NBA Power Rankings: Kevin Durant nears Michael Jordan, but Spurs still on top

Marc J. Spears
Yahoo SportsMarch 31, 2014
NBA Power Rankings: Kevin Durant nears Michael Jordan, but Spurs still on top
San Antonio
San Antonio

1. San Antonio Spurs (57-16; last week's ranking: 1): The Spurs' franchise-record-tying 17-game win streak will be tested in upcoming games against Indiana, Golden State and Oklahoma City.


Oklahoma City
Oklahoma City

2. Oklahoma City Thunder (54-19; last week's ranking: 3): Kevin Durant has scored at least 25 points in 38 straight games and is two games shy of tying Michael Jordan's 17-year-old record.


Los Angeles
Los Angeles

3. Los Angeles Clippers (52-22; last week's ranking: 2): Coach Doc Rivers has a reputation of being cautious with injuries to his stars. Expect the same with Blake Griffin, who had back spasms.


Miami
Miami

4. Miami Heat (50-22; last week's ranking: 7): Miami hosts a potential second-round playoff opponent in the Raptors on Monday. Miami has a 14-game win streak over Toronto, including 3-0 this season.


Houston
Houston

5. Houston Rockets (49-23; last week's ranking: 4): Houston is 13-8 this season when Jeremy Lin starts at point guard. Point guard Patrick Beverley is out indefinitely because of a knee injury.


Indiana
Indiana

6. Indiana Pacers (52-22; last week's ranking: 5): Indiana is a surprising 8-9 in March and has scored less than 85 points in each of the past six games. The schedule gets no easier with the Spurs up next.


Portland
Portland

7. Portland Trail Blazers (48-27; last week's ranking: 9): Golden State currently owns a playoff tiebreaker over the Trail Blazers with a 2-1 series lead. Portland hosts the Warriors on April 13.


Golden State
Golden State

8. Golden State Warriors (45-28; last week's ranking: 6): Along with Andrew Bogut out with a groin injury, David Lee has missed two straight games with a hamstring injury and has yet to resume running.


Phoenix
Phoenix

9. Phoenix Suns (44-30; last week's ranking: 11): The playoff hopeful Suns' remaining schedule: Clippers, at Blazers, Thunder, at Pelicans, at Spurs, at Mavs, Grizzlies and at Kings.


Memphis
Memphis

10. Memphis Grizzlies (43-30; last week's ranking: 8): Memphis plays four of its final eight games against winning teams and has four games overall left at home.


Dallas
Dallas

11. Dallas Mavericks (44-30; last week's ranking: 10): The Mavericks own the playoff tiebreaker with Memphis and are 1-1 versus Phoenix this season with the last meeting on April 9.


Toronto
Toronto

12. Toronto Raptors (42-31; last week's ranking: 12): The Atlantic Division-leading Raptors are vying to win their division for the first time since seven years ago – the only time they've won it.


Chicago
Chicago

13. Chicago Bulls (41-32; last week's ranking: 13): Eight of Chicago's final nine games are against teams without a winning record, which should aid its hopes of landing the East's third seed.


Brooklyn
Brooklyn

14. Brooklyn Nets (39-33; last week's ranking: 14): The Nets are in competition with the Raptors for the Atlantic Division title and with the Raptors and Chicago for the East's third playoff seed.


Washington
Washington

15. Washington Wizards (38-35; last week's ranking: 15): The Wizards have to wait at least another day to clinch their first playoff spot since 2008 after New York beat Golden State.


Minnesota
Minnesota

16. Minnesota Timberwolves (36-36; last week's ranking: 16): The T'wolves, losers of four of their past six, have a tough schedule ahead with the Clippers, Memphis and a visit to Miami.


Charlotte
Charlotte

17. Charlotte Bobcats (35-38; last week's ranking: 17): The East's sixth-seed Bobcats are three games behind fifth-seed Washington. They meet in Washington on Monday.


New Orleans
New Orleans

18. New Orleans Pelicans (32-41; last week's ranking: 19): Tyreke Evans has had a great March for New Orleans, averaging a well-rounded 20.8 points, 6.9 assists and 5.6 rebounds.


Atlanta
Atlanta

19. Atlanta Hawks (31-41; last week's ranking: 18): The Hawks, losers of six straight, have done all they can to help the Knicks' playoff hopes. Cleveland also is making a late run at the East's No. 8 seed.


New York
New York

20. New York Knicks (31-43; last week's ranking: 20): After years of returning from injuries quickly, veteran forward Kenyon Martin appears to be cautious with his ankle problems.


Denver
Denver

21. Denver Nuggets (32-41; last week's ranking: 21): Forward Kenneth Faried is enjoying his best month of the season, averaging 19.3 points, 9.9 rebounds and 1.3 steals in March.


Cleveland
Cleveland

22. Cleveland Cavaliers (30-45; last week's ranking: 24): The Cavaliers are 2½ games behind Atlanta for the final Eastern Conference playoff spot. Cleveland plays at Atlanta on Friday.


Sacramento
Sacramento

23. Sacramento Kings (25-48; last week's ranking: 22) The Kings opted not to sign Royce White for the rest of the season after two 10-day contracts and before he had a chance to travel.


Los Angeles
Los Angeles

24. Los Angeles Lakers (25-48; last week's ranking: 26): The Lakers are closing in on 50 losses. The last time the Lakers had 50 losses in a season was in 1974-75 when they finished with 52.


Detroit
Detroit

25. Detroit Pistons (26-47; last week's ranking: 25): The Pistons' season became even more forgettable when the Sixers beat them to end their 26-game losing streak.


Utah
Utah

26. Utah Jazz (23-51; last week's ranking: 23): The Jazz have lost four straight games and are 2-14 in March. Utah can play the role of spoiler against playoff hopeful New York on Monday.


Boston
Boston

27. Boston Celtics (23-50; last week's ranking: 27): Kelly Olynyk is trying to become the first Celtics rookie to have 500 points, 300 rebounds and 100 assists in a season since Paul Pierce.


Orlando
Orlando

28. Orlando Magic (21-53; last week's ranking: 28): There's good news in Orlando. Nikola Vucevic has 36 double-doubles this season and has averaged 22.6 points the past three games.


Milwaukee
Milwaukee

29. Milwaukee Bucks (14-59; last week's ranking: 29): Milwaukee, losers of nine of its past 10, was held to its lowest scoring total in three years with 67 in Saturday's loss to Miami.


Philadelphia
Philadelphia

30. Philadelphia 76ers (16-57, last week's ranking: 30): With a win Monday at Atlanta, the Sixers could win two straight games for the first time since they won four straight from Dec. 29-Jan. 4.

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