Friday, August 20, 2010

Regent's Rankings of Power

I’ve always wondered what it would be like to get paid to write about the NBA, so I procrastinated writing this post until after my days off and during my shift at work… and I have to admit, it must be pretty awesome to be Bill Simmons. Although my gig, I must argue, is better than Bills. I may not get paid the big bucks… but I do get to wear a métis costume, pretend that I am from the 1880’s and fight the English in a battle royal over treaty rights as well as write about the NBA! Can a summer job get much better than this? I honestly don’t think it can.

So here in my native American gift shop, a rather startling occurrence occurred. A boy, probably 6 years old, and his Grandfather came in to browse through the dream catchers and toy tomahawks I sell here. The boy wanted a tomahawk so he asked his Grandpa: “ Can I have a smashing stick?” The Grandpa replied: “No, do you know what those are used for? …. Those are used by Indians who will smash other Indians in the head, smashing a hole in their skull… then blood oozes out… then the “killer” Indian will take that blood and smear it all over a dream catcher so that he can see the dead Indian’s dreams!”

Although entertaining, this grandpa was not just inaccurate about his assessment of what tomahawks are used for, he was astronomically inaccurate!! and not to mention ridiculously morbid for an adult, let alone 6 year old child. So you might be wondering what on earth this story has to do with the NBA? That’s easy, Most preseason predictions of how the upcoming NBA season will turn out are pretty inaccurate. They are completely subject to opinion on moves, players and how it will all mesh together. I mean, how many times have “experts” predicted that the Spurs will be out of the playoffs because they are too old, only to be surprised that Timmy and Manu still have it in them to be legitimate title contenders by the time the post season rolls around. It’s almost like ESPN experts are trying to smash the NBA’s skull open and smear the oozing blood all over a dream catcher so that they can get an inside scoop on how the upcoming season will turn out, predictions just don’t work out too well… but they are entertaining.

So in the name of entertainment, I present a full NBA 2010/11 season prediction for every team, complete with wins/losses and brief explanations, only I won’t claim to be an expert on the matter. However, I will use this set of predictions as a starting point for what I call Regent’s Rankings of Power… I will try to update it every two weeks or so during the season and if a big move happens during the offseason. Feel free to disagree. Well, here it is:

Regent’s Rankings of Power

1. Miami Heat 69-13 If Lebron could lead his last two teams to 60+ wins, he can lead this group to atleast 65+
2. Orlando Magic 59-23 Orlando is pretty much the same team as last year, not much with their record will change either
3. Los Angeles Lakers 58-24 The lakers got slightly better this offseason, their record will get slightly better too.
4. Dallas Mavericks 54-28 Dallas may have gotten better with Tyson Chandler, but they keep getting older… they will probably end up about the same as last year.
5. Utah Jazz 54-28 The Jazz arguably got better with Al Jefferson, he is slightly bigger and probably a better offensive weapon than Boozer.
6. San Antonio Spurs 53-29 I don’t think the spurs are done yet, plus another year for Jefferson to gel with the team can’t be a bad thing.
7. Boston Celtics 53-29 The O’neals should be good enough to help the Celtics win three extra games this year.
8.OKC 52-30 The thunder will be better, but I think about 5th in the west is as far up as they will jump.
9. Chicago Bulls 50-32 If the Jazz could get 53 wins last year, the Jazz 2.0 should be able to get close to that win total.
10. Denver Nuggets 50-32 Assuming Melo stays, they should be around 6th in the west.
11. Portland Trail Blazers 49-33 The west is so crowded it is hard to tell where 4-8th will end up, hopefully Oden can prove to be a valuable 1st overall pick this year.
12. Milwaukee Bucks 49-33 Brandon Jennings will be close to an allstar this year and Andrew Bogut should be an allstar too.. they can lead their team to near 50 wins.
13. Phoenix Suns 48-34 You should never count out Steve Nash.
14. Atlanta Hawks 47-35 With all of these teams getting better in the east, some team has to lose a few extra.
15. New Orleans Hornets 45-37 Just out of the playoffs… Chris Paul can only do so much by himself.
16. Houston Rockets 44-38 It’s hard to judge the rockets, it all depends on how well Yao Ming can come back from injury.
17. Indiana Pacers 43-39 The pacers have a good group lacking a really good point guard… Then they got collison, a young really good point guard, they should make the playoffs.
18. New York Knicks 41-41 the knicks have the tools to barely make the playoffs in the east.
19. Los Angeles Clippers 41-41 the clips should be able to tread water at .500 with Griffin being a beast down low.
20. Memphis Grizzlies 40-42 was last years randolph breakthru a new trend for him or a freak accident?
21. Washington Wizards 40-42 Wall and Arenas can work… maybe, they will atleast be in the hunt for the playoffs.
22. Toronto Raptors 37-45 Derozan and Davis will surprise a lot of people this year.
23. Charlotte Bobcats 35-47 They lost their best center and point guard.. chances are their playoff debut was shortlived
24. Detroit Pistons 33-49 T-mac will not make them better
25. Sacramento Kings 33-49 It’s tough to tell how much better cousins will make this team.
26. Golden state Warriors 31-51 They need to sort out their curry/ellis situation.
27. Philadelphia 76ers 30-52 As long as they are locked down by Brand’s contract, they will be a 30 win team.
28. New Jersey Nets 27-55 Troy Murphey seems good for about +15 wins don’t you think?
29. Cleveland Cavaliers 22-60 Biggest Turnaround in NBA history? For the worst…
30. Minnesota Timberwolves 10-72 David Kahn…… need I say more?

