A number of teams have been crawling back into contention and making the first-round of the 2013 NBA playoffs quite interesting. That could continue on Thursday night, as both the Brooklyn Nets and Denver Nuggets fight to keep their seasons alive and force a Game 7.
Brooklyn will have to overcome not only the Chicago Bulls’ feisty defense, but also the wild fans at the Madhouse on Midway. The Nuggets will try to get their bearings for another round in their knock-down, drag-out series against the rival Golden State Warriors, this time playing the role of bad guy for a packed house at Oracle Arena.
You aren’t going to want to miss a minute of either potential elimination game, so keep reading to find out when each matchup is, where to watch it, read a prediction on the final score and much more.
No. 4 Brooklyn Nets at No. 5 Chicago Bulls, Game 6, Eastern Conference
Time: Thursday, May 2 at 8 p.m. ET
Where: United Center, Chicago, Ill.
Series Record: Bulls 3, Nets 2
The Nets staved off elimination on their home court in Game 5, rallying for a momentum-shifting 110-91 victory to bring things back to Chicago.
If they can push the Bulls at home and steal a win, the Nets would have an excellent shot of coming all the way back and finishing things at the Barclays Center in Game 7.
It’s certainly not going to be easy for Brooklyn, especially considering just eight teams in the history of the league have accomplished the impressive feat of coming back from a 3-1 deficit.
However, with some of the Bulls stars banged up (notably Kirk Hinrich and Derrick Rose) and some possibly still feeling the lingering effects of sickness (Luol Deng and Taj Gibson), the Nets have an opportunity that they could capitalize on.
It’ll be interesting to see how Deron Williams and the rest of the Brooklyn stars look to exploit the mismatches and attempt to attack the weaker players on Thursday.
Prediction: Nets 95 – Bulls 92
No. 3 Denver Nuggets at No. 3 Golden State Warriors, Game 6, Western Conference
Time: Thursday, May 2 at 10:30 p.m. ET
Where: Oracle Arena, Oakland, Calif.
Series Record: Warriors 3, Nuggets 2
The more familiar these two teams become with one another, the more the toughness and intensity of the matchups escalates.
In Game 5, there were numerous shoves, elbows, hard fouls and other seemingly violent actions undertaken by both sides. It was playoff basketball at its finest and Game 6 promises to be even better.
The Warriors will be looking for their home-court advantage to help them to close out the Nuggets, giving their fans something to celebrate for the first time since 2007. Denver is hoping to bring things back to the Mile High City in order to cap off their incredible comeback effort.
It could go either way, but we’re leaning towards the Dubs taking care of business in the Bay.
Prediction: Warriors 105 – Nuggets 103