Monday, March 19, 2012

Remaining Schedule Favorable to Hawks

It was a good weekend for the Hawks as the Magic, 76ers, Pacers and Celtics all lost while Atlanta assembled a modest 2-game win streak. Among Eastern Conference teams, only the Bulls (impressively, given injury woes) have a better record in the last 10 games than the 6-4 Hawks.

The Hawks presently hold the 6th seed in playoff position, and must overtake division rival Orlando (2.5 games ahead in the standings) to gain home court advantage. The Hawks are ahead of Philadelphia in winning percentage, but the 76ers hold the 4th playoff position because they lead the Atlantic division (the seeding process is explained here).

Tonight's opponent the Celtics are the team immediately behind the Hawks in the playoff picture, currently holding the 7th position. However, if Boston hopes to move up, the team has its work cut out for it. The Celtics have played the 5th-easiest schedule in the league thus far. This site shows the strength of schedule for remaining opponents among Eastern Conference teams. The Celtics face the second-toughest remaining schedule while Atlanta, which has faced the 3rd-hardest schedule, will face the 2nd-easiest schedule the rest of the way.

Further, while the Celtics and 76ers have the most road games remaining among Eastern Conference teams (13) and the fewest home games (8 for Philadelphia, 9 for Boston), the Hawks have the most home games (14) and fewest road games (7). The Hawks would do well to deny the Celtics a much-needed road victory tonight at Phillips Arena.

1 comment:

James Goeders said...

Was looking at remaining schedules last night and thinking the same thing. If the Hawks can just hold serve at home catching Orlando is certainly within reach.