Power Rankings
Power Rankings

Power Rankings, Week 5: Raptors reclaim No. 1 spot as Butler heads East

John Schuhmann

John Schuhmann NBA.com

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Nov 12, 2018 11:48 AM ET

Pascal Siakam (center) proved key in several of Toronto's wins last week.

The Jimmy Butler drama is over. The Minnesota Timberwolves finally traded their disgruntled star on Saturday (with the deal set to become official on Monday), sending him to Philadelphia in exchange for Robert Covington and Dario Saric.

Now, Tom Thibodeau can get back to coaching basketball, Karl-Anthony Towns can get back to restoring his reputation as one of the best young players in the league, and the rest of us can get back to ... more discord, apparently.

Taking the place of Butler and the Wolves in the headlines are Carmelo Anthony and the Rockets, who are reportedly in the process of parting ways, with the Rockets sitting in 12th place in the Western Conference and Anthony having registered a team-worst minus-63 in his first season as a reserve.

The Rockets and Wolves (and Sixers) have time to figure things out, but we are getting closer to that 20-game mark in which the standings start to mean something. How many wins a team picks up in its first 20 games can tell you a lot about its chances of making the postseason. Over the last 15 (82-game) seasons, only one of the 47 Western Conference teams that won fewer than eight of their first 20 games went on to make the playoffs.

 
Dig into some of the stats from the Week 5 edition of the Power Rankings.

In the East, the 12-1 Toronto Raptors could probably start selling playoff tickets right now, and they're back at No. 1 in the rankings, with a five-game winning streak and with some other top teams suffering losses last week.

Previously...

Plus-Minus Players of the Week

Teams of the Week

  • Make It Last Forever: Portland (3-0) -- The Blazers picked up three quality wins, beating the Bucks, Clippers and Celtics at the Moda Center
  • Something Just Ain't Right: Phoenix (0-3) -- Almost doesn't count in hoops, and the Suns' late-game collapse against the Celtics only made it a more painful week.

East vs. West

Schedule strength through Week 4

  • Toughest: 1. Milwaukee, 2. Minnesota, 3. Washington
  • Easiest: 1. Toronto, 2. Golden State, 3. Memphis
  • Schedule strength is based on cumulative opponent record, and adjusted for home vs. away and days of rest before a game.

Movement in the Rankings

  • High jumps of the week: Dallas (+6), Brooklyn (+5), Portland (+5)
  • Free falls of the week: Indiana (-5), New York (-4), Sacramento (-4)

Week 5 Team to Watch

  • Houston -- As the Rockets deal with the Anthony situation, they head into an important week. Games against Denver (on the road on Tuesday), Golden State (at home on Thursday) and Sacramento (at home on Saturday) are the end of a stretch of seven straight games against teams that currently have winning records. They're 2-2 on that stretch so far and may have found their offense in their win over Indiana on Sunday.

* * *

Pace: Possessions per 48 minutes (League Rank)
OffRtg: Points scored per 100 possessions (League Rank)
DefRtg: Points allowed per 100 possessions (League Rank)
NetRtg: Point differential per 100 possessions (League Rank)

The league has averaged 101.6 possessions (per team) per 48 minutes and 108.2 points scored per 100 possessions this season.

* * *

NBA.com's Power Rankings, released every Monday during the season, are just one man's opinion. If you have an issue with the rankings, or have a question or comment for John Schuhmann, send him an e-mail or contact him via Twitter.

* * *

1
Last week:
4

Record: 12-1
Pace: 102.2 (12) OffRtg: 115.2 (3) DefRtg: 106.0 (8) NetRtg: +9.2 (3)

The Raptors cruised through a 4-0 trip out West (none of the wins were within five points in the last five minutes) and took care of business against the Knicks on Saturday afternoon. Pascal Siakam has begun to realize his potential to become an every-day problem for Toronto opponents. He's averaged 17.6 points on 68 percent shooting over the last seven games (highlighted by a career-high 23 points on Saturday), doing a lot more than just playing off the Raptors' two All-Stars. He was torching the Kings so badly in the first half on Wednesday (attacking Nemanja Bjelica in transition, spinning on Marvin Bagley in the post, and beating Bagley off the dribble), they were forced to double-team him in the post.

