Things are getting wild out there in the Western Conference. The Utah Jazz look like the best team in the conference for weeks, then they lose to a buzzsaw Phoenix Suns team, who then fall to a red-hot Los Angeles Clippers squad the very next night. Meanwhile you've got the Denver Nuggets looking nearly unbeatable since the addition of Aaron Gordon, and the Los Angeles Lakers silently hanging around with the impending return of LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
All this makes for an exciting round of Power Rankings, with lots of shuffling at the top. The Clippers' perfect week and big win over the Suns earned them the top spot, while the Jazz dropped a few spots due to a pair of losses. Kawhi Leonard, Paul George and Co. were the biggest risers of the week, while the struggling Kings fell eight spots as their losing streak stretched to six games.
CBS Sports HQ
Your Ultimate Guide to Every Day in Sports
We bring sports news that matters to your inbox, to help you stay informed and get a winning edge.
Thanks for signing up!
Keep an eye on your inbox.
There was an error processing your subscription.
One thing's for sure: We can expect plenty more turnover in the final month of the regular season. Here are this week's NBA Power Rankings.
*Keep in mind that our Power Rankings are based on the team's performance the previous week, not the entire season.
|The Clippers won all four games this week, making it five in a row overall, and did so with an inconsistent rotation due to injuries and rest. They stepped on the gas late in the win over Phoenix, and they never trailed in an impressive win over the Blazers last Tuesday. Paul George is on fire, averaging 33.7 points and 5.7 assists on 61 percent 3-point shooting in three games this week, while Kawhi Leonard put up 29 points, 7.3 rebounds and 6.7 assists per game on 41 percent shooting. The Clippers lost Patrick Beverley for at least a month with a broken hand, but that should give Rajon Rondo more opportunity to get acclimated to his new surroundings.||5||38-18|
|Phoenix beat the Jazz in overtime in one of the best games we've seen all season, then suffered a bit of a schedule loss the next night to the Clippers in L.A. Even with the loss, the Suns are one of the hottest teams in the league, and the win over the Jazz should provide them with confidence that the regular-season success can translate to the playoffs. Devin Booker continued his torrid pace this week, averaging 30.7 points on 38 percent 3-point shooting, while Chris Paul put up 18.5 points and 8.3 assists, including some big plays down the stretch in the win over Utah. Don't look now, but the Suns are just two games back of the Jazz in the loss column for the best record in the NBA.||1||39-15|
|The Nets put on a show in Kevin Durant's return to the court against the Pelicans, but failed to rally following Kyrie Irving's ejection in Saturday's loss to the Lakers. Durant averaged 19.5 points, seven rebounds, five assists and seven turnovers on 59 percent shooting in his two games this week, while Irving put up 27.3 points on 48 percent 3-point shooting in three games. LaMarcus Aldridge has been a great fit so far offensively, putting up 14 points per game this week on 57 percent field goals.||1||37-17|
|The Jazz scuffled a bit in losses to the Mavs and Suns to start the week, but bounced back with solid victories over the Blazers and Kings. Donovan Mitchell averaged 34 points for the week, but shot just 20 percent from 3-point range. Mike Conley, Joe Ingles and Georges Niang each hit over 40 percent of their 3s this week, while Rudy Gobert averaged 13.5 points and 16 rebounds.||3||41-14|
|Well, they finally lost a game with Aaron Gordon, but Sunday's blemish against the Celtics doesn't change how well the Nuggets are playing. They went 3-1 this week without Jamal Murray, who's been out with a sore knee, and players like Monte Morris and Facundo Campazzo have stepped up in his absence. Nikola Jokic continues his MVP push, averaging 23.8 points, 11.5 assists and 10 rebounds this week on 59 percent shooting, while Michael Porter Jr. added 21.8 points and 9.5 rebounds per game.||1||34-20|
|Offense was a bit of an issue for the 76ers in a win over the Celtics and loss to the Pelicans, but the defense looks as strong as ever with Joel Embiid back in the fold. The big man put up 25.3 points, eight rebounds and 2.3 blocks in three games this week, and most importantly showed no ill effects in the second game of a back-to-back, a win against OKC on Saturday that put Philly back into a tie for first place in the Eastern Conference.||1||37-17|
|The Mavs played up to the competition this week, beating the Jazz and Bucks, and also played down to the competition in losses to the Rockets and Spurs. The win against Utah came without Kristaps Porzingis, who averaged 26.7 points and 14.7 rebounds on 47 percent 3-point shooting in the other three games this week. Luka Doncic cooled off a bit from 3-point range, but still averaged 27.5 points, 7.5 rebounds and 7.3 assists for the week.||1||29-24|
|News flash: The Bucks are better with Giannis Antetokounmpo. They went 1-3 without him this week, blowing out the Magic on Sunday for their only win. Khris Middleton had a rough night as the primary offensive option in a loss to Dallas, going 6 for 27 from the field, but he still averaged 21 points for the week on 6-for-12 3-point shooting. Jrue Holiday also struggled against the Mavs, but overall kept up his hot shooting, going 7 for 13 from deep in three games.||3||33-20|
