, Atlanta’s Week 10 was somewhat of a disaster, losing to the Cavaliers, Thunder and the in-form Heat. The Hawks are now six games below .500 with an unfavourable fixture after the All-Star break.

Trae Young is in the midst of another shooting slump, however John Collins continued his excellent season, averaging 21.5 points on 47% three point shooting as well as eight rebounds last week. If not for Danilo Gallinari, the Hawks might have gone winless in Week 10, as Gallinari nailed 10 of 12 three pointers against the Celtics en route to a game high 38 points in 33 minutes. 

24. Cleveland Cavaliers

NBA Championship Odds: +30000
Current Record: 13-21
Previous Ranking: 30

The Cavaliers snapped their 10 game losing streak with victories in each of their three games in Week 10. Cleveland defeated the Hawks, Rockets and most impressively the 76’ers last week, largely thanks to the play of Colin Sexton and Jarrett Allen.

Sexton put up 26.7 points per game on 39% three point shooting last week, while Jarrett Allen has continued to dominate as a starter in Cleveland putting up 17.7 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks per game.

25. Oklahoma City Thunder

NBA Championship Odds: +25000
Current Record: 14-20
Previous Ranking: 25

The Thunder split their four games this week to improve to 14-20 record after a 2-2 week. OKC lost to the Heat, defeated the Spurs and Hawks, before closing out their week with a 30 point loss to the Nuggets.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander has continued his superb season, having averaged 25.4 points on 51.8% shooting from the field, 47.4 from three and 84.6 from the free throw line as well as five rebounds and six assists per game in the month of February.

SGA averaged 26.5 points per game on 48% three point shooting to go along with 4.8 assists per game last week, including a career-high 42 on the Spurs. However, the Thunder’s supporting cast isn’t capable of making them competitive in the West.

26. Sacramento Kings

NBA Championship Odds: +30000
Current Record: 13-21
Previous Ranking: 26

After back to back winless weeks, the Kings began Week 10 with their eighth and ninth consecutive losses, going down to the Nets and the Knicks.

Sacramento snapped their losing streak with a three point win over the Pistons before closing out the week with a one point loss to the Hornets. The Kings gave up an eight-point lead with 34 seconds remaining in Sunday’s matchup against Charlotte, losing the match on a Malik Monk’s and-one with 1.4 seconds left.

27. Detroit Pistons

NBA Championship Odds: +100000
Current Record: 9-25
Previous Ranking: 28

Detroit kicked off Week 10 with their second consecutive game against the Magic in Orlando, avenging their Week 9 loss with a 105-93 win. However, the Pistons dropped their following three games, solidifying their position at the bottom of the Eastern Conference with a 9-25 record.

Dennis Smith Jr. (who begged to go to the G League just to get some playing time before he was traded from the Knicks) began to make his presence felt in Detroit averaging 12.3 points on 40% three point shooting, to go along with 4.5 assists as a starter. While Jerami Grant continued to make his case to be named the NBA’s Most Improved Player putting up 22.7 points and 7.3 rebounds in three games last week.

28. Orlando Magic

NBA Championship Odds: +30000
Current Record: 13-21
Previous Ranking: 23

Things aren’t looking any better in Orlando as the Magic dropped all three of their games last week.

A 27.3 point and 9.7 rebound week from All-Star Nikola Vucevic wasn’t enough to keep the Magic competitive last week, as Orlando suffered double digit losses against Detroit (12 points), Brooklyn (37 points) and Utah (15 points).

29. Houston Rockets

NBA Championship Odds: +50000
Current Record: 11-21
Previous Ranking: 27 

The Rockets have extended their losing streak to 11 consecutive games after dropping all four of their Week 10 matches. Houston suffered double digit losses to Chicago (20 points), Cleveland (16 points), Toronto (11 points) and Memphis (49 points), with their 49 point loss to the Grizzlies now the eighth worst home loss in NBA history.

Given that Christian Wood is injured, Demarcus Cousins has left and Victor Oladipo has been in and out of the line-up, there simply isn’t enough continuity in Houston for the Rockets to compete.

30. Minnesota Timberwolves

NBA Championship Odds: +100000
Current Record: 7-28
Previous Ranking: 29

The Timberwolves dropped all four of their games in Week 10, solidifying their place at the bottom of the Western Conference with a 7-28 record. Losses to Milwaukee, Chicago, Washington and Phoenix resulted in the Suns extending their losing streak to eight consecutive games (four of which have been under new head coach Chris Finch).

Like last week, Karl-Anthony Towns and Anthony Edwards are doing their best to keep this team afloat, however with D’Angelo Russell out with injury and Malik Beasley out with suspension, there simply isn’t enough support from Minnesota’s role players.

*Odds correct at time of publication, courtesy of Bet365 

If you need more news, information and predictions, head over to our NBA hub page for all your basketball needs.

Jesse is and always has been a lover of sports. No matter the league, no matter the game, Jesse is constantly keeping up to date with the latest odds, news, injuries and stats. He has a strong interest in the NBA and the NFL, and he will always strive to keep you up to date with the best news, odds, predictions and picks that the ever engaging sporting world has to offer.

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