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Saturday, February 17, 2018

OT - 2017-18 NBA thread (All-Star Weekend to End of Time edition)

I estimate only 10-12 Primates care about the NBA, none of whom can be bothered to curate their own thread to avoid detracting from what this site is really about:  eliminationist rhetoric and precognition.

Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: February 17, 2018 at 02:09 AM | 6537 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: basketball, nba, off-topic

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   2601. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:51 AM (#5659677)
Patty Mills has undercut two guys in the air and dove at a third guy's knees this series.

Since none of those players got injured on the play, there's zero discussion of "Patty Mills, dirty player."


It seems like a vague awareness that the Popovich Spurs have long been, erm, unafraid of physical play bubbles to the surface now and again these days, but doesn't seem to stick to Pop in a meaningful way. This franchise retired Bruce Bowen's number for heaven's sake!
   2602. sardonic Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:09 AM (#5659680)
4. The best way to build a championship through the draft is to have as high draft picks as possible.


I do think there's a nuance that's been called out here in the past. I'd argue that player development is perhaps as important, and that drafting well doesn't require being in the top 3. If you look at recent champions, I wouldn't say that high draft picks played a major factor in any champion going back to arguably San Antonio in 2007.

2017 Warriors - Curry at 7 was the highest draft pick. Plus that Durant thing in free agency.
2016 Cavs - This is the strongest argument for the Process. Kyrie was drafted 1st overall, and winning the lottery helped them get Love. Though winning the lottery that year didn't require tanking. And they actually totally blew the 1st overall pick the previous year. And Kyrie wouldn't have been enough without attracting Lebron.
2015 Warriors - Again, Curry wasn't drafted that high, and while the team did tank a bit to keep the Harrison Barnes pick, in general the team did not bottom out in the way the Sixers did leading up to contention. In fact, they were willing to attach two first round picks and two second rounders to move enough contracts to sign Andre Iguodala, an anti-Process move if there ever was one.
2014 Spurs - Kawhi was drafted 15th. Tony Parker was picked 28th. Boris Diaw actually led the team in minutes during the Finals. Tim Duncan contributed, but multiple contracts into his tenure it's hard to keep pinning everything on winning the 97 lottery, 17 years on.
2013 Heat
2012 Heat - I guess Wade was the 4th overall pick, though he was actually a free agent when the Heatles formed.
2011 Mavericks - Dirk was the 9th pick, and the Mavericks famously refuse to bottom out, and were amidst a long streak of playoff appearances when they finally broke through.
2010 Lakers - Kobe was drafted 13th. Pau was acquired via a trade that included a post-bust Kwame and no other real draft assets. Lamar Odom was acquired for Shaq, who was a free agent.
2009 Lakers
2008 Celtics - Paul Pierce was drafted 10th overall. Kevin Garnett was acquired with the 6th and 28th picks of the 2009 Draft; Ray Allen the 5th. If anything, this is the closest analogue to the Process, but still required only a 10th, 5th, 6th and 28th pick. And also perhaps the most notorious trader in the league at the helm for Boston.
2007 Spurs - The Spurs were still led by Tim Duncan, so again perhaps an argument for tanking.

Going further back, you have a few more Duncan/Spurs titles, the Wade/Shaq title, the Billups/Wallace Pistons, and the Shaqobe Lakers. Then you get to the MJ era.

Based on that, there doesn't seem to be a lot of evidence to me that you need to bottom out to the point where you're picking 1st overall multiple times in a short period. Kyrie, Duncan and Lebron are the only #1 overall picks to win a championship with the team that drafted them, and Lebron only after leaving Cleveland for Miami, which I also don't really think is the point of the Process.

I suppose one might argue that there are no Process like champions because no one had the genius and steely resolve that Hinkie did until he came along. But the evidence seems to be that the initial franchise building blocks have been drafted 1st (Kyrie), 4th (Wade), 7th (Curry), 9th (Dirk), 10th (Pierce), 13th (Kobe) and then later supplemented mostly by free agents, and only in 2008 Boston's case by trading major draft assets.

EDIT: Thanks for the correction tship!
   2603. tshipman Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:14 AM (#5659681)
I agree with your overall point, sardonic, but Kobe was #13 overall.
   2604. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:18 AM (#5659682)
My pure speculation is that it's probably moot because the league office is henceforward going to make a point of extracting at least a witnessed verbal promise never to allow their team to go Full Hinkie before approving anyone to buy a team.
   2605. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:18 AM (#5659683)
If Klay Thompson wasn't super high during that post-game interview, I'd be shocked.

Also if Patty Mills is dirty, that is another player in the NBA from Australia or New Zealand who is at least a little dirty (so far Exum and maybe Simmons are the exceptions).
   2606. Booey Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:25 AM (#5659684)
What kind of Aussie is Simmons, anyway, though? Does he even have an accent?!
   2607. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:26 AM (#5659685)
Bog standard single-year tanks, of the "ahhh crap, we're not going to make the playoffs, let's just tank it and improve our draft position this year" variety, are a thing I wish would go away too, though. It's annoying sometimes trying to find watchable games after the All-Star break when a fourth of the teams in the league are no longer interested in winning. At this point I'd be on board with just saying every team gets equal odds, top 8 teams in the league can't pick in the top 5, or somesuch.

Or maybe it's just something inherent to basketball that without a star you're just hopeless. At any rate it's always felt to me like more basketball teams are just unwatchable the last few months of the season than baseball or hockey teams.
   2608. there isn't anything to do in buffalo but 57i66135 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:54 AM (#5659691)
What kind of Aussie is Simmons, anyway, though? Does he even have an accent?!
there's a reason his nickname is "the yank".
   2609. NJ in NY (Now with Toddler!) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:43 AM (#5659814)
Roster construction - too many big mean drafted, reducing the value of Noel.

Ok.

A lack of viable PG's, hampering development

I have a hard time buying a hampered development argument when the team is this good 5 years after Hinkie was hired.
   2610. jmurph Posted: April 25, 2018 at 11:04 AM (#5659834)
I have a hard time buying a hampered development argument when the team is this good 5 years after Hinkie was hired.

