Warriors (W-L): 44-28
Mavs (W-L): 45-27
Time: 6:00PM PST tip off
It would have to be Warriors luck that being 16 games over .500 might not be enough to qualify for the playoffs.
After stumbling a half step out of the final playoff spot, the Warriors should know there "ain't no half steppin'" in this league. With a game separating the spots 7 through 9, every game the Warriors play is of major consequence!
Can Nellie's tools dismantle the house that he himself built, that being the Mavs, but has since been renovated by Avery Johnson? Do the upgrades made -- the new crown molding around the doorways and windows in addition to the new granite countertops and cabinetry in the redone kitchen representative of the supposed benefits of Jason Kidd -- really make the Mavs THE team to beat??? How will they now match up against the Warriors?
With their window seemingly closing after a humiliating defeat at the hands of NBA cinderellas, our Golden State Warriors, the Mavs went out and got probably the best point guard of the last decade. Whether it was his veteran experience, experience in an NBA Finals, or his ability to defend bulkier point guards that the once Mavs-point guard-of-the-future Devin Harris just couldn't do (as evidenced by Baron Davis' sheer domination of him last post-season), Jason Kidd's presence is supposed to make this Mav's team MORE of a contender.
But I'm not so sure I see it that way. As odd as this might sound, Diop development as defensive interior presence this season was one of the major troubles the Warriors faced this season against the Mavs. Being moved in the Kidd trade to New Jersey with Devin Harris, might make the Warriors ability to navigate into the paint much easier. The Mavs are filled with sharp shooters; you know Jason Terry and Jerry Stackhouse can get hot. The Warriors tend to have tons of troubles with undersized 4s and Brandon Bass will have the potential to be some major interior trauma for our Warriors. The Mavs have been free falling of sorts in the last few games, so hopefuly our Warriors can take them down now! Even though they're Dirkless, the Mavs still look competitive.
* Warriors by 3
* Stephen Jackson has 31 points (hitting four threes)
* Monta Ellis has 26 points
* Brandon Bass explodes for 23 points and 9 boards. Another backup looks like Amare Stoudemire.
* The Warriors continue their streak this season of no back-2-back losses.
What are your predictions? Any comments, thoughts, anxieties??? Post them in the comments as you follow the game live!