The Bulls continue to cruise and currently hold a substantial lead in this week’s NBA Power Rankings at The Wife Hates Sports. With its 18-point ratings rank edge over the Heat, Chicago is rolling despite a close lose at home to the Orlando Magic last week.
The top four teams of last week remain unchanged, as the Heat, Thunder and Spurs follow the aforementioned Bulls.
The Orlando Magic cracked the top five this week, but face uncertainty with the future of Dwight Howard hanging in the balance and the NBA trade deadline only days away.
Here’s how each team sits in KP’s latest edition of NBA Power Rankings, coupled with some random facts about each team’s recent performances.
KP’s NBA Power Rankings: March 12, 2012
* Games, statistics and rankings include results up to Sunday March 11, 2012
1. Chicago Bulls – 34-9 (132 points) – Last Week: #1
The Bulls have won 10 of 11 games, with the only setback being a loss to the Orlando Magic at home last Thursday.
2. Miami Heat – 31-9 (114 points) – Last Week: #2
The Heat won three games last week, including a 30-point blowout win at home against the Nets.
3. Oklahoma City Thunder – 32-9 (106 points) – Last Week: #3
The Thunder faltered in a tough loss at home versus the Cavs last week.
4. San Antonio Spurs – 26-13 (80 points) – Last Week: #4
The Spurs have followed a win with a loss in each game since February 21.
5. Orlando Magic – 27-15 (72 points) – Last Week: #6
The Magic hit a season high and low in the same week, landing a huge road win against against the Bulls last Thursday, but only after blowing a huge lead to the hapless Bobcats a few days prior.
6. Philadelphia 76ers – 25-17 (70 points) – Last Week: #8
The Sixers have won three straight games, scoring 100-plus points in each contest.
7. Memphis Grizzlies – 24-16 (62 points) – Last Week: #11
The Grizzlies have lost just two games since Valentine’s Day.
8. Indiana Pacers – 23-16 (60 points) – Last Week: #5
The streaky Pacers followed a six-game win streak with a four-game losing streak last week, dropping three spots and out of the top five.
9. Los Angeles Lakers – 25-16 (59 points) – Last Week: #9
The Lakers matched the Magic last week, following a huge win against the Heat, with a blown lead to the hapless Wizards.
10. Los Angeles Clippers – 23-16 (55 points) – Last Week: #7
The Clippers, losers of four of six, have been on the road for the entire month of March, and get its first home game this Monday, hosting the Celtics.
11. Atlanta Hawks – 24-17 (52 points) – Last Week: #13
Josh Smith, on the heels of his own trade demand, has led the team in scoring over three of its last four games.
12. Denver Nuggets – 23-19 (51 points) – Last Week: #12
The Nuggets have a brutal four-game stretch coming, facing off against the Hawks, Thunder, Celtics and Mavericks.
13. Boston Celtics – 21-19 (37 points) – Last Week: #16
The Celtics have won six of eight, but face uncertainty with the NBA Trade Deadline looming and rumors swirling around its big three of Garnett, Rondo and Allen.
14. Minnesota Timberwolves – 21-21 (34 points) – Last Week: #17
With Ricky Rubio out for the year due to a knee injury, the Timberwolves have lost a key contributor and face an uncertain future.
15. Portland Trail Blazers – 20-21 (30 points) – Last Week: #18
The Blazers have lost five of seven, with its only two victories coming against the lowly Wizards and Hornets.
16. Houston Rockets – 22-20 (28 points) – Last Week: #15
The Rockets have lost six of seven games, with its only win coming against the Nets.
17. Dallas Mavericks – 23-20 (27 points) – Last Week: #10
The Mavericks plummeted this week, and have lost eight of ten games, including six consecutive losses on the road.
18. Phoenix Suns – 19-21 (22 points) – Last Week: #19
The Suns have won five of six games, with its only loss coming against the elite Thunder.
19. Golden State Warriors – 17-21 (19 points) – Last Week: #21
The Warriors have posted back-to-back solid victories, knocking off the Mavericks by 24 points at home, followed by a solid road win against the Clippers.
20. New York Knicks – 18-23 (19 points) – Last Week: #14
The plummeting Knicks have now lost six straight games. It’s gotten so bad, that even road team fans were chanting “Overrated” in the direction of Jeremy Lin on Monday night.
21. Utah Jazz – 19-21 (9 points) – Last Week: #20
Al Jefferson has been a game-high scorer in three of Utah’s last five games.
22. Milwaukee Bucks – 17-24 (0 points) – Last Week: #23
The Bucks have rebounded and won four of five games, scoring 105 or more points in three straight games – all wins.
23. Cleveland Cavaliers – 16-23 (-1 point) – Last Week: #24
The Cavs have won three straight, with huge road wins over both Denver and Oklahoma City.
24. Detroit Pistons – 15-26 (-11 points) – Last Week: #27
Nine of Detroit’s next ten games are on the road, with its only home game against the Heat.
25. Toronto Raptors – 13-28 (-15 points) – Last Week: #22
The Raptors hit the road for five straight, taking on the Cavs, Nets, Grizzlies, Bobcats and Knicks.
26. New Jersey Nets – 14-28 (-17 points) – Last Week: #26
Kris Humphries has 51 rebounds over New Jersey’s last four games.
27. Sacramento Kings – 14-27 (-28 points) – Last Week: #28
The Kings are at home for six straight games, starting with the Warriors on Tuesday.
28. New Orleans Hornets – 10-31 (-29 points) – Last Week: #25
The Hornets have lost five of six, and get the Lakers next on Wednesday night.
29. Washington Wizards – 9-30 (-48 points) – Last Week: #29
Last Wednesday’s shocking comeback win against the Lakers was easiliy Washington’s most impressive victory of the season.
30. Charlotte Bobcats – 5-34 (-76 points) – Last Week: #30
Charlotte’s come from behind victory last week against the Orlando Magic was easily the team’s biggest win of the year.
* All stats per NBA.com and ESPN.com
Note: RED = Falling 3+ spots from last week, GREEN = Rising 3+ spots from last week
The Wife Hates Sports’ NBA Power Rankings system has a method to its madness, attempting to be different and not just rank by popularity and record. It mixes a secret formula of six completely different categories, meshed into a points system. The categories don’t just include team results regarding record, but how each team has performed recently, as well as incorporating some statistics on both a team’s offense and defense, too.