Blackalicious - Passion feat Rakaa and DJ Babu of Dilated Peoples
Game Overview: This is a must-win game for both teams for their playoffs hopes - but much more so for the Bobcats. If the Bobcats lose this game, they basically have no shot at getting to the playoffs. None. The Bobcats lose out on a chance to close the gap to a single game and the Pacers would take a three-game lead over the Bobcats, forcing Charlotte to mount a monstrous run against strong playoff teams to catch up to a Pacers team with a slightly weaker schedule.
As I mentioned in yesterday's piece, Indiana has problems with effort but is decently talented on the whole. Danny Granger, a sniper, is Indiana's lead scorer with 20.5 ppg but is a weak defender. Expect to see Stephen Jackson try to take advantage of him in the post where Granger allows 54% FG. Defensively, we could see Henderson on Granger like we saw on Durant last week, but I doubt it, considering Granger doesn't drive much and instead relies on his jumper. Another problem is Indiana's frontcourt. Roy Hibbert is a good rebounder and defender who is still trying to develop his offense. Tyler Hansbrough is now starting at the power forward and surprisingly is putting up incredible numbers (about 19 ppg and 8 rpg).
Key Matchup: D.J. Augustin vs. Darren Collison - This is an interesting matchup. On the one hand, Augustin could have trouble with Collison's quickness. But Collison has his own defensive liabilities, which the Bobcats may be able to exploit on pick and rolls or screens, switching a bigger player onto Collison to back down into the post. And to avoid the sweep, the Bobcats are going to need Augustin to step up and show an immense amount of heart.