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NBA Power Rankings: Pelicans, Hawks soaring after opening week

Chinmay Vaidya updates his NBA power rankings for the 2022-23 season.

Utah Jazz v New Orleans Pelicans
Zion Williamson of the New Orleans Pelicans warms up before a game against the Utah Jazz at the Smoothie King Center on October 23, 2022 in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images

We’re one week into the NBA season and things can get easily misinterpreted after one or two games. These early power rankings, and really power rankings in general, are more about how a team has performed relative to its expectations and how it is predicted to keep performing. With that in mind, let’s dive into the updated rankings.

The New Orleans Pelicans and Atlanta Hawks are the big risers after the first week despite setbacks Sunday. The Pelicans look like a force in the West with the return of Zion Williamson, but might be without Brandon Ingram for a while as he recovers from a head injury. Williamson himself also left Sunday’s game with a hip contusion. The Hawks couldn’t be happier about the fit between Trae Young and Dejounte Murray, the team’s big offseason acquisition. Those two are dominating opposing defenses and make the Hawks legitimate threats in the East.

The Boston Celtics and Milwaukee Bucks have taken the top two spots in the rankings after the first week. Some notable teams that have yet to register a win are the Philadelphia 76ers and Los Angeles Lakers. They are ranked 15th and 19th, respectively, after one week.

Here’s a look at the full updated power rankings entering Week 2 the 2022-23 season.

NBA Power Rankings: Week 2

Team Ranking Previous Ranking
Team Ranking Previous Ranking
Boston Celtics 1 2
Milwaukee Bucks 2 3
Golden State Warriors 3 1
Los Angeles Clippers 4 4
Phoenix Suns 5 7
Dallas Mavericks 6 10
New Orleans Pelicans 7 17
Brooklyn Nets 8 5
Memphis Grizzlies 9 9
Minnesota Timberwolves 10 12
Atlanta Hawks 11 18
Denver Nuggets 12 11
Cleveland Cavaliers 13 13
Miami Heat 14 8
Philadelphia 76ers 15 6
Portland Trail Blazers 16 19
Toronto Raptors 17 16
Charlotte Hornets 18 21
Los Angeles Lakers 19 14
New York Knicks 20 20
Chicago Bulls 21 15
Sacramento Kings 22 22
Washington Wizards 23 24
Detroit Pistons 24 23
Utah Jazz 25 30
Indiana Pacers 26 26
San Antonio Spurs 27 29
Oklahoma City Thunder 28 27
Orlando Magic 29 25
Houston Rockets 30 28