Old School Power Rankings Weeks 17-18

A very familiar face climbs back into the chase in a big way, two mainstays take tumbles and a new name makes his debut on the list

Scott Wraight, NBA.com

Mar 3, 2017 5:07 PM ET

After missing the previous 15 games with a finger injury, Pau Gasol seems to have found his offensive groove.

And just like that, he appears out of nowhere to reclaim his standing among the OSPR elite.

And just like that, two mainstays who spent much of this season in or near the top five could very soon find themselves off our list completely.

Because of the All-Star break, it was a short work period for everyone (well, at least those who play in the NBA).

  • Notes: Season statistics are through games of March 2
  • Any player who turns 33 during regular season can be added to rankings.

1. Dwyane Wade (35), Chicago Bulls

Last week's rank: 1
Last week's stats: 4 games, 18.5 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 5.5 apg
Season stats: 19.1 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 4.0 apg
After a solid three-game stretch in which Wade averaged 20.7 points, 6.3 assists and 5.7 rebounds (including the huge facial below), the veteran slipped Thursday against the Warriors with a 12-point effort on 5-for-15 shooting -- ending a streak of seven straight games with 18 or more points. In fact, it was his lowest scoring output since managing just four points on Jan. 20.


Dwyane Wade proves he can still get up ... and throw it down.

2. Zach Randolph (35), Memphis Grizzlies

Last week's rank: 2
Last week's stats: 3 games, 18.0 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 1.3 apg
Season stats: 14.3 ppg, 8.3 rpg, 1.6 apg
Early on, it looked like Wade was going to run away from the field. Slowly but surely, Randolph is gaining some ground. After a pedestrian 11-point, 8-rebound effort last Friday, Z-Bo turned in back-to-back 20-point efforts for the first time this season (no, that's not a misprint). Randolph's rebounding continues to impress us, having grabbed eight or more boards in 18 of his last 22 games.


3. Pau Gasol (36), San Antonio Spurs

Last week's rank: NA
Last week's stats: 3 games, 16.7 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 1.3 apg
Season stats: 12.1 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 2.6 apg
In his first action since Jan. 17 because of a finger injury, Gasol showed very little rust, shooting 57.7 from the field and 77.8 from beyond the arc (7-for-9). He also managed to go 13-for-13 from the free-throw line. Not enough? Gasol also secured his first double-double (17 points, 12 rebounds last Friday) since Dec. 28.


4. Nene (34), Houston Rockets

Last week's rank: Just missed
Last week's stats: 4 games, 12.8 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 0.5 apg
Season stats: 8.5 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 0.9 apg
Nene put up solid numbers (including an eye-popping 67.9 FG%) despite averaging just 19.8 minutes. But he appears much more comfortable coming off the bench. In one game as a starter, Nene averaged 9.0 points, 3.0 rebounds and 50.0 FG%. In three games coming off the bench, he averaged 14.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 75.0 FG%.


5. Dirk Nowitzki (38), Dallas Mavericks

Last week's rank: 5
Last week's stats: 4 games, 11.3 ppg, 9.5 rpg, 1.3 apg
Season stats: 13.6 ppg, 6.4 rpg, 1.6 apg
Nowitzki maintains his position only because no one behind him stepped up. In addition to shooting just 40.4 from the field and 21.4 from beyond the arc, he was held under 12 points in three of the four games. While the scoring has definitely dipped, the rebounding has picked up, grabbing seven or more in seven of the last eight games.


6. Jameer Nelson (35), Denver Nuggets

Last week's rank: 6
Last week's stats: 4 games, 11.0 ppg, 4.3 apg, 2.3 rpg
Season stats: 9.3 ppg, 4.9 apg, 2.4 rpg
With the starting gig his for the time being, Nelson appears to in a comfort zone. In addition to shooting 64.3 FG% and 53.3 3PT% over his last four games, he has scored in double figures in seven of the last eight games while chipping in six or more assists in six of those games. Nelson has also managed to hit two or more treys in four straight.


7. Tyson Chandler (34), Phoenix Suns

Last week's rank: 3
Last week's stats: 4 games, no stats available
Season stats: 8.4 ppg, 11.4 rpg, 0.6 apg
Chandler has been a casualty of the Suns' recent youth movement. With coach Earl Watson giving more minutes to Alex Len and other youngsters, Chandler has been bumped to the bench, receiving four straight DNPs. If this keeps up, the man who held down the No. 3 spot for a while will be nowhere to be found.



8. Kyle Korver (35), Cleveland Cavaliers

Last week's rank: 8
Last week's stats: 4 games, 12.8 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 1.8 apg
Season stats: 10.3 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 1.8 apg
If not for Wednesday's letdown against the Celtics (four points on 1-for-7 shooting), Korver would have moved up at least one spot. Prior to Wednesday, Korver had scored in double figures in four straight (including back-to-back 20-point games), shooting better than 58 percent in three of those games and hitting at least three 3-pointers in all four.


9. Marcin Gortat (33), Washington Wizards

Last week's rank: NA
Last week's stats: 4 games, 10.3 ppg, 9.8 rpg, 0.8 apg
Season stats: 11.8 ppg, 11.3 rpg, 1.5 apg
Gortat, who joined the 33-and-over club when he celebrated his birthday on Feb. 17, did some nice things in his last four games. In addition to the above stats, the big man turned in two double-doubles and has now scored in double figures in 14 of his last 15 games. During that span, Gortat has managed nine double-doubles.


10. Jamal Crawford (36), LA Clippers

Last week's rank: 4
Last week's stats: 4 games, 8.0 ppg, 0.5 rpg, 1.8 apg
Season stats: 12.1 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 2.8 apg
It's another low point on the roller coaster that is Crawford's season. After breaking out of an early season slump, Crawford is elbow deep in another slump, shooting just 36.7 from the field and 27.3 from deep over the last four games. In fact, after scoring in double figures in seven straight, Crawford has gone for 10 or more points just once in the last five games.


Just missed the cut: Richard Jefferson, Zaza Pachulia, Tony Allen, David Lee

Will turn 33 this season:  Chris Bosh (March 24), C.J. Watson (April 17)

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