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NBA Power Rankings: OKC takes top spot

Marc J. Spears
Yahoo Sports

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Kevin Durant and the Thunder are riding a four-game winning streak. (USA Today Sports)

The Oklahoma City Thunder became the first team to win 30 games, which is good enough to place them atop Yahoo! Sports' NBA Power Rankings.

With four straight victories, the Thunder have ended the Los Angeles Clippers' three-week hold on No. 1.

Records are through Monday.

Oklahoma City
1. Oklahoma City Thunder (30-8, previous ranking: second): The Thunder have won four straight after losing at Washington. They have a big game Wednesday against Denver.

Los Angeles
2. Los Angeles Clippers (29-9, previous ranking: first): With Grant Hill in uniform, the Clippers earned an impressive road win at Memphis without injured point guard Chris Paul.

San Antonio
3. San Antonio Spurs (29-11, previous ranking: third): The Spurs have three tough games this week without injured guard Manu Ginobili: Memphis, Golden State and at Atlanta.

4. Miami Heat (24-12, previous ranking: fourth): Dwyane Wade was surprisingly benched during the final stretch of the Heat's 106-97 loss at Utah on Monday night.

[Also: Cavs may target LeBron James in 2014 free agency]

5. Memphis Grizzlies (24-12, previous ranking: fifth): With trade speculation hanging over them, the Grizzlies have dropped two straight games. They play the Spurs next.

New York
6. New York Knicks (24-13, previous ranking: sixth): The Knicks are just 3-4 in January. Their older roster will get some needed rest with only one game over the next seven days.

Golden State
7. Golden State Warriors (23-13, previous ranking: seventh): The Warriors' challenging January continues with games against Miami and at San Antonio. Even the improving Hornets can't be dismissed.

8. Indiana Pacers (23-15, previous ranking: ninth): The Pacers have two All-Star candidates in forward David West and swingman Paul George. Does Indiana deserve two All-Stars?

9. Denver Nuggets (23-16, previous ranking: 12th): Former Nuggets center Nene returns to Denver to play for the first time since being traded to Washington. Expect warm applause.

10. Brooklyn Nets (22-15, previous ranking: 13th): The Nets are 6-0 in January under interim coach P.J. Carlesimo. Brooklyn plays host to Toronto and then has two games against struggling Atlanta.

11. Chicago Bulls (21-15, previous ranking: 11th): Tom Thibodeau chewed out the Bulls at shootaround, then got the results he wanted: Chicago held Atlanta to just 20 points in the first half and 58 for the game.

12. Atlanta Hawks (21-16, previous ranking: eighth): The Hawks' 58 points were one shy of a franchise low against the Bulls.

13. Houston Rockets (21-17, previous ranking: 10th): James Harden and improving Rockets have a chance to measure themselves when they visit the Clippers on Tuesday night.

14. Boston Celtics (20-17, previous ranking: 16th): Celtics coach Doc Rivers faces his son – Hornets rookie guard Austin Rivers – for the first time Wednesday in Boston.

[Also: Knicks owner reportedly spied on Carmelo Anthony]

15. Portland Trail Blazers (20-17, previous ranking: 14th): After facing Russell Westbrook last Sunday, rookie Damian Lillard gets Ty Lawson, Kyrie Irving, Brandon Jennings and John Wall next.

16. Utah Jazz (21-19, previous ranking: 15th): Gordon Hayward saves Jazz's big home win over Miami on Monday and is steadily becoming a Sixth Man of the Year candidate.

17. Milwaukee Bucks (19-17, previous ranking: 17th): L.A. native Brandon Jennings faces Steve Nash, his mentor, on Tuesday.

18. Minnesota Timberwolves (16-19, previous ranking: 18th): The T'wolves have dropped four straight games without Kevin Love. Their next two games aren't easy, either: the Clippers and Houston.

Los Angeles
19. Los Angeles Lakers (16-21, previous ranking: 19th): The Lakers are four games behind Portland for the eighth and final playoff spot in Western Conference.

20. Philadelphia 76ers (16-22, previous ranking: 20th): Andrew Bynum said his ailing knees are now pain-free and he expects to return around the All-Star break.

21. Dallas Mavericks (16-23, previous ranking: 21st): Are the Mavericks ready to move up the West standings after three straight wins? They have tough games against Oklahoma City and Houston next.

22. Toronto Raptors (14-23, previous ranking: 24th): The Raptors will try to give the Nets their first loss of 2013 in Brooklyn on Tuesday. Ed Davis is playing well.

[Also: Kings' proposed sale to Seattle group inches forward]

23. Sacramento Kings (14-24, previous ranking: 22nd): DeMarcus Cousins meets old Kentucky teammate John Wall when the Kings play host to Washington on Wednesday.

[Also: Cavs' Omri Casspi requests trade]

24. Detroit Pistons (14-24, previous ranking: 25th): Rookie center Andre Drummond is averaging 7.1 points on 59.7 shooting and 7.3 rebounds in just 19.4 minutes per game.

25. Orlando Magic (13-24, previous ranking: 23rd): The Magic have lost 11 of their past 12 games.

26. Phoenix Suns (13-27, previous ranking: 26th): Scouts at the D-League Showcase were really down on rookie point guard Kendall Marshall, who is averaging 0.6 points and 0.7 assists.

New Orleans
27. New Orleans Hornets (11-26, previous ranking: 27th): Hornets now have a talented backcourt in Eric Gordon and Greivis Vasquez, a likely Most Improved Player of the Year candidate.

28. Charlotte Bobcats (9-28, previous ranking: 28th): The Bobcats are back on the slide after losing four straight. Kemba Walker, however, is a bright spot for Charlotte.

29. Cleveland Cavaliers (9-31, previous ranking: 29th): The matchup between Irving and Lillard could be entertaining in Wednesday's game at Portland.

30. Washington Wizards (7-28, previous ranking: 30th): The Wizards have quickly improved with Wall back. Washington's stay in the basement should be ending soon.

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