Call me Andy Iskoe’s alter ego.
After last week’s 0-6, it’s in the works for a name change to Nothing But Not. I feel like the NBA Atlantic with no teams above .500. Misery does love company.
The main theme of the NBA this week is streaks. Dallas has won 12 in a row after starting 0-4. Detroit had an eight-game run, Orlando six, Phoenix six and Chicago four. The Bulls turnaround couldn’t come at a better time for head coach Scott Skiles, embroiled in a headband squabble with expensive acquisition Ben Wallace.
I feel the Bulls will ride or fall on the spurts of another Ben — Gordon. The younger Ben can carry Chicago if in a zone, but can also get lost on the court. As for Skiles, I’m not certain he’ll last the season if the Bulls don’t find their way to the top of the Central Division soon.
Too much is invested in Wallace. If this continues to grow into a Skiles vs Wallace confrontation, management will choose big hair over bald.
Out West, the Utah Jazz continue to own the league’s best record at 14-4. Company is coming. The Lakers, at 10-5, look to be the real deal with Kobe Bryant blending in nicely with the team concept, while still being able to score 30 in a quarter and look comfortable.
The Suns are doing a better job protecting leads, but are basically outscoring the opposition.
The Clippers are the league’s leader in home / road dichotomy — going 7-2 at the Staples Center and 0-6 on the road.
Also on the downside is New Orleans / Oklahoma City, losers of five straight. Playing in two cities has to be a disadvantage. Bettors should note that in conference play Memphis is 1-8 and Seattle is 2-7. On the other side, Utah is 10-2 against the West and the Lakers are 8-3.
The Knicks are the league’s worst team at home, going 1-7 at Madison Square Garden. If that continues, Isiah will not survive.
Finally, the Washington Wizards have yet to win a road game. Hard to believe with Gilbert Arenas and all that offense. Just shows again that defense does win games.
Wizards at Knicks: The Wiz are 0-8 on the road. NY is 1-7 at home. I can relate to these lowers. WIZ.
Sixers at Bulls: The more Iverson scores, the less Philly wins these days. Bulls starting to turn things around. I’ll pitch in for Ben’s headband. BULLS.
Pistons at Mavs: The hottest teams in NBA clash in Dallas. Pistons were on 8-game run, Mavs winners of 12 in a row. Will take the points. PISTONS.
Heat at Kings: Tough spot for Miami now well into its West Coast swing. Kings always play well at Arco. KINGS.
Pistons at Magic: Second part of the dreaded back-to-back games for Detroit. Inspired Magic show no signs of slowing down. MAGIC.
Heat at Nuggets: Melo good for another 30 as George Karl uses the run and gun philosophy on an aging Heat team off the back-to-back. NUGGETS.
Pacers at Cavs: Indiana has been tough to shake, especially on the road of late. The Cavs have not been blowing people away at home. PACERS.
Nuggets at Mavs: Dallas has used defense, believe it or not, to string 12 wins together. Denver plays no defense. UNDER.
Warriors at Sonics: Golden State played the night before and will tire in the second half. Sonics will live this night by the 3. SONICS.