As the NBA season winds down USSDU looks ahead to the upcoming week with interesting stories that are developing.[caption id="attachment_15339" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Photo Credit: Tannen Maury/EPA[/caption]
Knicks are Ballin'After a disastrous west coast road trip where they went 1-4, the Knicks have quietly built themselves a 10 game winning streak. With Carmelo Anthony shooting hotter than a Trinidad Scorpion Butch T, Tyson Chandler back to protect the paint and JR Smith playing an all rounded game nothing can stop them. With the race for second spot in the East heating up (Knicks are ahead of the Pacers by half a game), this streak might actually end up hurting them. If they finish 2nd their likely playoff opponent is Boston, but if they finish 3rd then it could be Atlanta. 5 out of their final 8 games are against playoff teams with the toughest being an away game at Oklahoma City. If Melo can keep up a 45ppg average over the next week it will be exciting times ahead for the Knicks and NBA fans.
More Game Time for Patty Mills and Aron Baynes?With the Spurs firmly entrenched as one of the top two teams in the West, Coach Pop loves this time of year to rest his "old" players for the final part of the season. As we saw against Orlando we get to see some more of the Aussie duo, Patty Mills and Aron Baynes. Mills received 25 minutes off the bench with Tony Parker resting a sore ankle and Baynes getting 18 minutes and putting up some good numbers (9pts, 5rb). While wins are still important I think Coach Pop will put more priority on resting his stars and this can only mean an opportunity for our boys. Mills is still battling with a backlog of point guards so I'm thinking Baynes might have the greater opportunity in the coming week.
Clippers Stumbling, Improvements Coming?The Clippers have spent the last couple of weeks going from looking like potential contenders (wins against Brooklyn and New York) to looking like a potential first round sweep (poor efforts against the Pacers and Rockets). For a team that was knocking teams over by 20+ and being heralded as the kings of Los Angeles, it certainly has been a wake up call. The media has called for Vinny Del Negro's head (nothing new) but I think the responsibility lies with the players. Their starters have been lacking energy, looking disinterested and getting in 20 point deficits trademark of a Charlotte Bobcats outfit. A thumping of the Phoenix Suns, which included a 15-0 start has done something to rectify their slide but there is still a long way to go. Their next assignment is a blockbuster against the Lakers on Monday morning (Australian time) and that game is sure to be a cracker. Set your alarm clocks and enjoy the final battle for Los Angeles bragging rights this regular season.
How do you think Patty and Aron will go in the next week with a potential increase in minutes? Post your thoughts in the comments section below.