Hollinger's Insider Gems: Jan. 12, 2009
John Hollinger gives us five observations for Monday.
1. According to the Playoff Odds, we have a clear outsider in the Western Conference playoffs race. Dallas became the first of the nine Western contenders to see its odds drop below 50 percent after Sunday's 102-95 loss in Sacramento; its odds are at 49.4 percent. The Mavericks have fallen to 18th in the Power Rankings and as of Monday project to finish with only 43 wins and a 21-24 finish to their season.
That's not as unlikely as it might seem, given the Mavs' schedule. Sunday's game in Sacramento was expected to be one of only a few easy wins in a 14-game stretch that started Friday, so the loss was especially painful. Nine of Dallas' next 12 opponents have winning records, and two of the ones that don't are the misleadingly sub-.500 Milwaukee Bucks and the suddenly spry Philadelphia 76ers. Plus, eight of the 12 contests are on the road.
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Hollinger's PER Diem
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Jan. 13, 2009• PER Diem: Lakers-Rockets injury battle
• Insider: OKC's problems
Jan. 12, 2009• PER Diem: Magic join top ranks
• Insider: Portland travel problems
Jan. 9, 2009• PER Diem: Billups stealing the spotlight
• Insider: A can't miss game
Jan. 8, 2009• PER Diem: Sixers young spark
• Insider: Wolves continue to sizzle
Jan. 7, 2009• PER Diem: Boston's bench problem
• Insider: Miles won't wait too long
Jan. 6, 2009• PER Diem: Nuggets under luxury-tax line
• Insider: Tense few days for some teams
Jan. 5, 2009• PER Diem: Bucks, Pistons Ranking debate
• Insider: T-Mac's blatant mail-in job
Dec. 31, 2008• PER Diem: Spurs' playoff forecast
• Insider: Calderon's free-throw feat?
Dec. 30, 2008• PER Diem: The Year of the Great Divide
• Insider: Rip with a new role?
Dec. 29, 2008• PER Diem: Battle for top spot
• Insider: Portland's top offense
Dec. 24, 2008• PER Diem: The Good Bynum
• Insider: Passing of torch
Dec. 23, 2008• PER Diem: Magic near top crust
• Insider: O.J. making run at Rose
Dec. 22, 2008• PER Diem: Tough Sunday for Pistons
• Insider: Crisis mode for Raptors
Dec. 19, 2008• PER Diem: Orlando's lack of credit on D
• Insider: A big story up north
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