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THE NBA IS BACK!! MY 2013-2014 NBA PREDICTIONS!!

29 Oct

nba-logoWell kids, the NBA season is finally upon us…happy opening night!!  Last time we left the league, ‘Bron and company were hoisting Mr. O’brien’s trophy….again.  Well, what will this season bring.  For my predictions, I wanted to make it as simple as possible.  So, I am going to give you the teams that will make the playoffs, the conference winners and title winner….with only one reason why each will happen.  Enjoy this years picks and let me know who you think is taking home to title!!

EASTERN CONFERENCE

1.  MIAMI HEAT – Reason:  LeBron James.

2.  BROOKLYN NETS – Reason:  Added a more than serviceable Paul Pierce, KG, J. Terry and AK47 to a team already featuring Deron Williams, Brook Lopez, Joe Johnson, Reggie Evans, Andra Blatche and company…very deep, veteran squad.

3.  INDIANA PACERS – Reason:  Combining the now truly elite Paul George with the Roy Hibbert we saw in the playoffs = lots of wins and a deep playoff run.

4.  CHICAGO BULLS – Reason:  D Rose is back and this team might have been a D Rose away from winning the East last year.

5.  NEW YORK KNICKS – Reason:  If STAT is healthy, this team will challenge anyone in the conference.

6.  DETROIT PISTONS – Reason:  Josh Smith, Greg Monroe, Brandon Jennings and Andre Drummond make up a very nice top four…and the East really falls off after the top 5 teams.

7.  CLEVELAND CAVALIERS – Reason:  Well first, there will be no ping pong magic next year Mr. Gilbert!  But the real reason is that this team has a very nice combo of young talent and savvy vets to crack the top 8…and if Bynum comes up back…the Cavs will be back on the NBA map!

8.  WASHINGTON WIZARDS  – Reasons:  A healthy backcourt of John Wall and Brady Beal will carry this team into the playoffs…and a chance to be swept by Miami.

WESTERN CONFRENCE

1.  SAN ANTONIO SPURS – Reason:  Because they are the best run NBA franchise in the last 25 years, that’s why!

2.  L.A. CLIPPERS – Reason:  This team is absolutely loaded after signing Jared Dudley, JJ Redick, Darren Collison, Antwan Jamison and even Byron Mullens…oh and a certain Glenn Rivers will make sure this team is ready to win every single night.

3.  OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER – Reason:  The emergence of Serge Ibaka will keep this team towards the top of the standing until Westbrook comes back from injury.

4.  HOUSTON ROCKETS – Reason:  They legitimately have 14 players that would be in anyone’s rotation…and the combination of Dwight Howard and James Harden will give this team the ability to finish anywhere between 1-4.

5. GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS – Reason:  A healthy Andrew Bogut adds a new dimension to Steph Curry’s team.

6.  MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES – Reason:   Z-Bo and company have the pieces to compete every single night…but they are just not getting passed the top 5 in the conference this season.

7.  PORTLAND TRAILBLAZERS – Reason:  Lilliard, Aldridge, Wesley Matthews and Batum are a very solid four that will get help from a very nice bench that feature rookie CJ McCollum.

8.  DALLAS MAVERICKS – Reason:  Monta Ellis and Dirk will be able to share enough shot to just squeak into the playoffs over the Denver Nuggets.

CONFERENCE FINALS

EAST:  INDIANA PACERS over MIAMI HEAT – Heat because they still have the big 3 and Indy because if Granger ever stays healthy, he is the missing piece.

WEST:  L.A. CLIPPERS over HOUSTON ROCKETS – Both teams are overloaded with talent…and will both get past the Thunder and Spurs…but Clippers have just a little more.

FINALS

L.A. CLIPPERS over INDIANA PACERS – Great coaching and inside/outside talent that can surround CP3.  Congrats Clipper Nation you are no longer L.A.’s second team!!!

Larry_obrien_championship

TOP 10 WORST NBA LOTTERY PICKS IN THE PAST 10 YEARS

25 Jun

Top-10

 

 

 

 

 

With the NBA Draft just days away, I thought that this week’s Top 10 should focus on just that.  So here are my top 10 worst NBA lottery picks in the past 10 years.  Of course its easy for mnba draft logoe to go back now and bash a GM or a player…but some of these seems like no brainers!  Let me know who you think is the worst lottery pick of all time!

