Even in a perfect world with Carmelo Anthony wearing NETS across his chest, there are a handful of teams between us and the Playoffs. I've broken down those teams remaining schedules, as well as ours, and with a few not-so-far fetched predictions show what it would take for us to make the playoffs.
This is without a doubt a team I’m very worried about. I know the Bobcats and Pacers have a pair of new coaches, and they’re hot right now, playing inspired basketball, but the Bucks have a ton of talent that is just starting to get healthy.
Minnesota, NY, Chicago, Detroit, Phoenix, Boston
Wins at Minnesota, Phoenix and Detroit, and they’re happy.
Washington, Cleveland, Philly, Boston, Atlanta, Orlando, NJ, NY
An easy start get’s real tough real quick in this stretch. I’m giving them three wins including a split with NY.
Sacramento, NY, Chicago, Charlotte, Toronto, Indy, Philly
They will be looking as games vs. Indy, and Charlotte as must wins. I think they beat them both as well as Sacramento and another team that’s not Chicago.
Orlando, Miami, Detroit, Cleveland, Toronto, OKC
Orlando, Miami and OKC are not 3 teams they would hope they’d see in their last handful of games. They split these games.
2010-2011 record: 34-48
This is a team you cannot underestimate. They do have a pretty tough schedule, but they have two stars on their team that can lose interest at the drop of a hat. I
Toronto, Sacramento, Orlando, Denver, LA Lakers, Portland, Clippers
3-4 is a fair assessment here. I see them beating Toronto, Sacramento and a deflated Denver team.
Chicago, Portland, Toronto, Houston, OKC, San Antonio, Indy, Boston, NY
I’d really just like to see them beat Indiana here, but I could see them beating Houston or Chicago. Maybe even both.
Millwaukee, Cleveland, Orlando, Washington., Cleveland, Orlando, Miami, Detroit, NJ, Atlanta
They beat Cleveland both times, Detroit once, and Washington.
2010-11 Record: 34-48
If we do indeed get Carmelo and we miss the playoffs, this is the team that knocks us out. We really need them to lose some momentum after the All-Star break. The break does come at a bad time for them, as they’re really looking like a tough playoff team right now. Their schedule does have some tough parts to it, but we need them to stay cool.
Washington, Detroit, Utah, Phoenix
Getting off to a not so slow start after the break, they could go 2-2 over these 4 games.
GS, OKC, Dallas, Houston, Philly, Minny, TOR, NY, NY, Boston
A split here over these series of games is doing them justice. Houston is always a tough out. Maybe they will even get Nene and be an even tougher out. Golden State is most likely a win. Philly will be tough for them too. From there I could see the Pacers physical bigs tiring themselves out against Kevin Love, still beating the T-Wolves, but struggling getting out to the perimeter to guard Bargnani in their next matchup. Maybe Amare stays healthy and play a big back to back against their young PF’s as well. 4 wins is generous.
CHI, MEM, NJ, CHA, SAC, DET, BOS, DET
Hopefully coming off a back to back vs. NY and playing great Boston and Chicago teams continue to take the wind out of their sails, and they drop a tough game to Memphis right before they meet up with the Nets. Nets need to win of course. We have to hope that Charlotte beats them after we do and after a miserable stretch, they go 2-2 vs Detroit twice, Sacramento and Boston.
Milluakee, New Orleans, Washington, ATL, NY, Orlando
2010-11 Recrd: 34-38
I’m the least worried about the Pistons finishing hot. I don’t think they will be a problem.
Houston, Indiana, Philly and Utah
Seeing them go 1-3 here would be huge. That said, I think the Pacers beat them.
Mil, Minnesota, Washington, San Antonio, OKC & Denver
I think they can beat Minnesota, Washington, and maybe Denver or the Bucks.
Toronto, NY, Atlanta, Miami, Cleveland, Indiana, Indiana
(3-4) including a split with Indy seems fair.
Chicago, Boston, Washington, NJ, Milwaukee, Charlotte, Cleveland, Philly
A must win game for the Nets in this stretch.
2010-11 Record: 31-41
New Jersey Nets
We’re going to have to get hot, but in a world with Melo I think it’s completely doable.
SA, HOU, PHO
Us dropping one of those games seems pretty fair.
Toronto, Toronto, Golden State
Let’s go to England and put on a show, show off our new prized posession, come back, rest for a few days and kick Golden States teeth in. Who is going to guard Carmelo on that team? No one.
Clippes, Boston, CHIC, Mill, WAS, IND, Cleveland
I have no problem losing to Boston and Chicago, though ideally you’d like to knock one of them off to show them you’re a legit team. We have got to beat the rest of those teams. I think we can.
ORL, ATL, HOU, NY, Philly
Not too far a stretch to think we can beat Philly, Houston, and one of the others.
Miami, Minnesota, Detroit, NY, Toronto, Charlotte, Chicago
A loss to Miami, but we play them hard.The team starts clicking and we tear through Minny, Detroit, a resting Knick team, Toronto and Charlotte. The Bulls continue to click and need one more win to nab the #1 seed, and they see us in their final game. Joakim Noah and Humphries get tangled up and need to be separated. Carmelo and Rose both go off for a ton of points, Billups and Boozer are jawing at each other and we lose a tough game.
2010-11 record: 35-47
*8th seed in the Playoffs
Round 1: Bulls vs. Nets