Week 5: vs. NOP, vs. DET, @ BOS, @ CHI

2
Last week:
7

Record: 10-3
Pace: 101.0 (16) OffRtg: 113.6 (5) DefRtg: 104.4 (5) NetRtg: +9.2 (4)

After completing a 5-1 homestand with wins over the Bucks, Clippers and Celtics, the Blazers are 6-1 in games between the 15 teams that currently have winning records, with the only loss coming when they shot 6-for-35 from 3-point range against the Lakers. In the midst of dropping 40 on the Bucks' third-ranked defense, C.J. McCollum dropped rookie Donte DiVincenzo late in the third quarter. This is a jump-shooting team -- the Blazers rank 23rd in the percentage of their shots that have come from the paint and in the bottom three in restricted-area field goal percentage for the third straight season -- but it leads the league in point differential (plus-4.5 per game) from the free throw line, despite a drop in its own attempts over the last few games. In the last two seasons, Portland has gone from 28th (in 2016-17) to 19th (last season) to second (this season) in opponent free throw rate.

Week 5: @ LAL, @ MIN, @ WAS

3
Last week:
2

Record: 10-3
Pace: 104.7 (5) OffRtg: 115.2 (2) DefRtg: 104.0 (3) NetRtg: +11.2 (1)

Given the opponents, a 2-2 trip did nothing to dispel the notion that the Bucks are legit. The Blazers beat their defensive scheme by shooting a ridiculous 16-for-21 from mid-range and the Clippers (thanks largely to Montrezl Harrell) were the first team to match the Bucks' scoring in the paint. But the Bucks scored 126 points per 100 possessions in wins at Golden State and Denver, with Eric Bledsoe having a big night against the champs and Brook Lopez draining eight 3-pointers against the Nuggets. They're still 6-0 (and a plus-17.3 points per 100 possessions) at home and on Wednesday will begin one of their two six-game homestands, with five of the visitors coming from the Western Conference.

Week 5: vs. MEM, vs. CHI

4
Last week:
1

Record: 11-2
Pace: 102.4 (11) OffRtg: 119.2 (1) DefRtg: 108.1 (16) NetRtg: +11.1 (2)

November is a good time for the Warriors to be dealing with injuries. But with Draymond Green nursing a sprained toe and Stephen Curry out with a groin strain, they're heading into one of three five-games-in-seven-days stretches of the season (the other two are both in the final month). Quinn Cook did a nice Curry imitation against Brooklyn on Saturday, shooting an incredible 9-for-10 on pull-up jumpers, and Kevin Durant has filled in for Green, registering 20 assists over the last two games. The 115.3 points per 100 possessions they've scored with Curry off the floor is 10 more than they've scored with him off the floor in any other season. But the 84 points in the paint they allowed the Bucks to score on Thursday were the most they've allowed in more than eight years (since the Spurs registered 90 in March of 2010).

Week 5: @ LAC, vs. ATL, @ HOU, @ DAL, @ SAS

5
Last week:
3

Record: 9-4
Pace: 98.8 (25) OffRtg: 110.3 (9) DefRtg: 104.1 (4) NetRtg: +6.2 (6)

The Nuggets don't have a loss that wasn't within five points in the last five minutes, but they do have a three-game losing streak, having shot 0-for-6 and committed nine turnovers on clutch possessions against the Grizzlies, Nets and Bucks last week. Nikola Jokic started shooting again after taking just four shots against Boston and Memphis, totaling 57 points against Brooklyn and Milwaukee. But the weekend games were two of the Nuggets' three worst defensive games of the season, with the Nets getting to the line 42 times and the Bucks shooting 57 percent. After his starting lineup registered a minus-39 over eight games, coach Mike Malone made a change (Juancho Hernangomez in, Torrey Craig out) and shortened his rotation on Sunday, but the new lineup wasn't any better (minus-5 in 16 minutes).

