For all the marbles

May 30, 2010

The 2008 champions and 2009 champions go at it once again, but this time in the Finals. A classic rivalry that is a much watch for any basketball fan. Looking back at the 2008 Finals where both of these teams met was victorious for Boston and painful for Kobe Bryant and his Lakers. Back then, it was pretty much a one-sided Finals match. The Lakers had Andrew Bynum out of the series and Trevor Ariza coming off a broken foot after missing 8 weeks and returning in the Western Conference Finals of Game 2 where he did not look like himself and wasn’t a factor in both series. The Celtics on the other hand had the Big 3 Allen, Pierce, and Garnett for the first year. The Celtics took home the trophy on the night of Game 6 with a 39 point victory over the Lakers.

Kobe Bryant definitely has not forgotten that image in his head.

This series will create a lot of attention on a certain number of players. Lets start with Andrew Bynum. We know he’s not playing at his fullest form. His knee swells up after every practice and game the Lakers have. Not playing in the 2008 Finals to help out his team, the question is “Will he step up this time?”. Even with the injury Bynum and his coach Jackson believe he can still play under the pain of his knee. Fans wonder will Bynum bring his A game or just be a useless factor in this series.

Another person on the spotlight is Kevin Garnett. He was a total dominant force in the 2008 Finals averaging 20 points and 10 rebounds per game in the playoffs and had a double-double in every game of the Finals that year. This playoff season, he is averaging a low 14 points and 8 rebounds per game. The one time of the most dominant PF’s in the NBA is now an aged player without a bounce. Can Garnett step up and shape up to his new form or will he let his Celtic buddies fall in the Finals?

Another huge factor that comes into play is the Lakers bench mob. Their bench consist of Lamar Odom, Shannon Brown, Jordan Farmar, Luke Walton, Sasha Vujacic, and DJ Mbenga. So far, Lamar has been the only player stepping up off the bench. Farmar and Brown are nowhere to be found. Luke and Sasha have been lost in the playoffs. And DJ has

Kobe Bryant shooting over Ray Allen

only played a total of 4:47 in the playoffs. If the Lakers want to win the title this year against the Celtics, their bench must help take some weight off of Kobe and Gasol’s shoulders.

Lastly, Kendrick Perkins has been solid for the Celtics on the defensive end. It’s just a matter of time before he gets his next technical and being suspended for the next game. Knowing Phil Jackson, he likes to get into the heads of the opponents. Whether  it’s criticizing Kevin Durant’s FT line frenzy and taking a jab at Nash on his opinion of being the best coach in the league, either way, Phil Jackson came out of the series bringing the Lakers out on top. Kendrick can lose his cool easily and Phil Jackson could take advantage of that. You have to play smart in this series, and outsmarting Perkins in this series will take a toll on Boston.

This time the Finals are different. Both teams have a handful of former and current All-Stars Boston (5) Lakers (3). Both teams are the top two teams in the league with rings. Of course they both want to add another ring to their collection. Having all these star players and great teams battling it out in the Finals is simply classic and entertainment for any basketball fan. The Lakers are out for revenge and the Celtics want to remind the Lakers why they beat them in 2008.

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WCF and ECF

May 18, 2010

Lakers vs Suns

Game 1 was a huge statement by the Lakers. Despite Kobe being hurt, he did work. The Black Mamba dropped 40 points on the Suns and helped the Lakers win by 21 points. The Suns had a good start to the game but ended up looking sluggish around the half. If the Suns want to win the series, they need to really control the momentum which they did with the Spurs. Although Kobe has been scoring 30+ games, I wonder will he have enough gas left in the tank to last till the end of the Finals? When the series shift over to Phoenix, for sure the fans in Arizona will have the Suns back. It’s just the Lakers job to put the crowd out early.

Lakers in 5

Magic vs Celtics

The Celtics took a convincing Game 1. The Game seemed lopsided until the 4th quarter when Jameer Nelson made a put back layup. After that, the Celtics just played smart having Ray Allen hold the ball to get fouled for free throws. Allen has to be one of the best players to close out the game in a clutch situation. Game 1 was a lesson for the Magic to learn. Rasheed and Perkins stopped Dwight in that Game 1. Other players like VC, Lewis, and Nelson need to step it up big to replace Howard’s presence if it doesn’t show. This series will be full of physical play and drama (always involves the Celtics). Many fans say there will be a Final rematch between the Lakers and Celticsin 08, but I believe the Magic’s athleticism will overcome the Celtics veteran skills.

