NBA.com's team stats show the thru today, the Blazers have the highest RPI (Relative Percent Index) in the league. The RPI is an index that factors in a team's winning percentage and its strength of schedule. Their RPI is 0.674, higher than MIami (0.627), Chicago (0.627), and OKC (0.578), the favorites to win the NBA championship this year.
The Blazers having the best record in the West is well publicized. But did you know that they have played the 2nd hardest schedule to date? It is only minutely less difficult than the Clippers, who have the hardest Strength of Schedule. The Blazers have beat the 5th (Denver), 6th (OKC), and 7th (Lakers) best teams in terms of RPI, and lost only to the 4th best (Clippers).
The table below shows the RPI and SOS taken from http://espn.go.com/nba/stats/rpi today. It shows the ranking in terms of RPI and SOS. It also shows how far along in the range from bottom to top of each of these indices a team's metric is located. In other words, the top team is at 100% and the bottom team is at 0%, and this shows how far along this range each team is.
The Blazers are at 100% on RPI (the tops!) and 99% on SOS. So they've gone 5-1 while playing essentially the toughest schedule the league. At the other extreme, Washington hasn't won yet and has played almost the easiest schedule (11%): shows why they needed a team meeting. Among the other surprise teams this year, Denver has had a fairly tough schedule (77%), while Indiana (54%) and Philadelphia (55%) have had average schedules.
The RPI is calculated as 25% winning percentage and 75% strength of schedule, where strength of schedule is composed of 2/3 opponents' winning percentage and 1/3 winning percentage of opponents' opponents. Here's the table:
|Relative Percent Index||Strength of Schedule|
|Team||RPI Rank||RPI||RPI Range||SOS Rank||Strength of Schedule||SOS Range|