Week 5: vs. HOU, vs. ATL, @ NOP

6
Last week:
9

Record: 7-5
Pace: 103.5 (8) OffRtg: 111.3 (7) DefRtg: 107.0 (11) NetRtg: +4.3 (7)

We'll see if Avery Bradley (out the last three games with an ankle injury) is the Clippers' Wally Pipp, permanently losing his starting job to rookie Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (35 points over the last two games), who appears to be the real deal. The Clips' had mixed results at the start of games last week, and they've outscored their opponents by more than 13 points per 100 possessions in 219 minutes with Gilgeous-Alexander and Lou Williams on the floor together, so there's reasons for putting the rookie back in a reserve roll. More important than the starts are the finishes, and the SGA-Williams backcourt has been on the floor more often than not down the stretch of close games. Williams' game-winner on Saturday was preceded by two big threes from the rookie. The Clips are 5-1 at home, but Saturday's game in Brooklyn begins a stretch where they play 11 of 15 on the road.

Week 5: vs. GSW, vs. SAS, @ BKN

7
Last week:
6

Record: 7-6
Pace: 100.0 (22) OffRtg: 104.2 (27) DefRtg: 102.7 (1) NetRtg: +1.5 (12)

If we only counted possessions in the third and fourth quarters, the Celtics would have the league's seventh best offense. They've scored just 95 points per 100 possessions in the first half of games, but 112.8 in the second half, with Kyrie Irving (from 45 percent to 62 percent), Jaylen Brown (from 35 percent to 47 percent) and Marcus Morris (from 51 percent to 72 percent) all seeing huge jumps in effective field goal percentage after halftime. They had a great start in Denver on Monday, but blew an 18-point lead and then played from behind in Phoenix, Utah and Portland, getting one win on the trip mostly because the Suns are really bad. Eleven of their 13 games have been within five points in the last five minutes and, thanks to those comebacks, they're one of three teams (Denver and Portland are the others) that doesn't have a loss that wasn't within five in the last five.

Week 5: vs. CHI, vs. TOR, vs. UTA

8
Last week:
8

Record: 7-4
Pace: 98.7 (26) OffRtg: 109.0 (12) DefRtg: 107.3 (13) NetRtg: +1.6 (11)

Over the first two weeks of the season, the Spurs ranked 30th defensively. Over Weeks 3 and 4, the Spurs rank first defensively, having held five of their six opponents under a point per possession. Improvement has come on the perimeter; Their opponents' effective field goal percentage from outside the paint was 55 percent over their first five games and has been just 40 percent over the last six. They'll face some better offenses later this week, they play eight of their next 10 games on the road, and they're dealing with injuries to Rudy Gay and Pau Gasol. They did get back Derrick White, who was put right into the starting lineup and who had 14 points and eight assists in their win over Houston on Saturday.

Week 5: @ SAC, @ PHX, @ LAC, vs. GSW

9
Last week:
11

Record: 7-5
Pace: 102.8 (10) OffRtg: 106.1 (19) DefRtg: 103.6 (2) NetRtg: +2.5 (9)

The Thunder managed to run their winning streak to seven games without Russell Westbrook (who turned his ankle in the third quarter of Game 5 of the streak) before their defense finally fell apart in Dallas on Saturday. Dennis Schroder has filled in OK for Westbrook, but the bench has suffered without Schroder. In these last three games, the Thunder have outscored their opponents by 50 points in 112 minutes with Paul George on the floor (even though George hasn't shot particularly well) and have been outscored by 38 points in just 32 minutes with George on the bench. While Steve Adams was Mr. Plus last week (see above), Nerlens Noel was two opponent points from being Mr. Minus. The winning streak and a schedule that remains soft for another week could allow them to play it safe with Westbrook.