Eh, who was really developed? The argument is always Covington, which is totally fair given his draft status. And...? Okafor is one of the biggest draft busts in the last decade, and despite everyone pretending otherwise Noel was a failure, too. Embiid and Simmons were stars from game 1, and the team made the leap this year by getting a full season from Embiid, a full season from Simmons, and adding solid veterans.
   2611. jmurph Posted: April 25, 2018 at 11:17 AM (#5659848)
Most of you were probably (correctly) not watching Celtics-Bucks last night, but with under 2 minutes and the Bucks down by 5, the refs missed an extremely obvious in real time shot clock violation on the Celtics, which ended up resulting in an offensive rebound and a 7 pt lead for Boston, rather than a chance for Milaukee to get even closer. It was terrible refereeing, they missed several obvious calls. The L2M report seems like it will be a mile long.
   2612. spivey Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:11 PM (#5659904)
Rapid fire comments on the last ~150 posts that I've not been able to respond to:

- Westbrook. Short answer is yes, I'd take him on my team. He plays out of control and doesn't play very smart so it isn't all positive, but he's way more good than bad. I think the idea you can't win with him or win big with him is misguided. OKC's run when they had him and Durant included a couple of deep conference finals runs, a Finals appearance, and generally when they were healthy they were on like the 2-3 biggest contenders list. That was without a very good supporting cast. A strong coach could harness him a bit, I think. I think Pop could work wonders with him.
- Durant. I always had liked him for being a pretty thoughtful athlete in his comments, but he's seemed to be a bit petulant/childish in how he's acted recently. I'm growing to dislike him.
- stiggles. I enjoy him on the thread. I think the rooting for the 76ers is totally fine and mostly good spirited. The volume is also good, I like when this thread has volume. I do think he's a really good poster, and I'd prefer more leaning towards original content/thoughts that aren't trolling or just soundbytes, but I don't see an issue here.
- Hinkie. I'd take him as my GM. I mean, not now, but in a post-Pop/Buford era 5 years from now? Sure. Also think that his rebuild style doesn't have to be interpreted as championship or bust. It's really just "Be good or bust". The pieces they had before weren't only not going to win you a championship, they weren't going to be the core of a 50 win team either. People did say the losing would hamper the team and prevent free agents from going there. I'm on the side where that's been proven false.
- I agree that in the league's current structure, tanking seems a bit overrated. I do think a lot more of it is similar to what tship mentioned of having stuff line up really well in a short period of time. You generally have only a couple of years to put the big pieces of the core together, then you're out of cap space. Some of this is through the draft, or it can be done with people taking discounts (late era Spurs). But there's a real element of timing (and luck) here. No surprise, but Philly and Boston have done this well, and probably are gonna win 7 of the next 10 conference championships.
   2613. Athletic Supporter is USDA certified lean Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:16 PM (#5659910)
4. The best way to build a championship through the draft is to have as high draft picks as possible.


Since this is getting some flak, I should clarify. The part of this that's in the syllogism is just "you'd rather have a higher pick than a lower pick", which is clearly true. If you have pick 7 maybe you get Steph Curry, if you have pick 15 maybe you don't. Obviously you can do it by drafting well, but in the Process syllogism I went through the meaning was very narrow and tautological: having a worse record means your draft picks are better (holding constant lottery luck and team's drafting ability).
   2614. nick swisher hygiene Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:19 PM (#5659913)
I think Stiggles is a really strong individual poster but he has an unusual combination of skills; you've gotta build around him, surround him with the right group of posters to really get the most out of his abilities....
   2615. Athletic Supporter is USDA certified lean Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:20 PM (#5659916)
No surprise, but Philly and Boston have done this well, and probably are gonna win 7 of the next 10 conference championships.


orlando needs to be in here. everyone's sleeping on the magic, but there is the core of a championship team here. compare the magic now to the sixers a couple years ago. isaac is basically embiid minus the injury problems, hezonja is basically saric except he's already been exposed to the NBA, gordon gives them an extra dimension of athleticism that the sixers don't have. if they can grab doncic in the lottery, that makes up for simmons, and they'll be right where philadelphia was a couple years ago. one more year of development in 2018-19, and by 2019-20 they should be a playoff team. and for the five years after that, they should be regularly making the eastern conference finals at least.
   2616. Moses Taylor, aka Hambone Fakenameington Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:23 PM (#5659928)
Hinkie. I'd take him as my GM. I mean, not now, but in a post-Pop/Buford era 5 years from now? Sure. Also think that his rebuild style doesn't have to be interpreted as championship or bust. It's really just "Be good or bust". The pieces they had before weren't only not going to win you a championship, they weren't going to be the core of a 50 win team either. People did say the losing would hamper the team and prevent free agents from going there. I'm on the side where that's been proven false.

Maybe I'm recalling incorrectly, but is this moving the goalposts on Hinkie's goals? I thought the talk was championships - plural. I think it's been moved down to consistent contender now. Maybe I'm just mixing up some of that with #### stiggles would have posted (I am 100% confident he talked about championships - plural throughout the Process).
   2617. jmurph Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:26 PM (#5659932)
orlando needs to be in here. everyone's sleeping on the magic, but there is the core of a championship team here. compare the magic now to the sixers a couple years ago. isaac is basically embiid minus the injury problems, hezonja is basically saric except he's already been exposed to the NBA, gordon gives them an extra dimension of athleticism that the sixers don't have. if they can grab doncic in the lottery, that makes up for simmons, and they'll be right where philadelphia was a couple years ago. one more year of development in 2018-19, and by 2019-20 they should be a playoff team. and for the five years after that, they should be regularly making the eastern conference finals at least.

I mean this without insult but I can't tell if this is serious...?
   2618. Der-K: at 10% emotional investment Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:27 PM (#5659935)
I've long been pro-Hinkie and think that was a solid response, Steve. My short response to your point #1 ("Championships are the only thing that matter in the NBA.") is that I didn't take it (not as argued in that post, but how the Sixers perceived their situation) to mean "only thing that matters to fans" but rather "only thing that matters to this management/ownership" - and - specifically, the only thing that matters to a particularly group of owners/managers. Others might want consistent solid play or profit maximization or whatever (which mirrors your thinking)... but that what they want is what matters, not what the fans want (though there's are obvious linkages there).
   2619. spivey Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:29 PM (#5659941)
Maybe I'm recalling incorrectly, but is this moving the goalposts on Hinkie's goals? I thought the talk was championships - plural. I think it's been moved down to consistent contender now. Maybe I'm just mixing up some of that with #### stiggles would have posted (I am 100% confident he talked about championships - plural throughout the Process).

Sure. I think you are right about what was said, and I think the Hinkie was probably fired more for optics and how things were communicated than anything else. But imo, just because that's what Hinkie or anyone said about the process doesn't mean it's the only way I, personally, should evaluate if it was successful.
   2620. JC in DC Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:35 PM (#5659948)
I mean this without insult but I can't tell if this is serious...?



