MFFL Playoff Watch: Western Conference Power Rankings – Week 7 (11/28-12/04)

This was a really positive week for the Dallas Mavericks, they were 3-1 and have climbed to 2nd in the Southwest Division and 7th in the Western Conference standings.

The week started with a great blowout win in Houston over the division rival Rockets in which Luka went full WonderBoy, hitting fall away corner 3’s, step-backs, half courters, and power dunks in traffic.  He unleashed his full repertoire and had Mavs fans rejoicing, HalleLuka!

The second game of the week brought MFFL’s back to Earth with a disappointing showing in LA against LeBron and the Lakers where the Mavs lost by 9.  Harrison Barnes was strong in this game, putting up 29 points, but Luka didn’t seem like himself and we found out why as he missed the next game with a hip injury.

The Mavs then came back home to take on the #1 seed in the West, LA Clippers.  It was a knock-down, drag-out battle with a playoff atmosphere but the Mavs defense proved too much for the top seeded Clippers.  We then continued this momentum by once again holding down home court and sending Damian Lillard and the Blazers packing with a 9-point win that was sealed with a beautiful step-back 3 by Luka Doncic. 

The Mavericks have embraced their coaches request of being a defensive oriented team.  Since the first few weeks of the season where the Mavs started 2-7 we have seen continued improvement in defensive positioning and effort.  When they are able to play at home the Mavs take that defense to another level.  The raucous home crowd mixed with the gritty play of DSJ, the showmanship of Luka, and glass-cleaning of DeAndre makes the American Airlines Center a place no opponent wants to play right now.  They have won 8 straight home games and are 9-2 at home this season, but if the Mavs want to secure themselves a playoff spot this year they are going to have to figure out how to get it done on the road. 

Southwest Division Standings:

Team W L W/L% GB
Memphis Grizzlies 13 9 0.591
Dallas Mavericks  12 10 0.545 1
New Orleans Pelicans  12 13 0.48 2.5
Houston Rockets  11 12 0.478 2.5
San Antonio Spurs  11 13 0.458 3

Western Conference Standings:

Team W L W/L% GB
Los Angeles Clippers (1)  16 7 0.70
Denver Nuggets (1)  16 7 0.70
Oklahoma City Thunder (3)  15 7 0.68 0.5
Golden State Warriors (4)  16 9 0.64 1
Los Angeles Lakers (5)  14 9 0.61 2
Memphis Grizzlies (6)  13 9 0.59 2.5
Dallas Mavericks (7)  12 10 0.55 3.5
Portland Trail Blazers (8)  13 11 0.54 3.5
Sacramento Kings (9)  12 11 0.52 4
Minnesota Timberwolves (10)  12 12 0.50 4.5
Utah Jazz (11)  12 13 0.48 5
New Orleans Pelicans (11)  12 13 0.48 5
Houston Rockets (13)  11 12 0.48 5
San Antonio Spurs (14)  11 13 0.46 5.5
Phoenix Suns (15)  4 20 0.17 12.5

Western Conference Power Rankings:

There is a new top dog this week, the Denver Nuggets, who after 10 games this year were red hot at 9-1.  They then lost 6 of their next 7 and found themselves all the way down to #8 in the week 5 rankings.  After a 6-game winning streak including wins over the Thunder, Lakers, Blazers, and Raptors, the Nuggets have catapulted all the way to #1.

Biggest Gainer:  Minnesota ↑5.

Biggest Losers:  Portland ↓9San Antonio ↓5Golden State ↓4

  1. Denver Nuggets (16-7, T-1st) (2-0 this week) ↑2– Next Week: @ORL, @CHO, @ATL, MEM.
  2. LA Clippers (16-7, T-1st) (3-1 this week)  – Next week: @MEM, MIA, @PHO, TOR.
  3. Los Angeles Lakers (14-9, 5th) (3-0 this week) ↑3 – Next week: SAS, @SAS, @MEM, MIA.
  4. OKC Thunder (15-7, 4th) (3-0 this week) ↑1 – Next Week: @BKN, @CHI, UTA.
  5. Golden State Warriors (16-9 overall, 4th in West) (1-2 this week) ↓4 – Next Week: @CLE, @MIL, MIN.
  6. Dallas Mavericks (12-10, 7th) (3-1 this week) ↑2 – Next Week: @NOP, HOU, ORL.
  7. Minnesota Timberwolves (12-12, 10th) (2-1 this week) ↑5 – Next week: CHO, @POR, @GS.
  8. New Orleans Pelicans (12-13, T-11th) (2-2 this week) ↑2 – Next Week: DAL, MEM, @DET, @BOS.
  9. Memphis Grizzlies (13-9, 6th) (1-1 this week) ↓2 – Next Week: LAC, @NOP, LAL, @DEN.
  10. Houston Rockets (11-12, 13th) (2-2 this week) ↑3 – Next Week: @UTA, @DAL, POR.
  11. Utah Jazz (12-13, 11th) (3-1 this week) ↑3 – Next Week: HOU, @SAS, @OKC.
  12. Sacramento Kings (12-10, 9th) (2-1 this week) ↓1 – Next week: @CLE, @IND, @CHI.
  13. Portland Trailblazers (13-11, 8th) (1-3 this week) ↓9 – Next Week: PHO, MIN, @HOU.
  14. San Antonio (11-13, 14th) (1-3 this week) ↓5 – Next Week: @LAL, LAL, UTA, PHO.
  15. Phoenix Suns (4-16, 15th) (0-4 this week) – Next week: @POR, MIA, LAC, @SAS.

Western Conference Heat Map:

The following heat map shows which teams excel in which statistical categories and where teams are under performing.  The darker the green the more they outperform in that category and the darker the red the worse they are in that category.

The Mavs are still near the bottom of the West when it comes to turnovers, but other than that, they are very close to league average in every category.

week 8

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