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NBA Power Rankings: Who made moves as trade deadline looms


The long-awaited 2023-24 NBA trade deadline (Thursday, 3 p.m. ET) is nearly here, and teams across the league are continuing to seek out opportunities to shake up their rosters all the way up to the deadline.

We’ve already seen how a few midseason blockbuster trades have impacted our Power Rankings. OG Anunoby, after being traded from the Toronto Raptors in late December, has transformed the New York Knicks into one of the hottest teams in the league.

The Indiana Pacers have also climbed back into the Eastern Conference playoff picture with the help of Pascal Siakam, who was traded from the Raptors in mid-January.

And with Joel Embiid out for at least four weeks with a knee injury, eyes are turned toward the Philadelphia 76ers, who, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, are looking for a backup center ahead of the deadline

With a day left before the deadline, which blockbuster trades could shake up the league and our Power Rankings? Will the Los Angeles Lakers or the Golden State Warriors make any moves to save their seasons? And what do the futures of Dejounte Murray and Zach LaVine look like now?

Here’s where all 30 teams land with just hours to go.

Note: Throughout the regular season, our panel (Kendra Andrews, Tim Bontemps, Jamal Collier, Andrew Lopez, Tim MacMahon, Dave McMenamin and Ohm Youngmisuk) is ranking all 30 teams from top to bottom, taking stock of which teams are playing the best basketball and which teams are looking most like title contenders.

Previous rankings: Post-Finals | Nov. 1 | Nov. 8 | Nov. 15 | Nov. 22 | Nov. 29 | Dec. 6 | Dec. 13 | Dec. 20 | Dec. 27 | Jan. 3 | Jan. 10 | Jan. 17 | Jan. 24 | Jan. 31

Jump to a team:

ATL | BOS | BKN | CHA | CHI | CLE
DAL | DEN | DET | GS | HOU | IND
LAC | LAL | MEM | MIA | MIL | MIN
NO | NY | OKC | ORL | PHI | PHX
POR | SAC | SA | TOR | UTA | WAS

greyline

bos

1. Boston Celtics
2023-24 record: 38-12

  • Previous ranking: 1sw ye 40

  • Next games: vs. ATL (Feb. 7), vs. WAS (Feb. 9), @ MIA (Feb. 11), @ BKN (Feb. 13)

With the NBA’s best record and limited flexibility to make trades, it seems safe to assume it will be a relatively quiet trade deadline week in Boston. That said, the Celtics are equipped with a $6.2 million trade exception that could allow them to add a player to their rotation over the next couple of days to fortify a roster that Boston hopes can finally get over the hump this spring. — Bontemps


lac

2. LA Clippers
2023-24 record: 34-15

Not even a grueling trip that required playing seven games in 11 days can slow down the hottest team in the league. The Clippers aced their final Grammy trip before they move into the Intuit Dome next season, going 6-1 in that stretch with their lone loss against the rising Cavaliers. Their most impressive win was a 19-point shutdown against the Celtics, handing them just their second loss at TD Garden at the time. The Clippers typically make a move before the trade deadline and could always tweak their roster, but they continue to reap the benefits of the James Harden deal. After Tuesday’s slate of games, the Clippers now have the best win percentage in a four-way tie at the top of the Western Conference. — Youngmisuk


den

3. Denver Nuggets
2023-24 record: 35-16

Jamal Murray didn’t get an All-Star nod as he hoped, but the point guard has proved just how elite he can be when it matters most. He and Nikola Jokic, Denver’s lone All-Star, care more about June than now. But as the deadline approaches, Denver is monitoring who might be available to bolster its second unit. — Youngmisuk


okc

4. Oklahoma City Thunder
2023-24 record: 36-16

The Thunder attempted 63 3s in Sunday’s double-overtime win over the Raptors, the most in the NBA this season, tied for the third most in league history and nine more than in any other game in franchise history. It was uncharacteristic for a team that ranks 17th in the league with 33.8 3s attempted per game, but the Thunder, ranked fifth in offense, are efficient from long range, ranking third at 38.9%. Jalen Williams (45.6%) and Isaiah Joe (42.4%), Oklahoma City’s top 3-point shooters among league qualifiers, both missed the comeback win over the Raptors due to injuries. — MacMahon


cle

5. Cleveland Cavaliers
2023-24 record: 32-16

  • Previous ranking: 8gn arrow

  • Next games: @ WAS (Feb. 7), @ BKN (Feb. 8), @ TOR (Feb. 10), vs. PHI (Feb. 12)

