NBA power rankings 2013: Clippers, Thunder tops before matchup

Ezra Shaw

In a look at NBA Power Rankings, the Los Angeles Clippers are the most popular pick as the league's best after a week in which they won three games without Chris Paul. They'll play the next-best team, the Oklahoma City Thunder, Tuesday.

Here's a weekly roundup of which teams are ranked highest, lowest, as well as rising and falling the most in various NBA power rankings. We took a look at Seth Rosenthal's awesome SB Nation NBA Power Rankings, as well as some that don't include the always-weak FrostDonkeys, such as John Schuhmann's at NBA.com, Marc Stein's at ESPN, Kurt Helin's at Pro Basketball Talk, and USA Today's.

Who's the best: Most popular: Los Angeles Clippers

Others: Oklahoma City Thunder (ESPN, USA Today)

The Clippers overtake the Thunder after proving their depth by winning three straight without Chris Paul. Both teams had winning streaks snapped recently - the Thunder had won six straight before losing Sunday night in overtime to the Denver Nuggets, the Clippers had won four straight before losing Monday night to the Golden State Warriors - but they're still the league's best. PREDICTION: the team that wins Tuesday night's matchup between these two will be the top team in all five power rankings next week. SUGGESTION: watch that game on NBATV.

Who's the worst: Most popular: Charlotte Bobcats

Others: Washington Wizards (USA Today)

The Bobcats broke a five-game losing streak with a win last week over the Orlando Magic, but they've still just won two of ten this month after they had finally broken out of a string of 18 losses in a row. They're still ahead of the Wizards in the standings by percentage points, though, so they've got that going for them. One ranking had the Cleveland Cavaliers in last place last week, and they might be back again with Anderson Varejao officially out for the year.

Who's moving up: Most popular: Utah Jazz, Dallas Mavericks (two each)

Others: Washington Wizards (Pro Basketball Talk)

The Jazz have won three in a row and look like a playoff team now, sparked - no joke - by the addition of Jamaal Tinsley to the starting lineup in place of Mo Williams, and the Mavs would be owners of a six-game win streak if it weren't for an overtime loss to the Thunder, as they've really turned things around with Dirk Nowitzki still working himself back into the swing of things. Don't look - seriously, don't look - but the Wizards have won five of seven, including one on a Jordan Crawford game-winner Monday night.

Who's moving down: Most popular: Houston Rockets

Others: Portland Trail Blazers/Denver Nuggets (tied in Pro Basketball Talk)

It appears people wanted to believe a little bit too much in a Rockets team that won four straight to start the new year: they answered back with seven straight losses to drop to .500.

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