Gameday Preview Charlotte Bobcats vs. Phoenix Suns

(If you're interested in doing the gameday preview for Monday's game against Sacramento, write it up and send an email to rufusonfireblog@gmail.com following the established format. Music. Big Picture. Keys to Victory. Detail. Include your username for proper credit. Deadline will be roughly 9am the day of the game.)

Pump Up Music: Digital Underground -- "The Humpty Dance"

The Big Picture: The Phoenix Suns are coming off a buzzer beater loss to the Hawks last night. I don't really put much stock in the notion of game to game momentum, but that was certainly a heartbreaking loss, and now they have to come to Charlotte, where the Bobcats are 15-4.

The same principle applies to the Cats. We just watched them come out in the second half and utterly shut down the Spurs to the point that Greg Popovich twice called time out to scream at his starters before benching them for the final five minutes. The Suns provide a different challenge, but it's still a challenge. The Cats aren't good enough to beat playoff contenders on their off nights unless they get extremely lucky, so we've got to hope for the same kind of domination from Gerald Wallace, swagger from Stephen Jackson, scrap from Boris Diaw, and mistake-free decision-making from Raymond Felton that we've been getting the past week or so in order to keep winning.

Key to Victory: The Suns' best lineups allow the Bobcats to put their best players on the floor in a smallball configuration, with Diaw at the nominal center, guarding Channing Frye or Amar'e Stoudemire. I expect the Cats to come out in a conventional look, with Felton on Nash, Jax on Richardson, et cetera, eventually shifting to Jax on Hill and Ronald Murray on Richardson.

It won't happen, but I'd love to see what Jax could do guarding Nash, shifting Felton over to Richardson. That would force Nash to deal with Jax's length and tempt Richardson to post up the shorter Felton, which is not really what J-Rich does well.

Detail That May Interest .08% of You: Jared Dudley(!) still leads the league in three point shooting percentage at 48%.

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