NBA Update: Everything back to normal
In the aftermath of the 2013 All-Star Weekend, all the superstars are back with their respective clubs and going about their business in an efficient manner... well some of them are. Here is the update of the latest standings and happenings around the NBA.
The Miami Heat have put together an industrious 10-game winning streak to close the week, lifting them to the forefront as the best team in the league at the moment.
Reigning league MVP LeBron James seems to have done the "impossible", lifting his game to another level by averaging over 30 points throughout the month of February, while shooting over 60 per cent from the floor. The last time a player was able to be this effective was over 25 years ago. The Heat finished the week with a record of 39-14.
While the Heat are growing from strength to strength as the second stage of the season takes root, the New York Knicks are doing the complete opposite.
Though they are still in a relatively good position in the tables, neither the players nor number one fan Spike Lee would speak volumes of their current four-game losing streak that has caused them to lose second place to the Indiana Pacers.
The Pacers have capitalised with a four-game winning streak that extends their overall record to 35-21 with the Knicks at 32-20.
Despite suffering a few key injuries, the Boston Celtics seem to be doing just fine as they occupy seventh position in the conference, extending their lead ahead of the Milwaukee Bucks the Philadelphia 76ers to fight for the final play-off spot.
With losing streaks of three and four games respectively, neither team are doing much to improve their chances, but instead are allowing the Celtics to widen the gap without doing much work of their own.
Lakers for play-offs?
Considering their dismal start to the season and the dressing room controversies that followed, very few considered the Los Angeles Lakers to have even the slightest chance of making it to the play-offs this season. However, they have managed to find a winning formula, and they have risen from anonymity to end the week within three wins of the eighth-placed Houston Rockets.
By winning their last two games they improved their record to 27-29, which is the closest they have been to breaking even for a while. With just under 30 games left in the regular season, a strong run could see them surprise many clinch an unlikely seeding for the post-season.
The Dallas Mavericks also appear to be making a surge for that final play-off spot, winning their last three for a record of 25-29 right behind the Lakers.
Though not back to his best, Dirk Nowitzski has been turning his wheels and contributing to the cause in a huge way. With the teams occupying sixth, seventh and eighth settling in a zone of inconsistency, the race for the final play-off spots appears to be the one to watch.
Higher up the tables, the Memphis Grizzlies are stepping up as one of the teams to beat in the conference. They have extended their overall record to 36-18, with their six-game winning streak only overshadowed by the Heat in the East. The league leaders, the San Antonio Spurs were also on a fine run, winning eight of their last 10 games for a 44-13 record. In spite of the years, Tony Parker and Tim Duncan are still playing and producing at a high standard.