Week 5: vs. PHX, vs. NYK, @ PHX

10
Last week:
5

Record: 8-6
Pace: 97.2 (29) OffRtg: 108.8 (13) DefRtg: 106.0 (7) NetRtg: +2.9 (8)

The Pacers have scored just 102 points per 100 possessions as they've lost three of their last four. Tyreke Evans has shot just 31 percent over that stretch, but the team's starters have also had their issues. The Pacers have lost six straight first quarters and, over their 14 games, their starting lineup has been outscored by 17.6 points per 100 possessions in the open 12 minutes, the worst mark among 12 lineups that have played at least 50 first-quarter minutes. The same lineup is a plus-13.6 points per 100 possessions in quarters 2-4, with the bigger difference (20 points allowed per 100 possessions) coming on the defensive end of the floor. Nine of the Pacers' 14 opponents have shot 50 percent or better in the first quarter.

Week 5: vs. MIA, vs. ATL

11
Last week:
12

Record: 7-6
Pace: 101.0 (17) OffRtg: 114.4 (4) DefRtg: 107.3 (15) NetRtg: +7.1 (5)

Kemba Walker's usage rate is a career-high 29.9 percent, but his dribbles per touch (4.6) and the percentage of his jumpers that are off the dribble (67 percent) are both down from last season (5.8, 75 percent). The addition of Tony Parker and the change to the Hornets' starting lineup (Jeremy Lamb instead of Michael Kidd-Gilchrist) have helped, and so has the development of Malik Monk, who has an effective field goal percentage of 62 percent and an assist turnover ratio of 17/6 in the fourth quarter and overtime. Hornets coach James Borrego said this weekend that Monk has really taken a step forward with his decision-making. "His natural instinct is to go score, shoot the ball first. Right now, when he sees two bodies, he's really making the right play," noting the five dimes that Monk dished out in the fourth quarter against Atlanta on Tuesday.

Week 5: @ CLE, vs. PHI

12
Last week:
14

Record: 7-4
Pace: 96.0 (30) OffRtg: 106.3 (18) DefRtg: 104.5 (6) NetRtg: +1.8 (10)

The Grizzlies improved to 5-0 at home with narrow, but impressive wins over the Nuggets and Sixers. Mike Conley broke out offensively (scoring a season-high 32 points) against Philly, and the Grizz used a two-point-guard look (Conley and Shelvin Mack together) down the stretch of both games. The Memphis offense hasn't been good (less than a point scored per possession) with the two point guards on the floor together overall, but defense remains this team's calling card. Marc Gasol held both Nikola Jokic and Joel Embiid in check last week. They'll face Utah's eighth-ranked offense (which they've held to less than a point per possession) for the third time on Monday.

Week 5: vs. UTA, @ MIL, vs. SAC, @ MIN

13
Last week:
13

Record: 8-6
Pace: 103.9 (6) OffRtg: 105.4 (21) DefRtg: 106.3 (9) NetRtg: -0.9 (19)

The Sixers are still 5-2 in games that were within five points in the last five minutes, with Ben Simmons making up a lot of ground to erase what seemed to be a wide-open corner three to tie for Kemba Walker at the end of overtime on Friday. But Philly's OT loss in Memphis on Saturday, with the Grizzlies keeping J.J. Redick under wraps and Joel Embiid taking four of his five clutch shots from 3-point range, was an indication that sacrificing depth for another playmaking star -- Jimmy Butler -- was the right move. Shooting will remain an issue and the Butler-Simmons fit will be a big question, but the Sixers have raised their ceiling and still have a lot of time to adjust to their new star, figure out what to do with Markelle Fultz, and add another piece or two.

