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Where the Warriors rank among the NBA’s 50 greatest teams of all time

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Which group is the best of all time? To answer this question with much more rigor than it is normally debated in sports bars, in 2015 I rated every team since minutes played were first tracked in 1951-52 (sorry to the 1949-50 Minneapolis Lakers) according to their performance in both the regular season and playoffs.
Three decades after, it’s time for an update using a brand new No. 1, plus several other newcomers to the record thanks to the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors dominating the competition in their respective conferences.
The method
For champions, I took the average of the stage differential during the regular season and their stage differential in the playoffs in addition to the point differential of their opponents. That tells us how many points each game better than an average team each champion was, giving equal weight to the postseason as the regular season to reward the most important games.
For non-champions, the beginning point is exactly the same, but their playoff differential was adjusted by effectively giving them a five-point loss for every game they came up short of the title. That has little impact on teams like the 2012-13 San Antonio Spurs, who lost in Game 7 of the Finals, but it harshly penalizes teams that rolled up big victory margins early in the playoffs before falling short in the conference finals.
The last adjustment deals with all caliber of drama. It’s not surprising that some of the best single-season team performances in NBA history came in the early 1970s, when the league had expanded quickly and also battled with the ABA for incoming draft picks. The redistribution of gift enabled stars to glow even more brightly. For each season, I quantified how players watched their moments per game increase or reduce the following season as compared to what we would expect given their age. More minutes suggests a poorer league, while fewer moments indicates one that has gotten more powerful.
Each season is ranked relative to 2017-18, from a high of 21 percent stronger in 1965-66, the previous year that the NBA had only nine teams, to a low of 10 percent weaker in 2004-05, the last time the league expanded. That adjustment is multiplied by the group’s typical regular-season and playoff scores to give a final rating greater than an average team this year.

Read more: canballreport.com

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