The EuroLeague Power Rankings by Eurohoops

10/Oct/17 21:25 October 11, 2017

Antigoni Zachari

10/Oct/17 21:25

Eurohoops.net

The countdown to the start of the new Turkish Airlines EuroLeague season has begun and before the first shots are taken, Eurohoops.net sums up where the teams sit.

By John Rammas / irammas@eurohoops.net

First, let’s review our ranking process. The Eurohoops team chose five different categories by which to judge the 16 EuroLeague squads on a 1-to-10 scoring system and based on that has ranked the teams in order.

The criteria

  1. Quality of roster: What is evaluated here is the overall talent of all the players on the roster and their depth at every position.
  2. Chemistry: The big and fancy names do not guarantee a good team. Even though it’s very early and the teams are still trying to create their magic, the chemistry that the players have between them is very important, as is the level of familiarity with their coach.
  3. Status: The name and the history of the team do not play basketball, but in crucial games sometimes the weight of the jersey can impact the outcome.
  4. Offseason transactions: In this particular category we evaluate the moves made in the transfer market and estimate the weakening or strengthening of a team.
  5. How far they will go: This is the Eurohoops.net assessment of the path for each team. The teams that are favorites to get to the Final Four and win the title are graded with a 9, the teams that aim for a presence in Belgrade and good chances of making it are graded with an 8, the teams whose big goal is to reach the playoffs with a 7, the teams that are expected to have a decent run with a 6, and those that are not seen to be in the running with a 5.

Naturally, these categories are first debated before any official games have begun and thus it is only natural that these rankings will change throughout the season.

1. Fenerbahce Dogus Istanbul

Quality of roster – 9
Chemistry – 8
Status – 9
Transactions – 9
How far they will go – 9
Total – 44

After they managed to do what they had never done in their history and lifted the EuroLeague trophy, Fenerbahce Dogus Istanbul is getting ready to do what only a few teams have done in the annals of the competition: repeat as champion. Bogdan Bogdanovic and Ekpe Udoh are no longer present to lead the effort this season, but in their place came players who are capable and experienced, such as Brad Wanamaker, Nicolo Melli, Sinan Guler, Jason Thompson and Zeljko Obradovic’s latest bet, Marko Guduric. If there is one person who can get the new arrivals to click with the rest of the champs’ core – which includes Kostas Sloukas, Luigi Datome, and Jan Vesely, among others – to a degree where they can carry out the difficult task, he is Coach Obradovic. His nine championship rings speak for themselves.

2. CSKA Moscow

Quality of roster – 9
Chemistry – 8
Status – 9
Transactions – 9
How far they will go – 9
Total – 44

Milos Teodosic left, Aaron Jackson did the same and many others saw their time in the Russian capital come to an end, but teams of CSKA Moscow’s stature have ways to fill every hole. Former MVP Sergio Rodriguez stands out on a list of impressive signings that also features Will Clyburn, Leo Westermann and Othello Hunter. The newcomers will team up with another former MVP, Nando De Colo, while learning Coach Dimitris Itoudis’s attack. That is a good recipe to win the trophy. CSKA owns a seemingly permanent spot at the Final Four, but it is never enough if it’s not accompanied by the trophy itself.

3. Real Madrid

Quality of roster – 8
Chemistry – 8
Status – 9
Transactions – 7
How far they will go – 8
Total – 40

Talent, skill and experience are in excess on the roster of another 2017 Final Four squad, Real Madrid. Despite this, reigning MVP Sergio Llull’s serious injury creates many question marks concerning their dynamics this season. Rupturing the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee will keep Llull off the court for most of the season and what remains to be seen is the extent to which the rest of the players can carry the weight on their own. Considering that the departures (Dontaye Draper, Andres Nocioni, Othello Hunter and Augusto Lima) and arrivals (Fabien Causeur, Ognjen Kuzmic, Santiago Yusta and Chasson Randle) were few in the summer, their chemistry might help the situation and the efforts of Luka Doncic, Rudy Fernandez, Anthony Randolph and Gustavo Ayon, but a headache remains for Los Blancos’ head coach, Pablo Laso.

4. Olympiacos Piraeus

Quality of roster – 7
Chemistry – 8
Status – 9
Transactions – 8
How far they will go – 8
Total – 40

The summer brought many changes to Olympiacos Piraeus’s roster with the departure of a large number of players – including Daniel Hackett, Erick Green and Matt Lojeski. However, Georgios Printezis, Vangelis Mantzaris and Nikola Milutinov are back as the Reds managed to once again maintain the core from recent years. Vassilis Spanoulis stands out – together with Printezis in the foreground as well as Kostas Papanikolaou and Mantzaris in the background – as do the newly acquired players, for their mileage at a high level. Brian Roberts and Janis Strelnieks, who have experience in the EuroLeague, reinforced the team at the guard positions, Hollis Thompson in productivity, while Kim Tillie and Jamel McLean did so with their skills and experience in the competition. Last season, Coach Giannis Sfairopoulos led the Reds to a quick return to the Final Four after a very short hiatus. Can they get back there again?

5. Panathinaikos Superfoods Athens

 

Quality of roster – 7
Chemistry – 8
Status – 8
Transactions – 8
How far they will go – 8
Total – 39

Last season was the fifth in a row in which the Greens were absent from the Final Four – and it came about in a painful way as the team lost in the playoffs despite owning the home-court advantage. The summer called for changes and saw key players Mike James and Ioannis Bourousis move on, while Antonis Fotsis said goodbye to professional basketball. In their stead, the club signed a handful of talents to slot in alongside returnees Nick Calathes, Chris Singleton, K. C. Rivers, Nikos Pappas and James Gist. Ian Vougioukas, Dinos Mitoglou, Zach Auguste and Thanasios Antetokounmpo ensure the team will have a Greek core, while shooting Matt Lojeski brings the experience. Coach Xavi Pascual will hope to get a lot of production from guards Lukas Lekavicius and Marcus Denmon, too.

6. FC Barcelona Lassa

Quality of roster – 8
Chemistry – 7
Status – 8
Transactions – 8
How far they will go – 8
Total – 39

Not only did Barcelona miss the playoffs last season, but it completed its third straight campaign without making it to the Final Four. The result was a shake-up of the team, which was not limited to the players. Sito Alonso was hired as new coach and Adam Hanga, Thomas Heurtel, Paul Pressey and Kevin Seraphin, also landed in Barcelona eager to help this proud club turn things around. Emblematic captain Juan Carlos Navarro is joined by Pau Ribas, Petteri Koponen, Victor Claver and Ante Tomic on the returning core. The talent is in place for Barcelona to go places again this season.