NBA Western Conference power rankings update
Not much has changed out West since last week, but there have been some developments that need noting and some kudos to give for those who have been better than others at beating the NBA odds.
- San Antonio Spurs (42-12 SU, 30-22-2 ATS, 1st in West standings)
The Spurs are continuing to dominate out west, as they already have 42 wins, more than any other team in the NBA. While their ATS record has been slightly coming back to earth, (2-2 ATS since last week) their play has become increasingly hard to ignore. They beat the Bulls in Chicago without any of their best three players. Plus, they have done all of this with Tim Duncan missing 10 games this season, and Manu Ginobli missing 15 and some change. If this keeps up, the rest of the Western Conference might as well start making June vacation plans. There is still much more season to be played.
- Oklahoma City Thunder (39-13 SU, 30-19-3 ATS, 2nd in West standings)
Heading into the All Star Break, the Thunder are number two both in the standings and in my power rankings. They are only a game and a half back of the Spurs at the artificial halfway point, and they are probably closer than that in my power rankings. The Thunder are 2-1 ATS since we last talked, with their big game against the Heat tonight pending in OKC. While the Thunder have been a good bet throughout the season, their schedule is not kind to them in the second half. Their longest home stretch after the All Star Break is three games, and it’s right after the break at the end of February. After that, it might be time to fade a Thunder team, that have to play 14 of their last 25 games in the road this season.
- Los Angeles Clippers (38-17 SU, 30-25 ATS, 3rd in West standings)
The Clippers have also gone 2-2 ATS since last week and unlike the Spurs, they fell in the standings. The injuries to Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and others really hurt them, and now they are 4 ½ games back of the Spurs with 28 games to go. It will help now that they are healthy, and that they have more home than road games in the second half, but they still lose money ATS on the road, and I expect that to stay that way.
- Memphis Grizzlies (Up one spot, 33-18 SU, 29-21-1 ATS, 4th in West standings)
The Grizz have railed off three straight wins SU and they were 2-1 ATS in that time period, which has pole-vaulted them into the 4th spot in my power rankings and the NBA standings. However I don’t expect them to stay there for long. If you thought the Thunder had a tough stretch after the Break, wait until you take a glance at the Grizzlies’ schedule down the stretch. They are on the road for 19 of their remaining 31 games, with three and four game road trips. It might be time to fade Grizz Nation as well, wiping out their stellar ATS record so far this season. Memphis is 12-10 ATS on the road this season and great to back with your NBA picks.
- Denver Nuggets (Down one spot)
- Golden State Warriors
- Houston Rockets
- Los Angeles Lakers (previously unranked)