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I don’t mind it being Miami- aNd that seems to be where they’re heading. They have to topple the teams that have their number. No asterisks.

Now if somehow the Cavs take down the Nets. Getting Boston or Charlotte, particularly Charlotte, is a good warm up to what they have to do. And I do wonder about Heat/Nets.

But it’s doubtful. Bucks and Heat- let’s fuckin’ do this...

Last edited by Music City

Milwaukee and Philly are flying under the radar.  With Kyrie’s latest antics “basketball isn’t a priority right now” I can’t help but think how that team will be able to hold all the dysfunction and lack of defense together.  Unless they are scoring 140+ a game I don’t see that working enough over a long series against a good opponent.  

1st round Predictions?

Sixers-Wizards, I'll say Sixers in 5

Celtics-Nets, Nets in 4

Bucks-Heat, Bucks in 6

Hawks-Knicks, Knicks in 7

Jazz-Warriors. Jazz in 6.

Suns-Lakers.  Lakers in 5 (It's tough to feel sorry for a guy that's made 100s of millions of dollars, but Chris Paul just can't catch a break).

Nuggets-Blazers. Blazers in 6 for the upset (no J. Murray makes a difference)

Clippers-Mavs. Clippers in 5.

@Boris posted:

Revise this prediction, please

I was obviously assuming Donavan Mitchell was going to play. If he doesn't play, the Jazz are a tossup against the Grizzlies. The Warriors would have been favored against a Jazz team without Mitchell if they'd have gotten this far.

Draymond Green's limitations really got exposed. He's a great guy to have if he's your 4th or 5th best player. If you have to rely on him to get points for you as your 2nd best player, you're in trouble. He's an interesting one for a discussion about being a future Hall of Famer. If Ben Wallace is considered a Hall of Famer, I guess Draymond has a chance too. However, I didn't think Wallace should be in and at least Draymond wasn't one of the worst FT shooters in NBA history (Wallace was at 41% in his career). I guess Rodman is in also, and they are all similar players.

Last edited by MichiganPacker2

Hoping the Knicks get swept. The east coast press has been unlistenable. Linda Cohn has been even more unbearable than ever. I don’t know why the hell I was listening to her. Won’t make that mistake again.

Knicks fans were ready to anoint Julius Randle a HOFer, as they’re always wont to do. He’s living up to the hype... 27.4% shooting from the field, 16 points and 11 boards. He’s the F version of Eric Bledsoe... both from Kentucky, imagine that!

Walker - 73 mil left for next 2 years,  and injury prone is a nice way to put it. Horford did some decent things while at Boston, they were not able to reproduce it when he left, so they brought him back for 2 years I think 50 mil.

@Tschmack posted:

Can someone explain to me what Boston is doing sending Walker and a 1st rounder to OKC for 90 year old Al Horford?  

The Celtics effectively traded Terry Rozier for Kemba Walker two years ago when they still had Horford (or at least could resign him).

Two years later, they trade Walker for Horford. So, effectively they traded Terry Rozier (who has only one year left on a deal for 19 million a year and averaged 20 a game on good shooting splits this year) to be able to get Al Horford back two years later when he's owed 53 million for the next two years when he just turned 35. The decision was they'd rather pay Horford 53 million over two years to be an almost complete liability on defense than pay Walker 73 million a year to be a total liability on defense for the next two years.

Somehow Danny Ainge turned a team with Tatum, Brown, Irving, Horford, Hayward, Smart, Rozier, and Marcus Morris into Tatum and Brown and managed to overpay Marcus Smart and now Al Horford while losing Hayward, Rozier, Irving, and Morris for almost nothing.

@Tschmack posted:

Can someone explain to me what Boston is doing sending Walker and a 1st rounder to OKC for 90 year old Al Horford?  

Kemba is toast. His knee isn’t getting better. Damaged goods for a guy that had the year off for tanking.

@Tschmack posted:

So much for the Jazz

They completely fell apart in this series.  Reminded me a lot of the 2019 Bucks. had a good story on this.

Basically, the Jazz had a team two years ago that prioritized perimeter defense at the expense of offense. They didn't have enough offense to make a deep playoff run. So, this year they prioritized offense and set up a system that took advantage of Gobert's paint protection to compensate for subpar defenders. It worked in the regular season because other teams would play a typical 5 that allowed Gobert to stay close to the paint. In the playoffs, teams shorten their rotations and went small against the Jazz. Gobert is still a very good defender for his size on the perimeter so it's not that he's a liability. It's just that he's no longer there to clean up in the paint when their poor defenders get beat off the dribble.