|After starting off the week with a loss to the 76ers, the Celtics won three straight games, highlighted by a ridiculous 31-3 run to fuel a comeback victory over the Nuggets on Sunday. Jayson Tatum exploded for a career-high 53 points in Friday's overtime win over the Wolves, and averaged 31.5 points and 8.5 rebounds for the week on 39 percent 3-point shooting. Jaylen Brown added 23.8 points per game, while Marcus Smart is starting to find his groove as well, putting up 17.3 points per game on 43.5 percent 3-point shooting this week.||3||29-26|
|Miami went 2-1 this week, with its best effort coming on Sunday as it held the potent Blazers offense to 98 points, including just 12 for Damian Lillard. That's now six wins in seven games for the Heat, who will be without Victor Oladipo for at least the remainder of their road trip. Jimmy Butler averaged 25.3 points on 65 percent shooting this week, while Bam Adebayo put up 17.7 points, 6.7 rebounds and 5.3 assists on 60 percent shooting.||1||28-26|
|The Lakers continue to keep their heads above water as Anthony Davis and LeBron James near a return, going 2-1 this week with an impressive win over the Nets on Saturday. The Lakers were already without their two superstars and Kyle Kuzma in Brooklyn, but managed to extend their lead even after the ejection of Dennis Schroder. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope stepped up with 18.3 points per game this week on blistering 63 percent 3-point shooting, while Andre Drummond returned to the lineup to average 17.5 points and 11.5 rebounds in the final two games of the week.||1||34-21|
|Another solid week for the Hawks, who capped things off with a win in Charlotte on Sunday without Trae Young and Danilo Gallinari. Bogdan Bogdanovic took over the offense against the Hornets, scoring 32 points on 8-for-16 3-point shooting, while Brandon Goodwin added 17 points on 7-for-10 shooting in a spot start for Young. In the three games he played this week, Young was brilliant with averages of 28.7 points and 10.7 assists on 41 percent 3-point shooting. Clint Capela continues to be a beast in the middle, putting up 18 points and 12.3 rebounds per game this week.||1||30-25|
|Damian Lillard expressed his frustration at his team's inability to beat the league's top teams, and it's understandable. The Blazers lost to three of them this week -- the Clippers, Jazz and Heat -- and their only win came against the lowly Pistons without their best player. Enes Kanter pulled down a franchise-record 30 rebounds to go with 24 points in the win over Detroit, but that was the lone bright spot in a sobering week for the Blazers.||4||31-23|
|Charlotte beat the teams it needed to beat this week -- the tanking Thunder and the shell of a Bucks roster -- but lost a key game to the Hawks on Sunday in the fight for Eastern Conference playoff standing. Miles Bridges has taken advantage of the extra opportunity with Gordon Hayward out of the lineup, averaging 21.7 points and six rebounds on 41 percent 3-point shooting this week, plus one of the nastiest dunks you'll ever see. Jalen McDaniels has also stepped up, averaging 16.3 points on 63 percent shooting in three games this week.||--||27-26|
|The Grizzlies picked up impressive wins over the Heat and Hawks to start the week, but then lost a pair of barnburners to the Knicks and Pacers. Memphis put up a whopping 123.8 points per 100 possessions this week, and you know it would like more than just two wins to show for it. The defense needs to tighten up, and Jaren Jackson Jr. should help in that department if he returns in a couple of weeks, as expected.||--||27-25|
|With key players in and out of the lineup all week, the Pelicans went 2-2 with a blowout loss to the Nets and an impressive defensive effort in a win over the Sixers. Zion Williamson essentially started at point guard for the final two games of the week with Lonzo Ball out, and he was utterly unstoppable en route to 37.5 points, 12 rebounds and six assists per game on 62 percent shooting. Brandon Ingram also returned for the two wins after a five-game absence, averaging 22 points, six rebounds and five assists.||1||25-29|
|The Knicks went 2-2 in four very close games this week, losing to the Nets and Celtics then beating the Grizzlies and Raptors. RJ Barrett caught fire from 3-point range, making 15 of 22 this week while leading the team with 22.5 points per game. Barrett is now shooting nearly 39 percent from 3-point range after making just 32 percent as a rookie last season. Julius Randle struggled from the field this week, but put up averages of 20.5 points, 10.5 rebounds and 8.5 assists.||1||28-27|
|Indiana went 3-1 this week and has now won four of its last five, with some impressive offensive displays along the way. The Pacers scored 141 points against the Wolves, then dropped 132 in a win over Memphis on Sunday. Caris LeVert scored 34 in that game, and averaged over 20 points per game for the week on 53 percent shooting. Malcolm Brogdon and Domantas Sabonis both returned for the final two games of the week, with Brogdon averaging 20 points and 7.5 assists and Sabonis putting up 17 points, 15 rebounds and 7.5 assists per game.||1||25-28|
|The Spurs avoided an 0-4 week, thanks to DeMar DeRozan's game-winner against the Mavericks on Sunday. A loaded second-half schedule is catching up with San Antonio, and things don't get any easier from here on out. DeRozan averaged 22.8 points and 6.5 assists for the week, while Dejounte Murray added 18.3 points per game on 39 percent 3-point shooting.||3||26-26|
