2022-11-28 · 3 min read · NBA/Basketball
Jayson Tatum of Celtics, Devin Booker of the Phoenix Suns and Milwaukee Bucks

Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports | Christian Petersen/Getty Images

3. Phoenix Suns (13-6)
The Suns have been chugging along without Chris Paul for the past few weeks.A big reason why is the play of Devon Booker, who’s averaging a cool 27.1 ppg, 5.2 rpg and 5.8 apg.Throw in a much improved Mikal Bridges and a rejuvenated DeAndre Ayton, and the Suns look like they haven’t missed a beat from last season when they had the league’s best record.
It’s still worth noting that their depth isn’t all that great, and though they’ve been getting by without Paul, they ultimately won’t be able to reach their goal without him, so expect them to be in the market for a point guard of some sorts before the trade deadline.
Devonta Graham, who isn’t getting enough minutes on a stacked Pelicans roster, could be in the cards.Or, perhaps Terry Rozier on Charlotte would be a good fit as well.
Whoever it is, they need someone to address the point guard insurance spot, but for now, this team looks like the class of the West so far, as we reach the quarter point of the season.
2. Milwaukee Bucks (14-5)
The Bucks are probably the safest bet right now to win the East, given that they’ve been rolling through the league without the services of Khris Middleton, who has yet to play this year.The main reason why? Giannis Antetekoumpo’s absurd averages of 31 ppg and 11 rpg pretty much sums it up.
Giannis has officially taken the reigns as the pound for pound best player on the planet, and his impact on both ends is simply impossible to stop, similar to a prime Shaq from a physical dominance standpoint.
Brook Lopez’s return, who missed most of last year, has shored up the interior defence, while Jrue Holiday continues to be an absolute menace in the backcourt.Their wing depth leaves something to be desired, and they can occasionally fall asleep and suffer a silly loss once in a while, but the Bucks will be there come spring time, especially when they get their second best player back.
1. Boston Celtics (16-4)
Out of all the powerhouses, no one is playing better than the Boston Celtics.Jason Tatum is averaging 30 points per game, Jaylen Brown is at 25, new addition Malcom Brodgon has fit in perfectly, as has new head coach Joe Mazzulla, and they rank 1st in the league in defence.
This is a team that can absolutely shut you down on the defensive end.What makes them even more scary is the fact that they’ve been doing it without their best defensive player Robert Williams, who’s dealing with a knee injury.
Boston is the deepest, and most together team in the league right now and it’s not close.Though Marcus Smart and Al Horford’s stats may be down, it’s not as much of a concern because they’re both coasting until the playoffs because due to how many people contribute on this team.
But for all the depth they possess, it really comes down to the duo of Tatum and Brown, who are playing with as much confidence as any pairing in the NBA this year.
Sports Tree Profile

By: Eddie Huband


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