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Tuesday, May 01, 2012

OT: NBA Monthly Thread, May 2012

I estimate that only 10-12 Primates care about the NBA, but with our own thread, we won’t detract from what the site is really about: Bryce Harper getting mooned by a Dodgers fan, how dumb interleague baseball is, or random spamming of Yankees/RedSox news that barely counts as news.

Tripon Posted: May 01, 2012 at 10:28 AM | 2330 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1601. andrewberg Posted: May 23, 2012 at 01:57 PM (#4138727)
Sloan to Utah - I read that neither party wants that - that "that ship sailed".


I think you just correctly used "that" three consecutive times in a sentence. Excellent work.
   1602. GregD Posted: May 23, 2012 at 01:59 PM (#4138728)
Or 1986, that's a fun one:

Trade Moses and Terry Catledge AND two #1 picks for Jeff Ruland and Cliff Robinson.
Draft Brad Daugherty....and trade him the same day for Roy Hinson.
Yes! I remember it well, convinced that my 14-year-old self didn't understand higher-order basketball and twelve-dimensional chess since I couldn't see any logic to this at all. Jeff Ruland and Hinson were my favorite type of player, but still...I always think of this trade when people say that it's better to take a risk than settle for being pretty good. The Sixers decided Daugherty wasn't a superduperstar so they rolled the dice in a crazy way, while Daugherty ended up being exactly what he always looked to be, a really fine if never great player.
   1603. AROM Posted: May 23, 2012 at 02:14 PM (#4138745)
Yes! I remember it well, convinced that my 14-year-old self didn't understand higher-order basketball and twelve-dimensional chess since I couldn't see any logic to this at all.


I was 15, but otherwise that's the exact reaction I had at the time. I wasn't strongly into basketball yet (that would come in a year or two) but I was living in the Philly area and this was discussed all the time. There was a general thought that you couldn't play Barkley, Daugherty, and Malone all together. Probably true. There had to have been a better solution though.

Things could not have worked out worse as instead of two excellent centers, they were down to Tim McCormick after Ruland got hurt.

How in the world did Philadelphia get into the situation of having the #1 pick anyway? They got a #1 1986 pick straight up from the Clippers in return for Kobe's dad back in 1979. Bryant played 4 more years, with his best scoring average 11.8 per game, earning a total of 6.7 win shares. Really amazing to see the kind of trades dumb teams would make with future draft picks.
   1604. Backlasher Posted: May 23, 2012 at 02:19 PM (#4138754)
Yeah. He was the #17 pick, I was looking at guys picked in the top half. Jermaine is a good example of terrible draft pick, good player. The Blazers got nothing out of him before he was free agent eligible. Though I see they were able to get Dale Davis in a trade. Don't remember the circumstances, whether that was a pure trade or a sign and trade deal where Portland got a player and O'Neal got a better contract.

He came to Indy with Joe Kleine who was later waived. According to bkref, he went from 5 Mil to 5.7 Mil in salary that year and Davis went from 5 Mil to 6 Mil. IMHO, he looked good with Portland. They just didn't play him. A lot of that may have had to do with the team having trouble getting points. 'Sheed was usually their second scoring option, and when they took him and JR Rider off the court, Portland had trouble scoring. That probably cut into his minutes, as he wasn't the likely option for time behind Brian Grant or Sabonis.

Does LeBron still stay in Cleveland if he has 2 or 3 finals losses instead of only 1? Especially if 2 of them (2007 and 2008) were completely non-competitive sweeps?

Based on his recent interviews, he might still would move. I don't think he like Cleveland. There was all the talk about the locals looking down on Akroners. He might not have gone to the Heat, but he may still have wanted a bigger market for his non-basketball marketing income. LeDecision cut down on his brand exposure. It wasn't long ago he was plastered all over the place.

If we're talking early HS->Pros guys, I'd be remiss to not mention Bill Willoughby (19th pick in the '75 draft ... never more than a rotation piece).
This OTL piece on Willougby was pretty good.
   1605. Zipperholes Posted: May 23, 2012 at 02:28 PM (#4138765)
That's why I made my bounty comment. Unless someone snitches, the league won't catch anything (and dare I say, they don't want to catch anything). But why else would Pittman target Stevenson?
Suspend Spoelstra.
   1606. steagles Posted: May 23, 2012 at 02:29 PM (#4138766)
I'd like to vent for a sec. Why does the internet do such a lousy job of figuring out who's an unrestricted v. restricted free agent, who has a team option, etc... All this data is out there, but I'm not aware of any one site that is wholly correct. (Shamsports might be - they're my favorite for this sort of thing, but he's on semi-sabbatical. ESPN looks close. Hoopsworld did a lousy job and a number of other sites seem to use them.)

All this should take is effort and a basic understanding of how this stuff works - is that too much to ask?
storytellers
ESPN
   1607. smileyy Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:05 PM (#4138797)
I think you just correctly used "that" three consecutive times in a sentence. Excellent work.


Buffalo buffalo buffalo!
   1608. smileyy Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:06 PM (#4138800)
IMHO, he looked good with Portland. They just didn't play him.


I remember this. He was widely identified as a breakout star who needed minutes Portland wasn't giving him.
   1609. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:13 PM (#4138806)
Case in point: Terrence Williams (SAC): storytellers implies that he's a UFA, ESPN has him as an RFA (I believe that the former is correct).
(I use storytellers too, though I think I found an error there the other day - forgot what it was.)

andrew: thanks, it was a conscious choice.
   1610. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:27 PM (#4138819)
Just read Pelton's column on the 2007 draft over lunch. Great stuff. You know, my ESPN Insider account is expiring next week....
   1611. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:31 PM (#4138822)
NBA's All-Defensive Team announced:

1st Team
G: Chris Paul
G: Tony Allen
F: Lebron James
F: Serge Ibaka
C: Dwight Howard

2nd Team
G: Rajon Rondo
G: Kobe Bryant
F: Kevin Garnett
F: Luol Deng
C: Tyson Chandler

The last time the NBA Defensive Player of the Year didn't make the All-Defense 1st team was 1995 (Mutumbo).
   1612. rr Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:43 PM (#4138830)
Guys,

Just got a LONG email harangue from Abbott. 99.9% sure that he copies and pastes it and sends it to aggrieved Lakers Fanboys (and who could blame him). He ignored my invite to the thread.

