(Photo Courtesy Robert Lahser – Charlotte Observer)
Ok. Before the season got underway, I predicted that the Charlotte Bobcats would have over 30 wins and would make the playoffs. I also had reason to believe that they would be a .500 team. The more I thought about it last night, as the Bobcats beat the Denver Nuggets, the more I realized that it would mean that I believed that the team could manage to win 41 games. Well, here we are at 30 wins. There are 18 games left in the regular season.
Can they win 11 of them? I can spot 8 games for sure that they should be able to win easily. The other 10? Well, If we really plan on making some playoffs noise, we better beat Atlanta, Washington, and Brooklyn. That would be 6 of the last 18 games. That’s right; we face 3 Eastern conference teams in the playoffs race 2 times each before the season is over. We win all of those, then that would be 14 wins. Bottom line is that we need to keep the winning ways going, not lose games against teams we should be beating, and not get overconfident. With all of that said, we beat the Denver Nuggets last night. That was an important victory for us. Why? Every victory is important at this point.
Al Jefferson, Kemba Walker, Gary Neal, Josh McRoberts, heck, the whole team contributed in last night’s victory. When the Bobcats can play basketball like they did last night, they will win games and games and games. They did not play like that on Saturday night, thus the loss to the Memphis Grizzlies. When you have 4 guys in the sub-20-point mark on the night, like the Grizzlies game, you aren’t going to win a lot of games. 4 guys (Big Al, CDR, Kemba, and Tolliver) combined for 53 points. Everyone else contributed a little, but when a team shoots under 40% from the floor, don’t look for a victory. They didn’t find one Saturday. Jump forward to last night, where 4 guys (Al, Kemba, Neal, and McRoberts) scored a total of 84 points, and the rest of the team contributes as well, yeah, that’s a formula for victory. Shooting 45% from the floor and nailing 8 3-pointers helps as well. Last night was an off game for Tolliver and Zeller (0 points and 4 points respectively), but they will certainly bounce back against Washington tomorrow night.
We’re 30-34 right now, and 2-1/2 games back from the #6 seed in the playoffs. More specifically, we need to be pulling against Brooklyn right now, and when it comes time to play them, we need to beat them. We also need to be pulling against Atlanta. We need to beat them when we play them too. I’m pretty certain that the Pistons and the Knicks will not be catching up to us this season, and the playoff seeds can only fluctuate heavily for Washington, Brooklyn, Charlotte, and Atlanta. We control our destiny at this point, with 2 games against each of the teams just mentioned. Beat them all, and we could possibly be looking at a #5 seed. Time will tell, right? Things are looking good on Trade Street.
Let’s Go CATS!