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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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   901. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 14, 2012 at 06:12 PM (#4131338)
   902. baudib Posted: May 14, 2012 at 06:26 PM (#4131349)
Sixers are more likely to win in 5 than get swept, IMO. not that that's likely, either.

If Bosh doesn't play, it means Miami beats Boston in 6 instead of 4-5.



   903. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 14, 2012 at 09:27 PM (#4131483)
I'm impressed. I totally expected the Sixers to completely melt down, but they pulled themselves together and finished strong. What a big win for them.

I can just imagine what Steagles is thinking... maybe it's not Boston that's going to take advantage of all these injuries... maybe it's PHILLY... maybe... maybe...
   904. baudib Posted: May 14, 2012 at 09:36 PM (#4131493)
I didn't see much of the game at all. Feel really confident about the Sixers winning this series now, especially if Thad ever contributes.
   905. steagles Posted: May 14, 2012 at 09:54 PM (#4131523)
I can just imagine what Steagles is thinking... maybe it's not Boston that's going to take advantage of all these injuries... maybe it's PHILLY... maybe... maybe...
i'd really like to end boston's season. and i'd really, really like to end boston's run with this core group of players.

i think the great thing about this postseason has been that the sixers are starting to pull some of these games out. they were 0-8 in games decided by 4 points going into the last week of the season, but since they beat indiana to clinch a postseason berth, they've gone 3-1 in such games.

i think they were 2-25 in games where they trailed going into the 4th quarter, but they pulled out wins in 2 of those games in the chicago series.


it's just a hell of a lot more fun to win these games, and if the team is winning them now against boston and chicago, i can't help but feel optimistic about what they'll be able to do next season (though in fairness, optimism about this team has never really been lacking for me).
   906. baudib Posted: May 14, 2012 at 09:57 PM (#4131529)
i'd really like to end boston's season. and i'd really, really like to end boston's run with this core group of players.


Ditto.
   907. steagles Posted: May 14, 2012 at 10:00 PM (#4131536)
one more thing...those announcers were hideous. i already have a strong hatred of chris webber, but that guy with him was just awful to listen to. the two of them were just completely in the celtics corner, and they did not acknowledge a single thing that the sixers actually did to win the ####### game. just "boston...boston...boston...", "oh and the philadelphia 76ers have won the game"


also, andre iguodala was 2/7 from the FT line. i don't even have words for that. god knows how he pulled it together to make those FTs against the bulls.
   908. Famous Original Joe C Posted: May 14, 2012 at 10:04 PM (#4131543)
Feel really confident about the Sixers winning this series now, especially if Thad ever contributes.

I don't know - as a Celtics fan I still feel pretty confident as well. The Celtics will probably win one in Philly, and then it's 2 out of 3 with home court to the Celtics. Looks like it will take seven, though, either way. Everyone gets caught up in the most recent game in the playoffs.

Couple of frustrating calls there for a Celtics fan in the final minutes - the obvious traveling on Turner with about 2 minutes left when he scored was just a bad call, period. The Garnett offensive at the end was certainly a foul, but kind of made you go "well, he does that like 12 times per game, you're calling it now?" Please note that I am NOT saying these calls swung the game - just that I found them frustrating.

Good for the Sixers for closing it out though. Turner's reverse in the final minute was huge, as was that Holliday three. Big shots all around. Still, from Boston, I'm kind of shrugging and saying "yeah, we'll get 'em eventually". Maybe my confidence is misguided, we'll see.
   909. Famous Original Joe C Posted: May 14, 2012 at 10:07 PM (#4131552)
that guy with him was just awful to listen to. the two of them were just completely in the celtics corner, and they did not acknowledge a single thing that the sixers actually did to win the ####### game. just "boston...boston...boston...", "oh and the philadelphia 76ers have won the game"

*rolls eyes*

STEAGLES, you're a bigger homer than than the color guy "that guy with him" used to announce games with on CBS in the 80s.
   910. steagles Posted: May 14, 2012 at 10:13 PM (#4131566)
*rolls eyes*

STEAGLES, you're a bigger homer than than the color guy "that guy with him" used to announce games with on CBS in the 80s.
i'm not paid to be a neutral announcer on national television. i'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and say that maybe he just got caught up in the atmosphere in boston, but it was terrible to have to listen to in the heat of the game.
   911. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: May 14, 2012 at 10:35 PM (#4131581)
STEAGLES complaing about homer announcers is like Greg Luzinski complaining about bad outfield defense.
   912. Spivey Posted: May 14, 2012 at 10:44 PM (#4131586)
Westbrook has been explosive here. Bynum is playing well too.

Also, it annoys me that Reggie Miller has a job.
   913. tshipman Posted: May 14, 2012 at 10:56 PM (#4131589)
I know that the Lakers are not a championship contender because they play like dogshit on the road.