Agree. If this is satire, this is great satire.
   2621. Athletic Supporter is USDA certified lean Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:37 PM (#5659952)
I mean this without insult but I can't tell if this is serious...?

Agree. If this is satire, this is great satire.


I am working on building an Orlando STIGGLES persona as an addition to this thread following a discussion a few pages back about "a stiggles for every team". Thanks for the compliments :)
   2622. jmurph Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:38 PM (#5659954)
Oh I forgot about that! Well done, then, Athletic.
   2623. JC in DC Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:39 PM (#5659956)
Predictions tonight?
Houston over Minnesota to close out;
Rockets over Wolves to close out;
Wizards over Toronto;
Cleveland over Indiana
   2624. jmurph Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:41 PM (#5659963)
Houston over Minnesota to close out;
Rockets over Wolves to close out;

Feels like overkill, honestly.
   2625. Booey Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:50 PM (#5659982)
I think the idea you can't win with him or win big with him is misguided. OKC's run when they had him and Durant included a couple of deep conference finals runs, a Finals appearance, and generally when they were healthy they were on like the 2-3 biggest contenders list.


Yeah, but KD's role in that can't be overstated. I think the argument isn't so much that a team can't be a true contender with Westbrook (obviously they can), it's that they can't be a contender with him as your #1 (which I agree with). Like Pippen, he's the perfect #2 guy on a potential championship team, which is why I thought his pairing with Durant worked so well. I really do think a title caliber team would be hard to build around him as "the man", just like I always thought it would be with Iverson or Melo.
   2626. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:52 PM (#5659985)
Feels like overkill, honestly.


No, I think it is about right.
   2627. Booey Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:01 PM (#5659994)
Houston over Minnesota to close out;
Rockets over Wolves to close out;

Feels like overkill, honestly.


Eh, so was the 3rd quarter of last game. So it's fitting.

- Jazz need to put the Thunder out of their misery tonight. Even better if it causes OKC's "Big 3" to break up this offseason. Not a fan of attempted "superteams", so I'd be smugly satisfied if the Jazz could put an end to two of the most unlikable ones (the other was the Paul/Griffin/DAJ Clippers last year).

- Anyone else think that BOS/MIL and TOR/WAS will both go 7 with the home team winning every game?
   2628. Just TFTIO Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:18 PM (#5660007)
Feels like overkill, honestly.

I don't know, it sounds right to me.
   2629. sardonic Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:24 PM (#5660016)
Since this is getting some flak, I should clarify. The part of this that's in the syllogism is just "you'd rather have a higher pick than a lower pick", which is clearly true. If you have pick 7 maybe you get Steph Curry, if you have pick 15 maybe you don't. Obviously you can do it by drafting well, but in the Process syllogism I went through the meaning was very narrow and tautological: having a worse record means your draft picks are better (holding constant lottery luck and team's drafting ability).


I guess my position is that I don't think this matters that much, and that specifically I'd argue against The Process because I don't think the extreme tanking added that much to their current situation, while being a meaningful minus for both Philly fans and the league at large. To me, it's the extreme tanking that defines The Process, because everything else is just what all other teams do to try to win.

If you look back at the last 10-15 years of champions, there's a clear pattern that you need to scout/draft well in the lottery (but not necessarily in the top 5), have your lottery picks develop, and then supplement that core through free agency (Heatles, Warriors) or trades (Ubuntu Celtics) or both (Lebron Cavs II). As tship emphasizes, you need the timing to line up.

Compared to those four factors (draft, develop, supplement, luck), pursuing an extreme tanking strategy to stockpile and then cycle through second round picks or to move up from 5th to 2nd doesn't seem like it's actually adding much to the equation. Attributing Philly's current situation (which, let's be real, they haven't even gotten out of the second round yet) to the Process vs., say, a single savvy draft decision that paid off (drafting Embiid for the upside) seems to me to miss the forest for the trees.
   2630. Jtsports01 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:25 PM (#5660018)
Anyone else think that BOS/MIL and TOR/WAS will both go 7 with the home team winning every game?


Yes, I agree with this.

Like Pippen, he's the perfect #2 guy on a potential championship team


I don't think I agree with this. Your perfect number two would have less usage and more shooting range, just be better without the ball in their hands, basically.

   2631. Booey Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:47 PM (#5660044)
I don't think I agree with this. Your perfect number two would have less usage and more shooting range, just be better without the ball in their hands, basically.


Yeah, I guess "perfect" wasn't the best choice of words. I just think that Westbrook's game works better as a #2 scoring option rather than a #1, and I still think the Russ and KD duo fit well together (with his much greater efficiency, Durant would be the obvious choice for the #1 in that pairing). I'm not at all convinced that it was clear they weren't going to win a title if they'd stuck together.

And I think I agree with everything sardonic said in 2629 re: The Process. It's not that it didn't work, it's that the extremeness of it probably wasn't necessary. The Sixers are good because they hit on 2 stars. All the other guys they got with their abundance of picks are just noise. A regular garden variety bad team attempting a more traditional rebuild could have gotten lucky on 2 picks, too. We've seen it happen many times.
   2632. If on a winter's night a baserunner Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:49 PM (#5660046)
He's not a perfect #2, but there are many ways to go about being a #2 guy than "has the talent of a #1 guy but also some flaws in his approach"—albeit mainly due to that first clause.
   2633. Fourth True Outcome Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:55 PM (#5660055)
- Anyone else think that BOS/MIL and TOR/WAS will both go 7 with the home team winning every game?

I was thinking last night about how Kyrie's injury is an oddly good test case for an attempt to figure out how useful Marcus Smart is. I'm in the camp that believes he's more the player plus/minus says he is than the player his dreadful shooting says he is, and there will be both plenty of minutes for him to prove it and a need for him as a ballhandler to keep the Celtics' offense from sputtering. One game doesn't tell all that much, but if this is true I think Boston stands a good chance of taking the series in six, but we'll see. (Smart guarding Simmons is a thing I truly want to see.)

I have no read on TOR/WAS, as I've both not watched much of the series and haven't decided how for real Toronto is.
   2634. Booey Posted: April 25, 2018 at 02:08 PM (#5660075)
I have no read on TOR/WAS, as I've both not watched much of the series and haven't decided how for real Toronto is.