No way Kobe is second-team all-D. Don't think Paul should be first team. Would switch Garnett/Chandler and Howard/Ibaka as well.
   1613. Booey Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:43 PM (#4138831)
#1599 - My takes on WCF vs NBA Finals:

1999 - WCF: Spurs/Blazers over Spurs/Knicks easily. Neither ended up being competitive (4-0 over Portland, 4-1 over NY), but in the WCF at least it seemed like it was because of the Spurs dominance and not because of their opponents mediocrity. Swept or not, Blazers were a much better team that year than the Knicks.

2000 - WCF: Lakers/Blazers over Lakers/Pacers. I agree completely with everything you said. The Pacers series was underrated (just like that era's Pacers in general), but I don't think anyone really thought they were going to win. The WCF went 7 games and was about as close as you can get...and about as entertaining as a series between 2 teams I absolutely loathed could be. Picking a favorite to root for was hard since I badly wanted both teams to lose. I'd have been perfectly happy if they just called that series a draw and declared the Pacers champs.

2001 - WCF: Lakers/Spurs over Lakers/Sixers by far. The Sixers were just such an overwhelmed mismatch that how they managed to win a game in that series - even against a team that was possibly rusty from not having played in over a week and almost certainly a little cocky from having swept the West - remains a mystery. The WCF was a blowout too, of course, but it was probably the most entertaining sweep I'd ever seen (well, other than the 1998 WCF, and that was awesome for different reasons). The Spurs were a very, very good team - probably right on par with most of their title teams - and the Lakers made them look like a high school squad, especially in the games in LA. That was probably the most impressive series I'd ever seen from a sheer dominance over a great opponent standpoint.

2002 - WCF: Lakers/Kings over Lakers/Nets a million times over. The 2002 WCF will always be talked about for other reasons and rightfully so, but it was also an awesomely competitive series that may have gone down as one of the best ever if not for the controversy. Part of what made it great drama was also that everyone knew it was really being played for the title, since the token Eastern Conference representative Nets were just going to be a 4 game sacrificial lamb for whoever made it out of the west.

2003 - WCF: Spurs/Mavs over Spurs/Nets easily. The WCF wasn't as exciting as it had been the year before, but it was still pretty clearly being played for the title. The 49 win Nets had no business being near the finals and I have no idea how they took the Spurs to 6.

2004 - NBA: Pistons/Lakers over Lakers/Wolves. Even with an unexpectedly non competitive finals, I'd still say the actual finals were better than the WCF for the first time in this span just because of the surprise factor and the curiosity of seeing if Malone and Payton would finally get their rings. The Pistons were the first champion since I'd started following the NBA that I was genuinely surprised about - at the time I thought they were just a boring, defensive minded team without a true star that made the finals largely by default (like the previous 3 eastern conference champs). I predicted a Lakers sweep. And I was horribly wrong, obviously, about well, pretty much everything I thought about those Pistons.

2005 - WCF: Spurs/Suns over Spurs/Pistons. Really tough call here. I'm basically picking entertainment over substance. The finals were great as far as competitiveness goes; the last 2 NBA champions squaring off in a defensive slugfest that came down to the final seconds of game 7...sounds awesome on paper. But man, was that series painful to sit through! The Suns weren't as good as Detroit, but at least they were new and exciting and fun to watch, rather than seeing possibly the two most boring champs in recent memory duke it out for an ugly, ugly title. I'm sure a lot of people would disagree with this pick.

2006 - WCF: Mavs/Suns over Heat/Mavs a million times over. Heat/Mavs was competitive and all, but it's impossible not to think of that series as anything but an abomination, so the WCF wins by default. I know people who stopped following the NBA altogether after the travesty that was the 2006 finals.

2007 - WCF: Spurs/Jazz over Spurs/Cavs a million times over. Much of my interest in this series is due to my homerism, of course, since the WCF wasn't very competitive either. But the Jazz did win 1 game, and it was actually the Spurs biggest loss of the season, so that coupled with the fact that this was my boys first WCF in 9 years made their eventual and inevitable beatdown surprisingly easy to deal with. The finals were just a foregone conclusion featuring yet another mediocre eastern rep that had no business being there.


Tally it all up and from my personal POV, the WCF beats the NBA Finals 8-1 in this span (or 7-2 if I decide not to be so shallow about 2005).
   1614. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:48 PM (#4138836)
Just got a LONG email harangue from Abbott.
Seriously? That's f'n petty.
   1615. Booey Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:51 PM (#4138840)
No way Kobe is second-team all-D.


Are you saying he should be first team, or not on either team? I haven't watched the Lakers as much as you, obviously, but he doesn't seem to me to be nearly as good on D as he used to be. Are my impressions wrong?

This seems kinda like an MLB gold glove type of vote...
   1616. rr Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:52 PM (#4138841)
Seriously? That's f'n petty.


I forwarded it to you. It is clearly a form letter, but still, well, you will see it.
   1617. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:53 PM (#4138842)
Just got a LONG email harangue from Abbott. 99.9% sure that he copies and pastes it and sends it to aggrieved Lakers Fanboys (and who could blame him). He ignored my invite to the thread.

I would really love to read this (first time I've said that about something he's written in years...).