Week 5: @ MIA, @ ORL, vs. UTA, @ CHA

14
Last week:
10

Record: 7-6
Pace: 107.4 (2) OffRtg: 107.6 (15) DefRtg: 108.4 (18) NetRtg: -0.8 (18)

The Kings have a five-game winning streak sandwiched between two 1-3 stretches. The 1-3 start to the season was more about bad defense, but the offense has scored a paltry 95 points per 100 possessions in their three losses over the last eight days, getting a break against the Wolves' 30th-ranked defense on Friday. De'Aaron Fox had twice as many free throw attempts in that game (12) as he had in the last three losses combined (six). Their defense has continued to hold up, ranks fifth over their last nine games, and has allowed just 97 points per 100 possessions with the four guys who have started every game on the floor (even though they're the ones defending the opponent's starters). Willie Cauley-Stein ranks pretty low in regard to rim protection, but the Kings have done a much better job of keeping their opponents off the free throw line with him on the floor.

Week 5: vs. SAS, @ MEM, @ HOU

15
Last week:
15

Record: 6-6
Pace: 100.8 (18) OffRtg: 110.6 (8) DefRtg: 109.1 (20) NetRtg: +1.5 (13)

The Jazz finally got a couple of wins at home last week (after an 0-4 start in Salt Lake City), but their defense remains a concern after allowing the Celtics (a bottom-five offense) to score a season-high 117 points per 100 possessions on Friday. The Celtics' 17 3-pointers were the most the Jazz have allowed this season, but in general, their opponents have shot much better than they did last season on the shots the Jazz want to force (those in between the restricted area and the 3-point line). They rank 30th in opponent field goal percentage on those shots (44.1 percent) after ranking fifth last season (38.7 percent). With those two home wins in hand, they play 12 of their next 14 games on the road, with a five-game trip (their longest of the season) starting Monday in Memphis.

Week 5: @ MEM, @ DAL, @ PHI, @ BOS

16
Last week:
17

Record: 7-6
Pace: 105.6 (3) OffRtg: 109.3 (11) DefRtg: 108.4 (17) NetRtg: +1.0 (14)

Lakers' games have been fascinating to watch in more ways than we could have expected. We knew there would be some Lance Stephenson antics, questions about coach Luke Walton's job, and intrigue in regard to who would fit well around LeBron James. But the Lakers have also given us 10 games that were within five points in the last five minutes, featuring some ugly free throw shooting from James and some dirty-work heroics (multiple tap-outs against Minnesota and the game-saving block against Atlanta) from Tyson Chandler. They've climbed out of the bottom 10 on defense, maybe because they've had a center -- Chandler, JaVale McGee or Ivica Zubac -- for every second of their last three games and maybe because those three games were against teams ranked 17th, 15th and 29th, respectively, on offense. The Blazers' fifth-ranked offense is at Staples Center on Wednesday for the teams' third meeting of the season.

Week 5: vs. POR, @ ORL, @ MIA

17
Last week:
16

Record: 6-6
Pace: 105.4 (4) OffRtg: 111.5 (6) DefRtg: 111.2 (25) NetRtg: +0.4 (15)

With ups and downs on both ends of the floor, it's not yet clear where the Pelicans stand in the West, but home games against the Bulls and Suns helped them end a six-game losing streak in which they allowed their opponents to score 117 points per 100 possessions. With Nikola Mirotic out, Anthony Davis and Julius Randle had their best minutes together (plus-28 in 27 minutes) against Phoenix on Saturday. Elfrid Payton (who has missed the last seven games with a sprained ankle) could be back this week to provide some additional playmaking, though the added length with Wesley Johnson in the starting lineup wasn't necessarily a bad thing. Jrue Holiday has averaged 9.7 assists over Payton's absence and has started to make some shots from the outside (after shooting 12-for-50 from outside the paint through his first eight games).

