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What You Need To Know To Watch Marquette Guys In The 2020 NBA Restart

We’ll get a quick run of some seeding games before the playoffs start.

NBA: Miami Heat at Utah Jazz Russell Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA is set to begin their 2020 season restart live from the Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World in Florida. Every team that was in a playoff spot when the season was halted back in March due to the coronavirus are in attendance for the restart, as are any teams that were within six games of the eighth and final playoff berth in each conference. Every team involved will play eight seeding games to “finish” the “regular” season, with every contest involved being plucked from what was the remaining regular season schedule. In short, everyone is going to play games that they still had left to play, they just won’t be playing every game they were going to play, even if they had games left against teams that are now in the NBA Bubble.

ANYWAY, we’re running short of things to talk about in terms of Marquette sports here on this internet website, so we’re going to give you a rundown of how to watch the former Golden Eagles that will be participating in the restart games. You will note that I was very careful to not say “playing.” If you know why, then you’re smart, and if you don’t, we’ll explain it when we get there.

We’ll sort these out by the regular season record of each team that we’re going to talk about because that makes just as much sense as anything else.

Milwaukee Bucks

Marquette Guy: Wesley Matthews

The Bucks begin the restart as the team with the best record in the league at 53-12. They have a 6.5 game lead on Toronto Raptors for the #1 seed in the Eastern Conference, and they’re close to locking up the best record in the league. Milwaukee is four games up on the Lakers in the win column and two games up in the loss column. The seeding in the East is the most important thing, as there’s not really any such thing as home court advantage for the Finals, if it comes to that.

Wesley Matthews has appeared in 62 of Milwaukee’s 65 games this year. Here in Year #11 in the NBA, he has started in all 62 of those appearances. That’s just business as usual for Matthews, who has started in 92% of his NBA games. He’s only playing a shade under 25 minutes per game for head coach Mike Budenholzer, but the Bucks have 10 regulars playing at least 15 minutes a game and no one plays more than the 30.9 per contest that Giannis Antetokounmpo logs. Matthews chips in 7.5 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 1.5 assists per game for Milwaukee, and he’s shooting a pretty good 37% from behind the arc for a shooting split of 40%/37%/76%. Clearly he (and his new hairdo) are going to be a key component for the Bucks if they’re going to take a run at the NBA title in Disney World.

Here’s their eight game restart schedule.

Milwaukee Bucks 2020 Restart Schedule

Date Opponent Time (CT) Television
Date Opponent Time (CT) Television
Friday, July 31 Boston Celtics 5:30 PM ESPN
Sunday, August 2 Houston Rockets 7:30 PM ABC
Tuesday, August 4 Brooklyn Nets 12:30 PM NBA TV
Thursday, August 6 Miami Heat 3:00 PM TNT
Saturday, August 8 Dallas Mavericks 7:30 PM ESPN
Monday, August 10 Toronto Raptors 5:30 PM ESPN
Tuesday, August 11 Washington Wizards 8:00 PM
Thursday, August 13 Memphis Grizzlies 3:00 PM

LA Clippers

Marquette Guy: Doc Rivers

Obviously the Clips are the team that doesn’t have a Marquette player on the roster. However, they do have a MU graduate steering the ship, as Doc Rivers is in his seventh season in charge in Los Angeles. They’re currently 44-20 on the season, which is good enough for second place in the Western Conference. They’re 5.5 games back of the Lakers, but only 1.5 games ahead of the Denver Nuggets, three games up on the Jazz, and four ahead of both Oklahoma City and Houston. LA isn’t in any danger of missing the playoffs, as they’ve already clinched a berth, but their seeding is very clearly up in the air as the restart gets going.

The Clippers have a chance to finish with more wins than they did last season (48), but I think we can safely attribute that to not a whole lot that Doc did. I mean, I guess Doc Rivers had something to do with Kawhi Leonard opting to sign with LA in the offseason, but getting Kawhi to average 27 points, seven rebounds, five assists, and nearly two steals per game isn’t exactly what you would call difficult work. Paul George is playing his part in his first season in LA after being acquired via trade with Oklahoma City, which goes a long way towards making Doc’s life a lot easier, too.

Here’s their eight game restart schedule.

LA Clippers 2020 Restart Schedule

Date Opponent Time (CT) Television
Date Opponent Time (CT) Television
Thursday, July 30 Los Angeles Lakers 8:00 PM TNT
Saturday, August 1 New Orleans Pelicans 5:00 PM ESPN
Tuesday, August 4 Phoenix Suns 3:00 PM NBA TV
Thursday, August 6 Dallas Mavericks 5:30 PM TNT
Saturday, August 8 Portland Trail Blazers 12:00 PM TNT
Sunday, August 9 Brooklyn Nets 8:00 PM NBA TV
Wednesday, August 12 Denver Nuggets 8:00 PM ESPN
Friday, August 14 Oklahoma City Thunder 5:30 PM ESPN

Miami Heat

Marquette Guys: Jimmy Butler & Jae Crowder

As has been the case for most of the 21st century, Miami is the unofficial NBA team of Marquette fans everywhere. For most of that time, we were cheering at least a little bit all the time for the Heat because of Dwyane Wade. Now, though, we cheer for the Heat because they have not one but two former Marquette stars on the roster in Jimmy Butler and Jae Crowder. Officially, both men landed in Miami by way of trade. Butler’s was a sign-and-trade last summer, and he was the primary player in the deal. Crowder was acquired in a three-team trade in early February, which led to him only playing 13 games with the Heat before the season was shut down.

There’s an argument to be made that Butler is having his best season as a pro. He’s not scoring at his best rate ever, but his rebounding (6.6 per game) and assists (6.1 per) have never been better. Crowder is doing what Crowder does on the court. After beginning the year as a starter in Memphis, he’s right in line with his usual kind of stats while coming off the bench for the Heat: 11.9 points, 5.8 rebounds, 2.0 assists, and 1.5 steals per game. He’s also shooting nearly 40% from long range in a Miami jersey, which is notable because 1) Crowder is a career 33.6% three-point shooter in the NBA and 2) he was only connecting on 29% in Memphis. Miami is the most accurate three-point shooting team in the NBA at just over 38% this season, so it would seem that Crowder, at least before the stoppage, was benefiting from shooters everywhere else on the court.

Miami comes into the restart with a record of 41-24, which has them in fourth place in the Eastern Conference. They’re 2.5 games back of Boston for third place, which is pretty good with eight games to go, including one against those very same Celtics. They’ll also play Indiana twice before the “regular” season ends, and right now, the Pacers are just two games behind the Heat in the standings. Those two games — one of which is the finale — might end up being important. Miami is also two games in front of Philadelphia in the standings so they do have teams within shooting range of them in terms of how the final playoff seeding might end up.

Here’s their eight game restart schedule.

Miami Heat 2020 Restart Schedule

Date Opponent Time (CT) Television
Date Opponent Time (CT) Television
Saturday, August 1 Denver Nuggets 12:00 PM ESPN
Monday, August 3 Toronto Raptors 12:30 PM NBA TV
Tuesday, August 4 Boston Celtics 5:30 PM TNT
Thursday, August 6 Milwaukee Bucks 3:00 PM TNT
Saturday, August 8 Phoenix Suns 6:30 PM
Monday, August 10 Indiana Pacers 7:00 PM
Wednesday, August 12 Oklahoma City 7:00 PM
Friday, August 14 Indiana Pacers 3:00 PM ESPN