The Philadelphia 76ers (30-43) are going for their fourth straight victory tonight -- a season high -- against the Charlotte Bobcats (17-57). This is a critical match-up for Philly, since the rejuvenated Wizards are just 2.5 games away from stealing the elusive ninth spot in the Eastern conference. The Bobcats on the other hand, separated from the Magic by 1.5 games are looking to extend that deficit even further. Hurray, April!
The last time these two teams faced off, which was last week, the 76ers pulled ahead behind Jrue Holiday's 11 fourth quarter points as the Bobcats' offense stagnated. Still, there were many encouraging signs for Charlotte. Kemba Walker, despite going cold from long range, had a good game with 16 points and 9 assists. More importantly, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist played one of his best games of the season, scoring 21 points on just 11 shots while grabbing 11 rebounds and providing his usual, tenacious energy.
MKG's 76er counterpart, Evan Turner, also had a big game as he scored 22 points and grabbed seven rebounds. For tonight's game, this is probably the match up to watch. The two small forwards are similarly strong on defense and effective in unique ways on the other end. Turner never panned out as the triple double threat he was touted as in college, but the verdict is still out on his NBA abilities.
Both of these squads are in the bottom five in the league in offensive efficiency, so it's unlikely that this weekend's 50 percent shooting performance will repeat itself, but look for a close game regardless. At this point in the season nobody has much to lose, but pride games can often be the best. And you know, maybe Tyrus Thomas will do a few things that make us lol.