Column: NBA Madness in March?


Charlotte Hornets guard Kemba Walker, center, smiles as teammates Nicolas Batum, left and Marvin Williams look on after Walker hit a 3-pointer in the closing seconds against the New Orleans Pelicans in the second half of an NBA basketball game in Charlotte, N.C., Wednesday, March 9, 2016. Charlotte won 122-113. (AP Photo/Nell Redmond)

When you think of the sport of basketball during the month of March it’s obvious that the college game takes over the center stage from the NBA. I mean, the NCAA tournament always lives up to the hype, this past weekend we saw some of the most ridiculous upsets and endings to games in recent history.

However, as exciting as the college game has been, true basketball fans cannot sleep on the NBA during this time period either as there are multiple exciting story lines still taking place.

Eastern Conference Shuffle

The Eastern Conference playoff picture is completely undecided. Every single seed can change between now and the end of the season.

The Cleveland Cavaliers are trying to hold off the Toronto Raptors at the top of the conference. With all the drama that the Cavaliers have dealt with this season, LeBron James still has his team in position to claim home-court advantage throughout the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Beyond that we have the Miami Heat, Atlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics and Charlotte Hornets all within one game of each other. The order of the No. 3 through No. 6 seeds will likely take the entire remaining schedule to determine. These middle tier teams are playing great basketball right now and they would all love a shot at making things difficult for Cleveland come playoff time.

Former UConn player Kemba Walker, who is having a career season, leads the Hornets through this late playoff push. Walker is averaging a career high 21 points per game while also shooting a career-high 43 percent from the field. The Hornets are certainly peaking at the right time as they hope to win at least one playoff series.

At the bottom of the conference you have the Indiana Pacers, Chicago Bulls, Detroit Pistons and the Washington Wizards all battling for the final two spots. This is another tight race as two games is the difference from being the seven seed or in the draft lottery.

Chasing History

On the other side of the league, we have the Golden State Warriors chasing history. The Warriors have an opportunity to break the record set by the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls for most wins in a season. The Bulls went 72-10 that season.

The Warriors would have to finish the season 10-2 (this number excludes the results of last nights game with the Los Angeles Clippers) or better in order to break the record.

Golden State is banged up as a team as the season is concluding, but they have stated many times that they will take the opportunity to make history over resting before the playoffs.

Only time will tell if it will be worth the extra stress of going for the record or not, but that is beside the point. Steph Curry has pulled off some amazing things this season, where he has already all but locked up his second straight MVP award.

With eight of Golden State’s remaining games coming against possible playoff teams, they will certainly be challenged as they head down the stretch. 

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