Eastern Conference Power Rankings: Atlanta Stays on Top, Everything Else is Chaos

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6. Washington Wizards (34-26)

The Wizards are in free-fall. They’ve won just three of their last fourteen games, and dropped consecutive matchups against the Timberwolves and the 76ers. Fans have been calling for coach Randy Wittman’s head, but reports around the team seem to indicate Wittman is safe for at least this season. However, if the team fails to regain its footing, Wittman will likely be the first out the door.

7. Miami Heat (26-33)

With the recent trade for Goran Dragic, the Miami Heat looked like they could be contenders in the East. Then news came down of the blood clots in Chris Bosh’s lung, and all hope was smashed on the cruel rocks of fate. It is truly a disappointing end to the season of one of the truly good guys in the NBA. Without Bosh, the Heat have little hope of making noise in the East, and are faced with the possibility of missing the playoffs altogether.

8. Brooklyn Nets (25-33)

Despite some surprising wins against the Clippers, Raptors, and Warriors, the Nets have largely treaded water at the bottom of the Eastern Conference playoff standings. They’ve beaten bad teams and lost to good ones. Unless the addition of Thaddeus Young can jumpstart the stagnant offense, it will be difficult for the Nets to hold on to their playoff seed.

9. Milwaukee Bucks (32-27)

The absence of Brandon Knight at the point has hurt the Bucks in recent weeks. The team was playing extremely well going into the All-Star Break, but has recently dropped games against the Utah Jazz, and the Lakers. The team should be able to maintain its hold on a playoff spot, but a tough slate to end the year might drop them into an early matchup against the Hawks or the Cavaliers.

10. Detroit Pistons (23-36)

Things were looking up for the resurgent Pistons. Back-to-back wins over the Bulls and Wizards had hopes high in Detroit for a potential playoff bid. However, an overtime loss to the Knicks followed up by a loss against the rudderless Wizards brought the Pistons flailing back to earth. There’s still time to claw a way into the post-season, but a murderers row of upcoming Western Conference teams may knock the Pistons out for the count.

(Continue on next page for No. 1-5)

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