Our nightly look ahead to the schedule with a couple of notes and story lines so you can plan out your NBA viewing. All Times Eastern.
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7:00 – Philadelphia 76′ers at Orlando Magic
For a 13 game schedule I’m largely unimpressed by most of the match ups. But this one is a good one because only two games separate these two teams in the standings, and both are trying to put a little run together to avoid slipping into the bottom half of the conference (Philadelphia is the currently the third seed, Orlando is tied for fourth with Atlanta). Philly won the last match up, and Dwight’s been vocal recently about wanting the ball at the end of games to close out opponents. So there’s a little bit of an added edge to this game.
Couple of notes:
- Jason Richardson, who missed the first ORL/PHI matchup with a knee injury, is averaging 18.1 ppg since his return
- Philly picked up its 20th win of the season at Charlotte on Monday. The Sixers didn’t win their 20th game until Game #45 in 2010-11
8:00 – Oklahoma City Thunder at Houston Rockets
Kevin Martin picked a bad time to go cold. He’s averaging 7.3 ppg in his last six games, including his first goose-egg in six years. The Rockets are 10-3 at home, making them one of the best teams when it comes to defending their own turf. OKC, though, is the best road team in the biz. These are both fast paced teams with high-powered offenses. If Martin gets it going tonight, and maybe if Kyle Lowry or Luis Scola get into the mix, we could see a lot of points.
Couple of notes:
- Russell Westbrook scored his 5,000th point last night to become one of just four players in franchise history to record 5,000 points through 274 or fewer games
- Oklahoma City has held nine opponents to less than 40.0% shooting this year, while posting an 8-1 record in those game
Other story lines for tonight
7:00 San Antonio-Toronto: San Antonio looks to extend its current NBA-best nine game winning streak.
7:30 Detroit-Boston: Boston looks to avoid another letdown against a bad team in a game before facing the Bulls tomorrow night.
7:30 Indiana-Cleveland: Indiana looks to save face after an embarrassing performance against Miami, but they’ll have to deal with Kyrie Irving who’s back from missing three games with a concussion.
7:30 Memphis-New Jersey (NBA TV): Memphis is 1-5 in their last six road games.
7:30 Sacramento-New York: I can’t think of a single reason to watch the New York Knicks lately. Can you?
8:00 New Orleans-Milwaukee: The Bucks look to snap a four game home losing streak.
8:00 Charlotte-Minnesota: After finally climbing above .500, the TWolves have lost four straight. But the Bobcats have lost a franchise record 15-straight.
8:30 Denver-Dallas: The decimated Nuggets may go into Big D without Nene, Mozgov or Gallinari. Uh oh.
9:00 Atlanta-Phoenix: Phoenix ends its back-to-back-to-back by trying for it’s fifth-straight home win over Atlanta
10:00 Portland-Golden State (ESPN): Portland and its 4-10 road record hits the road without LaMarcus Aldridge, who is out with a sprained ankle.
10:30 Washington-LA Clippers: Washington tries to ride the high of a blowout win over Portland into LA, where the Clippers would like to avoid falling into a tie for 4th in the West
Orlando, San Antonio, Boston, Indiana, Memphis, New York, OKC, Milwaukee, Minnesota, Dallas, Phoenix, Golden State, LA Clippers
Last time: 1-3