I haven't watched a minute of either series. My comment was more along the lines of "None of those teams are playing well enough to win a road game" variety.
   2635. If on a winter's night a baserunner Posted: April 25, 2018 at 02:19 PM (#5660096)
Anyone else think that BOS/MIL and TOR/WAS will both go 7 with the home team winning every game?


I had thought that, but Marcus Smart's return pushes me juuuust into leaning Celtics in 6—although not with anything resembling a high degree of confidence. Smart sopping up much of what had been Shane Larkin's minutes should cut down on turnovers, get Horford one or two extra easy looks at the rim (seriously, no other healthy guard on that team has much feel for lobs to the roll man), and crank the defense up a notch. That said, all it takes is one more game of home cooking from Maker and Middleton to send this series to game 7, and ain't nothing guaranteed then.

there are many ways to go about being a #2 guy than "has the talent of a #1 guy but also some flaws in his approach"
Many WORSE ways, rather.
   2636. aberg Posted: April 25, 2018 at 02:36 PM (#5660134)
I am interested in what everyone thinks will be the resolution to the Spurs-Kawhi situation. I'd love to hear what you all think is most likely among these options:

1) Kawhi and Spurs somehow "patch it up" and he returns relatively healthy next year.
2) Spurs trade Kawhi for a package in line with recent all-star trades.
3) Spurs trade Kawhi for package lesser than recent all-star trades.
4) No resolution. No trade or public patch-up prior to start of next season. Basically returns to team under protest.
5) We find out that he was way more injured than what we have been led to believe (which could be part of 1-4).
6) Other. Did I miss something?
   2637. Fourth True Outcome Posted: April 25, 2018 at 02:45 PM (#5660153)
My expectation is either #1 or #5, not based on much.
   2638. Just TFTIO Posted: April 25, 2018 at 03:02 PM (#5660179)
I think #1, then #5.
   2639. Booey Posted: April 25, 2018 at 03:02 PM (#5660180)
#2. My guess - based on nothing - is that they've reached the point of no return in their relationship.
   2640. Rally Posted: April 25, 2018 at 03:09 PM (#5660186)
And I think I agree with everything sardonic said in 2629 re: The Process. It's not that it didn't work, it's that the extremeness of it probably wasn't necessary. The Sixers are good because they hit on 2 stars. All the other guys they got with their abundance of picks are just noise. A regular garden variety bad team attempting a more traditional rebuild could have gotten lucky on 2 picks, too. We've seen it happen many times.


The point of hoarding so many top picks is that you don't know which ones you are going to hit on. Give a team 3 #2 overall picks in a row and maybe you just end up with Russell-Ingram-Ball. Get a bunch of top picks, then hope that 2 or 3 of them turn out to be true superstars. That is the process.
   2641. PJ Martinez Posted: April 25, 2018 at 03:15 PM (#5660200)
Hinkie was seemingly willing to take high-upside guys who he knew couldn't help right away, and may have been riskier in general: Embiid at no. 3, Saric at no. 14, Noel at no. 6 (IIRC). It became a running joke, and obviously Noel didn't work out. But it was arguably an important part of both his thinking and the team's eventual turn-around. For this reason I don't think it's quite fair to say that they just got lucky a couple of times in the draft (though obviously luck is always a part of it).

I mostly agree with others here that the extreme quality of Hinkie's approach may have been unnecessary, and may have been bad for the league. But his commitment to long-term thinking, which is perhaps related but not equivalent, was a strength.
   2642. Moses Taylor, aka Hambone Fakenameington Posted: April 25, 2018 at 03:19 PM (#5660204)
6) Other. Did I miss something?

Pops retires.
   2643. Booey Posted: April 25, 2018 at 03:25 PM (#5660212)
The point of hoarding so many top picks is that you don't know which ones you are going to hit on. Give a team 3 #2 overall picks in a row and maybe you just end up with Russell-Ingram-Ball. Get a bunch of top picks, then hope that 2 or 3 of them turn out to be true superstars. That is the process.


I get that, I just don't know if that much extra losing is worth the slightly greater chance of nabbing a star(s). The Lakers chances of drafting a couple stars probably weren't much worse than the Sixers'. They just got unlucky.*


* So far. Ingram and Ball could still be good (Russell too, but obviously that won't help LAL)
   2644. there isn't anything to do in buffalo but 57i66135 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 04:09 PM (#5660292)
Maybe I'm recalling incorrectly, but is this moving the goalposts on Hinkie's goals? I thought the talk was championships - plural. I think it's been moved down to consistent contender now. Maybe I'm just mixing up some of that with #### stiggles would have posted (I am 100% confident he talked about championships - plural throughout the Process).

it's the other way around.

hinkie's original stated goal at the press conference where he was introduced as GM, was to build a team that would "contend for championships".

the people who wanted hinkie to fail raised that bar to "the process is a failure unless the sixers win multiple titles."
   2645. Fourth True Outcome Posted: April 25, 2018 at 04:10 PM (#5660294)
The Process is also, it strikes me, a plan with diminishing returns the more teams use it. IOW Hinkie was as successful as he was because no one else was willing to be that bad, or to trade today for tomorrow quite so baldly. Philly's peers were clearly annoyed by their doing so, but (mostly) willing to tolerate it. I suspect a second iteration of The Process, let alone several, would be met much more harshly. The inherent game theory of "this will work because no one else has the guts to do it" seems like part of what Process haters object to; it is in some ways nakedly taking advantage of the fact that your competitors feel a need to put a respectable product on the floor that you do not.
   2646. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 04:15 PM (#5660302)

The point of hoarding so many top picks is that you don't know which ones you are going to hit on. Give a team 3 #2 overall picks in a row and maybe you just end up with Russell-Ingram-Ball. Get a bunch of top picks, then hope that 2 or 3 of them turn out to be true superstars. That is the process.


But let's look at the possibilities. Let's say you get three #2 picks. There are three possible outcomes (speaking generally):

1) You draft 2 or three superstars. You win a bunch of games. Your fans are happy. In this world, you don't need a Process.
2) Your picks turns out to be busts and/or injured. You lose a bunch of games. In this world, you have ended up in the Process involuntarily.
3) Your picks turn out to be okay. You win some games. Your fans are somewhat happy.

It's the Process view that #3 has very little value. That's the issue I have with it.

To put it more concisely, it's the view that:

Year 1: Win 19 games
Year 2: Win 13 games
Year 3: Win 10 games
Year 4: Win 28 games
Year 5: Win 52 games, lose ECF
Year 6: Win 59 games, win title

Is a better six years than:

Year 1: Win 19 games
Year 2: Win 28 games
Year 3: Win 42 games, lose in first round
Year 4: Win 48 games, lose in second round
Year 5: Win 50 games, lose in second round
Year 5: Win 50 games, lose in second round

Wheres I see it as 180 games < 237 games.