Magic in 7

About the draft lottery tonight, I went on ESPN and used the lottery machine thingy majinger. I got the 76ers getting the number one pick overall. Wall will be number one regardless which team gets him. His value is too high to give up. He can also be a trading piece.


He’s just Nashty

May 10, 2010

I got one thing to ask Steve Nash….

WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED?!?!

Well, as you see, in Game 4 against the Spurs Nash got hit with a nasty eye injury. It’s not his first time getting hit in the eye by the Spurs too. But Nash still stayed in the game to play with that painful blow to the face. I respect Nash a lot. Not that he’s one of the best point guards ever to play in the game, but he’s a straight up Warrior. Broken nose, stitches around the eyes a few times, and at age 36, the man is still putting his body out there and helping his team win. The Suns actually swept the Spurs, which surprised many of us basketball fans. With Nash, the Suns can easily be the second best team in the West behind the Lakers. I won’t be shocked if they upset the Lakers in the Western Conference finals (assuming if the Lakers win one more game to beat out the Jazz).

In other news, besides the Suns advancing into the Western Conference finals, the Magic also did the same against the Hawks in the East by sweeping them. The Magic made it seem effortless. The Celtics and Cavs are still battling a close series with both teams winning 2 a piece.

Congratulations to all the players who won the regular season MVP to the All-NBA team awards. I hope to be updating more frequently soon. Sorry, I’m a college student, got MY kind of finals I need to study for also.


2nd Round Predictions

May 2, 2010

So my first round predictions were somewhat off… I didn’t expect that many upsets in the Western Conference. Now let’s take a jab at the second round.

Lakers vs Jazz

The Lakers took game one, but I don’t seem convinced with their confidence level yet. They struggled with the Thunder which I’m totally not surprised with. KD and his crew gave the defending champs a great run. The Jazz upset the untamed and uncoachable (unless you’re George Karl) Denver Nuggets. The biggest problems with these two teams are injuries. Bynum has a tear in his knee and Sasha is out for the Lakers. Jazz have a banged up DWill, hurt Kirilenko, and Okur who is out. Kobe stepped it up in game one and I think it’s obvious nobody can guard him from the Jazz. Other than that, each team is pretty evenly matched. Except coach Sloan I don’t think beat Phil Jackson’s team in a series yet.

Lakers in 6

Suns vs Spurs

I remember a few years back, these two teams were building a great rivalry between them. Players included were Bruce Bowen, Steve Nash, Raja Bell, and Robert Horry. Now, Steve Nash is the only player still playing in the same team which was involved in the altercations. The Spurs I believe pulled a lucky one against the Mavs. They have the talent and experience to match with Dallas, but Dallas seemed like they had more names to get them by. The Suns on the other hand shouldn’t have an excuse for losing the first game against Portland when they didn’t have Roy. Luckily, they won the series in game 6. This series will be fun to watch, I’m looking for drama in this one. Let’s see if the Richard Jefferson experiment REALLY sets in this series.

Spurs in 7

Cavaliers vs Celtics

The Celtics are aging quicker than you can say LeBron James. I think the Cavs “let” the Bulls take that one win. IF they wanted to sweep, I bet James would have gotten them to. The Celtics on the other hand whupped the Heat’s behind which I thought was a surprise. But this series should have a lot of complaining by the men in green. It seems like they can never take a loss…

Cavs in 6

Magic vs Hawks

After game 7, the Hawks are going to be exhausted facing the well rested sweeping Magic. As far as talent goes for Atlanta, I don’t see them putting more effort to this series, but taking a step back and preparing for next season. Magic I think is the scariest team right now in the East.

Magic in 5


It’s that time of year again…

April 17, 2010

The playoffs are finally set. As a huge NBA fan, I’m extremely excited for especially this part of the season. Let’s hope this year’s playoffs is better than last years with more thrills, drama, and heart in the game.

Before I make my predictions for the playoff series, I wanted to hand out the season awards! This season had plenty of memorable highlights such as Kobe’s game hitting winners and a Corey Brewer poster. Other than just game action highlights, lets highlight the the key factors that stood out this season.

Coach of the Year Award: Scott Brooks

This was a pretty tight race between Brooks and a few other notable coaches, but Brooks stood out most with his inexperience in coaching an NBA team, especially a young team. Scott knew how to keep the core of the Oklahoma City Thunder together to win games. Finally hitting the 50 game win mark on the last game of the season, Brooks and his Thunder team are finally heading to the playoffs which this team haven’t been in years. Brooks deserves a moment to shine especially when facing the power house Lakers in the first round. 8th seed = 50 wins?!?! Never seen that before!