---

Everyone on twitter is making fun of Carlos Boozer for getting a 2nd team vote (Rose did, too, which is odd, but not ridiculous like the Boozer one).
   1618. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:56 PM (#4138844)
I forwarded it to you. It is clearly a form letter, but still, well, you will see it.
Just read it, thanks. FWIW, my recommended reply to his line was:
Now, I accept that you don't like what I have to say. But I assure you it's entirely true.

It doesn't matter to me that what you're saying is entirely true. It matters to me that you no longer seem capable of writing or podcasting about anything else, so I'm going to take my business to an outlet that does.
It's hard to talk to someone who thinks he's fighting a holy war.
   1619. rr Posted: May 23, 2012 at 03:58 PM (#4138848)
or not on either team?


This one. I said that last year as well. Many Lakers fans aren't as stupid when it comes to Kobe as many people in other fanbases and some media guys like to believe.
   1620. rr Posted: May 23, 2012 at 04:02 PM (#4138853)
I would really love to read this (first time I've said that about something he's written in years...).


If you drop me an email from my BTF profile, I am happy to send it along. As I said to Hombre, if this whole thing is just a trolling thing, well, it is a long con. Abbott really comes off like a True (Hoop) Believer.

   1621. Booey Posted: May 23, 2012 at 04:04 PM (#4138854)
This one. I said that last year as well. Many Lakers fans aren't as stupid as many people in other fanbases like to believe. Every year during the playoffs, at the Lakers blog I hang out at, 5-10 guys who like the other team show up at the blog during every series, and say, "Gosh, I thought all you guys would be worshipping Kobe and complaining about the refs but some of you actually know something about basketball."


Sorry, I didn't mean for that to sound offensive if it did. I wasn't hanging out here last year (well, not much anyway. I may have dropped in for a minute a couple times). I was just curious. I wasn't implying any of what you said above.
   1622. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: May 23, 2012 at 04:07 PM (#4138857)
It's like anything else, isn't it? If I judged Yankee fans by those I deal with on a day to day basis, I'd think they were pretty clueless as fanbases go*. Having said that, there's obviously loads of great Yankee fans here and lots of other places.

* i attribute this to their large number of bandwagon fans and sample size issues.

I liked the tweet (jokediggy, r/t by hollinger): "Carlos Boozer wouldn't make second-string all-Defense on his own team."
   1623. Backlasher Posted: May 23, 2012 at 04:13 PM (#4138865)
No way Kobe is second-team all-D. Don't think Paul should be first team. Would switch Garnett/Chandler and Howard/Ibaka as well.

These are like gold gloves. Often, reputation from previous years can go along way toward getting the reward. Consequently, I am surprised that Iggy didn't get some love. In future years, Shumpert, Bradley and Tristan Thompson could get some recognition.

I don't want to be too much of a homer, but I think Josh Smith got a little bit hosed.

Edit: Coke to Booeey
   1624. rr Posted: May 23, 2012 at 04:15 PM (#4138866)
Sorry, I didn't mean for that to sound offensive if it did


Not at all--was not aimed at you. That is why I edited it down; the original version you have up there seemed harsh. Kobe's D has been crappy most of the year. Lateral quickness goes with age, no matter how hard you work at staying in shape.

That is one of the Lakers' many team construction issues: their three key guys, while all very good players, are all slow as hell, and MWP has lost a step. Sessions is quick but a bad defensive player.

   1625. Booey Posted: May 23, 2012 at 04:27 PM (#4138877)
That is one of the Lakers' many team construction issues: their three key guys, while all very good players, are all slow as hell, and MWP has lost a step. Sessions is quick but a bad defensive player.


Sounds like the 2007-2010 Jazz. Boozer and Okur were awful defenders, and the 2008-2010 Lakers were a nightmare matchup for us cuz they had the bigs to exploit that weakness better than anyone else in the league. I've always thought that ending up in the Lakers bracket every damn year sent us home from the playoffs a round early in both 2008 and 2010 at least.
   1626. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 23, 2012 at 04:54 PM (#4138895)
Kobe's D has been crappy most of the year. Lateral quickness goes with age, no matter how hard you work at staying in shape.
He did manage to do a great job on Harden, though; Beard shot less than 36% against the Lakers. Bryant's still good against guys who aren't burners, but he doesn't belong anywhere near an All-NBA defensive team.
   1627. rr Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:01 PM (#4138899)
He did manage to do a great job on Harden, though; Beard shot less than 36% against the Lakers


He can still play pretty well when he is really into it and the matchup is right. But as you say, he is not an all-D guy at this stage.

It has occurred to me that he might be more effective as a 3, rather than as a 2, at this stage in his career.
   1628. AROM Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:02 PM (#4138900)
Lateral quickness goes with age, no matter how hard you work at staying in shape.


While true, it makes me wonder how in hell the Celtics still defend like they do.
   1629. Backlasher Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:03 PM (#4138901)
Ric Bucher has an interesting story regarding some alleged shenanigans regarding Billy Hunter using union funds in regard to issues related to power struggles at the National Basketball Retired Players Association.

IF nothing else, you have to love that the lawyer involved with a Charles Smith issue is named Bernard King.
   1630. Booey Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:12 PM (#4138908)
Lateral quickness goes with age, no matter how hard you work at staying in shape.

While true, it makes me wonder how in hell the Celtics still defend like they do.


Steroids.
   1631. rr Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:12 PM (#4138909)
it makes me wonder how in hell the Celtics still defend like they do.


Well, Rondo and Bradley are both very quick. Bass is not old.

And a lot of it, as you know, is Garnett. He is not as quick laterally as he once was, but he anchors and runs the D. Sometimes when I watch Boston, I will watch him a few possessions when the other team has the ball.
   1632. AROM Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:13 PM (#4138910)
Steroids.


Where are the reporters demanding they pee in a jar before game 6 when you need them?
   1633. Tripon Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:41 PM (#4138926)
AROM, I demand you pee in a jar before game 6.
   1634. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:43 PM (#4138927)
ESPNChrisPalmer
Reports: Allen Iverson will be at the Sixers game tonight.

