Time to check the weekly NBA power rankings to see how your Portland Trail Blazers fared.
Again this week, only Drew Garrison of SB Nation sees the Trail Blazers as a top-five team although he drops them from 4 to 5 behind Dallas. Despite that, the Blazers are in the top 10 in all rankings and they gained a spot or two on 4 of 7 lists. The Los Angeles Clippers were big losers this week. Big gainers included Dallas, Toronto, and Cleveland.
Drew Garrison of SB Nation: 1) Atlanta, 2) Golden State, 3) Memphis, 4) Dallas, & 5) Portland.
5. Portland Trail Blazers (35-17, Last week: 4) Damian Lillard landed the All-Star spot he yearned for and the Blazers capped off their week with an important win over the Houston Rockets. If they want to stick around at the top, they have to beat their top competition.
Matt Dollinger of Sports Illustrated: 1) Atlanta, 2) Golden State, 3) Memphis, 4) Cleveland, & 5) Houston.
9 PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS LAST WEEK: 9 RECORD: 35-17 (3-1)
It would have been cruel for Damian Lillard to go from participating in every All-Star event last season to none this year considering he's become way more of a "star" in every sense of the word. He's having a better statistical season across the board, now has a signature shoe with Adidas, has hit countless big shots including one to win a playoff series and leads the league in fourth-quarter scoring. Luckily for us -- and Lillard -- Dame has found his way into the ASG as a last-second injury replacement.
John Schuhmann of nba.com: 1) Atlanta, 2) Golden State, 3) Memphis, 4) Dallas, & 5) Houston.
9 Portland (35-17) Last Week: 11
Pace: 96.7 (12) OffRtg: 104.7 (11) DefRtg: 99.8 (4) NetRtg: +5.0 (5)
The Blazers suffered a brutal loss in Dallas on Saturday, but recovered in Houston a night later and, given the issues surrounding some of the teams surrounding them in the standings, could be in worse shape. LaMarcus Aldridge has shot 49 percent since deciding to postpone thumb surgery, though he may want to skip the 3s. He's missed 11 straight. This week: vs. LAL
Mark Stein of ESPN: 1) Atlanta, 2) Golden State, 3) Memphis, 4) Cleveland, & 5) Toronto.
9. Portland 35-17 Last Week: 10 The triumphant return of Robin Lopez in an eventual home rout of Phoenix seemed to signal that the Blazers were back, nudging their record to 21-6 with Lopez in the lineup and 13-10 without him. But the way they rebounded Sunday night in Houston, after what happened in Dallas, was even bigger.
Mark Spears of Yahoo.com: 1) Atlanta, 2) Golden State, 3) Memphis, 4) Houston, & 5) Cleveland.
8. Portland Trail Blazers (Record: 35-17; last week: 9): Damian Lillard had a bittersweet moment when he was named the All-Star replacement for Blake Griffin, but he deserved to be on the team.
Adi Joseph of USA Today: 1) Atlanta, 2) Golden State, 3) Memphis, 4) Houston, & 5) Toronto.
6 Portland Trail Blazers 35-17 Last Week: 7 Damian Lillard didn't light the world on fire but did get his All-Star bid.
Matt Moore of CBSsports: 1) Atlanta, 2) Golden State, 3) Memphis, 4) Houston, & 5) Cleveland.
9. Last Week: 9 After the All-Star break and through March, they play 13 teams over .500 and nine teams under .500. They've got a chance to get themselves some padding to prevent a significant slip, but they need to find a groove.