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The best teams in the NBA, by net rating

In Yahoo! fantasy football, your team’s record is not necessarily the best indicator of how good your team is. The real benchmark is points scored.

In the NBA, net rating is a comparable stat to your fantasy team’s points scored. It can sometimes tell you more than an overall record.

Net rating = a team’s point-differential per 100 possessions, or how much a team outscores (or gets outscored by) its opponent over roughly the course of an average basketball game.

A good example of net-rating at work is the Miami Heat. They’re 17-6, which is the fourth-best record by win percentage in the league. By net rating, though, they’re at 5.3, which is eighth-best in the league, while their strength of schedule so far has been favorable. We would be willing to bet the Heat pile up a disproportionate amount of losses to their 17-6 record over the next few weeks.

Elsewhere, the graph shows how scary the Bucks, with a 12.7 net rating, have been; they’ve outscored their last six opponents by an average of 27.8 points per game.


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