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NBA MVP 2012 Power Rankings: If Only Josh Smith Could Keep This Up, No. 10 This Week

If Josh Smith keeps this up...every single Atlanta Hawks fans head would probably explode with sheer joy and happiness. Who knew that with Al Horford down, Josh Smith would decide to play some of his most inspired basketball to date?

Over the last week, Smith has put up a ridiculous line of 21 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 blocks a game. Yes, read that line again. He did that. The Hawks are now 3-0 without Horford and Smith feels confident that the doubters shouldn't doubt his team.

Josh Smith said when Al Horford went down for the regular season with a torn left pectoral muscle, he warned anyone that would listen that the Hawks would not just fold up shop and relinquish their position in the Eastern Conference playoff chase. Three wins later and folks are finally starting to listen to the Hawks' enigmatic star, who pounded the Toronto Raptors for a game-high 28 points and a season-high 15 rebounds to propel the Hawks to a 93-84 Martin Luther King Jr. Day win at Philips Arena

SB Nation's Tom Ziller ranked Smith No. 10 on his MVP Rankings post this week, check out his thoughts:

10. Josh Smith Hawks 15.6 points on .505 TS%, 8.6 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 1.5 steals, 1.8 blocks --
The Pacers, Hawks and 76ers all deserve a spot on this list, but balanced attacks and strong team defenses tend to deflate the stocks of all. So we'll give the last spot to Josh Smith, who has been a good Atlanta team's best player to date. He's No. 2 on the team in scoring, No. 1 in rebounding, No. 3 in assists, No. 2 in steals and No. 1 in blocks. Basically, he's being very Josh Smith right now. If only he could improve his shooting percentages ...

The Hawks face the Portland Trailblazers on Wednesday night. Can the Hawks keep this up along with Smith? We'll soon find out.

For more on this game Hawks fans should head on over to Peachtree Hoops while Blazers fans should check out Blazersedge. For more news and analysis on the NBA be sure to check out SB Nation's NBA Page.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.