Week 3 Power Rankings
By John Krolik, @krolikjohn July 8, 2022
1 – Tri State (2-1)
Jason Richardson missed Week 1 due to health and safety protocols. Since he returned to the lineup in Week 2, Tri State is 2-0 and have outscored their opponents by a total of 28 points.
They execute beautifully, they have size, and they have shooting. It’s hard to ignore what Tri State is doing right now.
2 – Triplets (2-1)
They’re coming off a hard-fought loss to the Ball Hogs, but the Triplets are still ever so dangerous. Iso-Joe has scored 30 points in two of the three games the team has played so far.
When just one of the two Pargo Brothers is on his game, the combination of what Iso-Joe can do inside and their ability to stretch the floor is too much for any defense to handle. When both of them are feeling it, like they were in Week 2, the other team might as well pack it up and go home.
Iso-Joe is leading the charge, the Pargo brothers give the team additional firepower from the perimeter, and Alonzo Gee and Ryan Hollins provide energy, size, and athleticism. Plus, Coach Lisa Leslie prepares the Triplets for their opponents as well as any Coach in the league. This squad isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
3 – Ghost Ballers (2-1)
The Ghost Ballers are also coming off a loss after allowing Trilogy to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat in Week 3. That notwithstanding, I still love the makeup of this team, especially the duo of Mike Taylor and Chris Johnson. Nobody plays with as much energy and confidence as Mike Taylor, and I’m going to stick by my assertion that Chris Johnson is the most talented player in the league until another big man who’s as athletic as the day is long can punish small guys in the post, handle the ball like a wing, and consistently drain shots from beyond the arc.
Darnell Jackson’s combination of strength and touch continues to be a weekly delight, Jermaine Taylor is a Swiss Army knife, and team Captain Ricky Davis has provided excellent leadership.
4 – Aliens (2-1)
It’s no secret I love watching the Aliens. Rick Mahorn’s team, led by three international players with a wealth of international experience, plays with so much beautiful man movement and ball movement. I went in-depth on this in my three observations column this week [LINK PLEASE], so I won’t belabor the point here. I do want to mention that Deshawn Stephens is just as important to the team of any of the Aliens’ three European stars – he can flat-out play and gives the Aliens some serious athleticism on the front line.
I put the Ghost Ballers above the Aliens because I believe the former team has more talent and that Jimmies and Joes beat Xs and Os at the end of the day, but I’m hoping the league is taking notice of what the Aliens are doing from a schematic perspective.
5 – Trilogy (2-1)
Now it’s time to discuss the defending champs. 2021 Team Captain Jarrett Jack’s responsibilities as an assistant coach for the Phoenix Suns prevented him from returning to the BIG3 this season, and newly-minted James “Flight” White has been in a slump. He scored a combined zero points in Weeks 2 and 3, but considering his scoring pedigree I’d expect him to get off the schneid sooner rather than later.
In the meantime, Trilogy’s twin towers of Earl Clark, who can get it done in the paint or from the perimeter, and Amir Johnson, who’s just a flat-out problem when he gets the ball down low, have been too much for opposing defenses to handle. When you add Isaiah Briscoe into the mix, who mixes a shifty handle and serious shot-making ability with as much pound-for-pound strength as any player in the league, this is a team capable of beating anybody on any given day. There’s also no quit in them, as evidenced by their 20-2 run in the second half to steal a win from the Ghost Ballers. Relying on massive comebacks to win games isn’t the most sound long-term strategy, but every game counts in the BIG3, and Trilogy really helped themselves with their gutty performance in Week 3.
6 – Enemies (2-1)
The Enemies are a bit too reliant on shot-making for my taste, but they sure do have a knack for making shots. Also, they have one of the best big men in the league in Isaiah Austin and an absolute dynamo in Week 2 Player of the Week Elijah Stewart, who will return from his stint with the Pelicans’ Summer League squad in Week 5. The fact that the Enemies were able to get a win without Stewart is pretty impressive stuff.
7 – 3 Headed Monsters (2-1)
Well, one 2-1 team had to come in at 7th. 3HM certainly haven’t looked bad this season. They play smash-mouth basketball, and league leading scorer Kevin Murphy is (obviously) a walking bucket. Jonathan Simmons can be a matchup nightmare, and team Captain Rashard Lewis will continue to be an additional matchup nightmare when he returns to the team. (Lewis missed Week 3 due to personal reasons.)
8 – Ball Hogs (1-2)
I’ll cut to the chase – Barbosa’s back. Barbosa led the league in assists in 2021, finished second to Jason Richardson in assist to turnover ratio, and finished second to Joe Johnson in scoring. If the Ball Hogs had made the playoffs, the Brazilian Blur easily could have won the MVP award.
After missing Week 1 due to his responsibilities as a Player Development Coach with the Warriors and struggling to get his sea legs under him in Week 2, Barbosa showed what he’s capable of in Week 3 during the Ball Hogs’ win over the Triplets. There’s just no stopping him when he wants to go to the basket. With the sweet-shooting Jodie Meeks spacing the floor for him, this is a dangerous team who I think is going to put their 0-2 start firmly in the rearview mirror.
9 – Power (1-2)
There’s so much to like about Power. Royce White and TJ Cline’s combination of size and passing ability makes them perhaps the most fun to watch frontline in the league. Cline can also hit the three, has an uncanny knack for being in the right place on “no-clear” situations, and has great touch on his running floater. White, meanwhile, can and will flat-out bully his matchup in the post if a passing lane doesn’t present itself. Glen Rice Jr. had a rough time of it in Week 3, but the #1 overall pick in the 2022 BIG3 draft has shown he can score from any spot on the floor against any defense.
I spoke to Power Coach Nancy Lieberman over the weekend, and she answered my question before I asked it – the issue with the team has been shot-making. The team has struggled from the perimeter and at the foul line, and it’s cost them dearly. Captain Cuttino Mobley and new acquisition Nikoloz Tskitishvili have both struggled with their shots in the early going, but Coach Lieberman believes in them and I believe in people Coach Lieberman believes in. When the lid comes off the basket for Power, they’ll return to being a threat.
10 – 3’s Company (1-2)
3’s Company has tied its fate to Michael Beasley, and opposing teams have gotten the memo. Beasley is the focus of the opposing defense every time he touches the ball, and he rarely gets anything resembling an easy look. Beasley is so talented that he can get buckets anyways, but he needs more backup than he’s getting from Captain Mario Chalmers and the rest of his teammates right now.
11 – Killer 3’s (1-2)
Captain Frank Nitty’s squad feeds off his energy, and this team brings it whenever they step on the floor. On top of that, Donte Greene is one of the smoothest scorers in the league. This is a team that shares the ball, plays hard, and can knock down shots, but the matchups simply haven’t been in their favor to start the season.
12 – Bivouac (0-3)
Even though Bivouac hasn’t won a game in the Biden administration, I still like this team. All three of their losses have been close – each of their losses have come by three points. New Coach Gary Payton has them leaving it all on the floor every game. There are panes of glass less smooth than team Captain Gerald Green. It’s easy for a team on a losing streak to spiral and have things go from bad to worse. With five games remaining in the regular season, time is already running out on Bivouac’s chances at a playoff run. However, based on the games this team has shown, I believe their first win will come, and it will come soon.