Runner up – Scott Skiles

Defensive Player of the Year Award: Dwight Howard

Easy to say, Howard is a monster on the boards and blocks. Averaging 13 re’s and nearly 3 blocks a game, it’s inevitable that Dwight would get this award. I remember Dwight averaging something similar last season also, and he won last year too. So why not give him the award this year? Make sense right?

Runner up – Gerald Wallace

Most Improved Player of the Year Award: Andrew Bogut

ESPN is ranking Aaron Brooks higher than Bogut. I totally think different. Look, Bogut has played nearly the same amount of time on the court as last year and Brooks has a +10 mins this season. Of course Brooks will get his chance to score more and shoot more when there isn’t a solid shooter and star on that team. Now onto Bogut. Andrew improved in blocks, points, and his leadership for the Bucks. Bogut may be finally living up to his number 1 overall name. Unfortunately, Andrew is seriously hurt after a gruesome injury recently. Best wishes to him, and I really hope he wins this award.

Runner up – Aaron Brooks

Sixth Man of the Year Award: Jamal Crawford

When you think of big shots, you think of Kobe Bryant. When you think of 4 point plays, Jamal HAS to come to mind. He leads the NBA in 4 point plays and he’s doing it off the bench. I still remember when Crawford was back in Chicago and he once scored that 50+ point game. That wasn’t too long ago. Now he’s a sixth man on a great young team where I believe have a shot at upsetting the top East teams. Jamal will be that X-Factor for the Hawks if they want to get through the playoffs strong.

Runner up – Anderson Varejao

Rookie of the Year Award: Brandon Jennings

He probably won’t get this award, but he definitely deserves it. For two big reasons. Yes, he brought the Bucks to the playoffs and no he didn’t do it alone, but with the help of Salmons and Bogut, yes I heard it many times. Thing is, Jennings is part of the reason why they ARE in the playoffs as a 6th seed in the first place. Secondly, he is practicly leading this team. He came into Milwaukee having huge shoes to fill since Redd was out. No one expected a breakout season by Bogut. The huge reason why Bogut is good is because Jennings is making him good. Tyreke Evans and Stephen Curry are one man shows, rookies like to do that. But both of them are on a losing team. You come into the league to perform well, but to also win games, and that’s what Jennings is doing with a mediocre team.

Runner up – Tyreke Evans

Most Valuable Player Award: LeBron James

If you want a complete player, LeBron James is the answer. KD has many years to improve himself. (Even though he is having an incredible season). I hate to break it, but James would be snubbed if he didn’t get it again this season. His stats were similar to last season’s. Just that now, the Cavs have a much better record. I don’t need to explain a lot really, just watch a Cavs game and tunnel in on LeBron.

Runner up – Kevin Durant


Game previews for 3/3/10

March 3, 2010

Reggie Evans from the Toronto Raptors recently got voted for being the "dirtiest player" in the NBA today.

Here is a look at what’s yet to come for tonight’s games:

Philadelphia 76ers vs. Atlanta Hawks – My hopes and prayers go out to Iverson and his family. With Iverson off the team to help his ailing daughter, it’s nothing new to the 6ers. A.I. played a total of 25 games and the 76ers won 10 with him. Jrue Holiday has been doing well in Iverson’s place. The Hawks on the other hand will have no trouble closing this game out with a win. I believe the most interesting match-up to me tonight will be Al Horford and Samuel Dalembert. The 2 bigs don’t score too much, but play defense very well. Let’s see who can be aggressive on both ends. I predict the Hawks will win by a good 11 points.

Golden State Warriors vs. Orlando Magic – Dwight Howard finally has been getting more touches of the ball to score ever since the All-Star break. The Magic excel if they let Dwight score 20 plus a game. Howard leads the league in rebounds and blocks, he’s probably going to receive the Defensive Player Award of 2010. But this game isn’t going to be about defense. GS and Magic has shooters left and right. This game will be a scoring frenzy with Curry, Ellis, Carter, Nelson, and Lewis. Obviously, this game will go to the Magic. I’d say Orlando should win by 7 points. By the way, Biedrins REALLY needs to shake up his horrible shooting at the line.

