NBA power rankings: Is Sixers’ slow start cause for concern?

Joel Embiid, Sixers, NBA power rankings Mandatory Credit: John Geliebter-USA TODAY Sports
Joel Embiid, Sixers, NBA power rankings Mandatory Credit: John Geliebter-USA TODAY Sports /
1 of 10
Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports /

The 2022-23 NBA season is finally underway. Through a week and change, we’re starting to get a sense of where each individual team is at. Some have started the season red-hot. Others are stuck in the mud, still trying to wrench their wheels free (see: the Philadelphia 76ers).

With every team having played between two and four games, let’s take a look at the NBA landscape. Where do the Sixers fall, and how concerned should we be? Who are the top-flight contenders, and who is destined to fade as the season progresses?

Let’s get started.

Early NBA power rankings: Are the Sixers in trouble?

. 1-3. . Oklahoma City Thunder. 30. team. 149

OKC is routinely going 12, 13, even 14-deep. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Josh Giddey are electrifying talents, but the Thunder are not here to win games. It’s all about player development right now, and while there are positive indicators for the future, do not expect many wins in 2022-23.

. 0-4. . Orlando Magic. 29. team. 38

The Magic have been treated to a historic opening stretch from No. 1 pick Paolo Banchero, who looks more than ready to carry the burden of lead scorer for an NBA franchise. Orlando has also received strong performances from the rest of its young core: Cole Anthony in particular. Franz Wagner and Wendell Carter Jr. are legitimate NBA difference-makers, but the Magic are simply too young to compete right now.

28. team. 64. . 1-3. . Detroit Pistons

The Cade Cunningham second-year leap hasn’t really happened yet, which is a bummer. That said, we’re four games into the season — plenty can and will change. Bojan Bogdanovic looks right at home spotting up along the perimeter while Cunningham and No. 5 pick Jaden Ivey take turns slashing the defense apart.