Toronto Raptors (0-1) vs. Brooklyn Nets (0-0)
At long last, the Nets arrive in Brooklyn.
Brooklyn's original home opener against the rival Knicks was postponed to late November after Hurricane Sandy rocked the New York area. Things inside the Barclays Center have been cleaned up some and the stadium, and the transportation in the Tri-State Area should be ready for the Nets to open the season now.
This opener has a little less circumstance, but should maintain all the pomp with the Raptors stepping in for the Knicks.
Brooklyn is excited to have its new team too. And so finally they get to dress up the Barclays Center for a regular season basketball game. The question is of course how will the people of Brooklyn respond to their new team and how will this new team come together. Those questions are completely unknown entering this opener. So the last team to be 0-0 will get its name on the board.
Other Storylines to Watch
-Toronto lost a heartbreaker at home in the season opener, but to that point played a pretty good game. Kyle Lowry and Jose Calderon came in and seemed to each play well in their minutes. Andrea Bargnani continues to pour in points and be a good scoring option. This Raptors team still has a lot of growing to do and this would be another opportunity to do that.
-The Nets are the last team to play their opening game. I am sure they will be hungry to get it going tonight and kick off this new era with a win.
Tonight's Other Games
Boston Celtics (0-2) vs. Washington Wizards (0-1)
The Celtics struggled in their home opener against the Bucks, falling behind and staying behind against the plucky young Bucks. Boston is going to have to come out in this game and establish itself defensively. That is where the Celtics identity has always been and right now that seems to be lacking.
Sacramento Kings (0-2) vs. Indiana Pacers (1-1)
How do you bounce back from a loss? That is the question facing these two teams. The Kings have already followed a loss with another defeat in Minnesota. Indiana? The Pacers dropped a road contest to the Bobcats. There is no telling what the coudl do to a team's psyche. There will be some #GoldSwagger in Indianapolis for the home opener though, maybe that pushes the Pacers to recover.
Denver Nuggets (0-2) vs. Miami Heat (1-1)
It was an odd scene last night at Madison Square Garden as New York tried hosting a major sporting event in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Dwyane Wade donated his game check from the loss to Hurricane Sandy relief efforts and he admitted they did not know what the response would be or whether people would attend. They attended and the Knicks ran away with the win. Should we chalk it up to the emotion of the moment?
New Orleans Hornets (1-1) vs. Chicago Bulls (2-0)
Anthony Davis will miss this game after suffering a "mild concussion" on an errant Austin Rivers elbow last night against Utah. The Hornets still pulled through thanks to Grievis Vasquez's runner late in the game. That lessens the intrigue of this game. But the Bulls are 2-0 without Derrick Rose after a nice victory at Cleveland last night.
Portland Trail Blazers (1-1) vs. Houston Rockets (2-0)
Get on board with "Beardsanity." James Harden is working to prove his first game was not an aberration by doing it again. Again. Harden scored 45 points last night in Atlanta for a second straight phenomenal game. Now the Houston fans get their first chance to see him. Hopefully he has another encore in him.
Cleveland Cavaliers (1-1) vs. Milwaukee Bucks (1-0)
The Bucks perhaps had the surprise of the day yesterday with a thorough working of the Celtics. Brandon Jennings had a superb game and Milwaukee did not even get a great game from Monta Ellis. These two teams are quite similar in their lineup's construction. So there should be four really great guards to watch in this one between Dion Waiters, Kyrie Irving, Jennings and Ellis.
Utah Jazz (1-1) vs. San Antonio Spurs (2-0)
Manu Ginobili said he expects to play limited minutes tonight for San Antonio. The Spurs have played pretty well without him as Tony Parker and Danny Green have picked up the slack with Tim Duncan looking like he hit a time machine. The Spurs look extremely dangerous. It is early though.
Charlotte Bobcats (1-0) vs. Dallas Mavericks (1-1)
The Bobcats are in first place and 1-0 thanks to Kemba Walker's career game last night. Let's see how long that lasts.
Golden State Warriors (1-1) vs. Los Angeles Clippers (2-0)
Andrew Bogut is fighting his trainers right now as he is eager to play, while many of his doctors and trainers are asking him to take things slowly so he can be ready later in the year. Bogut is averaging 6.0 poitns per game in 18.0 minutes per game. He is likely to sit out tonight for Golden State against a Clippers team that just scored a major victory.
Tonight's Fantasy Picks
F Blake Griffin, Clippers (vs. Warriors)
F Elton Brand, Mavericks (vs. Bobcats)
C Brook Lopez, Nets (vs. Raptors)
G Chris Paul, Clippers (vs. Warriors)
G Rajon Rondo, Celtics (@ Wizards)