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ANALYSIS

NBL Power Rankings: April 20

By Liam Santamaria

Each week this season I have released my power rankings, dropping them on NBL Overtime and then running them here on a Wednesday.

As you know, it’s a list that represents how each team is currently tracking, considering form, injuries, illness, recent opponents, etc. In other words, the team on top is the one other teams do not want to be playing right now.

 

1. SYDNEY KINGS

Previous rank: 1

After thirteen consecutive wins the Kings finally dropped a game as Adelaide knocked them off at Qudos Bank Arena.

That loss takes top spot off the table for the purple and gold, but it doesn’t drop them out of first place in the power rankings. They’re still top of the pops.

This week: @ Cairns, vs Illawarra

 

2. ILLAWARRA HAWKS

Previous rank: 2

It’s a similar story for the Hawks after they had their six game winning streak broken in that overtime classic against the Kings.

They’re still playing well though, and two wins in the final round of the regular season will see them finish in second place.

This week: @ Perth, @ Sydney

 

3. MELBOURNE UNITED

Previous rank: 3

The defending champs have won five straight and, thanks to Sydney’s slip-up, have essentially claimed their second consecutive regular season title.

Melbourne’s recent form has been a little patchy within games but, with their defence still elite and Chris Goulding shooting the ball well, they’re poised for another strong tilt at the title.

This week: @ Tasmania

 

4. TASMANIA JACKJUMPERS

Previous rank: 5

With only a handful of games remaining in the regular season, the new kids on the block have somehow managed to keep their final dream alive.

After a 2-6 start, the Jackies have won 14 of their past 19 game to become NBL22’s Cinderella story. And while they may not end up making the final four on the standings, their incredible resilience and consistent competitiveness has made them number four in the rankings and number one in our hearts.

This week: vs Melbourne

 

5. ADELAIDE 36ERS

Previous rank: 9

THIS is what Adelaide fans have wanted to see from their squad! CJ Bruton had his group playing with heart, effort and attention to detail over the Easter long weekend and they grabbed back-to-back road wins over Perth and Sydney.

More of that, please, in the season’s final round.

This week: @ South East Melbourne, @ New Zealand (in Hobart)

 

6. PERTH WILDCATS

Previous rank: 4

It has been a chaotic month out west with the John Brown saga and injuries to key guys messing with the Wildcats, on and off the floor.

As a result, the league’s most successful franchsie has won only two of its last six games, including a really underwhelming display against Adelaide early last round. And with Vic Law’s status still up in the air for the upcoming week, Perth’s 35-year streak of consecutive finals appearances is suddenly under threat.

This week: vs Illawarra, vs South East Melbourne

 

7. SOUTH EAST MELBOURNE PHOENIX

Previous rank: 6

The Phoenix let yet another double-digit lead slip away in Round 20 as the JackJumpers put the sword to their slim finals hopes.

That’s now eight losses for SEM from their past ten games as their once promising NBL22 campaign has fallen away in disastrous fashion.

This week: vs Adelaide, @ Perth

 

8. BRISBANE BULLETS

Previous rank: 8

Despite being heavily underwhelmed, the Bullets fought valiantly against the ladder-leaders last round, but just weren’t able to get over the line.

That’s now four Ls for Brisbane from their past six games. The challenge in the rinal round is to avoid a season sweep at the hands of their rivals from the Sunshine State.

This week: @ Cairns

 

9. CAIRNS TAIPANS

Previous rank: 7

It’s been a rough year for the Taipans with injuries to key imports keeping them from reaching their full potential.

That said, you have to credit head coach Adam Forde for the job he’s done with some of his squad’s burgeoning talent. Watching Bul Kuol and Keanu Pinder blow up this season has been very enjoyable and injury replacement Ben Ayre is making a name for himself to close out the year.

This week: vs Sydney, vs Brisbane

 

10. NEW ZEALAND BREAKERS

Previous rank: 10

There’s one last game remaining for the Breakers as they finish up their worst ever season as a franchise.

It’s a game that represents one final chance for NZ to grab a win but also one last chance for everyone to show their appreciation for that the Breakers have given to the comp over the past two seasons.

This week: vs Adelaide (in Hobart)

 

The views on this page are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBL, its Clubs or partners.

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