Just how good has Cleveland been lately? The Cavs’ 14-1 record over their past 15 games is the best record over a 15-game span without LeBron James on the roster in franchise history, according to research by ESPN Stats & Information. While part of their strength is their depth, Donovan Mitchell is the clear team MVP. He has led them in scoring in eight straight games and in assists in seven of those. — McMenamin


min

6. Minnesota Timberwolves
2023-24 record: 35-16

Although the Timberwolves are off to their best 50-game start in franchise history, they are tied with the Thunder for first place in the Western Conference in what has become a four-team race for the top slot. The Wolves were dominant in their wins last week against Houston and Dallas, but they gave up an eight-point fourth-quarter lead in a two-point loss to the Magic. As Minnesota looks to keep pace in the West, it’ll continue to lean on its championship-level defense, which leads the league with a 108.2 defensive rating, but more importantly, it must find ways to improve its 19th-ranked offense — and soon. — Collier


ny

7. New York Knicks
2023-24 record: 33-18

As the trade deadline approaches, the biggest question surrounding the Knicks is whether Evan Fournier will remain on the team past 3 p.m. ET Thursday. Fournier has been on the outside of Tom Thibodeau’s rotation for more than a calendar year, and the Knicks have a $19M team option for next season — making him an attractive chip for a team looking to shed money. A trade could allow a Knicks team dealing with several injuries to add some reinforcements for the playoff push. — Bontemps


mil

8. Milwaukee Bucks
2023-24 record: 33-18

  • Previous ranking: 6rd arrow

  • Next games: vs. MIN (Feb. 8), vs. CHA (Feb. 9), vs. DEN (Feb. 12), vs. MIA (Feb. 13)

Milwaukee lost its grip on the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference after going 1-4 in its first road trip since Doc Rivers took over as head coach. Rivers has preached patience since taking over the team and acknowledged the challenges ahead — the Bucks have the hardest remaining strength of schedule in the NBA. They return home for a difficult four-game homestand heading into the All-Star break, including games against the Wolves, Nuggets and Heat. — Collier


9. Phoenix Suns
2023-24 record: 30-21

It was a vindicating week for the Suns’ big three. They went to Brooklyn and Kevin Durant scored 33 points in a win against his former team; they went to Washington and Bradley Beal scored 43 against his former team; and then they hosted the Bucks and Devin Booker scored 32 versus the team that beat him in the Finals in 2021. And since a Christmas Day loss that dropped them below .500 they are 16-6 — most recently beating the Bucks in their first game at home after a seven-game road trip. — McMenamin


sac

10. Sacramento Kings
2023-24 record: 29-20

  • Previous ranking: 12gn arrow

  • Next games: vs. DET (Feb. 7), vs. DEN (Feb. 9), @ OKC (Feb. 11), @ PHX (Feb. 13)

This might come as a surprise, but Sacramento’s defense (10th) is ranked higher than its offense (11th), something that must have Mike Brown elated. As long as the Kings keep that up, and maintain their offense fueled by De’Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis, they should be able to solidify themselves in the middle of the playoff rankings. — Andrews


no

11. New Orleans Pelicans
2023-24 record: 29-21

  • Previous ranking: 9rd arrow

  • Next games: @ LAC (Feb. 7), @ LAL (Feb. 9), @ POR (Feb. 10), @ MEM (Feb. 12)

In Monday’s win against the Raptors, Brandon Ingram had 41 points and hit a career-high eight 3-pointers. During a stretch in the third quarter, Ingram became the first player to hit 3s on five consecutive possessions since 1997-98, according to Elias Sports Bureau. When Ingram has hit at least two 3s this season, New Orleans is 11-4. If he hits three or more, the Pelicans are 6-1. — Lopez


phi

12. Philadelphia 76ers
2023-24 record: 30-19

  • Previous ranking: 5rd arrow

  • Next games: vs. GS (Feb. 7), vs. ATL (Feb. 9), @ WAS (Feb. 10), @ CLE (Feb. 12)

As Philadelphia waits to see exactly how long Joel Embiid will be out — and whether the reigning MVP will be able to play again this season — the 76ers have to decide how aggressively they want to upgrade their roster. Philadelphia has the ability to wait until the summer and attempt to use cap space, or add players now and give itself back the Bird rights of players on the roster. — Bontemps


dal

13. Dallas Mavericks
2023-24 record: 28-23

Kyrie Irving’s return from a right thumb sprain that sidelined him for six games has lightened Luka Doncic’s immense workload, but the Mavericks are still missing rookie center Dereck Lively II, who is already considered to be the third franchise pillar on the roster. Lively missed his fourth straight game Tuesday night due to his broken nose, which required surgery Monday to repair. Dallas is 11-7 with Doncic, Irving and Lively in the lineup — a 50-win pace over a full season — and was .515 in the rest of its games entering Tuesday night. — MacMahon


ind

14. Indiana Pacers
2023-24 record: 29-23

Just how good is Indiana’s offense? Despite missing All-Star Tyrese Haliburton for 13 games, the Pacers have scored at least 100 points in all 51 games this season, becoming only the eighth team in NBA history to put up triple digits in each of its first 50 games. The Pacers made a splash last month trading for Pascal Siakam (averaging 21.6 points and 7.3 rebounds on 56% shooting in his first 10 games in Indianapolis), but the team is just 4-6 so far with him — Collier


