This week we are looking at four different sports news pundits and seeing where they ranked the
Milwaukee Bucks. ESPN and NBA.com have not published a Power Rankings since the trade deadline so
it seems unfair to count them. We have subbed them out this week for The Ringer. If you missed last week’s round up and want to catch up, you can find them here.
Let’s break it down!
CBS Sports (as of Feb 13th)
CBS Sports has the Milwaukee Bucks solidly at #1 after breaking the curse of being first in their rankings. They note that the Bucks are seemingly streaking along, and Giannis is looking like an MVP candidate (which he is). Another note, CBS Sports still believes that the Eastern Conference has the top teams in the NBA despite the arms race that the Western Conference got into before the trade deadline. The top four spots are occupied by the Milwaukee Bucks, Boston Celtics, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Philadelphia 76ers. The Nuggets are the lone Western Conference team in their Top 5.
The Bucks’ winning streak reached a nice, round number of 10 with convincing wins over the Blazers, Lakers, and Clippers this week . . . Giannis Antetokounmpo is putting himself back into the MVP race (if he ever dropped out), with averages of 32.3 points, 10.3 rebounds, and 6.7 assists this week on 58 percent shooting. – Colin Ward-Henninger, CBS Sports
The Ringer (as of Feb 10th)
The Ringer has placed the Giannis led Bucks at #1. They categorized their Power Rankings into sections, with “Finals Favorites” being the top spot and Milwaukee but sharing the category with the Boston Celtics, Phoenix Suns, and Denver Nuggets. They really liked the addition of Jae Crowder at the trade deadline.
The Bucks are 12-2 when Giannis, Middleton, and Holiday all play, and now they’ll be supported by Jae Crowder, who offers 3-and-D help . . . Milwaukee’s roster is taking shape to support the best player in the world in pursuit of his second championship. – Kevin O’Connor, The Ringer
The Athletic (as of Feb 13th)
The Athletic, for the second week in a row, has put the Bucks in the top spot. They also rated every team on how well they assisted their superstars at the trade deadline and gave Milwaukee 10/10 possible points (though Phoenix got 11/10 so I’m not sure how effective that metric is). Jae Crowder gets a second endorsement from a major sports news pundit for the Milwaukee Bucks.
It was long rumored they were the front-runners for [Jae Crowder’s] services, and now they just have to get the rust off a player who hasn’t laced them up in an NBA game since mid-May. They also didn’t give much up for him that will affect them in the short-term so it’s a great move. – Zach Harper, The Athletic
Bleacher Report (as of Feb 10th)
Bleacher Report has declined to give us a consensus with the Bucks at #1 and instead placed Milwaukee at #2 behind the Boston Celtics. It’s a fairly significant rise after they were ranked at #4 last week by B/R. They join the majority in believing that the Jae Crowder trade is good for the team and should help them compete come playoff time.
The Milwaukee Bucks sent five second-round picks to the Brooklyn Nets to acquire [Jae] Crowder, and they can now deploy some of the game’s most dangerous, switchable lineups. With Jrue Holiday and Giannis bookending groups that include some combination of Middleton, Crowder, Pat Connaughton and Joe Ingles, Milwaukee suddenly feels tailor-made for another deep playoff run. – Andy Bailey, Bleacher Report
Two significant events have happened since we last did a Power Rankings Round Up. Firstly, the Bucks remained undefeated and are now on a 10-win streak going into tomorrow’s home match against the Boston Celtics. Secondly, in case you haven’t heard or read by now, the Bucks acquired Jae Crowder from the Nets/Suns at the trade deadline. Broadly, this is considered a good move and adds extra shooting and defensive abilities not dissimilar from PJ Tucker (and arguably better) when he joined for the Bucks last championship run.
For more Milwaukee Bucks news (such as Giannis’ rankings among MVP candidates), find it here at Wisconsin Sports Heroics.