Euroleague has nearly approached Week 5 of its regular season, which is when RealGM traditionally presents the Euroleague Power Rankings. We evaluated and ranked the performance of all 24 Euroleague teams over their first four games and their perspective in future battles.
The number in brackets shows position in previous ranking.
1. (2) Fenerbahce Ulker Istanbul 4-0
Zeljko Obradovic’s Fenerbahce Ulker has been the most impressive team throughout first four games as their offense is pretty much unstoppable. Fenerbahce Ulker has the best ORtg (offensive rating) in the league and average 124.5 points per 100 possessions. The Turkish team’s offense wouldn’t be as efficient as it is now if Fenerbahce Ulker hadn’t cut its number of turnovers. Fenerbahce Ulker commits only 9.8 turnovers per game, which is the lowest in the competition. In fact, Linas Kleiza hasn’t turned the ball over in his last 90 minutes of action and this is currently the longest active streak.
2. (1) Real Madrid 4-0
Real Madrid hasn’t faced the best Euroleague teams yet, but still has been dominant while playing against lower-caliber clubs. Pablo Laso’s Real has won all four of its games by a total of 98 points and that is more than any 4-0 team since 2000 (previous record was 94). That wouldn’t be possible if not for Nikola Mirotic, whose draft rights are held by the Bulls, and his amazing shooting percentages. Mirotic averages 13.5 points (66% FG, 64% 3FG, 92% FT), 6.3 boards, 1.5 steals and is currently the main candidate to win MVP.
3. (4) Olympiacos Piraeus 4-0
Olympiacos Piraeus is on their way to a threepeat as the Reds are one of only three teams that remained unbeaten through the first four games. Newcomers successfully replaced players that left the team in offseason as Bryatn Dunston, Matt Lojeski and Brent Petway, together average 32.6 points, 15.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists. Olympiacos should get another win next week as they face Stelmet Zielona Gora and got one step closer on wining group C.
4. (9) Maccabi Tel Aviv 3-1
Maccabi Tel Aviv didn’t have many problems against Lokomotiv Kuban in Week 3 game and had built up an 18-point lead versus Lietuvos Rytas in Week 4. However, the game with Lietuvos Rytas went down to a Tyrese Rice game-winning shot, but Maccabi still managed to add two important away wins before heading home and hosting Panathinaikos and Laboral Kutxa. Their next two games should define where Maccabi is right now and whether they are worth being ranked in the Top 4.
5. (5) FC Barcelona 2-2
FC Barcelona lost to JSF Nanterre by a final score of 67-71, which was the biggest surprise so far this Euroleague season and just another proof that the Spanish team is far from being in top shape. Also despite having great shooters such as Kostas Papanikolaou, Juan Carlos Navarro and Bostjan Nachbar, FC Barcelona has been struggling with long-range shots and is currently ranked 23rd among 24 Euroleague teams in terms of three-point shooting percentage (28.7%).
6. (7) Anadolu Efes Istanbul 3-1
Even though Anadolu Efes slipped in Bamberg by losing to Brose Baskets, 86-88, Oktay Mahmuti’s team seems to be a Top 8 contender with plenty of offensive and defensive weapons to fight the best. Offensively, Euroleague rookie Scotty Hopson is currently third scoring at 17.8 points per game, while defensively, Anadolu Efes leads the Euroleague in number of opponents turnovers per game - 18.8.
7. (3) CSKA Moscow 2-2
CSKA Moscow continues to struggle to find its identity as they first had a slow start, then failed to compete with FC Barcelona and Fenerbahce Ulker. A team, which likely has the most talent on offense on paper - Nenad Krstic, Sonny Weems, Jeremy Pargo and others - is shockingly ranked 23rd in points per game and managed to score only 66 points on average in its first four Euroleague games.
8. (10) Lokomotiv-Kuban Krasnodar 3-1
In their first serious Euroleague test versus Maccabi, Lokomotiv-Kuban seemed to have their hands tied as Maccabi was already up by 20 (52-32) in the beginning of third quarter. However, Lokomotiv-Kuban rebounded in Athens where they beat Panathinaikos with a last-second shot. The Russian club definitely belongs in the elite eight with their fast and talented team, but it looks like Lokomotiv-Kuban hasn’t used its all offensive potential and still has space to grow.
9. (6) Panathinaikos Athens 2-2
Dimitris Diamantidis, who will turn 34 years old later this season, has been averaging a career-high 8.3 assists per game and shows no signs of slowing down. Equally important, Diamantidis dished out 33 assists in total and committed only three turnovers in 131 minutes spent on the court this season.
10. (8) Laboral-Kutxa Vitoria 2-2
Sergio Scariolo is once again on the hot seat. Scariolo, who won only 37 percent of his Euroleague games over the past three seasons with Olimpia Milano and Khimki Moscow region, has been struggling to implement his strategies and make Laboral Kutxa a winning team. Vitoria’s team won four games and faced face losses in Spanish championship and Euroleague so far and these results certainly don’t meet the expectations.
11. (11) Bayern Munich 3-1
Seeing Bayern beating Olympiakos and being one of three unbeaten Euroleague had been a huge surprise, but despite losing to the champs, the German team is still on a great pace to make it to the Top 16. Moreover, Bayern did make a surprise as even without healthy Deon Thompson, who should be a leading rebounder in Bayern in a long run, Munich team leads the Euroleague in rebounds with 40.8 per game.