ESPNChrisPalmer
If the Sixers win they should invite AI to practice tomorrow.


Ha!
   1635. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:43 PM (#4138928)
AROM, I demand you pee in a jar before game 6.

Expect a package in 5-7 business days.
   1636. Tripon Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:46 PM (#4138929)
Its safe to say that Billy Hunter got his hand caught in the cookie jar. AGAIN.
   1637. steagles Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:48 PM (#4138931)
i just want to draw attention to this screed by philadelphia inquirer columnist john mitchell. i'm just gonna quote the whole thing because it's absolutely hacktastic:

So, Kevin Garnett has decided that he wanted to boost the collective psyche of those wannabe fans in Boston, endearing himself to them by calling the fans of the City of Brotherly Love “fair-weathered.”

“Take that how you want,” Garnett added.

You think we’re the fair weather type, do you? Ok, to that I say that it’s better to be fair weather than to be anything remotely akin the cretins that unleashed their racist vitriol via Twitter upon Washington Capitals defenseman Joel Ward, a Black hockey player, last month after he eliminated Boston’s Bruins from the NHL playoffs with an overtime goal.

Can’t really call this an isolated incident, my friend, not unless you believe that those clowns were gathered together in some sort of Bruins/Skinheads gathering and, after their team went down, they all took to Twitter once Ward drove the stake through Boston’s heart.

No, this wasn’t the whole Boston fan base, not at all. But it’s not a coincidence that Bill Russell, the biggest sports winner in the history of Boston sports, absolutely loathed the city and a fan base that he saw as racist.

His words, not mine.

So my advice to you, KG, is that you’re better off winning this series, the next one and then the next. Because if you let those stalwart fans down, who knows what they’ll unleash on you. We do know what they are capable of.

Take that how you want.

   1638. Backlasher Posted: May 23, 2012 at 05:54 PM (#4138933)
He did manage to do a great job on Harden, though; Beard shot less than 36% against the Lakers.

Maybe from 3 pointers beyond the arc and mid range shots. Harden was 1-9 from 3s beyond the arc and 0-4 from mid range. But he got to the rim 17 times on Mr. Bean making 10 of those shots. He also averaged 10.4 Free throws per 36 minutes, which is higher than his playoff average and way higher than his season average. I don't have the hard numbers, but I think that is a TS% of around 57% (based on just using the per36 numbers). I am not sure that is a resume builder for your defense. See Link
   1639. Booey Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:01 PM (#4138940)
No, this wasn’t the whole Boston fan base, not at all. But it’s not a coincidence that Bill Russell, the biggest sports winner in the history of Boston sports, absolutely loathed the city and a fan base that he saw as racist.


Well, I would think that things have changed a bit between the 1960's and 2012...
   1640. baudib Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:11 PM (#4138944)
Kobe's defense was the subject of debate at the beginning of this thread. Just goes to show that if you say someone is overrated you will be proven right eventually.
   1641. rr Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:14 PM (#4138945)
Like Abbott, baudib and BL put quite a lot of thought and effort into the subject of Kobe Bryant.
   1642. baudib Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:24 PM (#4138946)
BL hates "Mamba" way more than I do.
   1643. Jimmy P Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:35 PM (#4138949)
Wojnarski is saying that Pittman's going to get three games. It's a just punishment.
   1644. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:43 PM (#4138951)
Wojnarski is saying that Pittman's going to get three games. It's a just punishment.


And that Haslem is suspended for game 6. Both seem fair to me.
   1645. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:43 PM (#4138952)
Wojnarski is saying that Pittman's going to get three games. It's a just punishment.

I think it's too light. What's the difference between that and the Bynum play last season? (I'm actually more upset by this one, since we see Pittman winking to the Heat bench.)

And that Haslem is suspended for game 6. Both seem fair to me.

Good, and correct. I was worried they'd chicken out on that one.
   1646. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:47 PM (#4138956)
I don't have the hard numbers, but I think that is a TS% of around 57% (based on just using the per36 numbers). I am not sure that is a resume builder for your defense.
No, it's not, you're right on that. Bryant gives up the corner now (part of that whole lateral movement thing) but Harden's TS% was 66% this season, and Bryant was consistently good at forcing Harden into help defense. Problem is, Harden's just so good around the rim that he was drawing fouls on the help inside. If it were KG in the paint, Bryant's defense would look really good.
   1647. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:48 PM (#4138959)
The league upgraded Hanborough's foul on Wade to flagrant 2. I disagree there, especially since they didn't change Wade's foul on Collison from last week. It was upgraded simply because the Heat escalated the situation. Terrible.
   1648. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:50 PM (#4138960)
Wojnarski is saying that Pittman's going to get three games. It's a just punishment.
And that Haslem is suspended for game 6. Both seem fair to me.
So now what does this mean for Game 6? No Haslem or Bosh in the middle for Miami — should we expect Indy to win it?
   1649. Jimmy P Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:50 PM (#4138961)
I think it's too light. What's the difference between that and the Bynum play last season? (I'm actually more upset by this one, since we see Pittman winking to the Heat bench.)

Well, Bynum's suspension was regular season games. Haslem's is playoffs. Just on the number of games, playoff games are more valuable. So missing one is like missing multiple regular season games.

I'm honestly surprised they suspended Haslem at all. I thought it'd be like Wade's shoulder check of Collison.
   1650. Maxwn Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:52 PM (#4138965)
I think it's too light. What's the difference between that and the Bynum play last season?

I suspect the repeat offender thing. Bynum got suspended 2 games for a flagrant foul on Michael Beasley in the reg season last year. As far as I can tell, this is Pittman's first run-in. You can debate whether that should matter, but it seems clear to me that it does to the NBA.

