This is the portion of the basketball season where every game becomes extremely important to playoff teams positioning. Sunday was no time for the Charlotte Bobcats to take their opponent lightly, even if it was against the worst team in the entire NBA, the 13-53 Milwaukee Bucks.
The Cats entered this match up with the same mindset as any other game. Go out there, play your heart out, and help your team in any way put another “W” in the win column. Charlotte once again climbed farther into the Eastern Conference playoff picture as they defeated the Bucks by a final score of 101-92. This victory clinched a season sweep against Milwaukee for the Bobcats.
The playoffs are quickly approaching coming, and fans are slowly realizing that this Charlotte team is no 7-59 sorry excuse for a franchise anymore. Four straight wins and being one game under .500 is good enough to have a solid positioning in the lowly Eastern Conference. If Queen City keeps playing great basketball like they have in this recent stretch, there is no saying how far they can climb in the seeding before the regular season comes to a close.
The game featured several returns to former teams. Gary Neal sounded off for 18 points from the bench in his first match up against his former team. Former Bobcats Ramon Sessions and Jeff Adrien responded well in their first match up since their deadline deal as the duo combined for 30 points despite the losing effort.
The Cats shot a near seasons high 57 percent from the field to aid them significantly in the win. Though Brandon Knight flirted with a near triple double (21 points, 8 rebounds, and 7 assists) his teammates couldn’t stop the powerful Al Jefferson/Kemba Walker duo who exploded for 41 total points.
Gary Neal clearly got his revenge against the team he came so distant from even when being a member of the roster. Neal got into a heated exchange with then teammate Larry Sanders after the team’s 116-100 loss against the Phoenix Suns on January 4. From that moment on, the sharpshooting guard dwindled in the rotation and was selected to play behind younger talent.
At least Neal is now on a team where he stands in a significant role. Now he’s not sitting at the bottom of the Eastern Conference.
The Bobcats next game is Monday against Kyle Korver and the Atalanta Hawks. Tipoff is set for 7:00 P.M. in Time Warner Cable Arena. Charlotte will have a chance to get back to .500 once again, if victorious.