2015-16 NBA Power Rankings Preview: Projecting Records for All 30 Teams

A look at how our algorithms project that the 2015-16 NBA season will play out.

It's here. It's finally here.

The 2015-16 NBA season starts tonight, and it couldn't have come soon enough. After months of discussing player movement, projecting rotations, and analyzing emojis, we finally get to talk about real, honest-to-goodness basketball.

Praise be to the basketball gods.

But before we get things started for real, let's make one final round of predictions. Here's how our algorithms see the season playing out for all 30 NBA teams. In the table below, you will find each team's projected win-loss record, its rank in the conference based on said projection, how we project its playoff chances, its championship chances, and its nERD going into the season.

If you're not familiar with our in-house nERD metric for teams, it's on a scale from 0-100 (with 50 as the league average) and is meant to be predictive of the team's ultimate winning percentage. You may notice that one team can have a higher nERD than another (the table below is sorted by nERD) but have a worse win-loss record. That is because strength of schedule comes into play here, as the records are an estimated result based on playing out the entire season through our system. nERD, on the other hand, is meant to tell you which team is "better" in a vacuum, unaffected by schedule.

Let's get down to it.

RankTeamProj. W-LConf. RankPlayoff %Champ %nERD
1Golden State Warriors56-261st West94.9%16.0%68.8
2San Antonio Spurs52-302nd West90.6%9.6%65.8
3Los Angeles Clippers51-314th West88.3%7.6%65.6
4Cleveland Cavaliers55-271st East95.7%13.8%65.3
5Houston Rockets52-303rd West89.5%8.9%65.2
6Oklahoma City Thunder51-315th West89.3%8.2%64.9
7Dallas Mavericks47-357th West73.4%3.0%60.9
8Memphis Grizzlies49-336th West82.5%4.9%60.6
9Toronto Raptors49-332nd East90.4%7.3%59.8
10Atlanta Hawks48-343rd East88.8%7.7%59.8
11Chicago Bulls47-354th East86.9%5.3%57.7
12Washington Wizards43-395th East72.6%2.2%52.8
13New Orleans Pelicans41-418th West43.3%0.3%51.7
14Miami Heat43-396th East66.8%1.4%51.5
15Utah Jazz40-429th West43.7%0.4%50.1
16Boston Celtics41-417th East60.6%0.9%49.1
17Phoenix Suns39-4310th West38.8%0.4%49.1
18Milwaukee Bucks41-418th East58.3%1.1%48.5
19Indiana Pacers39-439th East55.0%0.4%48.1
20Portland Trail Blazers39-4311th West32.4%0.3%48.0
21Charlotte Hornets38-4410th East48.3%0.5%46.0
22Detroit Pistons37-4511th East40.0%0.2%45.8
23Los Angeles Lakers33-4912th West14.5%0.0%41.5
24Sacramento Kings32-5013th West9.3%0.0%40.0
25Brooklyn Nets32-5012th East18.8%0.0%36.2
26Denver Nuggets31-5114th West7.6%0.0%36.1
27Orlando Magic29-5313th East12.0%0.0%33.4
28Minnesota Timberwolves26-5615th West2.1%0.0%28.9
29Philadelphia 76ers25-5714th East4.5%0.0%27.1
30New York Knicks22-6015th East1.8%0.0%27.0