DAY TWENTY-EIGHT - The conference finals may be set in the both the East and the West as two teams face elimination tonight. The Nets face Cleveland in Jersey and the Suns take on the Spurs in the Alamo City. Can Jason Kidd and Vince Carter impose their will on the Cavs once again? Can the Suns recover from their short handed game five win? We find out tonight in Day 28 of the NBA Playoffs.
Cavaliers at Nets, 8:00 PM, ESPN
Thoughts: I can't even remember who I picked for the last game in this series. It feels like I'm picking Cleveland every time out, and being disappointed every time. That pretty much describes Cleveland lately, disappointing. While I have all the sympathy in the world for LeBron and the situation with his girlfriend (taken out on a stretcher in game five), the lack of focus and consistency is killing the Cavs right now. Neither Carter nor Jefferson had a particularly great game in game five, and yet the LeBron and Larry Hughes managed to top them in unimpressiveness. Drew Gooden absolutely must play big for Cleveland tonight. The importance of the Cleveland bigs cannot be understated, not just in rebounding and defense but obviously also in scoring. Gooden went 2-7 for 4 measly points in game five, and that simply won't get it done. Maybe, I'm crazy, or stubborn, but I expect the Cavs to start playing like they should and win a damn game. Cavs win.
Suns at Spurs, 10:30 PM, ESPN
Thoughts: This series could be drastically different were it not for an absurd decision by the league to suspend Amare Stoudemire and Boris Diaw in a pivotal game five. But what's done is done and as screwed up as it is, Phoenix still has a chance to win this series. Game five was one of the closest most hard fought games I've seen in a long time, and San Antonio pulled it out by just a few clutch shots. Nevertheless, Phoenix was nearly able to overcome even though they were extremely shorthanded. That speaks volumes about the kind of team they are, both from a mental stand point and a talent stand point. It is true, that the physical and mental fatigue of a game like that can linger, especially when you come out on the losing end, but facing elimination tonight I can assure Phoenix will find the energy they need. The Spurs are still missing Robert Horry and Stoudemire and Diaw will be amped and just waiting to hit the hardwood after missing a game and their boost of energy will be felt immediately. This great series continues. Suns win.
* all times Eastern
Jordan's Playoff Picks so far:
38/62 - 62%
No games tomorrow.