Edit: Jimmy could be right about the reg season/playoff thing too.
   1651. Jimmy P Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:54 PM (#4138967)
The league upgraded Hanborough's foul on Wade to flagrant 2. I disagree there, especially since they didn't change Wade's foul on Collison from last week. It was upgraded simply because the Heat escalated the situation. Terrible.

It's pretty obvious Wade isn't just teflon with the media. The league won't do anything either.

Also, after his play on Collison, listening to Wade whine about physical play is a bit much.
   1652. Maxwn Posted: May 23, 2012 at 06:56 PM (#4138970)
Also, after his play on Collison, listening to Wade whine about physical play is a bit much.

I never minded him before, but I find him pretty ####### insufferable this postseason.
   1653. Squash Posted: May 23, 2012 at 07:03 PM (#4138973)
Kobe's last year in high school was my first year in college in the Philly area. As mentioned above, obviously slanted coverage, but everyone thought he was going to be a huge star. There were two off-the-court reasons he fell: 1) there was still a large bias against drafting high school guys - Garnett had only been drafted the year before and when he was it was a BIG story about a high school guy going that high, as no one had in a very long time. There was lots of talk about Moses Malone being the last impact high school guy drafted in the first round. Everyone was talking about what a huge risk Minnesota was taking in spending such a high pick on Garnett, and when Kobe came along right after the bias was still in play. 2) Arn Tellem went around before the draft telling people Kobe would only play for the Lakers and that he would go play in Italy otherwise. Whether that was a bluff, who knows?

Kobe's D is still all right, particularly when he's motivated. For an offensive star and his age it's very good. He had a long way to fall. It may have been part of the Jordan thing but Kobe was always very committed on D, unlike many other perimeter offensive stars.
   1654. Backlasher Posted: May 23, 2012 at 07:21 PM (#4138982)
1) there was still a large bias against drafting high school guys - Garnett had only been drafted the year before and when he was it was a BIG story about a high school guy going that high, as no one had in a very long time. There was lots of talk about Moses Malone being the last impact high school guy drafted in the first round. Everyone was talking about what a huge risk Minnesota was taking in spending such a high pick on Garnett, and when Kobe came along right after the bias was still in play. 2) Arn Tellem went around before the draft telling people Kobe would only play for the Lakers and that he would go play in Italy otherwise. Whether that was a bluff, who knows?

The Willougby OTL that I linked earlier has an interview with Calipari. He indicated that he wanted to take Kobe with the Nets pick. He was scared off by the high school bias.

I also heard the story about SouljaBoy saying that Bryant would only play with the Lakers. Like others, I thought the Hornets getting Divac out of the 13th pick was great esp. since they had lost Zo. Of course, if they had passed on Divac, they would have just settled on a Peja, Nash or O'Neal :). Of course, they would have probably been cursed to take someone like Muursepp.
   1655. Backlasher Posted: May 23, 2012 at 07:37 PM (#4138994)
John Hollinger ?@johnhollinger
Knee slapper RT @ESPNSteinLine My man @Chris_Broussard on ESPN's NBA Countdown, just reported Shaq could meet next week w/Magic about GM job


Would Shaq dare trade Dwight to the Lakers?
   1656. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: May 23, 2012 at 07:43 PM (#4138997)
2001 - WCF: Lakers/Spurs over Lakers/Sixers by far. The Sixers were just such an overwhelmed mismatch that how they managed to win a game in that series - even against a team that was possibly rusty from not having played in over a week and almost certainly a little cocky from having swept the West - remains a mystery. The WCF was a blowout too, of course, but it was probably the most entertaining sweep I'd ever seen (well, other than the 1998 WCF, and that was awesome for different reasons). The Spurs were a very, very good team - probably right on par with most of their title teams - and the Lakers made them look like a high school squad, especially in the games in LA. That was probably the most impressive series I'd ever seen from a sheer dominance over a great opponent standpoint.

Disagree completely. Iverson stepping over Lue is an indelible NBA moment for me. That year's Sixers team was the first time I ever felt emotionally invested in a team/player that wasn't the Knicks.
   1657. JC in DC Posted: May 23, 2012 at 07:43 PM (#4138998)
No way Kobe is second-team all-D. Don't think Paul should be first team. Would switch Garnett/Chandler and Howard/Ibaka as well.


Is it possible the second team is better than the first team?

Also, re Kobe, I found BL's look into the numbers instructive rather than haranguing.
   1658. Squash Posted: May 23, 2012 at 08:15 PM (#4139013)
I also heard the story about SouljaBoy saying that Bryant would only play with the Lakers. Like others, I thought the Hornets getting Divac out of the 13th pick was great esp. since they had lost Zo. Of course, if they had passed on Divac, they would have just settled on a Peja, Nash or O'Neal :). Of course, they would have probably been cursed to take someone like Muursepp.

I was about to wonder how Soulja Boy, who was probably all of three years old when that trade happened, knew the backstory, but then realized that was not to be taken literally. It is impressive that they got Divac, who was still considered a good player and a marketable personality, for Bryant, especially if they didn't really have any leverage. But then the Lakers also knew they were about to sign Shaq.

re: the high school bias, if that draft was held five years later, Kobe goes significantly higher than he did. Of course, Kobe's career is one of the reasons the mythical five-years-after Kobe goes higher, but nonetheless.
   1659. steagles Posted: May 23, 2012 at 08:23 PM (#4139016)
i do not like that timeout.
   1660. steagles Posted: May 23, 2012 at 08:26 PM (#4139022)
i do not like that timeout.
and they turned the ball over coming out of it, then iggy fouled paul pierce at the other end of the floor, taking him out of the game with his 2nd foul/

####.
   1661. Zipperholes Posted: May 23, 2012 at 08:54 PM (#4139034)
On TNT, Shaq is pretty good breaking down plays and the like. I haven't heard anything intelligent out of his mouth re player evaluation.
   1662. baudib Posted: May 23, 2012 at 08:56 PM (#4139035)
Would Shaq dare trade Dwight to the Lakers?


