ESPN: Celtics' front office is top 10 in the league

On Tuesday ESPN unveiled its 2015 NBA Front Office Rankings, rating every management group in the league on a scale from 0 to 10. The members of the ESPN Forecast panel are evaluating front offices based on how their decision-making impacts their team's on-court performance both short- and long-term.

The Celtics' front office, made up of the ownership group, president of basketball operations Danny Ainge and head coach Brad Stevens, got high marks in the second-ever rankings, with a 7.28 grade. That's good for seventh place overall, down one spot from 2014 but still comfortably inside the top 10.

Ainge in particular has earned a reputation as one of the most active general managers in the NBA. Over the past year and a half, he has dismantled the remains of the 2008 championship team, stockpiled an unprecedented haul of future draft picks and put together an overachieving roster that is currently sitting in the final Eastern Conference playoff position.

For the second straight year, the defending champion San Antonio Spurs sit atop the rankings, and it's not even close, with a score of 9.71. The biggest movers from last season are, not surprisingly, the two teams with the NBA's best records. The Warriors have jumped from 10 to 2 and the Hawks from 17 to 8, just behind the Celtics.

Three other Eastern Conference teams, the Bucks, Cavaliers and Pistons, have made major gains as well. The most precipitous falls have been those of the Lakers and Nets, who have gone from the middle of the pack to 28th and 29th, respectively. Sitting in last place, as they did in 2014, are Phil Jackson's New York Knicks, at 2.37, more than a full point worse than Brooklyn.

Over the course of the week, ESPN will be rolling out detailed rankings for owners, presidents/GMs and coaches.

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Image credit: Barry Chin/The Boston Globe