Power Rankings: San Antonio Spurs finish No. 1

Updated: May 16, 2012, 3:03 PM ET
By Marc Stein | ESPN.com
Monday, April 23
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The season's first edition of ESPN.com's weekly NBA Power Rankings had the San Antonio Spurs ranked 10th … and headed in the direction of the Senior Tour.

A mere 122 days later, Team Duncan sits atop the final 2011-12 edition of the rankings, looking every bit like the NBA's Masters of the Lockout-Shortened Season. Again.

The playoffs begin Saturday with San Antonio, thanks to two 11-game win streaks fueled by Tony Parker's monster season and a young and springy supporting cast that has rejuvenated Tim Duncan, looking like a sure thing to open as the West's No. 1 seed. The Spurs and No. 2-ranked Chicago remain the only teams in the league that can win 50 games in this 66-game schedule depending on what happens this week.

In the other notable developments in the top 10, Miami has climbed back into the top five entering the playoffs (at No. 3), with the Los Angeles Clippers closing at No. 5 thanks to their ongoing 14-3 run, Indiana checking in at a surprising No. 6 … and the Los Angeles Lakers slumping to No. 8 thanks to the forthcoming suspension of Metta World Peace that undeniably deflates L.A.'s playoff momentum.

Check back here every Monday during the regular season for the latest fresh and nonautomated pulse-take of the league's 30 teams, with unparalleled dishing from ESPN Stats & Information and the Elias Sports Bureau to help the committee (of one) with its calculations. Click here to rank the teams yourself, or click here to comment on these rankings.

Also, check out John Hollinger's daily power rankings.