2011 NBA Now Rankings 2.0 (Final Pre-season Build) Part 2 The Build 2011 v1 and The Best Team in the NBA?

Posted on 10/15/2010 by

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That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?- Yeats “The Second Coming”

A month has past since I did my first pre-season projection for the coming NBA season (NBA Now Team Rankings take 1). As I said there, it was a preliminary team rankings based on 2010-2011 performance and didn’t include:

  • Detailed Minute allocations
  • The Rookie Model
  • Injuries
  • Age modeling

You may be aware that since then I’ve worked on all of the above (see Part 1) and it was a lot of work (go here for the Basics behind it all, here for the veteran model and here for the rookie model).

In part one I looked at projecting the stars, superstars and good bigs for the coming season. Here I’m going:

  1. Show my player projections so far including player allocations
  2. Project win totals for every team based on their rosters as of today (which will need to be updated prior to the season starting)
  3. Identify the Favorites, Contenders and pretenders using the necessary conditions from the Championship Equation called out in Part 1

So here is the official 1st pass at the preseason nba. You will be amazed and surprised . I totally was. It’s like a weird machine for forecasting the future.

"People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint, it's more like a big ball of wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey... stuff."

The 2010-2011 Build v1 (as of 10/15/10)

There are 519 players currently on NBA rosters. I’ve done projection for 455 players at this point. The full build is here.

Now, when I started my expectation where a clear cut exercise with one team above all others (hint: they’re the southernmost team in the league) and the big argument to be about second place. My expectations we’re wrong. There are two superteams for the 2010 and 2011 season not one. The 2011 projection looks like:

Miami and Portland are not just projected to be the 2 best teams in the league but they’re projected to have historically great seasons. Before anyone asks, the Portland projection assumes that Oden & Przybilla play less than 1700 minutes. Combined. If Portland can have some health? They’ll join the Heat (and the Wizards) in challenging the all-time win marks.

So the Heat and the Blazers shape up as the favorites. As for the rest? The Lakers, Spurs,  Celtics and Bulls round out the contenders here. Some might ask why the Bulls win totals have fallen so far. The answer is big,tall and red-headed and might go away before when final cuts are made (but I’m kinda hoping he doesn’t, sorry Bulls fans).

From Boston with Love

For this group the health of the Heat and Blazers will be key. I’ll go further into detail for each contender in upcoming posts.

As for the rest? There’s a mad scramble with only five teams completely out of the playoff race. A fun fact is that Miami vs Cleveland or New York looms in the first round of the playoffs (somewhere in an office in New York, David Stern  is giddy with anticipation).

Feel free to review the roster, projections & minute allocations and make constructive comments and criticism. I’ll incorporate your feedback into the final build once rosters are final.

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