The Portland Trail Blazers are 45-25 on the season after a 2-1 week that included victories over the Milwaukee Bucks and Washington Wizards and a loss to the Charlotte Bobcats.
Here's how the Blazers stack up in the various NBA power rankings following week 21 of the 2013-14 season. Last week, the Blazers ranked from No. 6 to No. 16. This week, Portland placed from No. 7 to No. 18, dropping again in all of the various rankings.
Playoff forecasts are also included below.
No. 15 (Last week: 14): Marc Stein, ESPN.com
Let's hope Greg Oden really does start at center for Miami on Monday night against his old friends from Portland. It would surely be good for Blazermaniacs to focus on something else besides this ongoing slide since the All-Star break toward Everyone Wants 'Em In The First Round status.
No. 9 (Last week: 8): Marc Spears, Yahoo! Sports
All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge is listed as out for Monday's game at Miami with a low back contusion. He has missed five straight games.
No. 12 (Last week: 11): Matt Dollinger, SI.com
Portland began a critical five-game road trip with a 30-point loss to the Bobcats. That's pretty indicative of how things are going for the Blazers these days. Most troubling of all, Portland is 0-7 against the West's four best teams (Spurs, Thunder, Clippers, Rockets) over the last two months. It was 6-1 against those teams before then.
No. 14 (Last week: 13): John Schuhmann, NBA.com
The Blazers are 21-5 against the Eastern Conference (tied with Houston for the best mark among West teams), but got smoked in Charlotte on Saturday and finish their five-game trip with two back-to-backs (and three teams with something to play for). If those don't go well (and we don't know when LaMarcus Aldridge will be back), Sunday's game against the Grizzlies could have added importance.
No. 18 (Last week:16): Matt Moore, CBSSports.com
I got hammered by Blazers fans for last week's ranking. I suspect the outrage will be a tad bit quelled this week.
No. 13 (Last week: 12): Kurt Helin, ProBasketballTalk
Not sure when we will see LaMarcus Aldridge back, the Trail Blazers want him to practice before he plays but with five games this week there will not be a full practice for the team. So, no timetable yet. Five of their next six games are on the road (and the one home game is a tough one against Memphis).
No. 14 (Last week: 13): Jason Patt, SB Nation
LaMarcus Aldridge has dealt with some injury issues of late, and even when he has played, he hasn't been that great. Since the All-Star Break, Aldridge is shooting 39.7 percent.
No. 8 (Last week: 7): USA Today Sports
Eastern Conference swings dont often mean facing four good teams in five games.
No. 7 (Last week: No. 6): Hollinger Power Rankings
- Offensive Efficiency: Tied-No. 4 (Last week: No. 4)
- Defensive Efficiency: Tied-No. 20 (Last week: No. 20)
- Rebound Rate: No. 7 (Last week: Tied-No. 5)
- Pace: Tied-No. 10 (Last week: No. 10)
- Projected record: 52-30, No. 5 seed (Last week: 58-24, No. 6)
- 99.4 percent chance to make the playoffs (Last week: 99.3 percent)
- 3.6 percent chance to make the Finals (Last week: 7.7 percent)
- 1.8 percent chance to win the title (Last week: 4.7 percent)
- Projected record: 53-29, No. 5 seed (Last week: 53-29, No. 5)
- 100 percent chance to make the playoffs (Last week: 100 percent)
- 7 percent chance to make the Finals (Last week: 8.9 percent)
- 4 percent chance to win the title (Last week: 4.3 percent)
Be sure to follow Blazersedge's new official Twitter account here.
-- Ben Golliver | email@example.com | Twitter