 

darko2003 #2 Darko Milicic – Detroit Pistons:  Oh Darko…the Human Victory Cigar.  I don’t want to put too much on Joe Dumars for taking Darko with the second pick in one of the best drafts in NBA history…almost every team in the league had Dark #2 on their draft boards.   But you just can’t ignore his mediocre career numbers (although he did have a few solid years), the fact that he is no longer in the league and the players that were selected after him.  As in a few guys named Carmelo, D-Wade, Bosh, Kirk Hinrich, David West…ok, ok…I’m being too harsh.  Sorry Dumars!

araujo2004 #8 Rafael Araujo – Toronto Raptors:  At this point you might asking yourself “who?”.  The Brazilian center had two good years at BYU, but played just 3 years in the league and averaged a robust 2.8ppg and 2.8rpg.  All the Raps did was pass on the likes of Kris Humphries, Al Jefferson, Josh Smith, Jameer Nelson and more.

robert swift2004 #12 Robert Swift – Seattle Sonics:  This high school center was taken 12th overall and played 4 injury plagued seasons for SEA/OKC before calling it quits at just 23 years old.  I don’t know…maybe should have grabbed any of the players listed directly above…

fran2005 #11 Fran Vasquez – Orlando Magic:  Where to even start with this one…for a team that was rebuilding like Orlando, to not have your lottery pick ever play a single game for you is NBA Tragedy.  Vasquez is still roaming the courts of Spain and Otis Smith is still waiting for Fran’s agent to call him back.

yaroslav korolev

2005 #12 Yaroslav Korolev – L.A. Clippers:  Two season in the NBA and he scored 39 points more than I did!  Has there ever been two worse back to back lottery picks than Vasquez and Korolev?  Guess the Clips and Magic both didn’t want Danny Granger, Jarrett Jack or David Lee!

patrick obryant2006 #9 Patrick O’Bryant – Golden State Warriors:  The big man put up great per 36 minute stats, but could never get more than 11.3mpg.  After playing for three teams in four season and banking $7.4million, O’Bryant hung up the high tops.  I guess Redick, Rondo, Kyle Lowry or Paul Milsap didn’t test high enough to draft over Pat…or the next guy…

Seattle SuperSonics v Denver Nuggets2006 #10 Mouhammed Sene – Seattle Sonics:  This makes two bust picks in three drafts for Seattle…no wonder they packed up and headed to OKC.  Sene played an underwhelming 3 years in the league, made a cool $6.3million and was out of the league by 22.  Don’t we all wish we were 7footers?!

joe alexander2008 #8 Joe Alexander – Milwaukee Bucks:  Joe had a nice all around career at West Virginia, but just couldn’t put it together in the pros.  After playing for the Bucks and Bulls over two seasons Joe couldn’t cut it with the big boys and hung it up.

hasheem thabeet2009 #2 Hasheem Thabeet – Memphis Grizzlies:  Four year, four teams and career averages of 2.3ppg and 2.8rpg make Thabeet possibly the worst lottery pick in NBA history.  The shot blocking center fromUCONN has never lived up to…well to even Darko numbers!!  And now, since he is 7’3 and still just 26 years old, he gets a shot with one of the league’s best young teams:  OKC.  Oh to be young, tall and in the NBA.  Hasheem has made $15million and has played in just over 2,100 minutes.  Keep working hard my man!

The 10th spot on this list is reserved for the next lottery bust.  Who will it be?  Will Jan Vesely ever be as good as his girlfriend looks?  Or will someone take a chance on the next great foreign born player in this year’s draft, only to have him never come to the league?  Stay tuned!

BROADWAY OR BASKETBALL???

10 Jun

finals logo

tony awards logo

Sunday night featured two big events for two very different audiences:  Game 2 of the NBA Finals and The Tony Awards.  However, if you’re like me, you watched them both (thank you guy that invented the DVR…once again, I will be delivering my first born to you)!

So without further delay, here are the nominees for the 2013 Broadway vs. Basketball Sunday Night Face Off!!  You pick the winner!

BEST PLAY

brons block-LeBron James’ block of Tiago Splitter:  This play will be added to Finals’ highlight films for future generations to see…dare I say this will now be known as THE BLOCK??

-Lucky Guy, written by Nora Ephron:  The late, great Ephron gave us such classics as When Harry Met Sally and Sleepless in Seattle.  Just for that, she gets a nod in this category.  Not to mention the play stars Tom Hanks…and everything Hanks is in deserves positive recognition…yes even you Bosom Buddies!

