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Pro Basketball

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The Week at a Glance

Click here for more on this story

Posted: Tuesday April 20, 1999 09:19 AM

The Games to Watch | Storylines
The Bandwagon | All-NBA Watch |The Rookie Watch | Ask the Glance

By Dan Shanoff, CNN/SI

Check back every week for "The NBA at a Glance."

At the playoffs surge, more of what we know -- and what we don't

  • We know someone's head will roll if the Knicks don't make the postseason.

  • We don't know if Charlotte's Eddie Jones and Elden Campbell could be any happier having escaped Los Angeles.

  • We know we'd love to see the Raptors in the playoffs.

  • We don't know what the heck is wrong with the Wizards.

  • We know the sixth-, seventh- and eighth-seeded teams in the East (Milwaukee, Philly, Cleveland) are holding on by the skin of their teeth right now.

  • We don't know how playoff-novice young stars like Ray Allen and Allen Iverson will react to the late-season pressure.

  • We know that the Kings would love to bump the once-mighty Sonics from the West's playoff field.

  • We don't know if Golden State's P.J. Carlesimo should be our coach of the year yet.

  • We know Paul Westphal is going to be run out of the Pacific Northwest if his Sonics do get bumped by Sacramento.

  • We don't know how the Grizzlies feel about being overtaken by the Cellar-Dwellers Formerly Known As the Clippers.

  • We know these next two weeks will be intense. Watch for a flip-flop between the hot Hornets and slumping Cavs in the East; keep an eye on Seattle, the "Wizards of the West," who don't seem to want a playoff spot as bad as the hungry Kings and Warriors.

     
    Games to Watch
    Spurs at Jazz
    Tuesday, April 20, 8 p.m. ET (TNT)

    Why you should care: Western Conference heavyweight brawl
    Matchup to watch: Spurs PF Tim Duncan vs. Jazz PF Karl Malone
    Lakers at Warriors
    Tuesday, April 20, 10:30 p.m. ET (TNT)

    Why you should care: Surprising Golden State is in playoff contention
    Matchup to watch: Lakers SG Kobe Bryant vs. Warriors SG John Starks
    Raptors at Magic
    Friday, April 23, 8 p.m. ET (TNT)

    Why you should care: Vince Carter, Vince Carter, Vince Carter
    Matchup to watch: Raptors C Kevin Willis vs. Magic C Ike Austin
     
    Storylines We'll Be Following
    As the Worm Turns
    Dennis Rodman's career as a Los Angeles Laker was short and not particularly sweet. When he showed up, Rodman provided a spark and a championship intensity that the rest of the team was sorely lacking. When he showed up.... In the end, he provided a great example to follow on the court -- and one to avoid off of it. Hopefully, prima donnas-in-training like Kobe and Shaq were paying attention at how not to act. Worm, we hardly knew ye.
    The race for home-court advantage
    In the East, Orlando holds a one-game lead over Miami and a two-game lead over Indiana. The Magic didn't bolster their cause on Monday night, dropping a 90-72 decision to the desperate Raptors, while the Heat and the Pacers both won. With eight games to play, there's no room for anything but winning. In the West, surging Utah has run past fatiguing Portland to take a two-game lead for the conference's No. 1 playoff seed. The Jazz has the best home record in the conference (18-1), but the Blazers are right behind (18-2). Here's the prediction: whichever of those two teams wins home-court advantage through the conference playoffs will go to the Finals.
     
    The Bandwagon
    Allen Iverson Had an Answer for Barkley
    Eddie Jones Only MJ would make Charlotte sweeter
    Toronto Raptors Feel-good team still in playoff hunt
    Antoine Walker Now, truly good for nothing
    William Avery Ready for NBA? Not even ready for UConn.
     
    All-NBA Watch
    In a short season, every game counts as players vie for All-NBA Status. With no All-Star game, "All-NBA" takes on greater meaning. Each week, we'll be handicapping the race for first-team honors.
    CNN/SI's Ongoing All-NBA: Great Players, No Playoffs Edition
    Michael Finley, Dallas
    Antonio McDyess, Denver
    Keith Van Horn, New Jersey
    Chris Webber, Sacramento
    Shareef Abdur-Rahim, Vancouver
     
    The Rookie Watch
    Unexpected rookie development adds intrigue to an already fascinating short season. Each week, we'll put the spotlight on first-year players and see which lottery picks were worth it, which weren't and which are emerging from the sleeper ranks.
    CNN/SI's Ongoing All-Rookie Team:
    G Jason Williams , Sacramento
    G Mike Bibby , Vancouver
    SF Vince Carter , Toronto
    F Paul Pierce , Boston
    F Matt Harpring , Orlando
     

    Ask the Glance
    Got a question or comment about the NBA season? Send your mail to the Glance, and each week we'll pick a few CNN/SI user responses and post 'em here.

    CNN/SI NBA Week at a Glance is released weekly throughout the season.

     
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    Last Week at a Glance
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