C's climb one spot in rankings

Despite dropping three straight home games before Sunday's hang-on-for-dear-life victory over Cleveland, the Boston Celtics climb one spot to No. 12 in this week's ESPN.com NBA Power Rankings.

Writes curator Marc Stein: "Is there such a thing as a heartbreaking victory? Sunday's near fold against the Cavs definitely makes you wonder. The Celts' consolation: Don't think they still have to Fear The Deer (or anyone else) in the first round."

The Celtics sit one spot in front of the Miami Heat and three spots in front of the Milwaukee Bucks, both potential first-round opponents.

The Heat have won eight straight, to which Stein writes, "On March 1? The D-Wades were ninth in the East. On April 1? They were up to sixth ... and soon headed for No. 5 thanks to Bogut's injury. An easy schedule is easy in real life only if you capitalize. And Miami has."

In John Hollinger's daily statistics-based rankings, the Celtics sit at No. 11, with Milwaukee (12) and Miami (13) close behind.

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