MOST CRINGE WORTH PERFORMANCE

-Manu Ginobili’s ball handling skills:  Manu, where are thosemanu handles that allow you to euro-step through double teams and tap dance around sideline traps?  Ginobili hands seemed like they were outfitted for a revival of Cats (think about it…can a cat dribble a basketball??….the jokes may or may not get better, so read on at your own risk).

-Mike Tyson dancing in the opening number:  Great to see Iron Mike…not so great to see him try to keep up with the steps of the pro dancers surrounding him.  Tyson’s name was immediately scratched off the potential casting list for Ring it On:  The story of one boxer’s dream to win a national cheerleading championship!

BEST REVIVAL

annie-Annie:  I have a soft spot for this one.  Who doesn’t love that little red-haired orphan and her adventures?!

-Tracy McGrady:  Ok so the box score only shows that T-Mac had 2 boards, 2 assists and a block, but as a T-Mac fan, it was good to see him get in a game during the NBA Finals.

BEST SCORE

lauper-Kinky Boots, Cindy Lauper:  She did give us Girls Just Wanna Have Fun and True Colors.  Enough said.

-Miami Heat’s opening intro music:  I love the White Stripes and Seven Nation Army.  But the Heat’s opening feels like a climb to a climax that never takes place.  I guess nothing beats the Orlando Magic 1995 intro with 2 Unlimited’s You’ll Ready For This!!

BEST SPECIAL GUEST APPEARANCE

-Mike Tyson in the opening number:  Iron Mike’s 2nd nomination.  Did you ever think you would see Doogie Howser and Mike Tyson on the same stage….dancing….singing….at the Tony’s?!?!?!

Host Neil Patrick Harris and retired boxer Mike Tyson perform during the opening number of Tony Awards in New York

BEST NIGHT

-Miami Heat:  In a span of about 10 game minutes, the Heat outscored the Spurts 37-9 and showed everyone why they are the defending champs and why they won 66 games this year.

-Neil Patrick Harris:  Come on….NPH was great again!  There was singing, dancing, magic and charm.  He made the night legen……..wait for it…..dary!

neil patrick harris

BEST VENUE

radio city-Radio City Music Hall:  Radio City.  NYC.  Fauggeetttaboutit….Radio City all the way!!

-American Airlines Arena:  A beautiful basketball building close to the bright lights of South Beach.

BEST DRESSED

-Juwan Howard:  The 40-year old Howard is now a professional high-fiver and suit wearer.  Last night Juwan brought out a terrific, sleek fitting blue suit; complemented by a light blue shirt, dark blue tie, and brown shoes.  What?!  I admire a good suit!!!

BEST SHOES

-Cast of Kinky Boots:  Did you see those knee high get ups??

kinky boots

BEST SUPPORTING ACT

-Mario Chalmers:  Chalmers contributed 19 points and a pair of treys in a must win for the Heat.  Seems like Mario always steps up in the big moments for Miami…nice insureance policy to have when D-Wade is aging before our eyes.

danny green-Danny Green:  In a losing effort Green threw in 17 points on 6 of 6 from the floor, including five from downtown.  It was nice to get some points outside of the Spurs’ big three and Leonard, but it didn’t really matter in this blowout.

richard kind-Richard Kind, The Big Knife:  This character actor is an underrated comedic genius….see Curb Youth Enthusiasm, Mad About You and Spin City.  Was there ever a more nebishy actor in Hollywood?  If you don’t know the word nebishy, find a Jewish grandmother asap!

TOP TEN BOLD PREDICTIONS FOR THE 2013 NBA PLAYOFFS

20 Apr

NBA playoffs-logoYes, I do realize that it’s not Tuesday.  But with the NBA Playoffs set to begin, I figured I would put together a special edition of my Tuesday Top Ten list.

jordan shrugged shouldersAh, the NBA Playoffs.  Some would argue that this is the only time of year to actually watch the NBA.  A time where legends are born.  A time where Havlicek stole ball, Jordan shrugged his shoulders, Willis Reed limped on the court, and Robert Horry became “Big Shot Rob”.  Its a time to gather ’round the old television set with Ernie, Chuck and Kenny (and Shaq) for 40 games in 40 nights.  Time to hear Marv Albert give us his patented “for the win….yes!”.  Its playoff time baby!!  And to set it off right, as I’m sure you are all just bursting with anticipation, here is a special edition Tuesday Top 10:  Top 10 Bold Predictions for the 2013 NBA Playoffs!

