The Atlanta Hawks have a seven-game win streak earlier in the season to take them from 4-9 to above .500. They were unable to turn that into extended consistent play but hope to for different results this time around. The Hawks are once again on a seven-game winning streak. Their next 10 games feature several contests that one would consider toss-ups. If the Hawks want to make this rise in the power rankings real, they’ll have to come out of that stretch with wins in those 50-50 contests.
The Philadelphia 76ers are making a different push. While Ben Simmons trade rumors continue to swirl, Joel Embiid is determined to create MVP buzz for himself while taking his team to the top of the conference. The 76ers are just a few games back of the Miami Heat for the No. 1 seed in the East. With the way Embiid is playing, it feels like Philadelphia has to get him some help at the trade deadline to avoid throwing away this year.
Elsewhere, the Phoenix Suns and Golden State Warriors remain consistent atop the Western Conference. They’ve experienced minimal hiccups along the way and look like the two best teams in the association. This could be a conference finals preview, making home-court advantage huge.
Let’s take a look at Chinmay Vaidya’s power rankings for Week 16 of the NBA season.
NBA Power Rankings: Week 16
|2||Golden State Warriors||2|
|15||Los Angeles Clippers||17|
|19||Los Angeles Lakers||18|
|21||New York Knicks||19|
|22||Portland Trail Blazers||22|
|24||San Antonio Spurs||25|
|25||New Orleans Pelicans||26|
|28||Oklahoma City Thunder||27|