Wednesday's NBA Guide: Heat vs Pistons and LeBron in N.Y.C. Part II

FanHouse's NBA Guide gives you a daily look at all the games that matter ... and some that don't.

Miami at Detroit, 7:30PM ET

Far removed from the battles of yore with Ben Wallace and Shaq tangling, Dwyane Wade and Chauncey Billups matching shots. These are new teams ... but they are still after the same thing.

We'd love nothing more (OK, that's a stretch) than a Detroit-Miami first-round matchup in the playoffs. While the Pistons have suffered under the weight of a coaching change, a trade and the winds of change (pick your poison), the Heat have taken stock and assembled something usable. This year is a placeholder for Detroit, one necessary blank level before the Elevator of Fate arrives at Floor 9, Department of Cap Space. This is not to say that the placeholder floor is not important -- it is! But it doesn't really mean anything.

For Miami, this season is a stepping stone. You can't just wait for it to end. You have to actually use the stone to get where you're going. There will be change, just as in Detroit. But here it's all an upward trajectory. Detroit hasn't hit the bottom yet, shallow as it may eventually be.

Cleveland at New York, 7:30PM ET

If LeBron James does score 62 points or something, I'm having tacos for breakfast Thursday morning.

Portland at Dallas, 8:30PM ET

Should Blazers fans feel happy about the epic second half comeback against the Hornets sans Chris Paul? I mean, if Paul doesn't get hurt, that's probably a blow-out N.O. win. Portland has no answer for him -- heck, I don't think Portland understood the question. You assume Paul will be healthy in the playoffs, should these teams meet.

L.A. Clippers at Orlando, 7PM ET
L.A. Lakers at Toronto, 7PM ET
New Jersey at Washington, 7PM ET
Denver at Oklahoma City, 8PM ET
Atlanta at Minnesota, 8PM ET
Houston at Memphis, 8PM ET
Chicago at New Orleans, 8PM ET
Phoenix at Golden State, 10:30PM ET

Wednesday's NBA Guide: Heat vs Pistons and LeBron in N.Y.C. Part II originally appeared on NBA FanHouse on Wed, 04 Feb 2009 16:50:00 EST . Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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