NBA Power Rankings week 11: OKC Thunder continues hot streak

OKC Thunder Nerlens Noel (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images)
OKC Thunder Nerlens Noel (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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OKC Thunder
(Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images) /

14. team. 29. . 14-20. Previous: 14th. San Antonio Spurs

San Antonio Spurs:

Offense: (109.8)  12th
Defense: (111.4) 20th
Net: (minus -1.6) 18th

Games Week 11 (1-2): Won vs Warriors 117-113, Lost to Thunder: 103-109, Bucks: 118-127
Games Week 12 (4 games): Mon vs Bucks | Weds at Celtics | Fri at Grizzlies | Sun at Raptors

Analysts were keen to cite this season as the end of the two plus decades of playoff appearances and may still be proven correct.

But entering week, 12 the Spurs are playing just above .500  ball (7-6). Moreover, Gregg Popovich’s roster (aside from DeRozan) has undertaken a new strategy of shooting more from the perimeter.

The player which jumps off the page in this regard is LaMarcus Aldridge who shied away from taking those shots. He’s abandoned that hesitance and proven to be among the best on the Spurs at taking them.

San Antonio began the New Year with back to back losses versus the Thunder and Bucks and things don’t get any easier with nine of their next 16 games against the elite and five of those games on the road. Factor in San Antonio will face the suddenly hot Grizzlies plus three games against the chase pack (Suns x 2, Pelicans) and it’s among the toughest strength of schedules.

The annual Rodeo trip is also more difficult this season with six of the eight games versus current Western playoff seeds and the other two against the Blazers and Kings.