   2647. there isn't anything to do in buffalo but 57i66135 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 04:16 PM (#5660304)
orlando needs to be in here. everyone's sleeping on the magic, but there is the core of a championship team here. compare the magic now to the sixers a couple years ago. isaac is basically embiid minus the injury problems, hezonja is basically saric except he's already been exposed to the NBA, gordon gives them an extra dimension of athleticism that the sixers don't have. if they can grab doncic in the lottery, that makes up for simmons, and they'll be right where philadelphia was a couple years ago. one more year of development in 2018-19, and by 2019-20 they should be a playoff team. and for the five years after that, they should be regularly making the eastern conference finals at least.

you're pressing too hard. just ease into it.

start off with generally agreeable statements of fact, then sprinkle in some nutbaggery along the way.
   2648. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: April 25, 2018 at 04:25 PM (#5660317)
aberg, as a born pessimist who frequently finds himself wishing he's wrong, I think it's most likely to end up as #5 (Kawhi turns out to be more seriously injured than anyone had let on) and also possibly #3 (he ends up traded for nothing much).
   2649. KronicFatigue Posted: April 25, 2018 at 04:29 PM (#5660325)
I dislike both options in #2646. A ceiling of 2nd round exists feels brutal. I would not want to be a fan of the Blazers or Clippers. I liked "the process" as a non-sixers fan who was into sticking it to the NBA. If I was a sixers fan at the time, I would have just tuned out for a few years and waited until they started to put it together.

The Ewing/Oakley Knicks were the height of my sports fandom. Sure, I would have liked a title, but with some distance, it no longer bothers me. David to Jordan's Goliath was a fine place to be, even if David never won. They were part of the story of the era. Second round knockouts aren't even footnotes. They are fodder.
   2650. NJ in NY (Now with Toddler!) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 04:32 PM (#5660327)
[2646] I think everyone's views on this are impacted by their fandom. As a Knicks fan, Scenario 2 is basically the 90s and while I enjoyed the ride, I was never happy at the end of the year that we lost a tough series in Round 2/3. I think the problem is that teams (the Knicks) spend a lot of time trying to create Scenario 2 and often fail and you involuntarily end up in a repeating cycle of Scenario 2 Year 1-3. The reason I was/am so jealous of The Process is that my team has spent the past 15 years looking for the faintest sign of progress to then jump to try and put the final touches on the roster and failing spectacularly rather than having the patience to just ####### lose for a while and sift through guys and see if they actually find enough foundational pieces. I want my management to be patient and try to win a title (acknowledging that there's a good chance they might fail). However, I'd rather fail while swinging for the fences and end up as "just" a Rd 2 level team than fail while swinging for a double.
   2651. JC in DC Posted: April 25, 2018 at 04:38 PM (#5660338)
Maybe I've not been following Kawhi closely, but how could 5 be possible? Didn't the Spurs say he was ready to go? Now, I have no doubt that a possibility is both side PRETEND his injury turned out worse than initially thought, but I wouldn't believe that, given what the Spurs said (unless I remember incorrectly), and I doubt they'll be complicit in that, as it would force them to toss their medical people under the bus and empower future such nonsense. So, I'm opting for a split, I guess, or a reconciliation where we just don't hear much about this anymore.
   2652. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:01 PM (#5660358)
It's not hard to fathom how both Kawhi (I'm healthy, honest, so give me that max extension already!) and the Spurs (he's healthy, honest, so you need to pony up a king's ransom to trade for him!) might be incentivized to be, shall we say, publicly optimistic.

Not saying that's definitely what is happening, just answering your question as to how it's possible.
   2653. KronicFatigue Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:06 PM (#5660362)
NJ in NY,

Those 90 Knicks being inferior to Jordan's Bulls was out of their control (I think we'd agree on that). It was miserable losing to them every year, but we could root for them passionately because they were trying. They just couldn't do it.

The problem arose when it was time to rebuild but nobody had the guts or intelligence to admit it. Trading Ewing instead of letting his contract expire (they got negative assets back for him, IMO)...getting a bunch of veterans who could score and were athletic, but only to slow down the bleeding. Dolan trying to sell tickets. Doing everything possible to field a "good enough" team to justify the ticket price increases that kept coming.

One of the benefits of a rebuild is being able to watch the players rise. And usually, at an affordable price point. It's so much more exciting to watch a young guy with a question mark for a ceiling vs an aging veteran with a question mark for a floor.
   2654. JC in DC Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:07 PM (#5660364)
That's not quite what happened. The Spurs, and the Spurs players, weren't presumably so motivated when they begged him to come help them in the middle of the season and his "camp" was claiming he was still hurt.
   2655. JC in DC Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:08 PM (#5660366)
Kronic and NJ: The knife in my heart, and one of the early signs of real delusion and the long ride we'd be on, was the Allan Houston contract.
   2656. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:14 PM (#5660371)
That's not quite what happened. The Spurs, and the Spurs players, weren't presumably so motivated when they begged him to come help them in the middle of the season and his "camp" was claiming he was still hurt.


Yes, but for the other side of the coin we must read the subtext in the known fact that the Spurs have declined to offer a max contract to one of the five or so best players in the NBA, a player who, if available and healthy, the GMs of 29 other teams would break their fingers trying to be the first to fax a max offer to his agent.

If it's not because the Spurs actually, privately, have serious concerns about his long term health, why in the world else could it be?

At the very least the Spurs' doctors must be saying "he should be OK to go right now, but long term, we just can't know whether he'll hold up until we've actually seen him play a full season," thus the Spurs want him to do so before they commit the supermax, whereas Kawhi, leery of what happened to Isaiah Thomas, is adamantly refusing to play until he gets paid. That seems like the simplest and thus most likely summation of the situation to me.
   2657. JC in DC Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:15 PM (#5660374)
Because he abandoned the team and turned out to be a jerk? Seems like the easiest explanation, no?
   2658. Fourth True Outcome Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:18 PM (#5660376)
The most convincing explanation I've seen is that the Spurs' doctors initially misdiagnosed his quad tendinopathy as less severe than it was, as there are grades to such an injury (disclaimer: I am very not a doctor) and when he reinjured it he stopped trusting the Spurs' doctors, brought in his own team, and is listening to them. If that's what happened, it's not too hard to envision the Spurs doctors claiming he was ready to go and his team disagreeing without any bad faith on either side.
   2659. KronicFatigue Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:28 PM (#5660383)
The knife in my heart, and one of the early signs of real delusion and the long ride we'd be on, was the Allan Houston contract.


