Enormous Consequences is a daily look at the most impactful games in the NBA's playoff races.
Did you die from NBA OVERLOAD on Wednesday night? That's very unfortunate. If you are dead, you cannot enjoy the two very important nationally televised games that take place on Thursday night. The Western Conference was (mostly) in the spotlight on Wednesday, but it's all East everything on Thursday.
In the early TNT game (7:00 p.m. ET), the New York Knicks go away to face the Orlando Magic. The Knicks are trying to hold off the Milwaukee Bucks for the eighth playoff spot, while the Magic are dealing with speculation that Dwight Howard wants Stan Van Gundy fired (Edit: Stan Van Gundy confirmed this). Howard sat out of the Magic's last two games with back spasms, and the team has lost four in a row.
Both teams are the walking wounded, so their game is a bit of a crap shoot. Howard and Jameer Nelson are game-time decisions for Orlando, while Ryan Anderson is out. The Knicks are without Jeremy Lin and Amar'e Stoudemire, probably for the rest of the season.
Orlando is competing for playoff positioning with the Boston Celtics, who take on the Chicago Bulls in the late TNT game (9:30 p.m.). Derrick Rose has missed the last 11 games due to injury, and the Bulls have lost the last two. Their top position in the East is starting to look a bit tenuous, so Rose's return will be extremely welcome. He participated in practice on Wednesday, and a decision on his status for the game will probably come before the Bulls arrive at the arena.
Knicks at MAGIC
Celtics at BULLS