NBA 2018-19: Eastern Conference Power Rankings Week 9
There is a quote,"This too shall pass" which implies that every unfortunate occurrence will shape up to become something good in the foreseeable future. Sadly, the Eastern Conference of the NBA has been toiling away in search of talent and competition for far too long and has had to seek solace of this quote.
LeBron's presence masked many of the internal problems of the "leastern" conference, but as soon as he bolted for the Lakers everything was disturbed. Teams that had been in deep slumber awoke (ie Bucks), teams that had been crushed by the King's presence suddenly decided on gambling away their franchise player (Raptors, duh) and teams loaded with talent found a path to the NBA Finals again.
It seems like much like airing out a wine and letting it breathe, removing Bron's suffocating presence has revived the conference again.
Here are the best five teams from the Eastern conference through Week 9 of the 2018-19 season.
#5 Indiana Pacers
Victor Oladipo is the Pacers' pride and joy. What initially looked like a fleecing by the Thunder in the Paul George trade has kept both teams happy and satisfied. Those are rare airs in terms of NBA trades.
Even though Oladipo has been injured for the Pacers' past 10 games, Indiana has kept its season well on track. In fact, they've won the past three games straight and are looking like a downright scary fourth seed in this conference.
Their recent form - most importantly a 113-101 win over the Sixers followed by a 110-99 win over the Knicks where a post injury Oladipo put up 26-7-8 stat is good reason to believe these young Pacers will only improve over time.
The Pacers defense is extremely good. At a 20-10 record, with talents like Myles Turner as a secondary scoring option and Sabonis averaging a near double-double of 14 points and 9.9 rebounds, this team can be a wild card for a top 3 seed as well.