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Standings: Houston Rockets 4th In Playoff Picture

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The Houston Rockets went 2-1 in a week that saw them fall to 6th and recapture 4th in the playoff picture.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Closing in on the NBA All-Star break the Houston Rockets sit in fourth place in the Western Conference with eyes on the Southwest Division leading Memphis Grizzlies.

The Rockets went 2-1 over the last week creating a small tide. A loss to the Golden State Warriors knocked them down to the Western Conference sixth seed for a few days. The Rockets rebounded from the tumble by posting wins against Phoenix and the Lakers to rise back to fourth place in the standings.

The week proves how tight the West is going to be from start to finish. All of the teams sitting from second to seventh in the seeding can suffer from a single loss or be rewarded by the misfortune of their peers.

In the coming week the Rockets have a tough game against the Mavericks and more advantageous match ups with the Celtics and Pistons.

Here's what happened in the national power rankings this week:

Source

Rank

Change

Date

ESPN 6 0 1/26
SB Nation 5 0 1/26
Yahoo! 4 +1 1/26
USA Today 5 0 1/25
PBT/NBC 6 0 1/26
CBS Sports 9 -2 1/26
SI 4 +1 1/26

The Southwest division continues to be the NBA's most competitive with four of the five teams vying for first place and a top playoff spot. Memphis ended a lull by running off three wins last week to stay at the top of the pile. Dallas dropped two of three allowing San Antonio to make up some ground. The return of Kawhi Leonard has put the Spurs back on the rise and they now look poised to take a run at the rest of the Southwest.

TEAM RECORD GB LAST WEEK
Memphis Grizzlies 32-12 0 3-0
Houston Rockets 31-14 1.5 2-1
Dallas Mavericks 30-15 2.5 1-2
San Antonio Spurs 29-17 4.0 3-1
New Orleans Pelicans 24-21 8.5 4-0