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NBA Week 3 Power Rankings: Cavilers Jump Into The Top Three Teams After 5-1 Start

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Sports Editor
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NBA: Brooklyn Nets at Milwaukee Bucks

The 2022-23 NBA season is already in November and we’re starting to see who the top dogs in the league are. Other teams have disappointed and have not been nearly as good as they were predicted to be. 

Milwaukee is still the only undefeated team left in the NBA and are looking like the team to beat in the east. The Cleveland Cavaliers, Phoenix Suns, and Portland Trailblazers have also all had a hot start at 5-1.

We’re still less than 10 games into the season and some teams haven’t woken up yet from the offseason. Our NBA week three power rankings will give you an idea of the best teams so far.

NBA Power Rankings: Week 3

1. Milwaukee Bucks (6-0) 

No surprises here. The Milwaukee Bucks are 6-0 to begin the 2022-23 season and they’re clearly the best team in the league as of now. Milwaukee started 7-0 in 1971-71 and in 2018-19. There’s a very realistic chance of that happening again as their next game is against a 2-6 Pistons team on Wednesday. The Bucks have been thriving without Khris Middleton and Pat Connaughton. They’re the team to beat in the East.

2. Phoenix Suns (5-1)

Phoenix earns the number two spot this week in our power rankings. Jae Crowder hasn’t played a game for the team and yet they’ve done just fine without him. Cameron Johnson has been getting a starting role because of it and provides a solid (12.) points and (4.2) rebounds per game. Additionally, center Jock Landale has been huge for the Suns as Deandre Ayton has been dealing with an ankle sprain. Phoenix plays tonight at 10:00pm vs the Timberwolves.

3. Cleveland Cavaliers (5-1) 

Darius Garland has been out for the Cavs since the first game of the season and the team is finding ways to win. After losing by three points to the Raptors in their first game, the Cavaliers have rattled off five straight wins. They’ve got a tough opponent in Boston for their next game. Caris LeVert has been playing well for the Cavs while Garland is out. Donovan Mitchell has been playing more of a PG role to begin the season and leads the team in assists (7.3) per game.

4. Boston Celtics (4-2)

The Celtics won their first three games of the season and then followed that up with two losses in a row. A convincing win vs Washington puts them at 4-2. Jayson Tatum is still the top dog in Boston averaging (30.8) points, (7.3) rebounds, and (3.5) assists per game. They could easily be in the top three of our power rankings if they had not lost two in a row. One of those losses was to the Cavaliers in OT and they’ll have a rematch this Wednesday to try and get some revenge.

5. Portland Trailblazers (5-1)  

Portland has shocked the NBA world starting 5-1 to start the season. Damian Lillard is out with a calf injury after playing in the first five games of the season. They hope he can return sometime in the teams six game road trip that starts this Friday. The Blazers have a sneaky good team this year and that’s why their first in the Northwest division and round out the top 5 of our power rankings.

6. Utah Jazz (6-2) 

The Utah Jazz are a red hot 6-2 to begin the season. They were not predicted to be here after they traded away two all-stars in the offseason. Utah is doing just fine without them. Three straight wins vs three top teams in the west is how their season started. Most recently they beat the Grizzlies in back-to-back games. Lauri Markkenan was shipped off to Utah in the Donovan Mitchell trade and has been their best player to start the season.

7. New Orleans Pelicans (4-2)

Even with having to shuffle lineups around with some injuries early on, the Pelicans are still a strong 4-2 and are second in the Southwest division. Zion Williamson looks like himself again after missing the entire 2021-22 season. CJ McCollum and Jonas Valanciunas have started all six games for New Orleans this season. One player who’s gotten three starts while others have been injures is Trey Murphy III,  giving the team quality minutes. Their next game is Wednesday on the road vs the Lakers.

8. Denver Nuggets (4-3) 

The Nuggets have been a tough team to beat this year and their again lead by back-to-back MVP, Nikola Jokic. He leads the team in points, rebounds, assists, and steals. Michael Porter Jr. has lightened the scoring duties for Jokic in his return this year. Denver is a well-balanced team this season with seven different players that average double-digit points for the team.

9.Memphis Grizzlies (4-3) 

Memphis had a great 4-1 start to the season and have since then lost two straight games to the Utah Jazz. Ja Morant missed one of those games where the Grizzlies lost by one point and then lost last night, 121-105. Six of their first eight games have been on the road. They’ll have another tough test against the 5-1 Portland Trailblazers on Wednesday.

10. Dallas Mavericks (3-3)  

The Dallas Mavericks are lead by front-runner MVP candidate, Luka Doncic. Despite his dominance to start the season, the team has alternated wins and losses to start the year. Doncic can only do so much to carry the team and their defense has hurt them at times. Dallas will have a tough game coming up on Wednesday against a frisky Utah Jazz team.

Zach Wolpin is an NBA and NFL expert who's been betting on the league for over three years now. Wolpin has been a fan of the NBA and has been watching for a decade and a half. He covers the latest news and stories surrounding the league daily. His passion in life is watching sports and being able to share that through his sports writing. He has written about the NBA and other sports leagues through various media outlets over the years like Sir Charles In Charge, G-Men HQ, and TAP into South Plainfield. Before he became an NBA News Writer, Wolpin attended Montclair State University where he graduated in 2021. He studied Sports Media and Writing while in school.

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