OK, the Sixers are out of time. It’s basically sh*t or get off the pot for this season, and all signs are pointing toward number two, literally. Tonight’s game against Charlotte, the first of a back-to-back which takes the Sixers to Miami on Saturday, is a must win if the Sixers have any hopes of making a run at the playoffs. The window has been slowly closing, but a loss tonight and it’s pretty much slammed shut.
In the Sixers’ favor: Okafur has been out for about a month and probably won’t play; Iguodala has had a couple of days off to rest his back, and is not listed on the injury report; The home team has won each of the first three games these teams have played this year.
In the Bobcats’ favor: Beyond the obvious hair advantage (Morrison over Korver); the Bobcats are coming off back-to-back wins over Cleveland and at Boston, so momentum is on their side; The Sixers don’t really have an answer for Gerald Wallace (here’s a good take on Gerald’s game from FreeDarko) when he plays the 4. Neither Joe Smith, nor Stephen Hunter can handle his slashing style.
Prediction: I’m hesitant to predict the outcome of this game until I see what Iguodala looks like in the first quarter. If he isn’t himself, the Sixers will be hard-pressed to beat anyone. Andre is a warrior though, so I’m going to bank on him coming back strong off two sub-par performances and helping the Sixers take care of business on their home floor. The Knicks lost a terrible game last night, with a win over Charlotte the Sixers can take one step closer to the pack in the playoff race. I think they’ll get it done.
Around the Blogosphere:
- Here’s a nice breakdown of the race for the third-worst record from Supersonicsoul, a Sonics’ blog.
- Basketbawful asks why everyone’s crazy about Kobe’s 65 when Nash dropped 64.
- The Basketball Jones guys are bummed because it took 60 more from Kobe to squeak out a 2–point win over the lowly Grizzlies.
- Huge Loss For the Sixers (83–89, Jan. 13)
- Sixers Turn Bobcats Into Kittens (92–83, Feb. 7)
- Poor Showing From the Sixers (87–102, Feb. 23)