orl

15. Orlando Magic
2023-24 record: 27-23

In a 108-106 comeback win against the Timberwolves last week, Orlando finished with a supersized lineup of Jalen Suggs, Franz Wagner, Paolo Banchero, Jonathan Isaac and Wendell Carter Jr. It’s a lineup the Magic haven’t gone to as much this season because of minutes restrictions on Isaac and other injuries. But in six games and just 22 minutes, the group has been stingy, allowing just 97.9 points per 100 possessions, giving Orlando a formidable defensive group at the end of games as it looks to push for a top-six seed in the East. — Lopez


lal

16. Los Angeles Lakers
2023-24 record: 27-25

Thursday figures to be one of the most jam-packed days in Lakers franchise history. The NBA trade deadline hits at 12 p.m. PT, followed by the Kobe Bryant statue unveiling at 3:30 p.m. PT and capped by a game against the defending champion Nuggets at 7. As solid as L.A. should feel about its 4-2 road trip, it would be folly to draw any conclusions about the team’s future until this week plays out. — McMenamin


mia

17. Miami Heat
2023-24 record: 26-24

Terry Rozier’s tenure in Miami hasn’t gotten off to the smoothest start. In his first seven games, Rozier is averaging just 11.7 points and 5.4 assists on 32.9% shooting and is shooting 21.9% from deep. But it’s not just Rozier who has struggled. Despite holding the Clippers to a season-low 43 first-half points, Miami’s offense stagnated in a 103-95 loss. The Heat fell to 2-10 this season when failing to score 100 points. The Heat, currently No. 7 in the East, will need to address their 22nd-ranked offense if they hope to climb out of the play-in. — Lopez


utah

18. Utah Jazz
2023-24 record: 26-26

The Jazz are sixth in the league in assists per game (28.4) despite not having any player who averages at least five. Six Utah players — Jordan Clarkson, Collin Sexton, Kelly Olynyk, Kris Dunn, Keyonte George and fallen-out-of-the-rotation Talen Horton-Tucker — all average between 4.1 and 4.9 assists, evidence of how well the Jazz share the ball. One major issue: Utah leads the league in turnovers with 15.8 per game. — MacMahon


gs

19. Golden State Warriors
2023-24 record: 22-25

  • Previous ranking: 21gn arrow

  • Next games: @ PHI (Feb. 7), @ IND (Feb. 8), vs. PHX (Feb. 10), @ UTA (Feb. 12)

The return of Draymond Green has stopped the bleeding but not enough, as the Warriors continue to struggle, falling to 12th in the West. The theme remains the same: Stephen Curry continues his high-level play, dropping 60 in a loss to Atlanta, while Klay Thompson struggles — the longtime vet has been pulled from the starting lineup — and the younger players seem to be the only hope. Jonathan Kuminga has scored over 20 points in nine of Golden State’s past 10 games, and Brandin Podziemski is averaging a tidy 10 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists in 26 minutes per game. There doesn’t appear to be a deal the Warriors can make at the deadline to fully reset, so this will likely be their reality the rest of the season. — Andrews .


hou

20. Houston Rockets
2023-24 record: 23-27

No. 4 overall pick Amen Thompson — the highest selection in the 2023 draft who didn’t make the cut for the Rising Stars Game — has been a significant contributor recently. Thompson, who missed an extended stretch with a sprained ankle, has averaged 9.9 points on 55% shooting, 7.4 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 1.2 steals in 21.2 minutes in the past nine games. His teammate, No. 20 overall pick Cam Whitmore, can make a claim as the most glaring Rising Stars snub in the rookie class. He ranks sixth among rookies with 11.8 points per game on 59.1% true shooting. — MacMahon


atl

21. Atlanta Hawks
2023-24 record: 22-28

  • Previous ranking: 22gn arrow

  • Next games: @ BOS (Feb. 7), @ PHI (Feb. 9), vs. HOU (Feb. 10), vs. CHI (Feb. 12)

