Miami Heat concluded their season today with a parade in South Beach. Lebron’s first title, and probably not his last. I’m not saying that he’ll get to 7 or 8 rings but my guess is that he’ll end his season with about 4. Dwayne Wade’s on the down of his career. Mike Miller will never play like he did in game 6. Shane Battier still has some fight left in him. Chris Bosh still has it. Mario Chalmers surprised me with his play. Nevertheless, they’re gonna have to face a Derrick Rose and his Bulls, a season Kevin Durant and the Thunder, and dare I say, the Clippers? Okay, wishful thinking with that last one but tell me that with a healthy Chauncey Billups and a Clipper squad that has 1 year under its belt, these guys aren’t gonna make some serious noise next year? Anyway, with the NBA season officially over, time to head into the dog days of summer and the country’s official pastime, baseball. Yawn…
Derrick Rose tore his ACL with just over 1 minute left in Game 1 of their series with the Philadelphia Sixers. At the time Rose went down, the Bulls had the ball and were up by a dozen. There was probably a 97% chance that they were going to win that game. Rose has been injured all year, so I ask myself, “Why wouldn’t coach Thibodeau pull him out?” I know, I’m Monday morning quarterbacking right now, but still The Bulls just went from favorites to win the Championship to a 1st or 2nd round out. Let’s not blame the Bulls coaching staff entirely. I believe the league has to share about 50% of this as well. Had it not been for the lockout, the cramming of all these games in a shortened season, this would’ve never happened. No preseason, no camp, multiple back to back to back games. I mean, this is ridiculous. Same thing happened to Dwight Howard, Al Horford (although he is injury prone), and now Iman Shumpert of the Knicks. Looks like Chicago’s gonna have to wait another year. Take it from this blogger who has torn his ACL in each knee (the most recent 2 yeas ago), it ain’t fun, and rehab’s no walk in the park either. But I’m guessing with the money they have invested in Rose, along with the state of the art facilities and medical staff, Rose should be ready to go by November. As for the playoffs, looks like the Heat are gonna coast to the finals.
It’s time to give credit where it’s due. Derrick Rose is the quickest point guard in the league. Derrick Rose is the best scoring point guard in the league. Derrick Rose is averaging 8.5 assists and 1 steal a game. Dare I say he’s the best point guard in the league? Remember, a point guard has to have that unique ability to score, penetrate, and dish. And oh yeah, some defense wouldn’t be bad. I always liked Steve Nash but he never played defense. I love Rajon Rondo but he’s not enough of an offensive threat.Deron Williams is probably the only comparable guard out there, but he’s got 4 more years of miles on him and I’m pretty sure that Rose is a step quicker. I’ve never seen someone change directions quicker than Rose. Let’s not forget Chris Paul. The epitome of a true point guard. 16 ppg and almost 10 dimes, not bad, but not Rose. One last kid I’m gonna mention is Russell Westbrook. I think him and Rose are gonna be going at it for the next decade. I still think Rose is the cream of the crop. The scary thing is he’s only 23 years old and has years of getting better. We already saw his 3-point shot improve from 22% in his rookie year to 36% this year. His points per game, free throw %, assists, steals, blocks and rebounds are all increasing each yet. I’d like to see his shooting percentage over 45% but he’s pretty much on the border. Enough strokin’ this guy. He’s money. All we gotta do is give him a nickname, ‘cuz “Pooh” ain’t cutting it. P.S. he’s got the prettiest teardrop floater in the league.
Here’s my prediction, Lebron James is going to stay in Cleveland. All this hype, all this drama, all the build-up over the past 2 years and all we’re going to get is an anti-climactic ending. I”m going to be VERY disappointed if this Lebronathon has no surprise ending. I want to see a Lebron going to Chicago or New York. Hell, I’ll even take a Lebron headed to New Jersey. Cleveland is not a place where you want to live for the rest of your life, especially if you have all that money. Go live it up in New York. Make some history with Lebron. You’ll have the biggest city with the best fans under your control. I can see why he wouln’t want to go to Chicago, even though he would make the Bulls instant favorites to win it all. The King probably doesn’t want to be compared to Jordan the rest of his life. I might even consider going to the Nets. With their new billionaire owner, there’s no limit what this team can do. Plus, he’d be matched up with point guard Devin Harris and Brook Lopez. Not too bad of a consolation gift. If there’s any truth to Mo Evans banging Lebron’s mom, then I would expect the King to leave. But otherwise, I have a bad feeling that on Thursday, the Lebron pinata is about to break open and no candy’s gonna fall out.