piercegarnett1.  THE CELTICS RUN IS OVER – I know, I know…every year we count these guys out…you would think I might have learned my lesson by now.  As long as they still have Pierce, KG and Doc this Celtics team does not lay down for anyone.  Yes, they will compete.  Yes, if Jeff Green shows up on a consistent basis, he and Rondo will be a nice combo for many years to come.  But the core of this team is old and past their prime.  They can no longer compete with the Miamis, Thunders and even Knicks of the league.  So, although we are sure to at least see one more KG snarl and another Pierce clutch shot from the elbow, the Knicks will defeat the C’s and a rebuild can fully begin in New England.

knicks2.  THE KNICKS WILL BATTLE THE HEAT IN THE EASTERN CONFERENCE FINALS – Are they ready?  Are they too old?  Are they good enough?  Which Carmelo will show up?  All the questions that surround this team make it tough to really gauge how good they can really be.  However, the Knicks are the 2nd best team in the east, will defeat Boston, and the winner of the Indy/ATL series, and then give the Heat a run for the Finals.  This is the year that Carmelo finally shows the world that he can carry a team on his back (Syracuse not included).

james harden3.  JAMES HARDEN WILL ACTUALLY LOOK LIKE JAMES HARDEN – Harden had a nice run in the playoffs last season with OKC, but he really fizzled out in the Finals.  Harden’s scoring average of 12.4ppg was close to four points under his season average.  Combined with his 37% shooting from the floor and 32% shooting from downtown, his Finlas’ performance was definitely one to forget.  However, Harden will definitely give his old OKC teammates a glimpse into what could have been had he remained with the Thunder.  Houston will not win this series, but Jimmy Jr. will show why he is one of the top young players in the league.

brooklyn and heat4.  BROOKLYN WILL PUSH THE HEAT TO AT LEAST SIX GAMES – The Nets will definitely struggle to get past the scrappy, Rose-less Bulls, but that series is in the bag….so bring on the Heat!  With D Will looking like…well, looking like D Will again, and Brook Lopez playing some of the best ball of his career, Brooklyn is poised to make their series with Heat an actual series.  Sure the Heat have the best player on the planet, and D Wade has recently looked rejuvenated; but the Nets are deep, well coached, and seem to be thriving at the right time.  Enjoy this great series, its just what the NBA Playoffs are all about :  superstars (Bron, Bosh, Wade, Williams, Lopez, Joe J) leaving everything they have right on the floor!

steph curry5.  THE FIRST ROUND WILL BRING THREE GAME 7’S – Clips/Memphis, Denver/Dubs, and Pacers/Hawks will all go seven games.  The Clippers and Grizzlies will give us a matchup of the two of the league’s hottest teams.  The Clips won a cool seven in a row to close out the season, while the Grizz won 9 of 11 to wrap it up.  And since trading Rudy Gay to the Raptors, the Grizzlies posted a 27-11 record; better than the 22-13 record for L.A. in that same span.  The Pacers and Hawks represent two teams that have struggled to find their identity the whole year.  ATL looked great with a 19-9 start, but they have played below .500 ball since.  Indy looked like the East’s 2nd best team for most of the season, but finished with a mediocre 13-11 record over their last 26 games.  Combine that with the unsteady play of Roy Hibbert and major fatigue setting in for Paul George, and this series has 7 written all over it.  Finally, the Nuggets and the Warriors should provided NBA fans with one of the most entertaining series in this year’s playoffs.  Two deep, high energy teams playing great basketball.  The world will finally get to see how good Steph Curry really is!

dwight howard6.  THE LAKERS WILL LOSE IN THE FIRST ROUND – Ok, so this isn’t really a bold prediction, but I have a little left-over animosity for D12 that I need to get out…so here it is:  Congrats Dwight!  You craved a title so much that you just had to leave Orlando.  Well, great job my man.  You caused more drama than a Justin Beiber shirtless sighting with your exit to L.A., and all you did was finish in 8th place and now you have a nice first round exit in your near future.  Was it worth it???

tmac7.  T-MAC WILL CONTRIBUTE – If you have not heard, Tracy McGrady has signed with the Spurs.  Yes, that Tracy McGrady.  Back from dominating the Chinese league and tossing elbows in the process (look up the video!).  They say he won’t be ready until at least the 2nd round, but I can see him jumping off the bench for 10-12mpg and hitting a few crucial jumpers.  TMAC, the former high flyer, now being featured as the old vet off the Spurs bench…a ring for McGrady….maybe….but probably not.