No
   1663. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 23, 2012 at 08:56 PM (#4139036)
Kobe's last year in high school was my first year in college in the Philly area. As mentioned above, obviously slanted coverage, but everyone thought he was going to be a huge star.
I thought one of the reasons some teams were turned off by him was because it was obvious that HE thought he was going to be a big star. The whole taking-Brandy-to-the-prom thing didn't help that, and neither did his agent telling everyone he would only play for the Lakers.

re: the high school bias, if that draft was held five years later, Kobe goes significantly higher than he did. Of course, Kobe's career is one of the reasons the mythical five-years-after Kobe goes higher, but nonetheless.
Tim Legler likes to tell the story of how he was in Philly for winter workouts and some 15-year-old had taken over the gym, blowing by guys who were already in the NBA. He asked who it was, and was told, "That's Jellybean Bryant's kid." If a kid was doing that these days, he'd be on the cover of ESPN Magazine by the time he was 16, and no team would hesitate to draft him.
   1664. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 23, 2012 at 09:04 PM (#4139038)
I'm not enjoying this basketball game. Grind, grind, grind, thud.
   1665. baudib Posted: May 23, 2012 at 09:13 PM (#4139042)
Brutal sequence to end the half there.
   1666. steagles Posted: May 23, 2012 at 09:23 PM (#4139051)
I'm not enjoying this basketball game. Grind, grind, grind, thud.
the sixers really deserve to be down 20 right now, but somehow they're going into the half down only 3. boston is beating them on the boards, at the FT line, and to every loose ball. the sixers are playing tight, they're getting pushed around, they're choking on every jumpshot. the way they're playing right now, they don't deserve to go back to boston, let alone to win there.




   1667. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: May 23, 2012 at 09:25 PM (#4139053)
Gotta wonder what AI is thinking right now.
   1668. Backlasher Posted: May 23, 2012 at 09:32 PM (#4139057)

Gotta wonder what AI is thinking right now.

Im thinkin money every moment thinkin money
I bust a nut then I'm back to thinkin money
   1669. Fourth True Outcome Posted: May 23, 2012 at 09:46 PM (#4139066)
Does Ibaka really belong on either all-NBA defensive team? I don't watch him enough to really have a feel for this, but my perception was that he was an athletic guy who works hard on that end and blocks a lot of shots, but is otherwise still a work in progress defensively. Given that KG was as much a 5 as a 4 this season, shouldn't they have given that spot to Joakim Noah or somesuch, or am I underrating Ibaka?
   1670. smileyy Posted: May 23, 2012 at 09:49 PM (#4139068)
That seemed to be a shared opinion on Ibaka a few pages ago.
   1671. Fourth True Outcome Posted: May 23, 2012 at 09:51 PM (#4139070)
That seemed to be a shared opinion on Ibaka a few pages ago.


I just found it interesting that no one (here or elsewhere) has said much about him ending up second team all-NBA. I guess nitpicking that might just be rehashing the DPOY conversation, though.
   1672. smileyy Posted: May 23, 2012 at 09:56 PM (#4139075)
My take on it is that he's the kind of guy who gets those kinds of votes, because blocks are easy to count.
   1673. Srul Itza Posted: May 23, 2012 at 10:11 PM (#4139083)
I'm smelling two game 7s in the East, while the Spurs rest and the Thunder rust.
   1674. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: May 23, 2012 at 10:29 PM (#4139089)
Take this for what it's worth, but Ibaka's defensive stats from 82games.com stack up with the top big men defenders save Howard.

Matchup's PER:
Ibaka: 14.0 PF, 24.1 C (I don't see the exact minutes played at each, but he played 67% of the Thunder's minutes at PF compared to only 4% at C)
Chandler: 12.6 C
Garnett: 13.8 PF, 15.7 C (23% of Celtics' minutes at PF and 52% at C)
Smith: 1.8 SF, 15.7 PF, 12.4 C (0% of Hawks' minutes at SF, 66% at PF, 20% at C)
Howard: 14.0 C
Noah: 0 PF, 15.3 C (0% of Bulls' minutes at PF, 76% at C)

Team's Net Defense Per 100 Possessions:
Ibaka: -2.8
Chandler: -1.2
Garnett: -1.6
Smith: -1.6
Howard: -6.8
Noah: +8.0 (wonder if this is mostly being paired up with Boozer and Asik/Gibson possibly being better defenders than Noah?)

Nick Collison does not grade out well on defense, which may give Ibaka's net rating a boost compared to the guys with strong defensive bench players (like Jeffries, Gibson, Asik, etc.).
   1675. steagles Posted: May 23, 2012 at 11:10 PM (#4139103)
watching this series, i can't help but notice how the celtics are just ####### awful. they're beating philly from the 3P line. they're beating philly from the FT line. they're beating philly on the glass. and they're still losing these ####### games. it's embarrassing.


unfortunately, there are two off-days before game 7, so despite garnett and pierce both playing 40+ minutes, they should both be fairly rested going into saturday's game.


and whatever happens, i just really hope the sixers don't lose game 7 by 20+ points. they probably deserve to lose that game by 20 points, but it'd just be a really terrible end to the season.
   1676. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: May 23, 2012 at 11:13 PM (#4139104)
Never in a million years would I have thought Backlasher had musical tastes I can appreciate. Heh. Learn something new every day.
   1677. baudib Posted: May 23, 2012 at 11:54 PM (#4139112)
Celtics' offense is fairly retched, just a lot of long twos.
   1678. PJ Martinez Posted: May 24, 2012 at 12:04 AM (#4139114)
Celtics' offense is fairly retched, just a lot of long twos.

