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Top 5 Hardest Remaining NBA Schedules
by Matt Fargo - 02/17/2010
The NBA regular season is winding down quickly and Matt Fargo took a look at the remaining schedule of the 30 teams in the league to see what teams could have a tough time down the stretch. Here are five teams he thinks have the toughest roads coming in.
San Antonio Spurs
Remaining road games: 19 Current Road Record: 11-11
The Spurs finished the pre-All-Star Break schedule with five straight road games. It does not get any easier for San Antonio however. The Spurs have played a league low 22 road games through Tuesday meaning they will be playing the most games on the road of any team for the rest of the season. San Antonio has only two homestands left that are at least two games and both of those are two games exactly so they better not get too comfortable in their own beds. Making matters worse for San Antonio is it has eight back-to-back situations remaining and that is not very comforting for a team that is only 3-6 ATS when playing with no rest.
Remaining road games: 18 Current Road Record: 11-12
Utah had the luxury of playing 13 of its final 19 games before the All-Star break at home and the results showed that as it went 13-2 in the final 15 games of that stretch. The Jazz have nothing close to a home slate like that for the rest of the season as they have 18 road games left including four separate roadtrips of three or more games. Utah has been a very effective 13-9-1 ATS on the road but it makes it easier when only two roadtrips in the first half were more than two games in length. The longest remaining homestand is just two games (four times).
New York Knicks
Remaining road games: 17 Current Road Record: 7-17
The Knicks have played the easiest schedule in the NBA so far this season but their 19-33 record certainly does not show it. The rest of February and the start of March is relatively tame as seven of the next 11 games are at home but New closes with 13 of its final 19 games away from MSG including two different five-game roadtrips. Of the 17 remaining road games, eight are against the Western Conference while another six are against Eastern Conference teams firmly planted in playoff spots. Last season the Knicks failed to cover only 14 road games and they have already dropped 14 against the number this season.
Remaining road games: 17 Current Road Record: 6-18
It has been a very disappointing season for the Pistons who have just six road wins this season and still have 17 more road games to play. Detroit has played the 26th ranked schedule in the NBA but it has played the fewest amount of games of any team in the league against the Top Ten teams, going 4-10 in those 14 games (6-8 ATS). That means 14 games remain against the Top Ten including three games against Cleveland, three games against Atlanta and two games against Boston. Detroit also has seven back-to-back sets left and it is just 4-9-1 ATS playing with no rest.
Los Angeles Lakers
Remaining road games: 16 Current Road Record: 16-9
The Lakers opened the season with one of the easiest schedules in the NBA. They played 17 of their first 21 games at home before finally taking an extended roadtrip. Even though the slate was in their favor, the Lakers went just 10-11 ATS in those games. The road games have become more frequent and they have to play five more games on the road than at home. 11 of the final 14 games in March are away from home and even though Los Angeles closes with four of the last seven at home, three are against San Antonio, Utah and Portland. The Lakers are 16-9 SU but 11-13-1 ATS on the road.