When Trae Young wasn’t announced as an All-Star reserve Thursday, he responded by averaging 30.7 points and 11 assists in his next three games, helping lead the Hawks to four consecutive victories before falling short to the Clippers on Monday. On Tuesday, the NBA’s leader in total assists was named as an injury replacement by NBA commissioner Adam Silver. This will be Young’s third All-Star appearance after 2020 and 2022. — Lopez


chi

22. Chicago Bulls
2023-24 record: 24-27

The Bulls are, once again, scuffling as they head into the trade deadline, losing three of their past six games. Guard Zach LaVine is scheduled to have season-ending surgery this week. This week’s deadline represents the latest chance for Chicago to shake up its roster as the Bulls are the No. 9 team in the East, and closer to 11th than eighth. — Collier


bkn

23. Brooklyn Nets
2023-24 record: 20-30

After Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving made their returns to Brooklyn within the span of a week, the Nets now must decide what direction to take a roster that sits outside the play-in mix in the Eastern Conference. There are several players on the roster — including Royce O’Neale and Dorian Finney-Smith — who could be on the move. — Bontemps


mem

24. Memphis Grizzlies
2023-24 record: 18-33

The Grizzlies have been absolutely ravaged by injuries. They had 13 players ruled out for Sunday’s 40-point road loss to the Celtics and played the game with Luke Kennard and David Roddy as the only two players with standard contracts. They were joined by three players on two-way deals (GG Jackson, Jacob Gilyard and Scotty Pippen Jr.) and three players on 10-day hardship contracts (Trey Jemison, Matt Hurt and Tosan Evbuomwan) to give the Grizzlies the minimum of eight players in uniform. — MacMahon


tor

25. Toronto Raptors
2023-24 record: 17-33

  • Previous ranking: 25sw ye 40

  • Next games: @ CHA (Feb. 7), vs. HOU (Feb. 9), vs. CLE (Feb. 10), vs. SA (Feb. 12)

Toronto has picked its direction this season after trading OG Anunoby and Pascal Siakam over the past several weeks, but that doesn’t mean the Raptors are necessarily done dealing ahead of the trade deadline. Bruce Brown is one of the most appealing players who could be moved this week, not only because of his on-court abilities to guard several positions and hit open 3-pointers, but also the flexibility his contract provides with a team option for next season. — Bontemps


por

26. Portland Trail Blazers
2023-24 record: 15-35

Positivity in Portland! The Blazers have won seven of their past 11 — including home wins against the 76ers and Bucks — and shown steady growth since getting healthier. Deandre Ayton, in particular, has taken a step forward, scoring at least 18 points in six of his past seven games. — Andrews


sa

27. San Antonio Spurs
2023-24 record: 10-40

  • Previous ranking: 27sw ye 40

  • Next games: @ MIA (Feb. 7), @ ORL (Feb. 8), @ BKN (Feb. 10), @ TOR (Feb. 12)

Victor Wembanyama’s lead in the Rookie of the Year race is growing. Wembanyama’s odds to win the award are at minus-300 (Chet Holmgren is at plus-280) according to the latest ESPN BET odds. Wembanyama is averaging 20.4 points, 10.3 rebounds, 3.2 assists and a league-leading 3.1 blocks per game. He could become just the seventh player to average 20-10-3-3 over an entire season since blocks became official in 1973-74. The other six — Shaquille O’Neal, David Robinson, Hakeem Olajuwon, Patrick Ewing, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Bob Lanier — are all Hall of Famers, and none of them did it before the age of 25. — Lopez


CHA

28. Charlotte Hornets
2023-24 record: 10-39

  • Previous ranking: 28sw ye 40

  • Next games: vs. TOR (Feb. 7) , @ MIL (Feb. 9), vs. MEM (Feb. 10), vs. IND (Feb. 12)

On an eight-game losing streak, Charlotte continues to eye the future as the trade deadline nears — and that means building around LaMelo Ball and Brandon Miller. Ball has been sidelined for two weeks by an ankle injury, but Miller has been silencing draft-day critics who questioned the Hornets for taking him over Scoot Henderson. The second overall pick has scored 35 and 33 points in his past two games and has scored 20 or more in nine of his past 11 games. — Youngmisuk


was

29. Washington Wizards
2023-24 record: 9-40

  • Previous ranking: 29sw ye 40

  • Next games: vs. CLE (Feb. 7), @ BOS (Feb. 9), vs. PHI (Feb. 10), @ DAL (Feb. 12)

After putting together their first winning streak of the season with two straight victories against the Pistons and Spurs, Washington dropped three in a row, including a loss to a departed Bradley Beal and the Suns — Beal had a season-high 43 points in his return. Still, the Wizards are focused on building for the future with a very measured approach. As the deadline approaches, they’ll see what other assets they can continue to add that will help them down the road. — Youngmisuk


det

30. Detroit Pistons
2023-24 record: 6-43

  • Previous ranking: 30sw ye 40

  • Next games: @ SAC (Feb. 7), @ POR (Feb. 8 ), @ LAC (Feb. 10), @ LAL (Feb. 13)

The Pistons went 0-3 last week, failing to build any momentum after an upset win over the Thunder two weeks ago. With the league’s worst record, Detroit has been one of the most-talked-about teams heading into the trade deadline. The losses will likely continue to mount as the Pistons begin a West Coast road trip heading into the All-Star break, traveling to Sacramento, Portland and Los Angeles to face both the Lakers and Clippers, before finishing up in Phoenix. — Collier



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