lindsey lohan8.  LINDSEY LOHAN WILL FINISH REHAB – Sorry, I have no stats to back this up…but come on, can’t she make something as good as Mean Girls???  (Oh, like you didn’t enjoy that movie?!)

durant westbrook9.  KEVIN DURANT WILL LEAD THE LEAGUE IN PPG, BUT WESTBROOK WILL ACTUALLY TAKE MORE SHOTS – I love Russell, I mean my love for him is bordering on the inappropriate side.  But dude, you have arguable the most talented pure scorer in the league right beside you.  If you want your team to take home the title, how about you play Robin to KD35’s batman…just saying.

pat williams10.  THE ORLANDO MAGIC WILL WIN….THE DRAFT LOTTERY – I mean the worst team in the league can’t really win a playoff game, and I realize this has nothing to do with the playoffs…but it will take place during…and they can win their 4th draft lottery….and they will.  Pat Williams better make his reservations for Seacaucus, because he is the lucky charm that has done it three times before.  Shaq, CWebb into Penny and D12…who will be next.  Noel, Burke, or does Orlando trade the pick??  I think that is a another blog post altogether.

What are your gold predictions for the playoffs??

Enjoy that next two months…the NBA Playoffs are back baby!!!

A GREAT TIME OF YEAR!

8 Apr

winter to springAh what a great time of year…it’s that time when winter seems to fade into spring and the sun begins to peak out from the grey clouds.  The time of year when school enters its stretch run and the promise of summer grows ever so closer.  The time of year when…when….when the sports schedule is the best it can possibly be!  It’s a time of year when you’re TV is on 24hours a day, your home page is set to espn.com and your unlimited data plan is finally paying off as you check game after game on that contraption in your pocket that was once used to actually talk to real people.  Oh yeah, this is my favorite time of year!  (Also because new seasons of Mad Men and Game of Thrones have begun!!)

I don’t love this time because of the whole spring and sun thing; but because it’s such a hot time for sports!!  I mean, are you kidding me?!  This is most definitely a sports lover’s dream time of year.  Of course there are other great times of the year for sports too.  sports_fanYou have that time in October with the MLB playoffs, November and the start of the NCAA and NBA seasons, the time when summer collides with fall and the the stretch run of the MLB season is coupled with the beginning of college football, and of course there is February and….and….ok, February kind of sucks for sports…but you get the idea.  With all those great events throughout the year, you would think it might be tough to pick the time of year…one time that really gets the old heart racing.  But its not tough at all…this is the best sports time of the year, period (I know I actually put a period at the end of the sentence, but I wanted to type the word PERIOD to emphasize my point…Ok, gotta get back on topic).

Let’s just take a quick look at all we have going on during this epic time of year.  March brings us the greatest four word phrase in the English language:  PITCHERS AND CATCHERS REPORT.  spring trainingOtherwise known as the start of spring training.  A time of new hope for fans of every MLB team in the league…I’m even talking to you Cubs fans!  Soon after, we get college ball at its best with conference tournaments and March Madness.  Printer ink wasted brackets all over the place, late night West Coast tournament games, and the first Thursday and Friday of the tourney…man, this is already a great time of year.  But wait, there’s more!  With April things really start to take off.  We get MLB opening day, the only day of the year where every team starts in first place.  Then we get the Final Four and the stretch run of the NBA season.  Top teams positioning for playoff seeding, bad teams tanking for that #1 draft pick, the resting of stars killing your fantasy ball title run (thanks Greg Popovich…don’t you know I have a fantasy title on the line?!)!

As if all of that wasn’t enough, we get “a tradition unlike any other with the Masters, on CBS” (thank Jimmy Nantz).tiger and phil  This year it could be Tiger and Rory…but I’m hoping for a vintage Tiger and Phil pairing!  Then the NBA regular season quickly bleeds straight into the playoffs, and before you know it the NFL draft closes out the month.  WOW!  What a great time of year.  Now you get it right?  There is something for every type of fan out there.  I didn’t even cover the NASCAR races and Euro soccer matches on the schedule.  I’ve also heard that there are actual real-life hockey games going on right now as well!!  SkylarDigginsOh and don’t forget women’s college bball too…Skylar Diggins, UCONN and the ladies from Louisville all representing on the court.  (And let’s not forget the start of new season of Game of Thrones and Mad Men!)