Week 5: vs. TOR, @ MIN, vs. NYK, vs. DEN

18
Last week:
19

Record: 5-7
Pace: 98.3 (28) OffRtg: 104.7 (23) DefRtg: 109.1 (19) NetRtg: -4.4 (22)

This weekend brought an end to the Rockets' pursuit of Jimmy Butler and, apparently, the Rockets career of Carmelo Anthony, who shot 1-for-11 (in Oklahoma City of all places) in what was probably his last game with Houston. GM Daryl Morey will surely continue to make calls, but the pressure is now greater for this team to figure things out from within, despite a severe lack of depth (even with Eric Gordon back from injury). Coach Mike D'Antoni used only eight guys against Indiana on Sunday, but the Rockets had one of their best offensive performances of the season, with Chris Paul making more 3-pointers (five) than he had over his previous four games and James Harden getting to the line 15 times (and making eight 3-pointers of his own).

Week 5: @ DEN, vs. GSW, vs. SAC

19
Last week:
24

Record: 6-7
Pace: 98.5 (27) OffRtg: 109.9 (10) DefRtg: 109.8 (22) NetRtg: +0.1 (17)

The Nets rank fifth offensively (113 points scored per 100 possessions) in November, climbing into the top 10 overall. Caris LeVert hit the game-winner in Denver on Friday on an isolation and has scored 1.27 points per possession on isos, the third best mark (behind those of Khris Middleton and Kemba Walker) among 38 players with at least 25 isolation possessions. Joe Harris has shot a league-best 33-for-56 (59 percent) on catch-and-shoot 3-pointers, while Spencer Dinwiddie and D'Angelo Russell have combined for 58 assists and just 14 turnovers over the last six games. The numbers with both Dinwiddie and Russell on the floor have not been good, but they've only played a little over five minutes per game together over that six-game stretch. With two of their next three games against two of the three worst defenses in the league, the offense could continue to climb.

Week 5: @ MIN, vs. MIA, @ WAS, vs. LAC

20
Last week:
18

Record: 6-6
Pace: 101.7 (14) OffRtg: 105.5 (20) DefRtg: 106.6 (10) NetRtg: -1.1 (20)

The Pistons got two road wins (in Orlando and Atlanta) last week, but can't gain any traction offensively. If it's not turnovers, its poor shooting. They shot 12-for-45 from 3-point range in their loss to Charlotte on Sunday and, with a frontline of Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond, rank last in field goal percentage in the paint (49.9 percent). The good news is that they've won two straight first quarters after trailing after the first 12 minutes in nine of their first 10 games (they had to come back from two different double-digit deficits in Orlando on Wednesday). With just one game this week, there's time to get a lot of extra shots up.

Week 5: @ TOR

21
Last week:
22

Record: 6-7
Pace: 100.7 (19) OffRtg: 102.9 (28) DefRtg: 107.3 (14) NetRtg: -4.4 (23)

The Magic have won four of their last five games, with Evan Fournier (the game-winner on Monday) and Aaron Gordon (the dunk on Wednesday) providing the highlights. They've seemingly risen above the dregs of the Eastern Conference with wins over the Cavs, Wizards and Knicks, but will face two of those teams again in the next seven days. Gordon is day-to-day with an ankle injury and both of those games (Monday in Washington, Sunday against New York) being the second of a back-to-back. Wes Iwundu has shot just 7-for-22 in his five games as a starter (in place of the injured Jonathan Isaac), but the Magic have allowed just 91 points per 100 possessions in his 91 minutes.

Week 5: @ WAS, vs. PHI, vs. LAL, vs. NYK

22
Last week:
20

Record: 5-7
Pace: 102.2 (13) OffRtg: 107.4 (16) DefRtg: 107.2 (12) NetRtg: +0.3 (16)

The Heat got big performances from Josh Richardson (nine points in overtime in Detroit on Monday) and Hassan Whiteside (29 points, 20 rebounds and nine blocks against the Spurs on Wednesday) early in the week. But weekend losses to the Pacers and Wizards (in which they turned the ball over a total of 43 times) have them 0-2 in their new "Vice" City Edition uniforms and gave them a league-high four losses (they're 4-4) in games they led by double-digits (having survived after blowing a 12-point, fourth quarter lead in the Detroit game). The only point guard on the roster -- Goran Dragic -- has been banged up (he shot 0-for-7 on Saturday after missing the previous two games) and their back-up playmaker -- Dwyane Wade -- has been out following the birth of his child. Being in the Eastern Conference affords them a sluggish start, but the first half is the easier half of their schedule.