|The Warriors got a much-needed win over the Giannis-less Bucks on Tuesday, then relinquished a late lead against the Wizards before handling business against the Rockets on Saturday. Amid their recent struggles, Golden State will now be without James Wiseman for the foreseeable future as he deals with a meniscus injury. It's a shame, as Wiseman had put together two of his better games against Milwaukee and Washington. Steph Curry has gone nuclear of late, averaging 37 points on 18-for-37 3-point shooting this week.||1||26-28|
|The Bulls ran their winning streak to three games with victories over the Pacers and Raptors to start the week, but finished things off with losses to the Hawks and Wolves. Zach LaVine showcased his offensive versatility by dishing out 13 assists in the win over Toronto, then dropping 50 points the very next night in the loss to Atlanta. Nikola Vucevic averaged 24.3 points and 9.5 rebounds per game on 57 percent 3-point shooting this week, as he and LaVine continue to feel each other out.||1||22-31|
|The bright spot for the Raptors' week was an improbable offensive explosion without their three top scorers in a win over the Cavs, but overall Toronto went 2-3 in a strenuous stretch of five games in seven days. Gary Trent Jr. had one of the most efficient offensive games in NBA history in the win over Cleveland, scoring a career-high 44 points on 17-for-19 shooting, including 7 for 9 from 3-point range. Kyle Lowry returned from a six-game absence in Sunday's loss to the Knicks, putting up 19 points, seven rebounds and six assists in 37 minutes -- so much for easing back into things.||3||21-34|
|The Cavs blew out the Spurs and Thunder to start the week before an absolutely atrocious defensive first half against the Raptors in which they allowed 84 points. Even in that loss they fought back to at least make things interesting, and they hung with the Pelicans on Sunday despite being without Collin Sexton and Darius Garland, who had each averaged 26 points in the previous three games. Kevin Love is starting to look like his old self, averaging 16 points in 25 minutes per game this week while making 39 percent of his 3-pointers.||3||19-34|
|The Wizards welcomed back Bradley Beal for two games this week -- not so coincidentally the only two games they won. The All-Star guard averaged 23 points and 5.5 assists in the two wins on 46 percent 3-point shooting, and made a key four-point play late to help beat the Warriors. Russell Westbrook kept up his monster numbers this week, putting up 20.5 points, 13.5 assists and 13.3 rebounds per game as Washington went 2-2.||4||20-33|
|Detroit went 2-3 in a rare five-game week, beating the Thunder and picking up an impressive win over the Kings without Jerami Grant and Mason Plumlee. The Pistons offense exploded for 118.2 points per 100 possessions this week compared to their season average of 108.8, even more intriguing since they were without Grant, their leading scorer, for three of the games. Rookie Saddiq Bey had a strong week, averaging 17.2 points on 41 percent 3-point shooting, while Josh Jackson added 15.6 points on 57 percent from deep.||2||16-38|
|Overall a pretty good week for the Wolves, who beat the Kings and Bulls while dropping close games to the Pacers and Celtics. The defense is still a major issue, but the return of D'Angelo Russell has provided a lot more offensive firepower. Russell didn't miss a beat after nearly two months of inactivity, averaging 23.8 points in just 25.7 minutes in his first four games back this week. Karl-Anthony Towns continued his dominance, putting up 28 points, 12.3 rebounds and 6.5 assists per game on 44 percent 3-point shooting.||3||14-41|
|The Rockets lost to the Suns, Clippers and Warriors this week, but pulled off a big home victory over the Mavs on Wednesday, holding the high-powered offense to just 92 points. John Wall averaged 30.5 points and seven assists on 53 percent 3-point shooting in two games this week, while Christian Wood put up 21.5 points on 39 percent shooting from deep in four games.||3||14-40|
|You know your season has gone south when you lose to the Timberwolves, then follow that up with a home loss to the Pistons without Jerami Grant or Mason Plumlee. That's now six L's in a row for Sacramento, which had previously shown some signs of life. De'Aaron Fox is doing all he can, averaging 28 points and eight assists this week on 38 percent 3-point shooting, but a 104.2 offensive rating over three games just isn't going to get it done for a defensively-challenged team like the Kings.||8||22-32|
|Three more losses for the Magic this week, which brings their skid to five games. The rest of this season is all about development, and Mo Bamba is the latest to take center stage. He led the team with 18 points per game this week on 10-for-15 3-point shooting to go along with 6.3 rebounds and two blocks per game. Cole Anthony also made his return to the lineup, averaging 11 points, 5.7 assists and 5.7 rebounds in his first three games since early February.||6||17-37|
|The tank appears to have finally caught up with the Thunder as they suffered four more blowout losses this week, including to the Pistons and Cavs, to extend their losing streak to six games. Lu Dort and Darius Bazley returned to the lineup on Saturday, which provided some help for Theo Maledon, Aleksej Pokusevski and Kenrich Williams, who had been running the show without them.||6||20-34|