So enjoy this time of year sports fans.  Sure the rest of the year has its moments, but no time can compare to this time!  cubicleSo when you are ready to send your kids back to school after day #2 of summer vacation, the beach beckons from your 9-to-5 cubicle and you are forced to suffer through another freezing snow laced winter, think back to this time of year.  Think back to spring training and March Madness.   Think back to the greens of Augusta and National Anthem’s on opening day.  Back to playoff atmospheres and new breakout stars in the NBA playoffs.  And just remember, next year we get to do this all over again!cheering

BATTLE WITH THE BRACKET!

29 Mar

THE STORY OF AN OBSESSIVE FAN FILLING OUT HIS NCAA TOURNAMENT BRACKET

bracket

The clock approached 8am…my hands were sweaty and my eyes were bloodshot.  The fluorescent lights above felt like the middle eastern sun on my face.  A TV blurred in the background with another talking head pushing their agenda on the world…and the silence around me was unnerving. But the job still had to be done…I had to finish my bracket

insomnia-computer-flickr-vibrant_artThat’s right, it was early Thursday morning.  Just hours before the tip of the greatest present the Sports Gods have ever given fans:  the first 2 days of the NCAA Tournament.  And I had brackets spread out all over my kitchen table…no, my desk would not hold the 10 or so brackets I had laid out before me.  And now my table was looking like the Situation Room on the West Wing…or maybe the actual Situation Room from the actual White House.  And why 10 brackets?  Well I need my initial bracket, the one I fill out as soon as the Selection Show airs.  Then I need an Upset A and an Upset B bracket.  And don’t forget the Favorites Bracket…you get the point.

As I stared at my already completed brackets, searching for answers, a few Cinderellas, and maybe my dignity, there was still one blank sheet before me.  This was my Best Bracket.  The bracket that I would take into battle with me.  The bracket that I would use to conquer the ridiculous number of pools I was about to enter (don’t worry Government, they are all “just for fun” pools).  One bracket to rule them…ok sorry, I couldn’t resist the obligatory Lord of the Rings reference!

As my half open eyes gazed over the matchups once again, I saw little mascots dancing on my paper, shouting at me like my mother calling me in for dinner when I stayed outside past dark…LOUSIVILE ALL THE WAY, KANSAS WILL GET UPSET, BELMONT AS THE CINDERELLA.

kenny-and-charlesAnd the so called experts that were now circling through my head were just as obnoxious:  GIANT KILLERS, OFFENSIVE REBOUNDS, DEFENSIVE EFFECIENCY, FINAL FOUR PEDIGREE, SIZE, TURNOVERS….Shut up Seth Davis!  Be quiet Doug Gottlieb!  Stop shouting Dickie V!!  Oh great, now the entire TNT crew is there too….make it stop, get Chuck and Kenny out of my head!!!

“Deep breaths, deep breaths” I tell myself.  “You can do this, you have done this about 20 times before.”  Just focus!  I try my best to block out the “experts”.  I try my best to not pick based on my emotions.  I try my best to get that Call Me Maybe song out of my head…not that it’s affecting my bracket, I just get annoyed when that song gets stuck in my head.  So I pick up my pencil, give the sheet a last once over, and I’m off.  Suddenly, the stats and picks I’ve been hearing about all week are starting to make sense.  So place a 1seed here, and a 12seed there.  I’ve got a Big East team dancing through rounds, and a Cinderella wearing the glass slipper past a few favorites.  I’m in the zone and I feel like my father’s son again!  Like I’m writing a mission statement that may get me eliminated early, but is revolutionary…Jerry Maguire style!  Breakdown?  No, breakthrough (thanks Cameron Crowe).

jerry_maguire

And just like that…its over.  Well….almost over.  Now that I have filled out my bracket, its time for one last check of all my picks.  So I roll over my upsets and my Final Four selections.  I second guess this 12 over a 5 and second guess taking the new “hot” selection that all of the experts are going with…I’m talking to you New Mexico!  And then, it’s a stare down.  One last battle with my bracket.  We stare into each others’ souls…well I stare into its NCAA logo, but my bracket is for sure staring into my soul.  I can feel it judging me…laughing at me…questioning my every pick.  But there is no time for a hearT to heart with my bracket.  For one, it’s a piece of paper, so I probably need to remember that.  But more importantly, I give my watch a quick glance and realize the deadline to enter my picks is just minutes away.  So I log on, enter the picks in all of my pools, and click that horrific button that brings fear in the hearts of all men everywhere…the save button!  Entries complete, time to start the tourney.  Life is good…but then an Elite 8 pick is out before things get going…and the 2nd guessing starts all over again…

ENJOY THE MADNESS EVERYONE!!