Week 5: vs. PHI, @ BKN, @ IND, vs. LAL

23
Last week:
29

Record: 4-8
Pace: 101.5 (15) OffRtg: 108.0 (14) DefRtg: 111.1 (24) NetRtg: -3.0 (21)

Amazingly, the Mavs still rank last in opponent 3-point percentage (40.8 percent), with their opponents having shot less than 30 percent from beyond the arc over their last four games. Improved defense and consistent production from Luka Doncic has given them two wins in their last three, and Monday's game in Chicago is a nice opportunity to make it three of four. Even with the additions of Doncic and DeAndre Jordan, the numbers with Dennis Smith Jr., Wesley Matthews and Harrison Barnes on the floor together are worse this season (minus-11.8 points per 100 possessions) than they were last season (minus-11.2 -- by far the worst mark among trios that played at least 1,000 minutes). For the second straight season, bench minutes have kept them in games.

Week 5: @ CHI, vs. UTA, vs. GSW

24
Last week:
21

Record: 4-9
Pace: 103.0 (9) OffRtg: 107.2 (17) DefRtg: 114.3 (30) NetRtg: -7.2 (26)

After an 0-5 trip, in which the defense was terrible (116 points allowed per 100 possessions) with Jimmy Butler on the floor (for almost 40 minutes a game), the Wolves finally decided it was time time send Butler packing. They've definitely lost some juice off the dribble, but have gained perimeter shooting, depth and peace of mind. They set a franchise record for 3-pointers (20) on Wednesday (raise your hand if you had Derrick Rose leading the Wolves into the 3-point revolution), but their bench was brutal against the Lakers and Kings. Their starting lineups (with Josh Okogie replacing the injured Andrew Wiggins on Friday) were a plus-20 in 54 total minutes over the two games, and the Wolves were outscored by 35 points in 42 minutes otherwise. They can start fresh with a new rotation this week, playing 10 of their next 12 games at home, where they're 4-1.

Week 5: vs. BKN, vs. NOP, vs. POR, vs. MEM

25
Last week:
26

Record: 3-9
Pace: 103.9 (7) OffRtg: 105.2 (22) DefRtg: 114.1 (28) NetRtg: -8.9 (28)

The Wizards are 2-2 in this stretch of seven straight games against teams with losing records after a much-needed win in Miami on Saturday. John Wall and Bradley Beal aren't completely innocent when it comes to the Wizards' issues, but the minutes when both have been on the bench have been the biggest problem. The Wizards have been outscored by an amazing 71 points in the 102 minutes (33 per 48) that Austin Rivers and Tomas Satoransky have been on the floor with both Wall and Beal on the bench. The team has been outscored by 35 points in 479 minutes otherwise. Scott Brooks only staggers the minutes of his two All-Stars a little bit (choosing not to do the Mike D'Antoni thing where one of the two starting guards is always on the floor), even though the Wizards' minutes with only one on the floor have been pretty good.

Week 5: vs. ORL, vs. CLE, vs. BKN, vs. POR

26
Last week:
27

Record: 4-9
Pace: 99.3 (23) OffRtg: 104.6 (24) DefRtg: 111.3 (26) NetRtg: -6.7 (25)

The Bulls went 2-1 in a week in which they scored less than a point per possession, with Zach LaVine carrying them down the stretch (all nine of his buckets were unassisted as he scored 23 of their last 29 points on his way to a career-high 41) in New York on Monday and Jabari Parker saving Saturday's win over the Cavs with his defense (seriously). They've allowed just 100.2 points per 100 possessions over their last four games, including just 81.7 in 50 minutes with Robin Lopez (back in the rotation) on the floor. With Kris Dunn injured and Cameron Payne out of the rotation, Ryan Arcidiacono (he of the 53/10 assist-turnover ratio) is the new starting point guard.