That is quite often the case, yes, although sometimes those long twos are well set-up. But they've gotten away with it (to varying degrees) since Garnett arrived for two reasons: 1) They generally play the best defense in the league, and 2) the guys shooting most of those long twos (Pierce, Garnett, Allen) hit them at a relatively high percentage.

Age (and/or bone spurs) has finally caught up to Allen, and these days they need a lot more than they got from Rondo tonight to win.

On a mostly unrelated note: somebody said around here the other day that the Celtics seem to play to the score, and I completely agree. Not necessarily tonight so much, but just in general.

Game 7 here we come.
   1679. baudib Posted: May 24, 2012 at 12:30 AM (#4139117)
wretched*
   1680. Dandy Little Glove Man Posted: May 24, 2012 at 12:34 AM (#4139119)
these days they need a lot more than they got from Rondo tonight to win

Paul Pierce appears to agree with you.
   1681. baudib Posted: May 24, 2012 at 03:14 AM (#4139131)
Nice moment for Iverson, good to see him back in Philly.
   1682. baudib Posted: May 24, 2012 at 03:30 AM (#4139132)
That is quite often the case, yes, although sometimes those long twos are well set-up. But they've gotten away with it (to varying degrees) since Garnett arrived for two reasons: 1) They generally play the best defense in the league, and 2) the guys shooting most of those long twos (Pierce, Garnett, Allen) hit them at a relatively high percentage.

Age (and/or bone spurs) has finally caught up to Allen, and these days they need a lot more than they got from Rondo tonight to win.


Usually the Celtics hit more 3s, but they were 3 of 14 last night. The other big part of their offense is the fact that Paul Pierce has a unique uh, talent, for drawing fouls on jumpers.

But yeah, my impression the whole series has been that the Celtics need a huge game from Rondo to win.

   1683. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: May 24, 2012 at 05:55 AM (#4139143)
Nice moment for Iverson, good to see him back in Philly.

Yeah, this warmed my heart.
   1684. jmurph Posted: May 24, 2012 at 08:45 AM (#4139163)
This series- and those against Atlanta over the past few years- makes me question Doc a little. Generally speaking, I think he's been the right guy for this group of players, and he hung a banner, so on the one hand it's stupid to question him. On the other hand, do they really need to keep going to 6 or 7 games against clearly inferior teams? They can't get up for a big road win to get themselves an extra few days of rest?
   1685. JC in DC Posted: May 24, 2012 at 08:46 AM (#4139164)
So, the Celtics lose Avery. That's gonna hurt them moving forward. Regarding KG, I was surprised how successfully Philly challenged him at the rim. Philly's just so athletic and fast. I expect Boston to win, but I can see the upset happening.
   1686. AROM Posted: May 24, 2012 at 08:52 AM (#4139169)
Philly has made it a point to take away the three this series. Their wing defenders are very quick. Last night the Celtics only made 3 - the first was a bit of a lapse at the buzzer to end the first half, and the other two came in desperation time at the end of the game.

If you can do all of this:
1) close out and challenge every 3 opportunity
2) double on Garnett and Bass when the get the ball inside
and
3) keep Rondo from driving to the basket

Then you're going to have a great defensive game. I think the key last night was #3, and I'm not sure how much credit there goes to the Sixers and how much was Rondo himself. The other 2 jobs are much harder when Rondo is having a good game.

Celtics also get a ton of baskets throughout games by cutting to the basket off a screen and somebody finding the cutter with a perfect pass under the basket. Sixers deserve credit for not letting these opportunities develop last night.

Finally, great job by the Sixers D once they realized they had to have a plan to defend Brandon Bass. They frustrated him, and reminded him that he's Brandon Bass, not the reincarnation of peak Amare Stoudamire.
   1687. AROM Posted: May 24, 2012 at 09:05 AM (#4139174)
This series- and those against Atlanta over the past few years- makes me question Doc a little. Generally speaking, I think he's been the right guy for this group of players, and he hung a banner, so on the one hand it's stupid to question him. On the other hand, do they really need to keep going to 6 or 7 games against clearly inferior teams? They can't get up for a big road win to get themselves an extra few days of rest?


I understand frustration in having to go 7 with Atlanta in 2008. But this year? Atlanta had home court advantage. They probably win the series if Smith and Horford were available the whole series. Heck, I'd like to see what Atlanta could have done if they had Pachulia for the first 3 games instead of playing Collins and Dampier.

As for the Sixers, the Celtics won 4 more regular season games than they did, but the Sixers were 4 games better on Pythagorean record. The reason the Celtics are having trouble with these teams is simply because they are not that much better than their opponents, if at all.

This is not to say I don't fear the Celtics against Miami next round if that's what happens. But that's more about the absence of Chris Bosh and the fear that these guys are going to get into Lebron's head in such a way that it will give Bill Simmons writing material for the next decade. They most definitely are not an elite team.
   1688. jmurph Posted: May 24, 2012 at 09:50 AM (#4139192)
I don't think they're an elite team, believe me. But I also feel comfortable saying they're clearly better than the Sixers, and were clearly better than the Hawks (who, as you point out, were not anywhere near full-strength).
   1689. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: May 24, 2012 at 09:59 AM (#4139194)
But I also feel comfortable saying they're clearly better than the Sixers

How/why?
   1690. JC in DC Posted: May 24, 2012 at 10:01 AM (#4139196)
I don't think they're an elite team, believe me. But I also feel comfortable saying they're clearly better than the Sixers, and were clearly better than the Hawks (who, as you point out, were not anywhere near full-strength).


