NBA Power Rankings: Countdown to the trade deadline

NBA Power Rankings: Countdown to the trade deadline

BOSTON — With the trade deadline right around the corner, a potential power shift is indeed on the horizon. 

What will the Detroit Pistons do with Andre Drummond? 

We’ve spent most of the season talking about Kevin Love being on the move. Will the Cavs find a partner willing to give them the king’s ransom they’ll seek in such a deal?

And then there’s lesser-known talent like Minnesota’s Robert Covington, widely viewed as a potential piece who could provide some added depth for a team whose sights are set on a deep playoff run. 

Let’s not forget about Andre Iguodala, who is on the books in Memphis but hasn’t played a game all season. While he’s a proven impact player as a starter or as a reserve, is rendering a first-round pick too much for the soon-to-be-36-year-old who's also a  former NBA Finals MVP?

Lots of players, lots of questions and we know what that usually means: lots of fireworks and drama on the rumor mill between now and the February 6 trade deadline. 

Click here for this week's NBA Power Rankings.

NBA Power Rankings: Few first-half surprises in the league

NBA Power Rankings: Few first-half surprises in the league

BOSTON -- The midway point of the season is upon us with very few surprises at the top.

The Milwaukee Bucks had the best record in the East a year ago. With most of their core guys back, they remain at the top. And Giannis Antetokounmpo remains a strong contender to repeat as league MVP.

Chances are good that the road to the NBA Finals in the Western Conference will go through Los Angeles with both the Lakers and the Clippers among the top teams.

While those are the front-runners, there’s a bunch of teams bringing up the rear.

In addition to the usual cellar-dwellers, you can add the injury-depleted Golden State Warriors to the mix of bad teams this season.

But the second half of the season will be even more exciting with key players such as Indiana’s Victor Oladipo and New Orleans’ Zion Williamson returning to action to help their respective teams make a strong playoff push.

The first half of the season was good on many fronts, with the second half shaping up to be even stronger.

Click here for A. Sherrod Blakely's full NBA power rankings

NBA Power Rankings: Celtics hit a speed bump after losing streak

NBA Power Rankings: Celtics hit a speed bump after losing streak

BOSTON — When it comes to power rankings, the best teams are able to manage runs of success as well as stretches of not-so-great play. 

Aside from the Milwaukee Bucks, just about every team in the NBA has strung together at least three or more consecutive losses, like the Celtics did last week.

And with that trio of defeats, the Celtics have taken a slight step back in the standings behind the Miami Heat, who now have a slim ½-game lead over them for the No. 2 spot in the East. 

LIVE stream the Celtics all season and get the latest news and analysis on all of your teams from NBC Sports Boston by downloading the My Teams App.

Remember, it was only a week ago that the “What’s wrong with the Lakers” alarm was sounded when they lost four in a row, only for LeBron James and company to bounce back with wins in their last eight games. Indeed, the road to NBA success is a bumpy excursion that’s nearing the halfway point of its conclusion.

And with each day drawing us all closer to its end, it also provides some much-needed clarity as to who will be among the last teams standing when all is said and done. 

Here are the latest NBC Sports Boston Power Rankings full of teams looking to charge ahead and finish out the season with a strong surge in the second half of the season, whether that’s making a playoff push or better positioning themselves for a shot at the top overall pick in next June’s NBA draft. 

(Games played through Jan. 12)

Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Bulls-Celtics, which tips off Monday at 7 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live, and then Mike and Scal have the call at 7:30 p.m. You can also stream the game on the MyTeams App.