Old School Power Rankings 2018-19: Weeks 7 and 8

NBA.com Global on Dec 16, 2018 08:01 AM
Old School Power Rankings 2018-19: Weeks 7 and 8
FILE - SAN ANTONIO, TX - MAY 1: LaMarcus Aldridge #12 of the San Antonio Spurs stands for the National Anthem before Game One of the Western Conference Semifinals of the 2017 NBA Playoffs on May 1, 2017 at AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas. (Photo by Mark Sobhani/NBAE via Getty Images)

By Scott Wraight, NBA.com

As the King continues to keep his kingdom in good order, there's a lot of movement just outside the walls.

It's looking more and more like the chase for 'No. 1' will be a season long back and forth between three or four guys.

As for the rest of the list, it should be fluid all season, especially since there won't be any more additions. Will Dirk Nowitzki make some noise now that he's back in action? Probably not. But we can expect to see Al Horford, Paul Millsap, Rajon Rondo, Goran Dragic, Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol being factors before all is said and done.

- Notes: Statistics are through games of Dec. 13 (Dec. 14, PHL time); ATHO = All To His Own
- Any player who turns 32 during regular season can be added to rankings.
- Check out previous rankings

ATHO. LeBron James (33), Los Angeles Lakers

Previous rank: ATHO
Latest stats: 7 games, 29.1 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 7.7 apg
Season stats: 28.4 ppg, 7.6 rpg, 7.0 apg

It was just another dominant two-week stretch for James, who has completely spoiled us with his impressive performances night after night. His last seven are no exception, putting up 20 or more in all seven while going over 30 twice. Heck, he even managed to nail three or morethree3-pointers in four of the seven.

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1. LaMarcus Aldridge (33), San Antonio Spurs

Previous rank: 2
Latest stats: 8 games, 20.6 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 1.1 apg
Season stats: 18.5 ppg, 9.5 rpg, 2.1 apg

Shooting a blistering 58.6 from the field while chipping in 20 or more points in five of eight games propels Aldridge to the top. What makes that more impressive is the fact that he's gone over 30 minutes in just three of those games. Of course, we'd like to see more work on the boards since his last double-digit rebound game was Nov. 23 (Nov. 24, PHL time).

2. Marc Gasol (33), Memphis Grizzlies

Previous rank: 1
Latest stats: 7 games, 10.4 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 4.3 apg
Season stats: 16.4 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 4.0 apg

After a dominant stretch over the last three weeks of November, Gasol's production has slipped considerably. In his last seven games, he's gone for 10 or more points just four times, with none of those being more than 15. Also over those seven, Gasol has just one double-double while shooting 34.6 percent from the field.

3. J.J. Redick (34), Philadelphia 76ers

Previous rank: 3
Latest stats: 6 games, 17.5 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 2.2 apg
Season stats: 18.2 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 3.0 apg

Consistency has always been the calling card of Redick, who scored between 11-25 points in all six games and has now scored in double figures in all 29 games this season. But his touch from deep has been hit and miss, hitting 8-for-18 over two games only to follow with 5-for-24 over the next three.

4. Kyle Lowry (32), Toronto Raptors

Previous rank: 6
Latest stats: 6 games, 9.8 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 8.7 apg
Season stats: 14.2 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 10.0 apg

We were ready to drop Lowry down a couple spots since his first four games produced 15 total points on 14.2 FG% (4-for-28) and just 3-for-25 from deep. Then he seemed to find his touch, going for 22.0 points on 54.8 FG% (17-for-31) and 6-for-15 on three's in the last two games. Yep, strong enough to flip the script and move up.

5. Lou Williams (32), LA Clippers

Previous rank: 5
Latest stats: 5 games, 15.6 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 5.6 apg
Season stats: 17.2 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 4.5 apg

Before missing the last two games with a hamstring injury that could sideline him for two weeks, Williams was doing his thing, going for 18 or more in three of the five in just 23.0 minutes. He also chipped in five or more assists in four of those games. Unfortunately, with him being on the shelf for some time, he'll be slipping down a bit.

6. Chris Paul (33), Houston Rockets

Previous rank: 4
Latest stats: 7 games, 13.0 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 8.9 apg
Season stats: 16.3 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 8.0 apg

It was a mixed bag of good and bad for Paul. The good was a 23-point, eight-assist showing against the Mavericks. The bad was a five-point effort on 1-for-8 shooting against the Wolves. In between there was a 12-13 effort against the Bulls, a triple-double on 2-for-12 shooting against the Blazers and a 14-10 against the Spurs.

7.  Tony Parker (36), Charlotte Hornets

Previous rank: NA
Latest stats: 6 games, 13.5 ppg, 1.7 rpg, 4.5 apg
Season stats: 10.5 ppg, 1.7 rpg, 4.3 apg

If you toss out (we're trying hard to do that) a zero-point game against the Wolves last Wednesday (last Thursday, PHL time), Parker was very solid while averaging just 21.7 minutes. For the first time since Nov. 1-3 (Nov. 2-4, PHL time), the 17-year vet scored in double figures in consecutive games. In fact, he's scored at least 16 points in four of the last six games.

8.  Dwyane Wade (36), Miami Heat

Previous rank: 10
Latest stats: 7 games, 13.1 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 5.4 apg
Season stats: 14.5 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 3.9 apg

Despite shooting just 32.6 FG% and 30.6 3PT%, Wade moves up. That's what happens when you score in double figures in five of the last seven, including a 25-point performance against the Clippers. A 15-10 against the Lakers wasn't too shabby, either, though it did take him 19 shots to get there.

9. Rudy Gay (32), San Antonio Spurs

Previous rank: 8
Latest stats: 8 games, 15.6 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 2.0 apg
Season stats: 14.1 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 2.2 apg

Like Parker, Gay had an ugly zero-point performance that we'll try our best to brush aside. After all, he did manage to shoot 59.0 FG% and 52.4 3PT% over the last eight games. Unlike Parker, Gay also had two other ugly showings: nine points on Nov. 30 (Dec. 1, PHL time) against the Rockets and 10 points against the Lakers last Friday (last Saturday, PHL time).

10. J.J. Barea (34), Dallas Mavericks

Previous rank: 7
Latest stats: 7 games, 12.6 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 3.4 apg
Season stats: 11.4 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 5.4 apg

Barea put together a pair of solid efforts (24 points against the Clippers and 18 points against the Hawks). And last Wednesday's (last Thursday, PHL time) game wasn't too shabby (14 points on 6-for-10 shooting). But in between was a bunch of blah -- four games all under 10 points on a combined 13-for-37 (35.1%) shooting.

Just missed the cut: Wes Matthews, Paul Millsap, Jeff Green, Kyle Korver

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