That's the question of the night. Is it enough to just make the playoffs? Are the Sixers content to lick their wounds over the last nine days of the season and coast into a near-impossible first round matchup? Or do they play like seeding matters. Do they play like they still have a golden opportunity staring themselves in the face. I know one thing for sure, the Bobcats won't be taking anything for granted tonight, they can't afford to.
On paper, this looks like a great matchup for the Sixers. The Bobcats turn the ball over way too much, they foul too much, they don't shoot particularly well. We aren't talking about a team with strengths in areas of Sixer weakness. According to the pure stats, this game should be a win. According to records, it should be a loss. The Sixers aren't a particularly bad team on the road, 16-21 ranks as the fourth-best record in the league. Charlotte, however, is a much better team at home with a 22-18 record. This is also their final home game of the season.
Charlotte is clinging to their last shred of playoff hope, coming off three straight tough losses and trailing Chicago and Detroit by 3 games for the final playoff spot. They're always dangerous with Larry Brown on the bench, add the fact that their backs are against the wall and you've got a recipe for disaster. The only way the Sixers are going to be able to exploit any statistical advantages is if they can match Charlotte's emotion.
So here's the question, and the key to the game. Does getting the number five, or possibly even the number four seed mean as much to the Sixers players and coaches as it does to us? Does it mean as much to the Sixers as simply living to fight another day means to the Bobcats and Larry Brown?
If the answer is no, I'm going to be very disappointed. The Sixers still control their own destiny. If they win out, they will pass either Miami, Atlanta or both. Simply making the playoffs is not good enough, and I truly hope the team feels the same way about this as we do.
The tip is at 7pm. I'll be right here, so join me in the comments and let's see if they can't bring home a very, very important win.