Posted 02/25/2008 at 05:03 PM
Tennessee may have a very short stay as the newly crowned #1 team in the nation. It was a great win for the Volunteers but a brutally tough scheduling situation is waiting on Tuesday, playing at Vanderbilt. This will be a second-straight huge road game for the Volunteers and playing into revenge will make this a far bigger game for the Commodores. Vanderbilt beat Tennessee at home last season after losing the first meeting of the season in lopsided fashion and similar situation could come up Tuesday night. Vanderbilt is 17-0 at home this season so it will be another chance for Tennessee to deliver a home winning streak-snapping victory.
In the NBA it is a bit too early to panic but Suns fans have to be worried with the post-Shaq trade results including an embarrassing national TV loss to the Pistons on Sunday. Take a quick glance at the Western Conference standings. The top nine teams are currently separated by a just 5.5 games. We wrote last week that the odd-team out likely would be from the group of Houston, Golden State, and Denver but the reality is that any team could be the one to fall out of the picture. The Suns could easily be that team if things don’t turn around in a hurry and expect Dallas to struggle as well as we still feel that Jason Kidd is not a great fit for the Mavericks. San Antonio made another shrewd deadline move and despite some ups and downs this season the Spurs are likely still the team to beat in the West, proving once again that they know what they are doing.
In the East Cleveland earns a huge boost with moves that look great on paper and proved positive through one game with a big win on Sunday. The Cavs are definitely a serious threat to make it back to the NBA finals and Boston and Detroit should be very worried about facing the Cavs in round two of the playoffs. On the other end of the spectrum the battle for the final seeds in the East could be an exciting one as Chicago can climb back into the mix and New Jersey and Philadelphia could still make runs into the playoffs despite marginal records. Atlanta, Indiana, and Milwaukee are all underachieving still and it wouldn’t take much of a win streak to get any of those teams into contention as well. Washington will be an interesting team to watch as injuries have been a huge problem this season. They could be a dangerous team if they can hold onto a playoff spot and emerge healthy into the playoffs.