Yeah, I don't see this, either. They're not even obviously better, imo. They're solid, and home court will mean a lot as it influences the refs, but I don't blame Doc for this going 7.
   1691. The Essex Snead Posted: May 24, 2012 at 10:11 AM (#4139203)
Seconding AROM & JC in DC. Unless you think Doc's making a mistake not giving E'twaun Moore or Marquis Daniels more burn, I'm not sure you can expect anything more than what he's done with the Celtics this year.
   1692. jmurph Posted: May 24, 2012 at 10:54 AM (#4139230)
Interesting, I didn't think that would controversial. In what area is Philly clearly better than Boston? Certainly in creating turnovers. Anything else that I'm missing? Boston is playing with something like the three best players in the series, or 3 of the best 4.

I'm not suggesting they should have swept, I just think you have to close it out last night if you're an actual contender.

Also, just read this:
With the loss, the Celtics drop to 10-13 overall and 2-11 on the road in close-out games since Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen joined Paul Pierce and Rajon Rondo on the team in the 2007-08 season.


I really do think Doc has done a great job, overall, I just get the sense they don't think they have to bring it when they feel like they're the better team. That's probably a little too much amateur psychology, to be fair.
   1693. AROM Posted: May 24, 2012 at 11:03 AM (#4139236)
The Celtics are probably better, but not so clearly better that they should stomp these teams. Elite teams should stomp opponents, like Miami did to the Knicks and the Spurs/Thunder did to Utah/Dallas. Merely decent teams playing opponents who they have an advantage on should expect to win after a hard fought battle. Sometimes they'll still stomp them, and sometimes they'll actually lose the series.

In the Garnett era here's how the Celtics fared when they were heavily favored:

2008: Atlanta takes them to 7 (though all games in Boston were blowouts), Cavaliers take them to 7 (where Lebron was perhaps a late 3 pointer away from stealing the series).

2009: Bulls take them 7. Orlando was a 59 win team, and KG was out so the Celtics should not have been heavily favored, if at all.

2010: Blew out Miami in 5. Were underdogs against Cleveland, Miami, and Lakers. Won 2 of 3 series anyway.

2011: Swept Knicks. Underdogs to the Heat, and lost.

2012: Not a good enough team to be overwhelming favorites against anyone.

I count 5 series where they should have been heavily favored, the first 3 took them 7 games, but the most recent 2 were taken care of easily.
   1694. AROM Posted: May 24, 2012 at 11:11 AM (#4139244)
Boston is playing with something like the three best players in the series, or 3 of the best 4.


I agree with that. But I think if you ranked the best ten players in this series, 6 or 7 are playing for Philly.
   1695. AROM Posted: May 24, 2012 at 11:16 AM (#4139252)
At the team level, Boston led in defensive rating (98.2) but Philly was close behind (99.2, 3rd place). Philly is a much better rebounding team (though you could not tell by last night), and turns the ball over less (not so true on Monday). They are close in 3 pointers, both volume and efficiency. Boston shoots better (.460-.448) and both gets to the line more and makes a higher percentage.
   1696. Booey Posted: May 24, 2012 at 11:20 AM (#4139259)
2010: Blew out Miami in 5. Were underdogs against Cleveland, Miami, and Lakers. Won 2 of 3 series anyway.


The second Miami should have been Orlando. Sorry to be pedantic, but it confused me for a second.
   1697. Maxwn Posted: May 24, 2012 at 11:21 AM (#4139262)
In what area is Philly clearly better than Boston? Certainly in creating turnovers.

Offense. Seriously. I know Philly's offense looks awful at times and it may be legitimately problematic in crunch time, but by all the efficiency numbers, as well as actual scoring, Philly is roughly league average or a bit worse while Boston is well below average. BBref has Boston 25th out of 30th in ORating and Hoopdata has them 24th in Offensive efficiency. Philly is 20th on BBref and 17th on Hoopdata. The actual numbers for ORating are 103.9 for Philly and 101 for Boston. OffEff from Hoopdata is 101.7 for Philly to 98.9 for Boston.
   1698. Backlasher Posted: May 24, 2012 at 11:23 AM (#4139266)
I really do think Doc has done a great job, overall, I just get the sense they don't think they have to bring it when they feel like they're the better team. That's probably a little too much amateur psychology, to be fair.

The analysts in the twitterverse agree with you. There is a consensus opinion that the Celtics play to the score. I think there is some truth to that statement; however, it probably understates the job that Doug Collins is doing in making adjustments.

Iggy is an underrated player. He is not a great scorer, but he is still one of the better defenders in the NBA. Lou Williams and Jrue Holiday should be able to get shots against the Celtics. Its much of the same principal as to how the Nuggets and Thunder could get shots against the Lakers; however, its probably a bit worse now that the Celts don't have Bradley. The only issue with the Sixers is if Holiday and Williams can efficiently convert their opportunities. Beyond that, they have a lot of servicable players which can create depth issues for the Celtics. The Celts were not incredibly deep to begin with. Now they have lost Bradley, and Allen, Pierce and Steimsma are hobbling.

IMHO, the Celts should win, and they should have won the series. This is not b/c of last night. I am not sure there was a way for them to win that game with the performances they got from the players, but IMHO, they should have won the earlier games. Nevertheless, if the Sixers do win game 7, I would not consider it a monumental upset (like I did for the Nuggets over the Soncics in '94)
   1699. GregD Posted: May 24, 2012 at 11:25 AM (#4139269)
Nice moment for Iverson, good to see him back in Philly.

Yeah, this warmed my heart.
That is an awesome picture. He still has the boyish look of wonder, like he's meeting David Stern for the first time. Suit him up!
   1700. AROM Posted: May 24, 2012 at 11:32 AM (#4139276)
Rivers mostly deserves credit for the defense. It is hard to reconcile the personnel with #1 defense in league. Garnett is great and plays with intensity all the time, but the last time he blocked 100 shots in a season he was still in Minnesota. Rondo is excellent, as is Bradley though they played great D before Bradley started getting minutes. Pierce somehow gets the job done at his age. But this defense is definitely more than the sum of it's parts.
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