NBA Perfect Ten (Week of March 6th)

There are just over 20 games left for most teams and the pressure is on for some to make a final push for a playoff spot. Here’s this week’s Perfect Ten.

Perfect Ten (Week of March 6th)

#10. Orlando Magic (36-26) (+8000/+30,000) - The Magic make a return appearance to the Perfect Ten with 9 wins in their last 11 games. Strengths: The Magic are tough on the interior and have depth. Weaknesses: This team isn’t ready to win a title and could certainly use some experienced offensive weapons. Last Week’s Rank: Unranked

#9. New Orleans Pelicans (37-25) (+2800/+7500) - The Pelicans now take the 10th spot in the rankings as three to four teams juggle for positioning in the Western Conference. Strengths: Ingram and Williamson give the Pels a unique one-two punch when they’re both healthy. Weaknesses: Relying on Ingram and Williamson can be a dangerous proposition. Last Week’s Rank: 10th

#8. Cleveland Cavaliers (40-21) (+1200/+3500) - The Cavs had a thrilling come-from-behind win over the Celtics last night, ending the Celtics’ 10-game win streak. Strengths: The Cavs proved that they could fight back with offense on Wednesday night and have depth to boot. Weaknesses: Eric Mobley twisted his ankle in last night’s game. The Cavs don’t have size depth. Last Week’s Rank: 3rd

#7. Phoenix Suns (36-26) (+900/+1800) - The Suns just need to get to the playoffs healthy. If they do, they have the tools. Strengths: Durant proved his dominance in last night’s thrilling win at Denver. Weaknesses: Can the Suns be consistent in the playoffs, particularly Durant? Last Week’s Rank: 8th

#6. LA Clippers (39-21) (+250/+475) - The Clippers will have to navigate without Russell Westbrook as he recovers from a fractured hand. Strengths: The Clippers have the depth to survive Westbrook’s loss in the regular season. Weaknesses: Can the Clippers regain their momentum come playoff time? Last Week’s Rank: 6th

#5. OKC Thunder (42-19) (+900/+2500) - It's March and the Thunder are still here and fighting for the top spot in the West. Strengths: OKC rarely takes a night off and has enjoyed excellent health this season. Weaknesses: The Lakers exposed this team’s Achilles heel; a lack of size. Last Week’s Rank:6th

#4. Milwaukee Bucks (42-21) (+290/+700) - The Bucks have found their groove again and moving in on the second seed in the East. Strengths: The Bucks’ defense has arrived, allowing under 100 points four times in their last ten games. Weaknesses: The Bucks’ bench will need to deliver in the postseason. Last Week’s Rank: 5th

#3. Denver Nuggets (42-20) (+245/+475) - The Nuggets don’t seem overly concerned with the #1 seed in the Western Conference this season. Health is a primary concern. Strengths: Jokic remains the most influential player on the court at all times. Weaknesses: It will be difficult to get through the rugged Western Conference for a second straight season. Last Week’s Rank: 3rd

#2. Minnesota Timberwolves (43-19) (+950/+2500) - The T-Wolves keep on rolling as they fight for the top seed in the Western Conference. Strengths: The Wolves will certainly be battle-tested by the time the playoffs roll around. Weaknesses: Edwards’ tardiness for a game this week does remind all that this team still has some maturing to do. Last Week’s Rank: 2nd

#1. Boston Celtics (48-13) (-110/+230) - The Celtics' 10-game winning streak was ended last night after they coughed up a 22-point lead at Cleveland. Strengths: The Celtics have such a cushion at this point that they can play around with their rotation as they gear up for the postseason. Weaknesses: Is Boston comfortable with Hauser as the backup to Tatum and Brown? Last Week’s Rank: 1st

Top-Five MVP Candidates:

Here are my Top Five MVP candidates in the NBA at this point along with their current odds to take the award.

#1. Nikola Jokic (-150) - Last Week’s Rank: 1st

#2. Jayson Tatum (+2000) - Last Week’s Rank: 3rd

#3. Giannis Antetokounmpo (+1000) - Last Week’s Rank: 5th

#4. Luka Doncic (+700) - Last Week’s Rank: 4th

#5. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (+250) - Last Week’s Rank: 2nd

With just weeks left in the season, this is how I see the MVP voting ending up this season. Jokic is a near-lock at this point to win the award. Tatum has earned the second spot while leading the NBA’s best team. Giannis has helped the Bucks navigate a coaching change while also updating his game with an added star, Lillard, on the roster. Doncic will get this award sometime in the next three years for sure, but not this year. SAG had a strong push early but he’s not there just yet.

Game of the Week, Season Record 7-10: Denver’s dominance over the Lakers continued and got us to 7-10 on the season.

Boston at Phoenix on Saturday at 8:30 PM EST

Another potential NBA Finals matchup will take place in Phoenix on Saturday. The Celtics, when healthy, have too many weapons for the Suns to handle. Expect the Celtics to roll to a win on Saturday.

  • In parenthesis, conference odds and finals odds. Player MVP props are also in parenthesis. All odds Courtesy of

By Mark Ruelle

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Mark Ruelle

Mark has been a sports fanatic since childhood. He is also an avid follower of sports analytics and has used it in his own betting analysis for over two decades. Now we have Mark on our team here at Stat Salt. He holds degrees in marketing, broadcasting, and English and uses this vast array of assets to dissect and analyze game matchups. Mark will provide you with a wide variety of statistics to consider and a strong opinion in each matchup that he covers. Please follow him daily for an up-to-the-minute analysis of all the important games.