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Power Rankings: Same as it (mostly) was -- Heat, Thunder rule the roost

by | Senior NBA Blogger

The NBA schedule is too long. We saw that the past two weeks with Kobe Bryant's Achilles tear, with Danilo Gallinari's ruptured ACL, with tweaks and tears and other issues. The schedule needs to be shorter.

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But the length makes seasons by Miami and Oklahoma City so impressive. From preseason to the regular-season's final week, these two new-age empires have remained dominant, staying in our top five every week with few exceptions. They had lulls but always found their way back.

Many teams can be great for a week or even more, few are prolific for an entire season.

Three examples:

 The Spurs slipped at the end of the year for three reasons: injuries, schedule and poor play.

 Denver started with high expectations, failed for a month, then took off like they had jetpacks on their backs.

 The Knicks went on a huge inverse bell curve -- starting strong, plummeting for months, then taking off again in a spring surge.

But the Heat and Thunder? So consistently great that many have decided they'll meet again in the Finals. And after this long season, highlighted by the potential we've seen from these teams, I'm excited to find out which is best.

And with that, here's the final edition of the 2012-13 season's Power Rankings.


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