Pump Up Music: Franz Ferdinand -- "This Fire"
The Big Picture: There are nine games left in the season, and the Bobcats are 3.5 games clear of missing the playoffs. Basically, it would take a collapse -- not an epic one, but a major collapse -- for the Cats to not see playoff ball for the first time in their history. Of course, if they are who everyone and their third cousins think they are, then it doesn't really mean anything to the wider NBA. If they don't push their first round opponent, they'll just be the latest in a string of beneficiaries of the weak Eastern Conference able to call themselves "playoff team" even though they wouldn't have sniffed the Western Conference playoffs.
Tonight, against the Philadelphia 76ers, I'd love to see some carryover from the atmosphere we saw against the Toronto Raptors. Obviously, I'd prefer a better result, but the Sixers are a team with little left to play for and should be dispatched with ease.
Key to Victory: Lou Williams did not play against Oklahoma City last night due to back spasms, and Andre Iguodala has been struggling with plantar fasciitis. Neither has much reason to struggle through that pain, and it's entirely possible we'll get a starting back court of rookie Jrue Holiday and Jason Kapono.
Detail That May Interest .08% of You: Jason Kapono's greatest quote: "I should have left UCLA after my freshman year, played in Croatia, grown a beard and changed my name to Vladimir Kaponovich."