NBA Power Rankings week 6- the quarter pole finds OKC Thunder defying the odds

Steven Adams #12 of the OKC Thunder handles the ball against the New Orleans Pelicans (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images)
Steven Adams #12 of the OKC Thunder handles the ball against the New Orleans Pelicans (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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OKC Thunder Power Ranking W6
OKC Thunder Power Ranking W6: Lonzo Ball #2 of the New Orleans Pelicans drives against Chris Paul #3 of the OKC Thunder (Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images) /

With the quarter pole almost complete the NBA Power Rankings reflect the shifts and the OKC Thunder are defying odds in the clutch.

The quarter pole is upon us as the majority of teams have already (or will this week) complete 20 games. At that stage, there is enough of a resume in place to decipher if a team simply had an off week. For reference, John Schuhmann of offered an article that provides the evidence. Historically, the top eight teams in each conference after 20 games generally reflect the playoff participants.

In terms of the OKC Thunder, they are one of the few teams who previously defied the 20 game logic. They could find themselves in a similar position this season given their hardest section of the 82 game schedule was front-loaded.

Adding another twist to this long established precursor to determining playoff participants is an uncommon denominator. Typically there are three to five teams in the Eastern Conference who are separated from the pack. In the West, although there is generally one or two teams that stand out the next tier has typically been augmented by seven or eight solid teams vying for the other six seeds.

The difference this season is there are seven teams in the East that already appear cemented and unusually copious underperformers in the West. The resulting effect is the West isn’t getting to feast on the East, losses are spread out and the season is much more in flux at this stage that the historical reference.

Week Six Team Highlights:

  • The Lakers, Clippers Bucks, and Raptors are the only teams that rank in the top 10 for each of the key categories of offense, defense, and net differential. Perhaps surprisingly only the defending champs rank in the top five in all three areas.
  • The Heat, Celtics, Rockets, Mavericks, Nuggets, and Pacers rank top ten in two of the three categories.
  • Four teams enter the week with unbeaten home records all from the East – 76ers, Celtics, Magic, and Raptors.
  • Four teams were unbeaten in week six – the Blazers, Bucks, Raptors, and Rockets.
  • Six teams were winless — the Bulls, Cavaliers, Hawks, Knicks, Pelicans, Suns,

These factors all play a huge part in the seeding and will continue to play a role in placement moving onward. Given there are clubs yet to play 20 games the top 16 list will be laid out in next week’s power ranking to get a hint of who has the best chance of reaching the postseason.

With that, I give you Thunderous Intentions week six NBA Power Rankings