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Power Tankings: The Slog of War

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Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world

NBA: Charlotte Hornets at Dallas Mavericks Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Talking about ‘tanking’ is an inherently confusing thing to do. The Mavericks lose but they improve their odds at getting a high draft pick. The Mavericks win and it hurts the chances of ping pong balls bouncing the right way. We’re all newer to this than these other franchises and we’re each coping in different ways.

The Nets, Kings, Magic, and Hawks all won games last week. The over all standings didn’t change much as the Nets were the only team to climb the standings. The Mavericks didn’t win but fell in the standings as a result of the movement from the other teams. Hilariously, the recently included New York Knicks have found the win column as often in the last week (2 wins!) as they did in their previous month and a half. That’s a lot of losses to not move in the standings much.

The Bottom Nine

Rank Change Team W L PCT GB DIFF STRK L10
Rank Change Team W L PCT GB DIFF STRK L10
22 none New York Knicks 27 47 0.365 33 -3.3 W1 3-7
23 none Chicago Bulls 24 49 0.329 35.5 -6.7 L5 3-7
24 none Sacramento Kings 24 50 0.324 36 -7.4 L1 4-6
25 down 1 Brooklyn Nets 23 51 0.311 37 -4.2 L3 3-7
26 up 1 Dallas Mavericks 22 51 0.301 37.5 -2.6 L5 3-7
27 none Orlando Magic 22 51 0.301 37.5 -4.8 W1 2-8
28 none Atlanta Hawks 21 53 0.284 39 -5.4 L3 1-9
29 none Memphis Grizzlies 19 54 0.26 40.5 -6.1 L4 1-9
30 none Phoenix Suns 19 55 0.257 41 -9.9 L11 0-10

Where Dallas Stands

The Mavericks fell in the standings to tie with the Orlando Magic for the fourth worst record in the league. While it appears that the Mavericks may have ‘committed’ to the tank, their current five game losing streak has all the hallmarks we’ve come to expect from Dallas: mainly an inability to quit. The overtime loss to the Raptors was incredibly close and the following four losses were great television for a bad team.

With four games in the next seven days, the standings could look very different for Dallas next week if their on court luck is any different.

Standouts this week

The Hawks valiant efforts to stick with the tankmasters in Phoenix and Memphis took a harsh blow this week with a rare road win over the Utah Jazz. The Nets have no reason to lose, so their win over Dallas was a blow to the hearts of those terribly unlucky Cleveland fans. The Magic beating the Suns was not a shock but Orlando has many chances to fall back down the standings. The Kings are in a similar spot as the Mavericks as they play a fair amount of bad teams down the stretch and can’t help but win now and again as they did over the Hawks.

Tank-on-tank action

The headliner for Dallas fans is the Kings-Mavs match up Tuesday evening. The Kings are only a half game ahead in the standings. Brooklyn and Orlando play Wednesday. Chicago and Orlando face off Friday. Not too many super tank options this week, but it should be enough to change the standing for next week.