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NBA Power Rankings: Kevin Durant leads Thunder to top

Marc J. Spears
Yahoo Sports

Oklahoma City
1. Oklahoma City Thunder (38-11; last week's ranking: 2): Kevin Durant averaged 35.9 points in January, including 54 against Golden State, for his highest-scoring month ever.

2. Indiana Pacers (36-10; last week's ranking: 1): Indiana expects Andrew Bynum to join the team in about a week. The Pacers added him as an insurance third center.

3. Portland Trail Blazers (34-13; last week's ranking: 3): Portland, which plays at Washington, New York and Indiana next, is 7-0 against the Eastern Conference on the road this season.

Los Angeles
4. Los Angeles Clippers (34-16; last week's ranking: 6): Chris Paul, out since Jan. 3 with a shoulder injury, said he needs to play one game to be comfortable enough to play in the All-Star Game on Feb. 16.

5. Miami Heat (33-13; last week's ranking: 4): Miami had discussions with Bynum before he signed with Indiana, a source said. It would have been odd for the Heat to have Bynum and Greg Oden.

San Antonio
6. San Antonio Spurs (34-13; last week's ranking: 5): Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili are seven games away from passing Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Michael Cooper (657) for the third-most games played by a trio with the same team.

7. Houston Rockets (32-17; last week's ranking: 7): The only two losses the Rockets have had in their past eight games were against Memphis. Houston had a 10-4 record in January.

8. Phoenix Suns (29-18; last week's ranking: 10): Goran Dragic, who has averaged 26.7 points the past four games, is the first Suns player to average more than 19 points and five assists in 10 seasons.

Golden State
9. Golden State Warriors (29-19; last week's ranking: 8): Should Harrison Barnes start over Andre Iguodala? Barnes is averaging 10.1 points while Iguodala is averaging 9.7.

10. Memphis Grizzlies (26-20; last week's ranking: 9): Losing Marc Gasol was tough. Losing Mike Conley (ankle), who averages 18 points and 6.3 assists, could have greater impact.

11. Dallas Mavericks (27-21; last week's ranking: 11): Dirk Nowitzki helped his return to the All-Star Game by averaging 22.9 points, including three 30-plus scoring games, in January.

12. Atlanta Hawks (25-21; last week's ranking: 13): Paul Millsap's first All-Star selection is great timing. The game is in New Orleans, and he's an ex-Louisiana Tech star born in Monroe, La.

13. Toronto Raptors (25-22; last week's ranking: 14): DeMar DeRozan joins Vince Carter, Chris Bosh and Anthony Davis as the only Raptors to make the All-Star team.

14. Minnesota Timberwolves (23-24; last week's ranking: 15): Hopeful Lakers fans will likely voice their love for former UCLA star Kevin Love when Minnesota visits the Lakers on Tuesday.

15. Chicago Bulls (23-23; last week's ranking: 16): The Bulls recorded the most wins in the East in January with an 11-4 record. Chicago allowed only 92.7 points per game in the month.

16. Washington Wizards (23-23; last week's ranking: 17): John Wall will be challenged facing fellow All-Star point guards Damian Lillard, Tony Parker and Kyrie Irving in his next three games.

17. Denver Nuggets (22-23; last week's ranking: 12): One NBA scout likened athletic Arizona freshman forward Aaron Gordon, a heralded draft prospect, to Nuggets forward Kenneth Faried.

18. Brooklyn Nets (20-25; last week's ranking: 18): The Nets went 10-3 in January, including a season-high five-game win streak. Brooklyn has slumped of late with three straight losses.

New Orleans
19. New Orleans Pelicans (20-26; last week's ranking: 26): Keep an eye on whether NBA commissioner Adam Silver gives host New Orleans some All-star love by replacing an injured Kobe Bryant with Anthony Davis.

20. Charlotte Bobcats (21-28; last week's ranking: 20): Center Al Jefferson averaged 23.9 points, 11.3 rebounds and 2.6 assists in January, including 40 points against the Los Angeles Lakers.

New York
21. New York Knicks (19-28; last week's ranking: 19): New York hosts Denver on Friday. With Danilo Gallinari's injury woes, did the Knicks end up getting the best of the Carmelo Anthony trade?

22. Detroit Pistons (19-27; last week's ranking: 21): The Pistons are one of only four teams that have won at Miami this season. They return there on Monday night with a two-game win streak.

Los Angeles
23. Los Angeles Lakers (16-31; last week's ranking: 22): The fewest amount of wins the Lakers have had in Los Angeles during a non-lockout season: 30 during 1974-75.

24. Utah Jazz (16-31; last week's ranking: 25): The Jazz were 6-6 in January. Jazz fans have debated whether it's better to win and not the make playoffs or struggle and finish with an even better draft pick.

25. Sacramento Kings (15-32; last week's ranking: 23): Rudy Gay faces his old Raptors teammates on Wednesday.

26. Cleveland Cavaliers (16-31; last week's ranking: 24): Anthony Bennett, the 2013 No. 1 draft pick, showed some flash with 15 points and eight rebounds against New Orleans on Jan. 28.

27. Philadelphia 76ers (15-33, last week's ranking: 27): How important is rookie guard Michael Carter-Williams to the Sixers? Philadelphia was 1-11 when Carter-Williams was sidelined.

28. Boston Celtics (16-33; last week's ranking: 28): Rajon Rondo had his best game since returning from a knee injury with season-highs of 19 points and 10 assists against Orlando on Sunday.

29. Orlando Magic (13-36; last week's ranking: 29): The Magic lost their 11th straight road game on Sunday against Boston. The next road game for Orlando? Monday against Indiana.

30. Milwaukee Bucks (8-39; last week's ranking: 30): Rookie Nate Wolters, a second-rounder out of South Dakota State, has an assist-to-turnover ratio of 9-to-1 over the past seven games.

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