Sunday 22 October 2017 / 10:41 PM

Power Rankings March 22

1. Miami Heat (43-14) – The streak continues. There is no way (barring injury) any team in the sport can beat them in a best-of-seven series.

2. San Antonio Spurs (52-16) – Tony Parker is returning. While having a career year, his absence wasn’t missed too much. The Spurs were 6-­?2 without him, showing how deep their talent lies.    

3. Oklahoma City Thunder (48-17) – Only 11-­?5 since the All-­?Star break and continue to lose momentum. I still see them being formidable in the playoffs.  

    
4. Denver Nuggets (44-22) – Have now won 14 in a row which would be an even bigger deal if not for LeBron and the Heat’s record-setting streak of their own.

5. Memphis Grizzlies (46-21) – Best defensive team in basketball, holding teams to just 89 points per game. The  Grizz have won eight of ten.

6. Los Angeles Clippers (47-22) – Losing to the Kings drops their stock slightly.

7. Indiana Pacers (42-26) – Still one of the best in East, but will need Danny Granger to make any serious noise in the playoffs.  

    
8. Brooklyn Nets (40-28) – They live and die by the play of D-Will. Lately, D-Will has been dropping dimes left and right, meaning the Nets have been slightly surging.  

9. New York Knicks (40-26) – Since their quick start, the Knicks are barely a .500 team, going just 22-21. Injuries have plagued the boys in the Big Apple.

 

 
10. Golden State Warriors (39-31) – I’m a Stephen Curry lover. The kid can score as good as anyone. Golden State finishes nine of their last 2 games at home.

    
11. Boston Celtics (36-31) – Still fighting hard, going 16-­?8 since losing star point guard Rajon Rondo.  

12. Atlanta Hawks (38-30) – Have won four of five but something tells me they’ll be another early playoff exit. Lackluster rebounding definitely doesn’t help their cause.

13. Chicago Bulls (36-31) – Now 3-­?6 in March. Either they’re physically tired or tired of waiting for Derrick Rose to return; or both.

14. Los Angeles Lakers (36-33) – Just when they start to look like a decent team, they lose to the Suns…by 23 points.

    
15. Milwaukee Bucks (34-33) – Purely a .500 team that will get trounced by Miami in the first round of the playoffs next month.  

    
16. Dallas Mavericks (32-36) – Have made the playoffs 12 years in a row – a streak that looks likely to end.  

17. Houston Rockets (37-31) – 23-10 at home this season, but underwhelming on the road. This team will likely lose to Oklahoma City in the first round of the playoffs.

18. Portland Trail Blazers (32-36) – They’re young and they’re playing great defense. Have now beat Chicago twice this year. 2 of their last 15 games are against likely playoff teams.

19. Utah Jazz (34-34) – Losing  momentum    by  the  day   and  are  now    looking  up   at   the flailing    Lakers.    Not  a  good    sign.    3-­?7    in  their  last  10  games.

20. Sacramento Kings (25-44) – Gives  up  the  most  points  per  game  in  the  NBA (104.8).

    
21. Philadelphia 76ers (26-42) – 3-7 in their last 10 and all fans can do is point a finger at Andrew Bynum.

 
    
22. Washington Wizards (24-43) – Somehow have one six of their last 10 Erase their 0-12 start and they’re a decent team.

    
23. Cleveland Cavaliers (22-46) – Led the Heat by 27 points last week before blowing it. Still, the showing was impressive especially without Kyrie Irving.

24. Toronto Raptors (26-42) – Lost 10 of 14, which includes a loss to the Bobcats Wednesday. The terrible, horrendous, 16-win Bobcats. Ya; them.  

    
25. Minnesota Timberwolves (23-43) – had a 21-0 edge in second-chance points against the Kings, and still lost.

    
26. New Orleans Hornets (23-46) – Anthony Davis had a game-winner against the Celtics this week, but consider it a fluke. This is still the worst team in the West overall.

27. Detroit Pistons (23-46) – 1-­?12 over their last 13  games, the Pistons have nothing to play for, and it shows.

28. Phoenix Suns (23-46) – Were swept by the Wizards this year, if that tells you something.

29. Orlando Magic (18-51) – Have the second worst record and scoring differential at ­ ?6.7 in all of the NBA.

30. Charlotte Bobcats (16-52) – Combine all of their wins from 2012 and 2013 – it still doesn’t match the victories the Heat have surmounted during their one win-streak.
   

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Josh Helmuth

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