By Lefteris Moutis/ email@example.com
The first five games of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague have been played and Eurohoops presents the first power rankings since the start of the season, evaluating the current state of all the teams!
The power rankings after one-sixth of the regular season have several variations compared to before the first jump ball in mid-October. Eurohoops presents in detail every team’s dynamics, the overall record, at home and away, as well as each team’s averages in offense and defense. The criteria are based on the current status of all teams as compared to the expectations of each, surprise defeats and upset wins.
1. CSKA Moscow
Previous ranking: 1 (unchanged)
At home: 2-0
The EuroLeague champions started the season in an emphatic manner, showing that the rest of the challengers are going to have to put up one hell of a fight in order to dethrone them. They are now the EuroLeague’s only undefeated team, they have the best offense in the competition, and their away wins over Olympiacos Piraeus and Anadolu Efes Istanbul prove that they have a very tough character and versatility to their game. The leading duo of Milos Teodosic and Nando De Colo is making the difference once again!
2. Real Madrid
Previous ranking: 3 (+1)
At home: 2-1
Real Madrid has suffered only one defeat in the first five games and that one was at home to Baskonia Vitoria Gasteiz. The madrileños, however, have achieved some great victories so far – away against Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv and EA7 Emporio Armani Milan, and at home against Olympiacos – and with the inherently offensive game that they adopt they have the best team performance index rating in the tournament! Sergio Llull is without a doubt the team’s leader and the one who decides games.
3. Fenerbahce Istanbul
Previous ranking: 2 (-1)
At home: 2-1
Fenerbahce suffered their first defeat this season on the fifth game day, at home to Unics Kazan. In fact, this was the first time that Zeljko Obradovic‘s team lost on their home court after 23 consecutive wins and it might cost them as the season carries on. Bogdan Bogdanovic’s injury has reduced Obradovic‘s options, especially in the backcourt, but the Turkish team has a high degree of chemistry for getting over such hurdles, as their away win in Barcelona at the end proved.
4. Olympiacos Piraeus
Previous ranking: 5 (+1)
At home: 2-1
Olympiacos achieved as many wins as they had intended from the start of the season, in fact playing some impressive basketball in the three games against Efes, Milan, and Baskonia, being the team with the most points from fastbreaks. The defeats, away against Madrid and at home to CSKA, were expected and normal. The red-and-whites are the best team in rebounding and the one that forces its opponents into the worst shooting accuracy.
5. FC Barcelona Lassa
Previous ranking: 4 (-1)
At home: 1-1
Barcelona had a bad start to the season with the difficult win over Unics and the defeats by Fenerbahce Istanbul and Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade, but its imposing win over Maccabi in Tel Aviv reduced the damage. All this time head coach Georgios Bartzokas has been struggling to fill the void of injured players since Shane Lawal, Pau Ribas, Juan Carlos Navarro, Petteri Koponen and Justin Doellman have been out for shorter or longer periods of time. The “blaugrana” have by far the best defense in the EuroLeague and they force their opponents to have the lowest average performance index ratings per game!
6. Panathinaikos Superfoods Athens
Previous ranking: 6 (-)
At home: 2-0
Panathinaikos became the first team this season to go ahead with replacing their coach. Argyris Pedoulakis coached on the opening night against Zalgiris Kaunas, the assistant Georgios Vovoras in Moscow against CSKA, and now it is Xavi Pascual. The Greens are in the process of transitioning into the new era, but they have kept their home court intact, they got a win in Bamberg, and they are within the targets they’ve set. The absolute leader is Nick Calathes, who got close to a triple-double in Bamberg. He is the team’s best passer and rebounder, and its second-best scorer.
7. Baskonia Vitoria Gasteiz
Previous ranking: 11 (+4)
At home: 1-1
Baskonia jumped ahead a few positions, yielding a better result than what was expected before the start of the season. They outdid themselves by getting the big away win over Madrid and are treading on familiar and successful territory by bringing more players to the forefront all the time, rookies in the EuroLeague. Shane Larkin and Johannes Voigtmann are making the difference, together with guys who’ve been in the competition a bit longer, such as Andrea Bargnani, Adam Hanga, Tornike Shengelia and Jaka Blazic.
8. Darussafaka Dogus Istanbul
Previous ranking: 7 (-1)
At home: 0-2
In the first five games, Darussafaka didn’t face any team that has appeared in at least one Final Four in the last 15 years. And they achieved this paradox: they won all their away games and lost all the home ones! The Turkish team’s games are not suited for fans with heart conditions, since three of them were decided by a margin of less than 3 points and the others by a margin of 5 and 7 points. David Blatt has many quality players and four of them have double-digit averages: Brad Wanamaker, Scottie Wilbekin, James Anderson and Adrien Moerman. However, they still need to improve their chemistry.