2014 NBA Playoffs: Power Ranking All 16 Teams

Power Ranking All 16 Teams in 2014 NBA Playoffs

Power Ranking All 16 Teams in 2014 NBA Playoffs
Brian Spurlock - USA Today Sports Images

The 2014 NBA Playoffs are underway and we definitely haven’t been short on excitement thus far into the first round. All 16 teams have played at least one game (four teams having played two contests) now after the opening weekend of the postseason and left different impressions with their performance. Obviously that means it’s time for playoff team power rankings.

16. Indiana Pacers

16. Indiana Pacers
Brian Spurlock - USA Today Sports Images

16. Indiana Pacers

16. Indiana Pacers
Brian Spurlock - USA Today Sports Images

There seemed to be the overlying narrative amidst the Pacers’ struggles in the second half of the regular season that they’d get it all figured out by the playoffs. After the Hawks outlasted, out-hustled, and out-played them in game one, it’s safe to say things aren’t as they should be in Indiana.

15. Toronto Raptors

15. Toronto Raptors
Tom Szczerbowski - USA Today Sports Images

15. Toronto Raptors

15. Toronto Raptors
Tom Szczerbowski - USA Today Sports Images

The Raptors hung tough against the Nets in game one, but their inexperience was glaring. Late in the game, Toronto started to falter and it ultimately cost them the game. It’s something fixable, but it’s a concern for this team going forward.

14. Chicago Bulls

14. Chicago Bulls
Dennis Wierzbicki - USA Today Sports Images

14. Chicago Bulls

14. Chicago Bulls
Dennis Wierzbicki - USA Today Sports Images

While the Bulls have continued to be like the Goonies in that they “never say die,” they fell to the Wizards in game one. You have to wonder if they have the depth and consistent offense to hang in this series, despite how far they’ve come this year.

13. Charlotte Bobcats

13. Charlotte Bobcats
Steve Mitchell - USA Today Sports Images

13. Charlotte Bobcats

13. Charlotte Bobcats
Steve Mitchell - USA Today Sports Images

The Charlotte Bobcats were one of the most impressive losers in the first round, keeping with the defending champs for much of game one. However, an injury to Al Jefferson looms large for this team and could dampen any chances of hanging tough for the rest of the series.

12. Houston Rockets

12. Houston Rockets
Troy Taormina - USA Today Sports Images

12. Houston Rockets

12. Houston Rockets
Troy Taormina - USA Today Sports Images

Houston barely missed forcing double overtime against a Trail Blazers team playing out of their mind in game one, all while James Harden shot an abysmal 8-28 from the floor. You have to expect that things will only get better for the Rockets.

11. Dallas Mavericks

11. Dallas Mavericks
Jerome Miron - USA Today Sports Images

11. Dallas Mavericks

11. Dallas Mavericks
Jerome Miron - USA Today Sports Images

The Mavericks were in contention with the Spurs for most of game one, even if they left with a 1-0 deficit in the series. Given that both Monta Ellis and Dirk Nowitzki were lackluster in game one, you have to wonder if Dallas can steal a game or two from the Spurs.

10. Memphis Grizzlies

10. Memphis Grizzlies
Mark D. Smith - USA Today Sports Images

10. Memphis Grizzlies

10. Memphis Grizzlies
Mark D. Smith - USA Today Sports Images

Memphis fought valiantly but was just outmatched in game one. In game two, they were able to pick up a win in OKC, though. However, they needed overtime to beat the Thunder on a night when Serge Ibaka wasn’t great, Russell Westbrook wasn’t hitting jumpers, and OKC’s bench gave them near nothing. The Grizzlies will fight, but it’s hard to put them much higher than this.

9. Atlanta Hawks

9. Atlanta Hawks
Brian Spurlock - USA Today Sports Images

9. Atlanta Hawks

9. Atlanta Hawks
Brian Spurlock - USA Today Sports Images

The Hawks knocked off the top-seeded Pacers in game one and looked much better than their sub-.500 record for the season would suggest. If Jeff Teague and Pero Antic can continue to play at this level, the Pacers could be in severe trouble.

8. Portland Trail Blazers

8. Portland Trail Blazers
Troy Taormina - USA Today Sports Images

8. Portland Trail Blazers

8. Portland Trail Blazers
Troy Taormina - USA Today Sports Images

Portland came out swinging with all of their might in game one and it worked out well. LaMarcus Aldridge was big-time and Damian Lillard proved once again he can rise to the occasion. Even with that, though, you have to wonder if their defense is good enough to outlast Houston if their offense isn’t playing at that level.

7. Brooklyn Nets

7. Brooklyn Nets
Tom Szczerbowski - USA Today Sports Images

7. Brooklyn Nets

7. Brooklyn Nets
Tom Szczerbowski - USA Today Sports Images

The Nets came out and looked like the veteran team on the floor against the Raptors in game one. While you have to worry about their age and Toronto getting comfortable, they look like a low-seed that could definitely advance to the second round.

6. Golden State Warriors

6. Golden State Warriors
Jayne Kamin-Oncea - USA Today Sports Images

6. Golden State Warriors

6. Golden State Warriors
Jayne Kamin-Oncea - USA Today Sports Images

They came out and fought hard in game one, but the Warriors were annihilated in game two against the Clips. It’s hard to figure out where to place their performance, but in the lower part of the top-half seems about right given their potential, yet possible mismatch with L.A.

5. Washington Wizards

5. Washington Wizards
Dennis Wierzbicki - USA Today Sports Images

5. Washington Wizards

5. Washington Wizards
Dennis Wierzbicki - USA Today Sports Images

Despite inexperience, the Wizards were able to take a good shot from the Bulls defense and play well. If Nene can play at the level that he did in game one while John Wall and Bradley Beal get their offensive games rolling, Washington could be trouble in the East.

4. Los Angeles Clippers

4. Los Angeles Clippers
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4. Los Angeles Clippers

4. Los Angeles Clippers
Jayne Kamin-Oncea - USA Today Sports Images

The Clippers gave up game one on their home court, but they also had to deal with Blake Griffin being in foul trouble and playing a very limited amount of minutes and were still in contention. They proved in game two that there’s nothing to worry about and that they’re ready to go in the postseason.

3. San Antonio Spurs

3. San Antonio Spurs
Jerome Miron - USA Today Sports Images

3. San Antonio Spurs

3. San Antonio Spurs
Jerome Miron - USA Today Sports Images

San Antonio earned a victory in game one behind their big three that have been doing it for so long. You have to believe they’ll be even better once they can get their role players clicking, which only means the Spurs will keep rolling.

2. Oklahoma City Thunder

2. Oklahoma City Thunder
Mark D. Smith - USA Today Sports Images

2. Oklahoma City Thunder

2. Oklahoma City Thunder
Mark D. Smith - USA Today Sports Images

The Thunder suffered a loss in game two in a game that was hardly their best effort. Even with that, Oklahoma City looks like a serious contender and like a team that can dominate in almost any situation.

1. Miami Heat

1. Miami Heat
Steve Mitchell - USA Today Sports Images

1. Miami Heat

1. Miami Heat
Steve Mitchell - USA Today Sports Images

The Miami Heat struggled to find rhythm offensively, saw a big game from Kemba Walker, let an injured Al Jefferson notch a double-double, and still walked away with a double-digit victory that was closer than the score dictated. Though you’d like to see them clicking, the Heat in the playoffs is a totally different story than in the regular season and you have to call them the favorites.

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