Way too early NBA power rankings 2022-23

Joel Embiid, Sixers (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)
Joel Embiid, Sixers (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images) /
8 of 10
(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /

. . Miami Heat. 9. team. 110.

NBA power rankings — 9. Miami Heat

The Heat scrapped their way to the 1-seed and the conference finals. The loss of P.J. Tucker hurts, but the roster is largely similar and there are few more bankable forces of nature than Jimmy Butler and Erik Spoelstra. Miami should be right back in the heavyweight category next season, with Bam Adebayo and Tyler Herro both in line for another leap and the prospect of a Durant (or Donovan Mitchell) trade looming on the horizon.

8. team. 211. . . . Memphis Grizzlies

NBA power rankings — 8. Memphis Grizzlies

The Grizzlies’ depth is unmatched around the league. No team can so comfortably run 10, 11, even 12-deep. There are just too many good players on that roster. Ja Morant’s leap to MVP contention, along with Jaren Jackson Jr.’s ascent to the defensive mountaintop, has made it impossible to ignore Memphis when discussing Western Conference contenders. They’re probably one big trade away from really breaking through, but the Grizzlies will win a lot of games.

. . . Denver Nuggets. 7. team. 73

NBA power rankings — 7. Denver Nuggets

With Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr. set to return, we could see the Nuggets finally start to make noise. Nikola Jokic is arguably the best player in basketball, and his capacity to elevate teammates is what makes Denver so daunting on paper. A lot could go wrong with two key players returning from major injuries, but having the two-time MVP is a major luxury no other team can claim.