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Charlotte Bobcats at Phoenix Suns preview -- Game 24

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Today's Tunes:

"Flip Flop Rock" - Outkast

Game Overview: The Suns have long since departed from being a contender in the Western Conference, yet it's like they think they haven't. They're still trying to just build around 37-year-old Steve Nash, but when he's gone, they're not going to be in a good spot. Had they traded him a season or two ago, they could have added some young assets or great draft picks to expedite the rebuilding process. But now, it seems like the return in a Steve Nash trade would be far less considering the Canadian's health and age. And so the Suns are smack dab in the middle between not being awful enough to find franchise-changing talent in the draft and competing in the playoffs.

As they are currently, the Suns are somewhere around mediocre. Nash has been in and out of the lineup, but Marcin Gortat has been the only constant, rebounding and scoring ferociously. Expect him and Nash to carve up the Bobcats interior, as usual. Meanwhile, the Bobcats are without their top three scorers: D.J. Augustin, Gerald Henderson and Corey Maggette.

Update: Steve Martin (Bobcats play-by-play telecast guy, not the comedian) says the Bobcats may start Bismack Biyombo and Reggie Williams.

Key Matchup: Kemba Walker vs. Steve Nash -- defending Steve Nash is no easy task. He's incredibly quick even at his age and can find angles anywhere. Staying in front of him is difficult, but Kemba needs to try to do this to help keep him out of the paint as much as possible. The problem is that Nash is so, so good at doing just that, drawing a defense, squeezing the rock into a crack in the defense, finding a scoring opportunity for his teammate out of nothing. On offensive, Kemba should exploit Nash's weaknesses as a defender, driving past him and taking advantage of Nash's poor instincts.

Corey Maggette Cool Handshake Of The Day