Week 5: vs. DAL, @ BOS, @ MIL, vs. TOR

27
Last week:
23

Record: 4-10
Pace: 100.4 (20) OffRtg: 104.4 (25) DefRtg: 109.5 (21) NetRtg: -5.1 (24)

The Knicks' young lineup is still a plus-8.1 points per 100 possessions over 94 minutes since it got its first start 2 1/2 weeks ago. But it played just 2:17 together on Sunday and Frank Ntilikina never got off the bench after taking a seat with 6:15 left in the first quarter of an ugly loss to the Magic at Madison Square Garden. Ntilikina remains the team's best perimeter defender, but the offense just hasn't been there consistently enough. He ranks sixth on the team with just 7.9 drives per 36 minutes and has attempted just 12 free throws in 14 games. Emmanuel Mudiay and Allonzo Trier got the bulk of the backcourt minutes down the stretch of close games against the Bulls and Hawks last week. The losses to Chicago and Orlando were two of four one-game homestands as the Knicks play 11 of their 15 November games on the road.

Week 5: @ OKC, @ NOP, @ ORL

28
Last week:
25

Record: 3-10
Pace: 107.5 (1) OffRtg: 101.9 (29) DefRtg: 109.9 (23) NetRtg: -7.9 (27)

Trae Young hit 3-pointers from 27, 28 and 29 feet in the fourth quarter in L.A. on Sunday (making sure Lakers fans saw where he shot that last one from), but you don't get extra points for distance and Young's 3-pointers haven't been able to make up for the fact that the Hawks have allowed a league-high 13.4 3-pointers per game on the other end of the floor, ranking 27th in opponent 3-point percentage (38.5 percent) and 26th in the percentage of their opponents' shots that have come from 3-point range (38 percent). They've lost eight of their last nine games and the loss to the Lakers on Sunday was just the first game of a stretch in which eight straight (and 11 of the next 12) opponents are currently over .500.

Week 5: @ GSW, @ DEN, @ IND

29
Last week:
28

Record: 2-10
Pace: 100.3 (21) OffRtg: 100.1 (30) DefRtg: 113.0 (27) NetRtg: -12.9 (30)

The Suns set a new standard for 2018-19 late-game collapses (you're off the hook, Nets) on Thursday, somehow allowing the Celtics to come back from 14 points down with less than four minutes to go in the fourth quarter and win in overtime. That was their only loss (of 10) that was within five points in the last five minutes and they've trailed by 20 or more points for a league-high 124 minutes. They've been a little better than average offensively (108.4 points scored per 100 possessions) in 218 minutes with Devin Booker and DeAndre Ayton on the floor together, but have scored just 94.2 points per 100 possessions in 339 minutes otherwise.

Week 5: @ OKC, vs. SAS, vs. OKC

30
Last week:
30

Record: 1-11
Pace: 99.0 (24) OffRtg: 104.3 (26) DefRtg: 114.3 (29) NetRtg: -10.0 (29)

Larry Drew got his contract and is preaching patience with rookie point guard Collin Sexton, who scored a career-high 20 points in Chicago on Saturday, shooting 5-for-9 on pull-up jumpers. So the Cavs can now go back to just being the worst team in the league, with the dysfunction dissipating and the injuries continuing to pile up. Sam Dekker (ankle), George Hill (shoulder) and Cedi Osman (back) joined Kevin Love on the shelf last week and while Tristan Thompson has done more with extra opportunities (averaging 17.0 points and 14.3 rebounds over the last three games), J.R. Smith shot 6-for-21 in his first two starts of the season. The Cavs are playing just two games (a Tuesday-Wednesday back-to-back this week) in a stretch of eight days, so there is some practice and recovery time to be had.

Week 5: vs. CHA, @ WAS

* * *

John Schuhmann is a senior stats analyst for NBA.com. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter.

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