Which was only the the 2nd worst thing the Knicks did involving Allan Houston's contract, the first being (as I'm sure you know), NOT applying the "Allan Houston rule" to get out of it.

Yes, the Knicks are so poorly managed that the NBA tries to make rules to help them, and the Knicks still fail to mitigate.
   2660. If on a winter's night a baserunner Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:29 PM (#5660385)
the view that:

Year 1: Win 19 games
Year 2: Win 13 games
Year 3: Win 10 games
Year 4: Win 28 games
Year 5: Win 52 games, lose ECF
Year 6: Win 59 games, win title

Is a better six years than:

Year 1: Win 19 games
Year 2: Win 28 games
Year 3: Win 42 games, lose in first round
Year 4: Win 48 games, lose in second round
Year 5: Win 50 games, lose in second round
Year 5: Win 50 games, lose in second round
is one I share, and the reason is hope. Rooting for bad teams is its own kind of fun: you have to get invested in projecting what some young guys with potential may become. In the first scenario, there's a few years where those hopes don't manifest in any way that leads to wins, but if you are acquiring enough talent for a title in year 6, all those losses in years 3 and 4 are full of star flashes and tantalizing highlights. Then, of course, comes the immensely gratifying consummation to the years of building. In the second scenario, you have a quick, enjoyable rise to competence, but then the team hits its ceiling, gets capped out, and over the years of failing to hit another level, the hope fades. What you have is all you have and everyone knows it.
   2661. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:36 PM (#5660390)
Because he abandoned the team and turned out to be a jerk? Seems like the easiest explanation, no?


Yeah, that's a perfectly simple explanation too. It's just that Kawhi is so good that I'm not sure I buy the notion that Pop is prepared to get rid of him--discarding any near-term hope of contention for the Spurs in the process--merely because Kawhi's being an #######.
   2662. JJ1986 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:40 PM (#5660394)
the known fact that the Spurs have declined to offer a max contract to one of the five or so best players in the NBA
Come on.
   2663. there isn't anything to do in buffalo but 57i66135 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:46 PM (#5660400)
I suppose one might argue that there are no Process like champions because no one had the genius and steely resolve that Hinkie did until he came along. But the evidence seems to be that the initial franchise building blocks have been drafted 1st (Kyrie), 4th (Wade), 7th (Curry), 9th (Dirk), 10th (Pierce), 13th (Kobe) and then later supplemented mostly by free agents, and only in 2008 Boston's case by trading major draft assets.

a plan that relies on drafting the best player ever picked 7th or 9th or 10th or 13th does not seem likely to yield positive, or repeatable, results.


we'll never know what some different iterations of the process could have looked like, but i'll throw out a few bullet points:


1: the first stage of the process was acquiring a top 10-15 player.

..1a: because neither simmons nor embiid played a game for the sixers while hinkie was GM, he never cleared this stage in philly.
..1b: hinkie believed the most likely path for a team like the sixers to get a top 10-15 player was through the draft.
..1c: the most likely position to draft a top 10-15 player is in the top 5.
..1d: the way to get into the top 5 is to tank shamelessly.


2: the second stage of the process was to get a 2nd top 10-15 player.

..2a: hinkie was willing to do that through trade or free agency.
..2b: he was not willing to do that until clearing the first stage.


3: hinkie was not very good at drafting

..3a: his 1st round picks were noel, MCW, embiid, saric and okafor.
..3b: his 2nd round picks were arsalan kazemi, kj mcdaniels, jerami grant, vasilje micic, jordan mcrae, richaun holmes, arturis gudaitis, jp tokoto and luka mitrovic.


4: hinkie churned through a ton of fringe NBA talents without a lot to show for it

..4a: covington alone is enough to make that worthwhile
..4b: he also got mcconnell.
..4c: the only plausibly decent player he let get away was dewayne dedmon.
..4d: this one's key:


5: roster space was always going to be an issue once hinkie's stash of draft picks and cap room started to get spent


6: this is speculation, but i don't think hinkie had full control after 2014


..6a: i'm not absolving him of drafting okafor (i drafted okafor for the sixers in BTF's mockdraft, and i still believe in the guy), but there are few oddities about that pick
....a1: from day 1, hinkie wanted the sixers to play up tempo and as fast a pace as possible; that's not okafor
....a2: nearly all of the draft picks he made and the free agents he signed were active, mobile, high energy types; that's not okafor, either.
....a3: okafor wasn't expected to be available at #3, so if someone else (maybe with the initials j. harris or a. aron) was in the decision making tree, they may not have been mentally prepared to pass on him.
....a4: the fact that porzingis was not willing to meet with the sixers does not seem like the kind of thing that would dissuade hinkie, but it might have turned off someone less sophisticated.
..6b: there was no roster churn in 2015/16.
..6c: the sixers only had 18 players in 15/16; they had 25 in 14/15; they had 23 in 13/14.
..6d: that resignation letter was not written overnight. he knew he was gone, so the question is, how long did he know?
   2664. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:48 PM (#5660401)
Come on.


I'm sorry, am I ignorant of something? Kawhi's eligible for the supermax and the Spurs have yet to offer it to him, yes? Or are you objecting to my characterization of him as a top five player?
   2665. there isn't anything to do in buffalo but 57i66135 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:52 PM (#5660404)
is one I share, and the reason is hope. Rooting for bad teams is its own kind of fun: you have to get invested in projecting what some young guys with potential may become. In the first scenario, there's a few years where those hopes don't manifest in any way that leads to wins, but if you are acquiring enough talent for a title in year 6, all those losses in years 3 and 4 are full of star flashes and tantalizing highlights. Then, of course, comes the immensely gratifying consummation to the years of building. In the second scenario, you have a quick, enjoyable rise to competence, but then the team hits its ceiling, gets capped out, and over the years of failing to hit another level, the hope fades. What you have is all you have and everyone knows it.
also, the NBA is not ending after year 6. the hope for the process is that year 6 turns out to be year 3 of 10 straight years of dominance.

