What are the chances the Indiana Pacers beat the Miami Heat? What are the chances my San Antonio Spurs (that’s right, I said MY Spurs) can get a break this NBA Finals and play the Pacers? My guess is that the Heat will beat the Pacers in 7 but wouldn’t it have been nice if head coach Frank Vogel didn’t f-up game 1? Indiana would be up 3-1 right now and just chillin. Instead, they’re tied 2-2, and have to start from scratch. I believe the odds of winning the series are in favor of the game 5 winner so I’ll definitely be rooting for the Pacers. Indiana has played the Heat tougher than anyone this post-season and I’m giving them about a 35% chance to pull off this upset.
On a side note, I do think the NBA needs to crack down on all this flopping. It makes me sick. Back in days of the Detroit Pistons and Celtics v. Lakers, any player would get knocked out if they ever flopped like Lebron and David West did the other day. The $5,000 fine they levied on these guys is a joke (unfortunately, his name slips my mind right now). Oh well, they don’t make them like they used to and clearly the game has changed. I must say though, I’m actually enjoying these finals. If you have any good karma left, throw it the Spurs way. They deserve to win. They will win. They’re the prototypical franchise with ideal players. No complaining, no talks about contract extensions. Heck, Parker and Duncan don’t even have twitter accounts! With that said, let’s go Spurs!
Tim Duncan just gave Eric Dampier and Brendan Haywood a free class in Big Man Camp. Talk about Mr. Fundamentals: 25 points, 17 rebound and 0 turnovers, not to mention COUNTLESS clutch shots in the final minutes of the game. The Spurs did what they had to, and that was steal home-court advantage from the Mavericks. They’ve tied up the series at one a piece and are headed back to San Antonio. No one on the Mavs can guard Tim Duncan. Not even Dirk. This victory came at a perfect time, just as owner Mark Cuban opened his big mouth and gave the Spurs some extra bulletin board material in saying that he hates the Spurs. Well Mr. Cuban, you just got 1 more reason to hate them tonight. When will the Mavericks learn to play defense? You cannot win by outshooting a team. Richard Jefferson paying dividends, dropping 17 in the first half. Manu Ginobli putting the nail in the coffin with a 3 point dagger. Tony Parker, though he played well, took a couple of bad shots in the 4th that could’ve almost cost the Spurs the game. F-U-N-D-A-M-E-N-T-A-L. Dump it in to the big man, if no double team comes, then Duncan eats you up. If the double team comes, kick it out for a wide open shot. Simple. That’s their game plan Dallas, now try to stop it.
Portland v. Phoenix: The Phoenix Suns have been playing like the Suns of old. Amare Stoudamire finally looks like the beast he was a few years ago. Steve Nash is still one of the top point guards in the league. They’re facing a depleted Portland team without their star Brandon Roy. Marcus Camby is one of those proven “losers” who will never be on a winning team. I like Batum, LaMarcus and A-Miller but they just don’t have enough firepower without Roy. Neither one of these teams is advancing past the second round anyway. I’ll take the Suns in 7.
Dallas v. San Antonio: Remember a couple months ago when the Mavericks were streaking, I think they won 13 in a row? Well, streaks over now. The Caron Butler hype has died down. It’s the Spurs that are playing the best basketball in the West. It’s too bad these two teams had to match up in the first round. While offensively both these teams have the ability to win the game, same ol’ story for the Mavs…no defense, no fundamentals. Enter the “Big F” himself in Tim Duncan, with the best offseason pickup of the year in Richard Jefferson, and you got a recipe for success. As long as Tony Parker can play like he used to, and Ginobli continue what he’s doing, the Spurs should take this series in 6, and the only reason it goes that far is ’cause the Mavs have home court advantage.
Utah v. Denver : This is going to be the most interesting match-up in the first round. I would love to see the Nuggets fail (man do I hate J.R. Smith) but they just have a little more swagger and tougness than the Jazz. Carmelo Anthony is a bonafide superstar that can take over any game and Mr. Big Shot Billups has been to the promised land and knows hot to get there again. I am concerned however about the depth of the Jazz. Paul Milsap has been a bust since signing that big offseason contract extension. Boozer and D-Will are solid but there’s no one else that you can rely on (maybe Okur). Jazz are hurting at shooting guard and small forward, AK-47 is injured. Kyle Korver can only shoot 3s. It’s gonna be gritty but the Nuggets should wrap this up in 5.
Oklahoma City v. Lakers: Now on paper, you would take the Lakers in 4. BUT, the Lakers have taken care of business all year. They don’t put teams away when they should. Their bench has been MIA all year. Kobe’s finger is STILL an issue. Bynum’s health is still in question. With that said, I do expect a HUGE series from Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom. Nobody is gonna be able to stop these guys. The Thunder, on the other hand, have nothing to lose. Kevin Durant is having an MVP type season. But that’s it. Russell Westbrook FG% and 3pt% is horrible. Sure, he can drive and dish and dunk but if he can’t stretch the defense with his outside shooting, they’re gonna have problems. Plus, with the size the Lakers have, I don’t think the Thunder is going to do much in the paint. Look for the Lakers to outshine the Thunder, LA in 4 (did I just say that?)