TOP 10 UNDERRATED NBA PLAYERS

26 Mar

Top-10Back with another Tuesday Top 10!!  This week I thought we would look at the most underrated players in the NBA.  This list is based on skill and what the player brings to his team.  You cannot get on this list for having a crazy beard, a few strange neck tattoos, or by putting together an unexpected 50-point scoring effort….sorry Willie Burton (1994-76ers).  Also, we are going old school for this list!  No analytical stats that will make you break out your TI83 just to keep up.  No graphs or charts.  Just looking at the old stats we grew up with and using the good old eye test.  So enjoy the list and be sure to tell me who makes your Top 10!!

Paul George, Rodrigue BeauboisPAUL GEORGE – PACERS:  George is definitely one of the breakout young  starts of the NBA.  He is thriving in his new team-leader role this season as the Pacers look like the 2nd best team in the East.  The 6’8 SF, has shown great versatility by dishing out a career high 4.0apg.

jarrett jack

JARRETT JACK – WARRIORS:  Jack has emerged as one of, if not the best backup PG in the league for the fun to watch Dubs.  He is only 1 of 3 PG’s in the league to shoot over 45% from the floor, 40% from three, and 84% from the line.

mike conleyMIKE CONLEY – GRIZZLIES:  Conley is the floor general for one of the top teams in the West.  The 6th year guard is also second in the league in steals and has been clutch in crunch time.

Vasquez_Greivis_noh_121119GREIVIS VASQUEZ – HORNETS:  Raise your hand if you ever thought Vasquez would be a significant rotation player in the league…anyone…anyone…exactly.  Yes, he is on a bad Hornets team, but Greivis is 21st in the league in double-doubles and 2nd in the league in assists.  Those are stats you can’t ignore!

thaddeus-youngTHADDEUS YOUNG – 76ERS:  One of only 5 SF in the league to average 15ppg and 7rpg.  The athletic Young will only get better if he can work on his 3 point shot.

chandler parsonsCHANDLER PARSONS – ROCKETS:  Parsons has busted onto the scene as one of the best 2nd round picks (38th overall) in recent memory.  The 2nd year forward is doing a little bit of everything as the Rockets look to lock up a playoff spot in the West.  Parsons is one of only 4 Forwards to average over 15ppg, 5rpg, and 3.5apg…the other three:  Pierce, LeBron, and Durant.

nik vucevicNIKOLA VUCEVIC – MAGIC:  With Shaq and D12 both having been shipped out of Orlando, most Magic fans thought they would never get a another quality big man again.  Enter Nikola Vucevic.  The 2nd year big man has not only displayed a fearless persona on the floor, but Nik ranks 6th in the league in double-doubles and 4th in rpg.  Looks like Orlando has found another big man to anchor the paint for years to come.

Nicolas-BatumNICOLAS BATUM – BLAZERS:  Name the only two players in the NBA to average 1bpg, 1spg, 5apg, 5rpg, and 14ppg….yes of course LeBron is one….but the other is Nicolas Batum!  Versatility galore with the 5th year SF who is also shooting 37% from the 3 point line!

lamarcus aldridgeLAMARCUS ALDRIDGE – BLAZERS:  Yes, Aldridge is an all-star.  Yes, he is popular.  But LaMarcus is having a career year, has Portland just 2.5 out of the 8th spot, and is the only player in the NBA average over 20ppg and 9rpg.  We should be hearing more about this Blazer!

spencer hawesSPENCER HAWES – 76ERS:  If you play fantasy basketball, you know Hawes was close to fantasy gold from 2008-2010.  The big man gave your team points, block, assists, steals, and 3’s…all from the center position.  Well after two seasons of low numbers and injuries, Spencer is back to his old, versatile center self.  Philly’s starting center is averaging a crazy 13.6ppg, 9.3rpg, 3.6apg, 2.1bpg in March.  And his 5 made three pointers this month make this 24 year old a player with true all-star potential.

WHO IS ON YOUR TOP 10 LIST???