It points out how playoff basketball is very different. Small-ball centers would wear out playing major minutes against bigger guys for 70+ games, but they can get by for a couple of weeks in a playoff series.

The Bucks aren't getting beat when Lopez is getting drawn out because they lack paint defense (Giannis is still usually on the floor), but they do often give up more offensive rebounding when Lopez sits. For as poorly as Middleton, if they get one rebound when they were up 111-107 with under 2 minutes left instead of giving up 3 shots (and a made 3 to make it a 1-point game) on that possession the game would have likely been closed to being clinched. Lopez was sitting at the time.

1:52Trae Young misses 31-foot three point pullup jump shot107 - 111
1:49John Collins offensive rebound107 - 111
1:45Solomon Hill misses 28-foot three point jumper107 - 111
1:43Clint Capela offensive rebound107 - 111
1:39John Collins makes 23-foot three point jumper (Trae Young assists)110 - 111
@Music City posted:

Rick Carlisle to the Pacers, Jason Kidd to the Mavs… Pacers could become a threat in the next few years with the right coach.

The fact that Jason "purposely miss the FT to go up 4 to prevent a 4-point play" Kidd is even considered for coaching jobs is mind-boggling.

In Kidd's last 2 seasons as Bucks' coach, the Bucks won 42 and 44 games. The following year, the Bucks hired Bud and basically had the same team except for signing Lopez. They improved to 60 wins. There are only 3 explanations.

1. Bud is a superstar (regular-season) coach that is good for an extra 15-20 wins for your team.

2. Brook Lopez is a superstar (or at least a difference-maker) that is good for an extra 15-20 wins.

3. Jason Kidd is a terrible coach that costs your team 15-20 wins.

The answer is probably a little bit of #1 and #2 (maybe 5-8 games worth), but it's mainly #3. Any average coach should be able to win 50 games with a core of Giannis and Middleton.

Last edited by MichiganPacker2

Jason Kidd is a bad coach but I think he’s also disruptive behind the scenes in terms of wanting to play GM as well.

If you read the tea leaves, John Hammond basically said Kidd was a pain in the ass to deal with.  The Michael Carter Williams fiasco was 100% on Kidd along with him thinking Giannis was a PG.  

Hammond had a very good stint as GM.  Obviously drafting Giannis and Tobias Harris and Malcolm Brogdon and Jabari Parker and Brandon Jennings were solid moves, but the trade to get Brandon Knight and Middleton for Jennings is one of the most lopsided deals in recent history.  

Team USA in trouble… and why? I’ll submit exhibit A:

Over the last several years, baiting refs into calling fouls on wholly unnatural movements has become commonplace in the NBA. Players often pump-fake on the perimeter, get a defender in the air, launch themselves sideways like a guided missile into contact and get rewarded with free throws.

Tune into these NBA Finals and you're likely to see Chris Paul pull ahead of a defender, stop on a dime (or sometimes, even back up into the defender) and then hit the deck like he's taking a pro wrestling bump.

A trip to the line is the highest efficiency possession in basketball, and stars are often shameless in their attempts to get there.

But after years of successfully fooling NBA refs, many of Team USA's players are struggling to adjust to the more physical brand of defense played in FIBA tournaments, per Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports. On the other end, they're being called for push-offs that NBA officials rarely call:

"Throughout the games, multiple players, from Jayson Tatum to Bradley Beal, have been staring down the officials following no-calls as they're accustomed to receiving touch fouls or star-treatment officiating in the NBA. In the first half on Monday, Tatum was called for an offensive foul on a drive when he slightly nudged the defender aside with his right hand to create separation. It was a move that's consistently ignored in the NBA."

We’ve been saying it for YEARS. The NBA officiating and lack of consistency or logic makes the game worse, not better.

The other problem USA basketball has is that the roster is loaded with finesse players who are soft on defense. Beal is a terrible defensive player. He's Bryn Forbes level. Lavine, Lillard, and Love are also liabilities. The only great defenders they have right now are Adebayo and D. Green. Holiday will help when he joins because they sorely lack perimeter defense. Middleton will probably be their 4th best defender when he joins.

@Music City posted:

We’ve been saying it for YEARS. The NBA officiating and lack of consistency or logic makes the game worse, not better.

And this why I really don't follow or like the NBA.  College basketball is a much better game.