It’s time… playoff time. Probably the hottest team in the league, the San Antonio Spurs are gelling and peaking at the perfect time. They beat the Lakers in LA a few days ago. Tonight, they pounded the Timberwolves. Now I know the ‘wolves suck but for the Spurs to have everyone on the active roster to score at least 4 points and 8 guys in double digits (excluding Manu and George Hill), that’s sick. Tony Parker is coming back from the DL and this is probably one team that you don’t wanna face en route to the playoffs. I did say the Richard Jefferson pickup was probably the “impactiest” move in the offseason but it took a while for this guy to mesh with the team and figure out his role playing alongside Manu. But after following this team over the past month or so, the team that I once thought was old and over the hill is probably looking like one of the freshest teams out there. Winning the Championship has a lot to do with momentum and the Spurs have plenty of it. Only concern of this team is their bench. Not as bad as the Lakers’ but still a concern… The West is definitely up for grabs…
Guess what? Right after I rip Billups and the Pistons apart for not showing up against the Mavericks last night, they do something stupid and beat the Spurs in San Antonio. Inconsistency, the mark of a championship team? I don’t think so. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a good thing that they won. They beat the Champion Spurs. But they’re not dominating. You need to win night in and night out to prove to me that you’re worth something in the NBA. Don’t show up when you want to. Maybe I’m being super-hard on these guys but I guess I expect more from them. Heck, I picked them as the top team in the East.
Stop the presses! Stop the presses! A professional basketball player has cheated on his wife! O.k, allegedly. Rumors are Tony Parker of the San Antonio Spurs has cheated on his wife, Eva Longoria. With whom you ask? How about a women he met at his own wedding! As wrong as this is, isn’t there a part of you that wants this story to be true? It’s just so funny to me! I love to hear about these “perfect” relationship going down in balls of fire. I know… it’s mean. I can’t help it. Unfortunately for me, my gut tells me it’s not true. Parker seems like a down to earth guy and the flingstress? Alexandra Paressant, the ex-girlfriend of todays best soccer player, Brazil’s Ronaldinho, who by the way is suing her. Not like she’s got the greatest track record. As for Parker? “I love my wife.” He says. “She’s the best thing in my life, and I have never been happier.”
So good that when Tim Duncan goes down, they don’t miss a beat. They beat the Portland Trailblazers in the game that Timmy only played 11 minutes. They then went on to beat the Dallas Mavericks and the Utah Jazz. Now that’s sick. Probably one of the most complete teams in the league, the San Antonio Spurs have it all. Tony Parker, Manu Ginobli leading the way on the scoring end. You also have Bruce Bowen on the defensive end. Brent Barry and Michael Finley are great weapons off the bench. Their big men combo of Oberto and Elson are also great rebounders and role players. And of course, who can forget BIG SHOT ROB. The NBA title is their’s to lose. But don’t kid yourselves, no Timmy, no Ring.
You never realize how important a player is to his team until he goes down for a few games. We’ve seen some key injuries this season to marquee players, leaving their respective teams running around with their head’s cut off. Let’s start of with Tracy McGrady. Sure the Rockets have Yao Ming and before this season started, I though it was Ming’s team. But after T-Mac went down for a few games because of his back, the Rockets found it hard to replace his 26-5-5 per game. Then you have the Cleveland Cavs, no major player other than Lebron James. What happens, the King goes down with a sprained finger, take away his 27-7-8 and bam, the Cavs drop their last 3. Now it’s the San Antonio Spurs’ turn. The reigning NBA Champs. Tim Duncan goes down with a sprained ankle and knee, probably the worst injury for a big man. Now the Spurs only played 1/2 a game without him and maintained their poise and pounded the Blazers. The real test will come when they face Dallas and Utah on Wednesday and Friday. While suffering the worst of the 3 injuries mentioned, the Spurs probably have the best chance to persevere, as their team has other starts that can drop 30 on a given night (i.e. Parker and Ginobli). You never know how much you need it until it’s gone. Imagine what would happen if the Laker lost Kobe? Dallas losing Dirk? Wade and the Heat (we already saw what happened)? Orlando and Dwight? Forget, don’t imagine it, it hurts too much.
The first game of the 2007-08 NBA season just finished and imagine that, the Spurs won their home opener against the Portland Trailblazers. That’s 10 in a row against Portland, who hung in ’till the very end, but eventually lost, 106-97. It was Championship Ring night for the Spurs with Michael Finley finally getting what he deserved. I can’t help but notice how many times the camera panned to Eva Longoria throughout the evening. We got it TNT, she hot, he’s whipped, they’re married, they’re a superstar couple. She even held Tony Parker’s ring in her hand (not the only thing of Parkers she’s got the clamps on. Not much else to say about the Spurs, other than Tim Duncan with 24 points and 13 boards and Parker and Ginobli following with a combined 35 points. As for Parker’s 2 assists, he might want to look into that.
Let’s turn our heads to the Trailblazers. These guys are actually better than I, or most of the country outside of Oregon, thought they are. LaMarcus Aldridge and Martell Webster led the way with a combined 48 points. Travis Outlaw contributed with 11 off the bench. Rookie of the year Brandon Roy seemed to be bothered by that pesky Bruce Bowen the entire game and only finished with a measly 7 points. The Blazers looked good, but if only they had someone down low that could block shots and give them some presence…hmmmm…Right now I’m having delusions of grandeur of a healthy #1 pick. We miss you Greg Oden.