It’s Win or Go Fishin’ for Postseason Teams


Published: April 17, 2008

The NBA playoffs are here, and as the TNT commercials say, “It’s win or go home.”  But the cast of “The NBA on TNT,” Kenny Smith, Charles Barkley and Ernie Johnson, like to comically add the “Gone Fishin’” segment as each team is eliminated from the post season. Let’s see which team may be booking their next fishing trip with Kenny, Charles and Ernie during the 2008 playoffs.

The Junior Varsity (aka the Eastern Conference):

The Boston Celtics and the Detroit Pistons will meet in the Eastern Conference Finals unless there is a colossal collapse by either of these teams. This collapse could come at the hands of LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers or Gilbert Arenas and the Washington Wizards. Both the Cavs and the Wizards present potential problems for the Celtics and the Pistons—nothing the Celtics and Pistons cannot solve in a seven game series.

The Quest for a Repeat:

The San Antonio Spurs are trying to repeat for the first time after winning four championships in nine years. The critics say the team is a year older and showing signs of losing a step defensively, but head coach Gregg Popovich knows how to motivate his team to prevent an early fishing trip, and having Tim Duncan is almost a guaranteed trip to the Finals.

As Paul Buzzes, the Nest Follows:

Chris Paul and the New Orleans Hornets will only go as far as Paul can take them. This team’s success depends on his ability to create shots for his teammates and his ability to break down defenses. However, because of their inexperience, it would not be a surprise to see the Hornets gathering their tackle and bait with an early exit in the playoffs.

Home Games Only:

If the Utah Jazz were to play at home for an entire playoff series, where they are 37-4, they would have an excellent chance of advancing in the playoffs. However, with a deplorable 17-23 road record, the Jazz will head to Salt Lake City for an early boat trip.

The Question Marks:

If the Lakers are to advance in the playoffs, it will be a result of their question marks becoming exclamation points: Lamar Odom becomes a dependable third option in the triangle offense; Andrew Bynum’s knee holds up for 20 minutes a game and Kobe Bryant’s new 13-ounce shoes lift the squad to it’s first Finals in the post-Shaq era.

Phoenix Healing:

It seems as though Phoenix is the place you go to heal old battle wounds. The medical staff of the Phoenix Suns has found a way to rejuvenate Shaquille O’Neal, cure Steve Nash’s back spasm and keep Grant Hill’s rickety ankles in shape.  With all of these old timers finding a fountain of youth (even Allan Houston came to town for a drink), the team will rely on Amare Stoudemire for 30 points and 10+ rebounds.


If there is a team that no one wishes to play in the playoffs, it’s the Dallas Mavericks. After exiting in the first round last year at the hands of the Golden State Warriors, the Mavs are looking for redemption. A trade for Jason Kidd is now coming together offensively,  and the team could beat any of the Western Conference contenders.  Kidd  solidifies this shaky mental squad and could visit the Finals for the second time in his career.