Marquee matchup (cont.)

Monday March 7th, 2005

NBA Power Rankings
RankLW Team
1611 Somebody get LeBron some Sprite. Sunday's loss in Miami made it six straight defeats, and seven of eight overall. The strange thing about it is that they've been relatively healthy of late.
1722 They might have traded Keith Van Horn and Mike James, but they haven't given up. They beat the Sonics and Bulls last week, and had won nine of 15 overall since Feb. 1.
1813 They're trying to hang on amidst a difficult stretch of schedule. But they'll be OK if Luol Deng (ankle) gets back and if they can regain the defensive intensity that fueled their turnaround.
1917 They beat the Pacers on Sunday to make it two straight wins after that four-game losing skid. But with 14 of their final 24 games on the road, their playoff hopes could be in peril.
2010 They signed Dale Davis off waivers, but Jermaine O'Neal (shoulder) will miss at least five games. And until O'Neal and Jamaal Tinsley (foot) get back on the court, they're going to struggle.
2120 Vince Carter has scored 20 points or more in 18 straight games. But Saturday's blowout loss to the Magic was not a good sign, especially as they get set to head out on a four-game road trip this week.
2221 Chris Bosh pumped in a career-high 33 points as they won at New Orleans on Sunday to snap a two-game skid and make it five of eight overall. But Mo Peterson's bruised knee could be a concern.
2324 Tim Thomas has had some big nights of late, and they had won four of five after Sunday's drubbing of the Warriors. But their defense is still shaky, and the March schedule looks pretty tough.
2426 They won at Minnesota and Washington last week before falling to the Knicks. In five games, Baron Davis was averaging 10.6 points and 7.0 assists while shooting just 31 percent.
2523 New coach Kevin Pritchard's Youth Movement has begun. But with Zach Randolph's knee still bothering him, and Sebastian Telfair learning on the job, it's going to be ugly at times.
2625 Saturday's loss to the Nuggets snapped a seven-game home win streak. With seven of their next 10 at Staples Center, they're hoping a little home cooking can get them going again in March.
Utah Jazz (20-39)
Jarron Collins (separated right shoulder) is their latest injury casualty. He joins Raul Lopez (left knee injury) and Carlos Boozer (right foot strain) as their bleak season continues.
2830 They beat the Bobcats and Jazz last week before falling Sunday to the Raptors. But Dan Dickau saw his streak of double-figure scoring end at 21 games when he scored just four against the 'Cats.
2918 They lost Kareem Rush for the season with a knee injury, and then Brevin Knight went down with a sprained ankle. They're hoping Jason Hart and Gerald Wallace can pick up the slack.
3020 Hey, look, a Tom Gugliotta sighting! And, there's Michael Stewart too! With 11 straight losses through Sunday, they might as well give those guys some burn.

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