Power Rankings

RANK TEAM / RECORD CHANGE COMMENTS
1
Dhaka
Dhaka
0-0
--
LAST WK: --

 The Spring ’16 Champs bring back their squad ready to defend their title. Last season we witnessed the emergence of both Salman and Farzad, which may have only been the start of something special. They have built a team with a tremendous scorer, a big man who is efficient on both ends of the floor, and a group of terrific complementary players (Salman, Ali, Ameer, and Fahad). They have a championship under their belt and should have the opportunity to compete for another one.

2
Mombasa
Mombasa
0-0
--
LAST WK: --

 Lost a tough championship game but will have a shot at revenge as they kick their season off on a date with Dhaka. This season will feature a new-look Mombasa squad, but as long as Raza and Sadat are in the backcourt, they are a force to be reckoned with. Weiss always finds a way to recruit talent, so the losses of AJ, Eric, and John may not be as large as they appear. They do appear to be guard heavy, so they will need additional contributions from Weiss, who appears to be their only legitimate big. Raza and Sadat love to run, so this may actually play to their advantage. Wouldn’t be surprised to find them in a similar spot as last year – competing for the trophy.

3
Lahore
Lahore
0-0
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LAST WK: --

 The potent offensive trio of Anwar, Waqas, and Bilal was able to insert itself into the final four last season, but that is no longer the goal. They are looking to climb the ranks and knock off the likes of Dhaka and Mombasa. The Big 3 averaged a whopping 47 points per game – the highest of any trio in the league last season (…we’ll have our stat guys look into that one..). This team can score with anyone, but in the odd instance they go cold, their defense has not always been there to support them – a tough 66-47 loss to Dakha ended their season. If they can tighten up their defense, Lahore will have a chance to take the next step. They will be challenged by Jakarta in Week 1, a team that will test both their offensive chemistry and defensive discipline.

4
Mecca
Mecca
0-0
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LAST WK: --

 After a disappointing Spring, Mecca looks locked and reloaded for what could be a breakout season. Ammar and Obada are two of the toughest big men in the league, the Zubi brothers can explode in the blink of an eye, and now with Bilal Abbassi running the point, they could have the best offense in all the land. Arkan and Motasem will add some much needed length on the perimeter, solidifying a defense that was often lethargic and relied upon the offense far too much. If Mecca can perform on par with their on-paper appearance, they will be a nightmare for anyone. They’re physicality will be tested when they open the season up against Istanbul.

5
Jakarta
Jakarta
0-0
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LAST WK: --

 A scrappy and crafty bunch, Jakarta will not be blowing many teams out, but they will give the league fits. The Omar brothers are a tough two to play against – they do all the little things to the tee. Ramzy has proven that he can defend any team’s best perimeter player and the addition of two of the Abbassi brothers will add to their offense. Both Fursan and Islam Abbassi have the ability to get hot at any moment, combine that with their defensive capabilities, and you have a squad that will lose very few games. Jakarta will not be the prettiest team and their games will be some of the ugliest you will see this season, but they will find a way to stockpile wins.

6
Sana'a
Sana'a
0-0
--
LAST WK: --

 Picking up one of the best players in D1 should pay dividends for a Sana’a team that hasn’t had much to be excited about. Mo Amin will have the opportunity to put a team of his back and take them as far as he goes. The addition of Raied Saleh will also add a much needed offensive threat. Beyond Mohamed and Raied, Sana’a has a bunch of complementary players who will need to capitalize off of the opportunities created by their teammates to compete with the big boys.

7
Amman
Amman
0-0
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LAST WK: --

 A dark-horse MVP candidate, Jawad Tamimi is one of the best all-around players in this league and has continued to make great strides in expanding his game - he is a load to defend and a pesky defender himself. Moayad can be a top point guard and Omar Mana is a very solid big. If the younglings can maintain a positive attitude and play with composure, they can move their way up the rankings very quickly.

8
Granada
Granada
0-0
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LAST WK: --

 Enough is enough, this team has had issues with big men every year they have participated in this league. They decided to address this issue by reacquainting with Shadi, adding Hamza Saleh, and introducing a new face in Mohammad Nawaz. That front line, combined with what could be a potent backcourt, will have the opportunity to compete game in and game out. The difference maker will be Omar Singer, as we have seen in seasons past that this team goes as he goes. If he can make this team mesh quickly and play at an MVP type level, they will not be sitting at 8 for a long time.

9
Alexandria
--
LAST WK: --

 Last season, when the whole squad showed up, Alexandria was able to put up points. The finished 6th in PPG and if the Masri brothers continue light it up from deep, they can challenge many teams in this league. Defense may be a weakness, but they added some new faces – we’ll see how that pans out.

10
Kazan
Kazan
0-0
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LAST WK: --

 Couple D1 guys making the move down to D2. Frank O. and Mark can score, Frank T. can defend. Another team we’ll just have to wait and see what they can do.

11
Tehran
Tehran
0-0
--
LAST WK: --

 Captain Ali Omari returns from a two year hiatus with eight guys who will be making their Muslim Basketball debut. We’ve seen them play elsewhere – they have guys who can play, shoot, and defend. Not much else to go off of, but they are not a team to sleep on. Could very well make a push up the rankings as they have big matchups with Amman and Dhaka to start the season.

12
Baghdad
Baghdad
0-0
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LAST WK: --

 Another team taking its talent down to D2. Seems like Zak will be the primary scorer and Omar Khalef is a big dude who will challenge any front line. Maybe one of the older teams in the league, so the intangibles will be there. If they can find scoring they will be another team that can move up in the rankings.

13
Fez
Fez
0-0
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LAST WK: --

 Yet another D1 captain searching for the fountain of youth has made his way down to D2. A lot of uncertainty around this team, but you can bet that Ed will knock down shots. They are the oldest team in the league and will need all ten guys to contribute if they are looking to make a run.

14
Istanbul
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LAST WK: --

 Nobody ever looked forward to playing Istanbul in seasons passed. The sheer effort and grit will keep them in games, but the loss of Ammar may be their demise. They are going to have a tough time replacing his shooting ability and the 15 points he averaged. They still will not be a cakewalk for any team as Muhammad Turan brings a physicality and toughness that must be matched by any opponent.

15
Suba
Suba
0-0
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LAST WK: --

 No major changes to last season’s squad who ranked last in many offensive statistical categories. Only bright spot is that they can defend. They have a week one matchup with Granada, who struggles often against teams they should dispose of.

16
Damascus
--
LAST WK: --

 Some new, young faces. Osama Zidat and Ahmad Sehwail will need to guide this team and keep them in check. Hosam Karkis is a load on offense and will only get better as the season goes on. May not be their year, but they should prove to be a competitive bunch who will have to be taken seriously by their opponents week in and week out.


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