First day of NBA Free Agency and looks like the Knicks and the Nets got the jump on Lebron with the first meetings with the King. Seems like the Hawks are gonna give Joe Johnson a $120 million, 6 year contract. That’s gotta go up as one of the most ridiculous contracts ever. I like Joe Johnson, but he’s nothing but a #3 option. This guy can’t lead a team to a Championship. He didn’t do it with the Suns and hasn’t done it with all that firepower the Hawks have.
I am kinda pumped to see where Lebron is going. I’m gonna be very disappointed if this guy stays in Cleveland. If I’m Lebron, Chicago or the New York is probably the best situation. Chicago because they have the best chance in winning if Lebron goes there. A Derek Rose/Lebron combo would be deadly for the next decade. New York would be a good choice because other than LA, its the best place to live. I LOVE the city of New York. Sure the Knicks are in shambles and sure they have a subpar front office. BUT… Lebron on that teams puts ’em straight into the playoffs. If they re-sign David Lee and 1 more free agent (Stoudamire/Bosh/Boozer) the Knicks will be favorites to come out of the East. I’m not sure of the cap implications, but New York better make something BIG happen.
If I’m Dwayne Wade, I’m leaving Miami too. Look at Kevin Garnett. He spent most his life being “loyal” to the Timberwolves and got nowhere. He finally left, and got 1 ring. 1 ring for possibly one of the greatest power forwards to every play the game is a SHAME. Dwayne Wade needs to think about going to Chicago too. It’s a great fit for him. Miami needs A LOT of pieces to become a real contender.
Chris Bosh is one guy who is definitely leaving his team. This guy’s a stud. He’s going to make his team an instant playoff contender, and if they are already, a finals favorite. I see him going to either Miami to play with Bosh or the Knicks. If I’m Bosh, money’s a secondary issue. I look to see where Lebron and Wade land. Teaming up with Lebron is the first choice unless Chicago puts out an offer he can’t refuse. Playing alongside Wade is cool, but in Miami they’re nothing but a second round playoff bust.
I’m pumped about this offseason. Hopefully, teams don’t blow their chances of landing someone big by panicking and pissing money away on the wrong talent. No offense to Joe Johnson, but he’s just not the man. No offense to Darko Milicic, but why the hell would the T-Wolves offer him a 4 yr, 20 million offer? This kid’s been in the league for 7 years, a #2 pick in the draft, and his best year, averaged 8 points and 5.4 rebounds a game. This is why the T-Wolves suck. Not Darko’s fault, just managements fault. Congrats to Darko for getting his.
P.S. I would love to see Dirk Nowitzki end up somewhere else. He’s a good players in a bad system.
And the #1 pick of the NBA draft is…. John Wall of the Kentucky Wildcats. Hearing those words must be euphoric. Something finally went right for the Washington Wizards. After a tumultuous season with all the Gilbert Arenas and Javaris Critterton debacle, this team, THIS CITY, finally is headed the right way. First, the Nationals’ Stephen Strasburg surpasses all expectations and now Wall. It’s a good time to be living in the nation’s capital. Wall averaged 17 points, 4 rebounds and over 6 assists a game in college. Sure it’s not the NBA, but this kid’s projected to be a star and I’m a believer. I also like the rumors about Washington acquiring Kirk Hinrich from Chicago. This kid’s a true point guard and has that “I hate to lose” attitude. Alongside a scorer like Wall, it would be a smooth transition from Derek Rose. For Chicago, it frees up cap space for the Lebron James sprint about to start in a week. If I’m Washington, I try to move Gilbert Arenas as soon as possible, maybe try to get a big man. I wouldn’t want Arenas and his gangsta bullshit to touch or even be in the same room as Wall. Remember when Portland gave away Zach Randolph after they drafted Greg Oden? Hopefully, we’ll never mention Wall and Oden in the same sentence again.
37 points, 12 rebounds, 11 assists, 2 steals, 1 block… Those are stats from one game folks… ROYAL stats from the King. Lebron James is going to win the NBA Championship this year. There is no doubt about it. He can not be stopped. I don’t care who is guarding him. I don’t even think that he needs help from his teammates. All he has to do is clear it out, iso, and take his defender(s) to the rack. Or, he can pull up from half court like he did today at the end of the 3rd quarter and nail a 3 pointer from RANGE. I’m gonna love it when they eliminate the Boston Celtics, who might have the EASIEST first round match-up in the Miami Heat. The city of Cleveland is going to be set back 20 years if Lebron James signs with another team next year.