Year 1: Win 28 games
Year 2: Win 52 games, lose ECF
Year 3: Win 59 games, win title
year 4: win 60 games, lose NBA finals
year 5: win 60 games, win title
year 6: win 60 games, win title

is better than:

Year 1: Win 48 games, lose in second round
Year 2: Win 50 games, lose in second round
Year 3: Win 50 games, lose in second round
year 4: win 38 games, miss playoffs
year 5: win 45 games, lose in first round
year 6: win 35 games, miss playoffs.
   2666. Eddo Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:57 PM (#5660406)
the view that:

Year 1: Win 19 games
Year 2: Win 13 games
Year 3: Win 10 games
Year 4: Win 28 games
Year 5: Win 52 games, lose ECF
Year 6: Win 59 games, win title

Is a better six years than:

Year 1: Win 19 games
Year 2: Win 28 games
Year 3: Win 42 games, lose in first round
Year 4: Win 48 games, lose in second round
Year 5: Win 50 games, lose in second round
Year 5: Win 50 games, lose in second round

This also depends on the players involved. If some of the players from the first four years of scenario one are around for the championship, I'm OK with that. But if those four years provided no part of the year six champion, then they feel so much more wasted.
   2667. Dandy Little Glove Man Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:01 PM (#5660408)
No surprise, but Philly and Boston have done this well, and probably are gonna win 7 of the next 10 conference championships.

Call me crazy, but I think the Hornets are the team to watch the next decade. Charlotte's been good but unlucky each of the past 2 years. Flip their luck around and you're looking at 3 straight 48-win seasons. On top of that, Kemba's still right in the middle of his peak years and all but 2 players on the roster are still in their 20s, most of whom are 25 and under. Wing talent is arguably the most important thing in the NBA these days, and the Hornets are deep, skilled, and athletic there, with Batum, MKG, Lamb, and especially Malik Monk. Few realize just how much potential Monk has to be a difference-maker in this league. This past year he was a teenager with a 25% Usage in nearly 1000 minutes. The only teenagers to match Monk's usage and efficiency in the past 30 years are Kyrie, Melo, LeBron, Durant, and Kobe--and Monk made more 3s than any of them. That kind of elite shot creator and floor spacer alongside Kemba will make the Hornets effectively unguardable. Add in continued development from Kaminsky, Zeller, and Big Willy Hernangomez, plus the 11th pick in the draft, and there's no limit to how far the Hornets can go in the East. Just the thought of them picking up a 2-way Forward like Miles Bridges is enough to make you wonder if they'll be the presumptive favorite for years to come.

[How was that? Did it seem forced?]
   2668. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:06 PM (#5660413)
I think there's a pretty great chance of the Hornets developing into the Trail Blazers of the East. :)
   2669. Internet Commenter Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:06 PM (#5660414)
To me, the most interesting thing from last night is Westbrook. Would you want him on your team? I really am drawn to his personality. I mean, he's off, no doubt about it, but god, he cares. And he gives so much. And he's so damn loyal. But he needs a Larry Brown or Pat Riley, or someone like them: with the authority and experience to harness his talent. He's been given a flyer for too long and it's hurting him and of course, his team.

I don't think there's any reason to believe he's not harnessing his talent. This was his 10th season in the league and I've never heard someone criticize his work ethic. Westbrook's core problem is BBIQ. Whether he never had much potential to excel there or he never focused on it because his athleticism allowed him to succeed regardless, my guess is there's no coach who can fix his decision-making at this point. Maybe that changes as his athleticism declines? My guess is if it was fixable, it would've already happened.

I'm not convinced that he possesses the characteristics you admire to a greater degree than many, many other players in the league so much as he's highly demonstrative about them. I can't reconcile the "max effort" perception with the guy I see taking it easy on defense and standing five feet behind the line with his hands on his knees on offense when he doesn't have the ball.

Westbrook's a dude that I'm glad exists because he's bouncy and explosive like nobody else. I'd find much of his game infuriating if he was on the Suns, though.
   2670. there isn't anything to do in buffalo but 57i66135 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:07 PM (#5660416)
[How was that? Did it seem forced?]
nah, that's great.

the formatting could use some work.
   2671. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:12 PM (#5660418)
Just coming in to point out that the second, non-The Process scenario would also not include "Year 1: Win 19 games".

The disastrous team that resulted from the Andrew Bynum trade was still 34-48, only seen as disastrous because the previous year they'd won 7 playoff games.

The Process started by taking that team, trading Jrue Holiday for draft picks, and letting every other non-injured player leave without replacement except Evan Turner, Lavoy Allen, Spencer Hawes, and Thad Young, 3 of whom were also traded in February.

This also depends on the players involved. If some of the players from the first four years of scenario one are around for the championship, I'm OK with that. But if those four years provided no part of the year six champion, then they feel so much more wasted.


The first three years of scenario one produced Robert Covington, T.J. McConnell, and Richaun Holmes. Watching those years would have been truly a waste if anyone was foolish enough to do so. Last year Embiid and Saric finally appeared.
   2672. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:16 PM (#5660420)
is better than:

Year 1: Win 48 games, lose in second round
Year 2: Win 50 games, lose in second round
Year 3: Win 50 games, lose in second round
year 4: win 38 games, miss playoffs
year 5: win 45 games, lose in first round
year 6: win 35 games, miss playoffs.


Look, this is simply not inevitable. What's happened to the Pistons and Magic is not inevitable. If the GM is truly a brain genius he can avoid these things. Look at the Jazz. Look at the Pacers. The magic of Hinkie seems to have been coming up with a system so simple that his presence was not even needed to carry it out (or that even he, a bad drafter, could carry it out) once the owners were sold on "Lose all your games until you get two superstars from your own top-3 draft picks, then suddenly assemble everything else".
   2673. Athletic Supporter is USDA certified lean Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:22 PM (#5660424)
[2667] I applaud you, sir, and welcome. We are up to three teams with a stiggles.
   2674. aberg Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:36 PM (#5660433)
The most convincing explanation I've seen is that the Spurs' doctors initially misdiagnosed his quad tendinopathy as less severe than it was, as there are grades to such an injury (disclaimer: I am very not a doctor) and when he reinjured it he stopped trusting the Spurs' doctors, brought in his own team, and is listening to them. If that's what happened, it's not too hard to envision the Spurs doctors claiming he was ready to go and his team disagreeing without any bad faith on either side.



