SMELL TONY BATTIE'S WRIST.
Regardless of whether or not the Sixers beat the Pistons or the Knicks beat the Bobcats, we know the Sixers playoff schedule will begin this Saturday. The time (and opponent) are TBA, but the NBA has made the smart decision of having both the Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat opening their playoff runs on the same day so the local arenas can start planning for the game.
The Sixers are 0-0 all time playing as the 7th or 8th seed against a midwestern or southeastern team on a Saturday afternoon to start the playoffs, in a statistic that I made up. I do remember last year they were the second game of the first day of the playoffs, after the Bulls beat the Pacers in a great game that saw Tyler Hansbrough get clobbered with a Kurt Thomas elbow in scary fashion. I remember eating a roast beef sandwich during that game. It was good.
The Celtics and Hawks will face off on Sunday and the Pacers will match up with the Magic in the least-watched playoff series that day as well. I'd also like to point out the smart move by the NBA of having the playoffs begin the day after the NFL Draft ends so they don't have to compete with the mammoth television block the sports king has a throttle over. Though the first round is tonight, so some of the ping-poing ball matchups will go unwatched. Sad.
So clear your Saturday because we've got a full day of non-stop Sixers coverage about to punt you in the face.