Monday's eight-game NBA schedule kicks off an abbreviated week leading up to the All-Star weekend in Houston, and it features the first meeting this season between the league-best San Antonio Spurs and the Chicago Bulls.
The Los Angeles Clippers return to the floor after a 102-88 win Sunday over the New York Knicks with a 7 p.m. ET tip-off against the Philadelphia 76ers. It's the first of two meetings between the Sixers and Clippers this season.
The Eastern Conference Central-leading Indiana Pacers host the Nets in the second of three meetings this season. Brooklyn won the first meeting, a 97-86 win in Brooklyn on Jan. 13. Reserve forward Sam Young is questionable while suffering from flu-like symptoms.
Those who pick on the Celtics for their age should tune in Monday for a make-or-break case in that argument against the Bobcats. The Celtics played at home Sunday afternoon, beating the Denver Nuggets 118-114 in three overtimes, and they'll play at 7 p.m. Monday in Charlotte. Paul Pierce had his second triple-double of the season Sunday (27 points, 14 rebounds, 14 assists).
The Celtics have won six games in a row.
It's the first meeting of the season for the Hornets and Pistons, both of whom are well under .500 with a few days before the All-Star Weekend. The Hornets had won two games in a row prior to a 102-89 loss to the Toronto Raptors this season. New Orleans had only won consecutive games three times this season. Detroit is riding a two-game win streak into the Palace at Auburn Hills on Monday.
San Antonio Spurs at Chicago Bulls, 8 p.m. ET, NBA TV, FSSW, CSN
The Spurs will travel to Chicago after a 111-86 road win over the Brooklyn Nets on Sunday, and neither Tim Duncan nor Manu Ginobili played. Duncan missed his eighth game in the last 10 with a knee injury, and Ginobili missed his fourth game in a row with a hamstring injury. It's unclear if either will be available Monday.
The Bulls won in their last outing, a 93-89 win in Salt Lake City over the Utah Jazz.
The Wizards — yes, the Washington Wizards — go for their first four-game win streak of the season Monday against the Bucks. The Wizards are no longer the worst team in basketball, nor are they even last in their division — Charlotte is both. The Bucks won the first meeting between these two teams on Nov. 9, a 101-91 win in Washington.
The Hawks had the weekend off after a 111-100 loss to the Hornets on Friday, and they play their first of two games against the Mavericks on Monday. DeShawn Stevenson missed Friday's game with a sore knee, and his status for Monday is unclear.