NBA Preview: Brooklyn Nets’ Playoff Positioning vs. Philadelphia 76ers’ Ping-Pong Positioning
The Brooklyn Nets have to be pretty mad at the schedule makers for their late season back-to-back games. After their victory over the Detroit Pistons Friday night, the Nets now travel down I-95 to take on the suddenly hot Philadelphia 76ers.
The 76ers are coming off what can be described as one of the worst losing streaks in modern sports history. Any losing streak will leave a bad taste in a team’s mouth, but losing 26 straight games will stick with you your whole career. Maybe the 76ers are trying to tank away their season in hopes of a high draft pick, or maybe they are really that bad. No matter their past problems, they must deal with the present, which includes the playoff bound Nets.
The 76ers have a solid player in rookie of the year candidate Michael Carter-Williams, who I believe average a triple double one day. Thaddeus Young is turning into a great threat, whether he plays the power forward or the small forward position. Their roster is full of players who can play minutes, but have trouble producing on the court. This is the definition of a team that has given up on the season.
The Nets, on the other hand, have clawed their way back from the dead. Once a 10-21 team, they have managed to pull their record to 41-34, thanks in large part to a renewed defensive approach. Deron Williams and his backcourt-mate Joe Johnson has carried the team in the last month, while veteran Paul Pierce has been the glue that has keep the ball rolling with his championship intensity.
The Nets are playing for playoff position, while the 76ers are playing for ping pong position. This is the last game of the season between the two teams, and the Nets have 2-to-1 game advantage. No matter their record, the Nets cannot afford to look past the 76ers. Both teams are coming off an impressive win Friday night, and would like extend their good fortunes into Saturday’s game.