12. (12) Galatasaray Istanbul 2-2
Galatasaray can be a Top 8 contender on two conditions (assuming their healthy). First, Carlos Arroyo needs to be back in shape and start knocking down shots as he did in Week 1. Second, Galatasay needs to fix its defense - they’re ranked 23rd in DRtg (defensive rating) as they have allowed their opponents to score 117.3 (!) points per 100 possessions.
13. (14) Unicaja Malaga 2-2
The absence of injured Nik Caner-Medley is definitely felt in Malaga as Unicaja destroyed Galatasaray with him and was destroyed by Bayern while Caner-Medley was not available. The players of Unicaja still need more time to adjust to Joan Plaza and each other and once this happens, Unicaja should move up in our Euroleague Power Rankings.
14. (16) EA7 Emporio Armani Milan 2-2
EA7 Emporio Armani is on a pace to grab all must-wins against lower-caliber teams, lose all games versus the best and that should be enough to secure them a third place in group B. On a positive note, Alessandro Gentile is currently the top contender to win Euroleague Rising Star award as he’s been averaging 12 points (46% 3FG), 2.3 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 23 minutes in first four games.
15. (23) JSF Nanterre 2-2
JSF Nanterre has made the biggest rise in RealGM’s Euroleague Power Rankings by capturing two sensational wins against FC Barcelona (on the road) and giving Budivelnik no chance at home. In order to become a real threat in group A, JSF Nanterre needs to improve its free-throw shooting as they make only 59.3 percent of the shots from the line.
16. (18) Crvena Zvezda Belgrade 1-3
Crvena Zvezda’s fast-paced basketball has finally produced results. Dejan Radonjic’s team beat Laboral Kutxa in last week’s games and kept their Top 16 hopes alive. So far Crvena Zvezda has been doing great work under its own basket, limiting opponents to only 6.5 offensive rebounds per game and this has been the best result in the Euroleague.
17. (20) Brose Baskets Bamberg 2-2
Amazing performance by Casey Jacobsen, who nailed seven three-pointers, helped Brose Baskets to record a surprise win over Anadolu Efes and become a number one candidate to finish 4th in group B. However, next week’s game against Zalgiris could be decisive as stealing an away win would make Brose Baskets very hard to catch for both Zalgiris and Strasbourg IG.
18. (13) Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius 1-3
After grabbing a sensational win in Week 1, Lietuvos Rytas has been slowing down, mainly due to poor effort and lack of size inside the paint. Lietuvos Rytas allowed its opponents to grab 37.8 rebounds in its first four games and this has been the worst result in the Euroleague. The Lithuanian team also needs a better performance in away games from Milenko Tepic, who has been averaging 1.9 points (16% 3FG) so far this season.
19. (15) Budivelnik Kyiv 1-3
Last week’s loss to JSF Nanterre might be crucial for Budivelnik and their Top 16 hopes as they face FC Barcelona, Fenerbahce Ulker and CSKA in the upcoming three weeks. After promising performances in first two games, now Budivelnik has to start stealing wins from the giants and needs to win at least one of its next three games.
20. (17) Partizan Belgrade 1-3
The 2012-13 season had to be a year for Leo Westermann to develop his game and adjust to the Euroleague level, but the adjustment period lasts longer than it was expected. While Bogdan Bogdanovic and Joffrey Lauvergne already play as candidates to win Euroleague Rising Star trophy, Westermann is still far behind, averaging 7.8 points (31% FG), 2.8 assists and 2.5 turnovers in 32 minutes.
21. (19) Zalgiris Kaunas 1-3
Zalgiris Kaunas is the best three-point and free throw shooting team in the league, but the Lithuanian team has used its great range only once this season. Next week’s game against Brose Baskets is a must-win for Zalgiris, and it could also be a special match for team's captain Paulius Jankunas, who is 34 points away from becoming Zalgiris’ all-time leading scorer in European tournaments.
22. (24) Stelmet Zielona Gora 1-3
Euroleague tourists Stelmet won’t be the only Euroleague winless team as they beat Montepaschi in Week 3 and was close to put a surprise in last week’s game against Galatasaray. However, in order tq1o get another victory, Stelmet needs to fix their defense as they are ranked 24th in both opponents points per game (84.5) and steals per game (2.3) categories.
23. (22) Montepaschi Siena 0-4
It was expected that Montepaschi without Bobby Brown might struggle this season, but 0-4 is probably worse than most of Siena’s fans saw in a worst-case scenario. Montepaschi hasn’t lost a single game by more than 10 points, but that's not a big consolation for the supporters as Montepaschi doesn’t seem to be a team that would be able to rebound after a horrible start.
24. (21) Strasbourg IG 0-4
Alexis Ajinca has been playing like an MVP this season, but a one-man team doesn’t usually work in Europe. Ajinca cannot carry Strasbourg IG on his back - the French team is the least efficient Euroleague team in offense (ORtg 93) and third worse defensive team, which allow its opponents to score 115.6 points per 100 possessions. Strasbourg IG is slowly backing out from Top 16 race and now the question is if they can get a single win this season.