How many times can you utilize the 1 handed floater? Derrick Rose single handedly, LITERALLY, beat the the King and his Cleveland Cavaliers tonight. I’ve never seen so many 1 handed floaters from so many different areas; inside/outside, 6ft, 15ft. This guy is sick. I’m gonna love watching this guy for the next 10 years. He has to get a little more aggressive though. He let his team blow a 21 point lead.
I haven’t changed my mind about the series though, the Cavs are still gonna win, in 5 (no sweep though). Other than Rose being ridiculous, I was reminded of another thing tonight… the King can’t be stopped. In fact, I’m going to take it a step further… Lebron James is the best player in the NBA. Not only is he the King, but he’s the God as well. His outside shooting now demands respect. The guy can nail all kinds of threes. I don’t know why they lost this game? Maybe they were bored? Maybe it’s the the mafia? I guarantee you that they (Cavaliers) will win the next game. Cavs’ big men Zydrunas Ilgauskas and Shaq were nowhere to be found. Nice to see Mo Williams having a decent playoffs after his choke job last year. Even with that poor performance from the Cavs, they still had a chance to pull it out at the end. Lebron James went one on one and either scored, assisted, or got fouled every time. He might be able to do this every single possession. This might be that one game where even though they lost, the Cavs can feel pretty good about themselves. I guarantee you that no one in the Cleveland locker room is worried (maybe Mike Brown a little). Props to the Bulls for not quitting… who knows, maybe they pull this off??? NOT!!!
Chicago v. Cleveland: I love watching the Bulls play. Derek Rose is awesome. Unfortunately, they have no chance against the Cavs. Lebron is on a mission this year. There is noone that is going to stop this team. I don’t care what other 4 players are on the court with him. Cavs in 4, bring out the brooms. Not this year Rose, you’re gonna need to make a big off-season signing (hint hint: Bosh).
Milwaukee v. Atlanta: I don’t even know how the Bucks got into the playoffs. I know about that kid Brandon Jennings (good move playing in Europe for 1 year). I also know they’ve lost Bogut for the year. The Jennings/Salmons combo is solid, but not good enough. Who’s going to step up for the Bucks? Atlanta is gonna roll over these guys in 4. Might be the easiest first round matchup in the playoffs. I don’t even think I need to go into the strengths of this team, but I’ll name a few just for kicks: J. Johnson, Horford, J. Smith, Bibby, Jamal Crawford, Mo Evans.
Miami v. Boston: I’m not sure who I hate more, Boston or Denver. Since they won 2 years ago, Kevin Garnett has turned from a role model into a thug. Paul Pierce has game, I can’t even hate on him. Ray Allen is a has been that has 2 things going for him, his FT% and his steaky 3 pointers. D-Wade might be playing his last series as a Heat. Beasley’s the only other Heat I can name and frankly, he’s not getting it done either. Can’t wait to see what happens to Dwayne in the offseason… Boston in 5.
Charlotte v. Orlando: Interesting match-up here. On one hand, you have the reigning Eastern Conference Champs, big Dwight Howard, healthy Jameer Nelson, improving J.J. Reddick, and two key offseason pickups in Matt Barnes and Vince Carter. I actually think Barnes’ presence on the court is more vital than Vince’s. Kudos for the Bobcats for making the playoffs. Stephen Jackson has turned this team around. Gerald Wallace has always been a box-score filler. He his one of the best defenders in the league and one of the hardest guys to guard. Depth will be a problem for this team as well. They will give Orlando a run for their money but the Magic should pull this off in 5.
OK, it’s supposed to be 13, but technically, their streak ended at 13 games. The Portland Trail Blazers‘ win streak ended at 13 games on Monday as their bid for 14 fell at Salt Lake City against the Utah Jazz, 101-111. No big deal, everyone’s gotta lose at some point. But the true test for these youngsters will be their next game. Will they bounce back or start a losing streak of their own? Luckily, their next opponent is the worst team in the league in the Minnesota Timbewolves and then they’ll face the Bulls right after. So let’s go Blazers, we’re all rooting for you. Well, all except Wolves’ and Bulls’ fans I guess…