I’m not sure if all of the win/loss totals add up as far as all of the games in the entire NBA are concerned, but it’s probably close. Miller out.


  1. Good story, good column, good start to Ranking the Powers. Predicting how 30 separate entities will interact with each other is a super hard thing to do. There's not much, if anything, that I disagree with. Ummm...maybe Sacramento will be better than 25th with a top draft pick and reigning ROY on the team. And maybe the Wiz' will turn it on more than predicted with Wall? I feel like everything was placed very accurately. I could see the T'Wolves breaking the record for least wins in the season...what a joke. I look forward to future Regent Rankings of Power.

  2. I'm glad someone decided to take up the rankings of power, cause that always makes for a good article and discussion. Like T-Wah I agree with most of your predictions/rankings, but just found a few minor things that I disagree with. The biggest one is Indiana. Collison is good, but I really don't see them making the playoffs. I'd probably put the Knicks and the Bobcats into the last two spots in the east, but only because everyone else sucks more than them, not because they're any good in and of themselves. Obviously from my article I would put the Raps lower, but unlike I don't think they'll be the worst in the east. They'll be close to it, but not the worst. I also think that you may have overestimated the Spurs (still a playoff team, but near the bottom) and underestimated the Thunder (I would put them just behind Dallas and right before Utah). I know these are pretty small details, especially in the West, where I see another super close race to the playoffs. Otherwise, nice work.

  3. I found that three things were extremely hard to predict.
    1) Potential, teams with young talent are hard to gauge how they will do like the raptors, OKC, indiana, wiz and Sacramento... they could really could be better or worse than last year, it's hard to tell (most likely worse for the raps, but they are young and have potential).
    2)Old age slippage, who knows how good the spurs, celtics and suns will be... they will show up in the playoffs though
    3) The west... the difference between dallas and OKC last year was 5 wins.... that's it, 5 wins!!! so really I should have added a caveat to my rankings that any team from 2-8 or even 9 and 10 really in the west is interchangeable.

    I can't say the bobcats will be in the playoffs again this year.. they lost their starting point guard and a really good defensive center.. usually when that happens not much good comes of it, now their best player is wallace who just got cut from the USA B-team. Not good.

  4. I have things to say about the 2 latest articles. I'll post all my thoughts in a new article soon. Probably today because I have the day off. yahoo

  5. By the way, I looked over the Bobcats roster and ya they suck. I'm just not sure who will take that last spot in the playoffs in the East. It's probably going to be some crappy team that makes it on the last day of the regular season and then gets killed in the first round. That's why I'm not a huge fan of the race to the number 8 spot. In the end, it usually doesn't matter!