HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – You have 13 games to choose from tonight.
Anyone that can’t find one that catches their eye needs a trusty pair of Hang Time’s favorite shades (BluBlockers), because there is something for everyone on the Hump Day schedule.
You want Kevin Durant‘s crew matching up against Kevin Garnett‘s crew? Done.
Hang Time’s favorite rookie, Roddy Buckets, and the Mavericks against Hang Time’s Grizzlies? Done.
The Spurs can’t afford to let the Rockets come into their house and win and risk falling another game behind the Trail Blazers in the playoff chase (the loser in that race gets a first round playoff date with the Lakers).
Whatever you need tonight, we’ve got it on the slate.
As always, we plan on attending the hot game here in HT City (Kobe Bryant and the Lakers are in town to face the Hawks). And that is definitely on the Games of the Night list:
Bucks at Cavaliers, 7 p.m. ET – Cavs coach Mike Brown isn’t sure if he’s going to play his starters big minutes down the stretch here, he’ll rely on his “gut” to help him make the decision, as my main man Art Garcia of NBA.com explains:
“”There’s probably something scientific out there that you can follow or some data that you can look at, but it’ll come from in here,” Brown said, gesturing to the road to every man’s heart. “I’ve thought a little bit about it, but I haven’t thought much about it. It’s a feeling out process.”
Careful coach. The Bucks are hungry and eager to prove themselves against the best of the best. Your team qualifies. And if you don’t think the Bucks are serious, just check in with the Hawks, Celtics and … shoot, just remember what the Bucks did to you a few weeks ago at Bradley Center (when LeBron James was resting).
Don’t sleep on the Bucks. FEAR THE DEER!
Lakers at Hawks, 7 p.m. ET – Anytime Keri Hilson is scheduled to sing the anthem at a game, count the Hang Time crew in. I guess we can suffer through a night of basketball between two good teams as well. The Lakers don’t always play their best basketball on the road. And the Hawks are a robust 30-7 at the “Highlight Factory” this season. But you know what the Lakers do when they get beat up on after a tough stretch, they take it out someone else, as Bryant explained to the Fan Night Crew (via Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times):
“It’s important for me to put my foot on the gas and have in our mind’s eye the kind of urgency that we need to play with in order to defend [the championship],” Bryant told NBA TV host Ernie Johnson and analysts Kevin McHale and Chris Webber. “The trap that you run into is you play with that sense of urgency when you’re down 10, 12, 13 points and that’s the kind of mentality I do not want us to have going into the postseason. You kind of lollygag around for a series and now you’re down, 3-1, now it’s time to play. You kind of fall into that false sense of security and all of a sudden it’s time to go and sometimes it’s too late to turn it on.”
As worried as Lakers fans might be, the Hawks need to be equally concerned with what they’ll see from the Lakers tonight. We’re expecting fireworks. And a front row seat for Ms. Keri’s singing performance.
Suns at Nets, 7:30 p.m. ET – We’re keeping all eyes on the Suns from now until their season ends strictly to see who Amar’e Stoudemire and Jason Richardson will dunk on next. They’re taking turns making wallpaper out of cats these days and we can’t think of a better way to spend a little time than to speculate about who might be next?
Surely you remember this:
Look out below Brook Lopez, Courtney Lee and any other Nets player crazy enough to get in the way. That said, the Suns would be wise to pay attention to what happened to the Spurs the other night. This Nets team will rise up and bite you if you’re not careful.
Thunder at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. ET – Two words: KEVIN DURANT!
Warriors at Jazz, 10 p.m. ET – We don’t show the Jazz enough love around here. They’ve got a Hall of Fame coach in Jerry Sloan, a man we have high on our ballot for Coach of the Year. They fly under the radar in a loaded Western Conference for reasons we can’t figure. They have added incentive against Steph Curry and the Warriors tonight, highlighted here by my main man Tim Buckley of the Deseret News, even if they don’t want to admit:
“The Jazz simply aren’t buying the notion that they owe Golden State payback for what happened late last season, when the Warriors — with just seven healthy players — won in Utah and helped knock coach Jerry Sloan’s club into the eighth seed in the NBA’s Western Conference.
Stuck with that No. 8 seed, the Jazz wound up with a one-and-done first-round playoff series with the top-seeded Los Angeles Lakers.
“Who makes up this stuff?” power forward Carlos Boozer asked.
Point guard Deron Williams claimed to not even know what a reporter was talking about when asked about the same issue.
“What did they do last season?” he asked.
When reminded about the 118-108 loss last April 11, Williams said, “It’s our fault, not theirs. I didn’t even think about it until you brought it to my attention.”
The Jazz would be wise to pay close attention to Curry, whose late-season Rookie of the Year surge has burned others.