The weird part to me is that we're left to assume Leonard's side of the story. He has taken such a beating in the media, even from his own teammates. I figured they would at least have given some information about why they think he is still injured. They're not obligated to do it, but the fact that they haven't seems abnormal.
   2675. there isn't anything to do in buffalo but 57i66135 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:46 PM (#5660437)
Look, this is simply not inevitable. What's happened to the Pistons and Magic is not inevitable. If the GM is truly a brain genius he can avoid these things. Look at the Jazz. Look at the Pacers. The magic of Hinkie seems to have been coming up with a system so simple that he was not even needed to carry it out once the owners were sold on "Lose all your games until you get two superstars from your own top-3 draft picks, then suddenly assemble everything else".
yeah, pretty much.

the process reduces the risk of failure by preserving cap room and future assets until the conditions for great success are in place.
And I think I agree with everything sardonic said in 2629 re: The Process. It's not that it didn't work, it's that the extremeness of it probably wasn't necessary. The Sixers are good because they hit on 2 stars. All the other guys they got with their abundance of picks are just noise. A regular garden variety bad team attempting a more traditional rebuild could have gotten lucky on 2 picks, too. We've seen it happen many times.

the extremeness of year 3 was a reaction to years 1 and 2, where the sixers were outtanked by MIL, NYK and MIN, and had little to show for it (MCW was traded, and neither embiid nor saric had played a game).
The Process is also, it strikes me, a plan with diminishing returns the more teams use it. IOW Hinkie was as successful as he was because no one else was willing to be that bad, or to trade today for tomorrow quite so baldly. Philly's peers were clearly annoyed by their doing so, but (mostly) willing to tolerate it. I suspect a second iteration of The Process, let alone several, would be met much more harshly. The inherent game theory of "this will work because no one else has the guts to do it" seems like part of what Process haters object to; it is in some ways nakedly taking advantage of the fact that your competitors feel a need to put a respectable product on the floor that you do not.

there's a limit, but the limit is not 1.

hinkie facilitated a lot of deals along the way. he was willing to eat bad contracts, he was willing to trade useful players in the offseason and at the deadline. more teams doing those things is good for the league.


   2676. there isn't anything to do in buffalo but 57i66135 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:49 PM (#5660439)
here's a question for the crowd:


if hinkie was given complete autonomy to run the nuggets for the next 3 years, no strings attached, what would he do?
   2677. If on a winter's night a baserunner Posted: April 25, 2018 at 07:13 PM (#5660450)
Put a real damper on the next two years of Jokic's life.
   2678. JJ1986 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 07:28 PM (#5660457)
The Cavs do so much standing around on offense.
   2679. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: April 25, 2018 at 07:44 PM (#5660470)
The Cavs do so much standing around on offense.

They were a really good offensive team in the regular season but they have looked awful in this series. 3-15 from the non-LeBron Cavs in the first quarter.

The Pacers don't seem to take a lot of threes.
   2680. Crosseyed and Painless Posted: April 25, 2018 at 08:11 PM (#5660501)
I imagine the level of nervous and/or negative energy in the crowd at the Raptors game is through the roof. But I can't tell because I don't have NBA TV and don't feel like finding a stream.

My condolences, in advance.
   2681. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: April 25, 2018 at 08:19 PM (#5660510)
The uselessness of Tristan Thompson is hurting the Cavs. Sabonis, Young, and Turner are having an easy go of things.
   2682. NJ in NY (Now with Toddler!) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 08:28 PM (#5660520)
[2681] After the last game a few guys on Twitter had play breakdowns showing that Thompson was actually pretty useful in the scant minutes he got in this series.
   2683. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: April 25, 2018 at 08:37 PM (#5660527)
After the last game a few guys on Twitter had play breakdowns showing that Thompson was actually pretty useful in the scant minutes he got in this series.

Well, I haven't been able to watch most of the games but if that's the case, he should get more run. There have been a lot of situations where Calderon is having to guard Turner in the paint.
   2684. Tin Angel Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:13 PM (#5660551)
I imagine the level of nervous and/or negative energy in the crowd at the Raptors game is through the roof. But I can't tell because I don't have NBA TV and don't feel like finding a stream.


Me too. But hopefully someone will post some gif's of a dejected Drake.
   2685. Crosseyed and Painless Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:18 PM (#5660554)
I just found a stream for the end. Drake's looking confident after this run to get a lead.

Now the stream is frozen. Sad!

EDIT - Really wouldn't have guessed Raptors by 10 about 20 minutes ago. Wish I could've watched it!
   2686. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:26 PM (#5660560)
I really like Sabonis' game.
   2687. jmurph Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:33 PM (#5660567)
I know Hill is hurt and he would be out there, but it's kind of amazing that the other big deadline day acquisitions apparently aren't good enough to play for Cleveland in crunch time.
   2688. PJ Martinez Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:40 PM (#5660578)
That LeBron turnover was weird.
   2689. jmurph Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:42 PM (#5660581)
When will they learn.
   2690. PJ Martinez Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:42 PM (#5660582)
And then he got away with a goaltend, looks like?
   2691. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:45 PM (#5660585)
Damn, LeBron had an eventful last 5 seconds. What a player.
   2692. perros Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:46 PM (#5660586)
Looked like a goaltend.

Then the dagger.
   2693. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:46 PM (#5660588)
LeBron is LeBron. What can you say?

A disturbing trend for the Cavs has to be the fact that they have 10+ leads in the last 4 games and have blown them. Another has to be the fact that LeBron scored 44 and the rest of the team scored 54.
   2694. Crosseyed and Painless Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:47 PM (#5660590)
Nice of LeBron to give the Cleveland fans one more amazing moment before he goes to Philadelphia.
   2695. stanmvp48 Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:48 PM (#5660593)
Not only a goaltend but an obvious shove in the back
   2696. aberg Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:48 PM (#5660594)
Lebron is not surprising anymore but he's sure fun to watch.
   2697. jmurph Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:49 PM (#5660596)
A disturbing trend for the Cavs has to be the fact that they have 10+ leads in the last 4 games and have blown them.

They've been pretty unimpressive thus far. No idea what their best 5 is, and I doubt they know either. But LeBron man, what are you gonna do.
   2698. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:55 PM (#5660598)
The only east team that has looked at all impressive is the 76ers. The one thing that has been good for the Cavs is they have held Indiana to 100 points or less in every game so far. That's a relatively good sign.

Love has only shot 4/21 in the last two games. He needs to be better for the Cavs.
   2699. JC in DC Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:57 PM (#5660601)
What the hell is NBA TV, and how can I watch the OKC game if I don't have it?
   2700. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:58 PM (#5660602)
I’ve got to say that even on the out of bounds turnover, he was pushing off from the three-point line all the way to the hoop
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