If you are going to the playoffs, as a player you don't care who you play because you think you can beat anyone. As a nervous fan, I tend to look ahead at the playoff matchups and I know there are teams we would be much better off playing. If we just get in with the 8 seed, barring unforeseen circumstances, we'll get Indiana and get launched out of the playoffs like a Marcus Banks layup getting swatted by Jermaine O'Neal. If we manage to play into the 6th seed, chances are pretty good that we won't top 70 points the whole series and be subjected to stories about how Danny Ainge made all this possible by facilitating the Rasheed Wallace trade.
Which leads us to the Nets. If we can get past the New York Knicks and secure the 7th spot, we’ll have the privilege of playing the team that bounced us for the last two years. This bodes well on a couple of fronts. First and foremost, Kidd and Martin are banged up and should still be at least pretty rusty in the playoffs. Second would be the revenge factor. Sure, there aren’t many players left from those teams that were in the playoffs the last couple years, but you can bet that Pierce, Blount, Walter, and the coaching staff will be chomping at the bit and inspiring the rest to gear up for this. On the other hand, we could end up seeing Kidd, Martin, and company come back at full speed and give us our annual spanking.
Like I said before, playoff experience would be very valuable to our younger players and boost some morale for the whole team. On the other hand, some playoff experiences are better than others. So at this point, if they deserve to get an easier matchup, then they’ll play their way into the 7 seed. If not, then they get Indiana. And if they really stink it up, its the lottery. All of which sounds pretty fair to me. Should be fun to see how the rest of the year plays out.