Celtics rise to No. 17 in ESPN power rankings; Hollinger odds say they should make the playoffs

No. 17 Dave Cowens retro jersey.
This week's Marc Stein NBA power rankings for ESPN.com have just been released, with the Celtics landing at No. 17.  Up three spots from No. 20 last week, it ties the C's highest position of the season (which they also reached on February 16).  At 29-36, Boston is just behind the No. 16 Wizards (38-28), but ahead of the Suns (No. 18, 35-33) and Bucks (No. 19, 34-32).

On a related note, ESPN also posts playoff odds from John Hollinger.  In the latest projections, the Celtics are the most likely candidate for the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference.  Hollinger lists Boston with a 43 percent chance of making the postseason, slightly better than Charlotte's 41 percent and Miami's 31.1 percent.  The Celtics are currently half a game back of the Hornets (29-35) and tied with the Heat (29-36).  Indiana (30-35) is slotted for the No. 7 position, with playoff chances of 78.6 percent.

And just in case you're wondering, Hollinger's numbers say Boston has a 0.8 percent chance of making the NBA Finals, with 0.1 percent odds of winning the title.

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