Detroit Pistons vs. New York Knicks – Both of these teams probably won’t see the playoffs. Eddy Curry MIGHT have a chance to play in this game since the Knicks are in need of a big man. That decision is however in Mike D’ Antoni’s hands. The Pistons have had 2 heartbreaking losses in the last 4 games losing by 5 to the Nuggets and Celtics. With all the talent the Pistons have, they just can’t seem to put their puzzle pieces together. If I had to choose a winner, I’m going with Knicks winning by 3 points. Why? Big Ben is hurt.

Cleveland Cavaliers vs. New Jersey – Recently, the Nets have been desperate to get fans to go to their games just to fill up the stands! Their last idea was everyone over 18 gets their tax done for free, which is great to me. Other than that idea, I liked the one where if you bought 10 or more tickets, the team would buy a jersey for you regardless of any team. This game is probably going to be filled since everyone wants to see LBJ. But too bad they won’t be receiving a number 6 jersey if fans purchased 10 or more tickets. Easy to say, the Cavs will put on a show for New Jersey since that can be a designated place for LeBron next season. Cavs by 14.

Charlotte Bobcats vs. Boston Celtics – The Bobcats seem to be juggling their record around. I really hope they find a spot in the playoffs because they can match up well with the Cavs or Celtics since they beat both teams. The Celtics have been struggling lately, but picked it up with a win against the Pistons. Pierce is finally back so it gives the men in green a lift. However, I believe the Bobcats will take this game in the end just like they did before. Bobcats by 4 is my guess.

Memphis Grizzlies vs. New Orleans Hornets – This game is important for both teams. Chances are, neither team can make the playoffs. But either team can create a season ending run with wins. Darren Collison has been playing incredibly solid in place of injured Chris Paul. David West has also been putting much effort in games. The Grizzlies look to bounce back in a groove they were in when the new year began. This game I believe will become intense as pressure builds up for both teams. In the end, I say New Orleans takes it by 2.

Washington Wizards vs. Milwaukee Bucks – Andray Blatche is blowing UP! What has happened to him? He eat or drink something wrong? After the trade deadline, Blatche makes it look like he’s single handedly putting the Wizards close in games. Don’t forget about the Bucks in the playoff race. They have come back in the running with the held of G/F John Salmons. Honestly, I just want young Blatche to go crazy again tonight. Bucks should win this by 4.

Sacramento Kings vs. Houston Rockets – Kevin Martin will face off his former team for the first time since the Kings traded him. On the other hand, Carl Landry who was in running for the sixth man award will also face off his former team the Rockets. This game will have some friendly play to it. But I believe the more serious team will be the Rockets. After the trade, they are looking to put themselves back into the playoffs. Yesterday, I looked at Stephen Curry’s stats and it gave me a feeling he might receive ROY this year. When I checked out the Kings game yesterday, I was sold on who is the ROY and that is Tyreke Evans. Evans vs. Brooks, this will be fun. Houston by 5.

Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Dallas Mavericks – Al Jefferson screwed up at a bad time. This game is quite lopsided for one team to win of course, and that would be for the Mavs to win. Flynn and Kidd will be fun to watch tonight since I see Flynn as a bright point guard and Kidd’s veteran skills will teach Jonny a lesson or two. Dirk will be Dirk and will continue to give his best efforts on the court night in and night out. Kevin Love will probably replace Jefferson for PF or C. Look for Brewer or Hollins to have a better game tonight. Mavs by 8.

Oklahoma City vs. Denver Nuggets – A huge playoff preview game. KD vs. Melo. Does it get any better? Both young, both talented, both leaders, and both leading in PPG behind LeBron in the league. The Nuggets have a more stacked team on paper, but the Thunder have tricks up their sleeves where they can pull out a win. Expect this game to be extremely intense between the two stars. Both players need this win to prove a point for their team. My pick: Nuggets by 2 since OKC played yesterday night.

Indiana Pacers vs. Portland Trailblazers – Pacers will come off a butt whooping night by the Lakers. Matching up with the Blazers tonight will be difficult since Indiana has been cold in their last ten games only winning 2. Indy’s D just falls apart. BRoy will have no problem roughing the Pacers tonight and slashing through the careless D. Blazers should win by a good 9 points tonight.

Phoenix Suns vs. Los Angeles Clippers – I expect this game to be uptempo in not just the Suns side, but the Clippers too. The score can easily be predicted to be over a combined 210 points. Clippers picked up a big win against the Utah Jazz. The acquisition of Drew Gooden has helped the Clips out in a big way. Suns crushed the Nuggets in their last win. The reason maybe because Ty Lawson didn’t give that bench spark? Naw. The Nuggets should know better with all the thug talent they got. This game will be fun to watch also. Suns by 3.