NBA Power Rankings: Where do the Pelicans rank 10 games in?

The New Orleans Pelicans have a leadership problem. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
The New Orleans Pelicans have a leadership problem. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /
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NBA Power Rankings
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17. San Antonio Spurs (6-6)

I’ll admit I’ve been critical of the San Antonio Spurs recently, but I can’t put this team any lower than 17 in our NBA Power Rankings, because they’re playing solid basketball to start the year.

Offensively, this Spurs team is clicking pretty well, and it seems like Gregg Popovich has actually found a way to get his veterans to mesh with his young players. Sure, they don’t have the talent to win with the Western Conference’s elite anymore, but this team wins the games they are supposed to. With Popovich’s coaching, I wouldn’t be surprised if this Spurs team improves over the course of the season, and sneak into the playoffs.

A sputtering offense and a 4-game losing streak has caused the New Orleans Pelicans to slip to 18th in our NBA Power Rankings

18. New Orleans Pelicans (4-6)

The New Orleans Pelicans have fluctuated a lot recently. In our preseason rankings, we had them at 16, a strong start to the season boosted them up to 9th a few weeks ago, but now the team’s struggles have sent them plummeting to 18th.

To be honest, we could’ve put this team even lower like some other rankings have, but I’m giving credit to the Pelicans for their effort and defense. This team never quits in a game, and they’ve done a great job transforming into one of the best defenses in the NBA. Now, it’s time for Stan Van Gundy to fix his offense, and figure out how to get more spacing and shot creation on the court. If he can do that, then the Pelicans can make a run that takes them all the way to the playoffs.

19. Denver Nuggets (6-6)

I’ve been woefully disappointed with the Denver Nuggets to start the season. This talented roster is regressing badly, and losing games they should be winning to start the season.

My main concern is the Nuggets’ defense. Last season, Wes Unseld Jr. transformed the Nuggets’ defense into one of the better units in the league. This season, with Unseld still on the staff, the defense is once again giving up too many points. Making matters worse, opponents have started to figure out the Jamal Murray-Nikola Jokic two-man game on the offensive side of the floor. I hope the Nuggets can regain their form because they have a roster capable of making the NBA Finals.