Down 2-0 heading into LA is a virtual lock.
   914. Spivey Posted: May 14, 2012 at 11:12 PM (#4131594)
Perkins looks hurt. Edit: He wasn't exactly stopping Bynum before that though.
   915. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 14, 2012 at 11:13 PM (#4131595)
Pretty much. OKC can counter LA's interior size, and the Lakers have no answer for OKC's perimeter speed and skill, not to mention the pace the Thunder play at. I'd just like the Lakers to not lose their road games by more than 15, and to win at least one game at home.
   916. Spivey Posted: May 14, 2012 at 11:14 PM (#4131597)
Lakers made some good adjustments at halftime.
   917. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 14, 2012 at 11:24 PM (#4131600)
Laker halftime adjustment: Rest up for Game 2.
   918. Spivey Posted: May 14, 2012 at 11:31 PM (#4131603)
Westbrook is clowning the Lakers.
   919. steagles Posted: May 14, 2012 at 11:36 PM (#4131605)
STEAGLES complaing about homer announcers is like Greg Luzinski complaining about bad outfield defense.
again, these weren't hometown announcers. these guys were broadcasting a game in the 2nd round of the playoffs (which means that there was no competing local broadcast for me to choose to watch instead), and i don't think it's entirely unreasonable to expect some semblance of neutrality.


also, before the tipoff of games 3 and 4 against chicago, i made mention of the fact that i felt that both games were must-win. but going back to philly tied 1-1 against boston, against a healthy boston, i don't really feel the same way. i think the sixers can go back to boston for game 5 tied 2-2 and still have a chance to win the series.
   920. Phil Coorey is a T-Shirt Salesman Posted: May 14, 2012 at 11:42 PM (#4131607)
Philly deserve to win one of the first two games with the way that they have matched the Celtics - this is going to go down to the wire in game 7 - I can just feel it.
   921. DA Baracus Posted: May 14, 2012 at 11:53 PM (#4131609)
Things like "foul on World Peace" will forever amuse me.

Fun with the NBA: NBA memes.


Isn't that just a ripoff of the Facebook page Sarah J Phillips scammed?
   922. rr Posted: May 15, 2012 at 01:20 AM (#4131615)
maybe it's PHILLY...


It has also occurred to me that maybe it's Indiana. With no Bosh, I think they can compete with Miami.

Since there was some disagreement about it earlier, I will clarify by saying that I would still pick Miami to win the East even if Bosh were guaranteed to miss the next this series and the next. But like Zach Lowe wrote today, it's "trickier." I think the other teams have a chance now, with Chicago gone and Bosh injured.
   923. baudib Posted: May 15, 2012 at 02:51 AM (#4131625)
I don't know - as a Celtics fan I still feel pretty confident as well. The Celtics will probably win one in Philly, and then it's 2 out of 3 with home court to the Celtics. Looks like it will take seven, though, either way. Everyone gets caught up in the most recent game in the playoffs.

Couple of frustrating calls there for a Celtics fan in the final minutes - the obvious traveling on Turner with about 2 minutes left when he scored was just a bad call, period. The Garnett offensive at the end was certainly a foul, but kind of made you go "well, he does that like 12 times per game, you're calling it now?" Please note that I am NOT saying these calls swung the game - just that I found them frustrating.

Good for the Sixers for closing it out though. Turner's reverse in the final minute was huge, as was that Holliday three. Big shots all around. Still, from Boston, I'm kind of shrugging and saying "yeah, we'll get 'em eventually". Maybe my confidence is misguided, we'll see.


I don't blame you for feeling confident, either. Certainly a veteran team with a long track record of going far into the playoffs should expect to handle the Sixers, but after watching Game 1 I felt that the Sixers could not only compete, but beat the Celtics. With Paul Pierce somewhat gimpy, I feel like Iguodala should be able to contain him pretty well. Garnett is certainly going to have good games but I feel like it comes down to Rondo; if he plays like he did in Game 1 it's obviously going to be a problem.
   924. Famous Original Joe C Posted: May 15, 2012 at 08:37 AM (#4131670)
baudib, just for the record, I'm certainly not saying the Sixers won't compete and can't win the series. They absolutely could - I'd be crazy to think otherwise after two 1 point games in Boston. Just the feeling I have watching the games. The Hawks have guys who scare me more - maybe that's all it is - there's no one on the Sixers who I am constantly worried is about to take over the game, a la Lebron, Kobe, even Josh Smith or Joe Johnson (who for as poorly as he played in that last series overall, torched the Celtics in '08 a few times).
   925. baudib Posted: May 15, 2012 at 09:13 AM (#4131690)
Of course no one scares you, no one scores 15 points per game!

I'll say this, I think the Celtics do have a better chance of winning 2-3 games off the Heat than the Sixers, who will be really lucky to win more than 1. However, I like the matchups against the Celtics and I think the Sixers have a decent shot at blowing them out at home.

P.S. I think the call on Garnett certainly gets ignored many times.
   926. AROM, Instagram Gangsta Posted: May 15, 2012 at 10:05 AM (#4131713)
I don't think the call on Garnett affected the outcome at all. Pierce (I think it was Pierce at the top of the key) missed the 3. Probably a rebound for Hawes and an intentional foul if nothing is called on Garnett.

Celtics are scary because they know how to close out games. Just compare their clock management in the final seconds to what happened in game 1. Celtics took no time at all to commit the foul, and very little time off the clock to inbound the ball to Allen for a 3. They scored 6 points in the final 6 seconds which would have sent the game to OT if the Sixers had not hit all 4 of their free throws (no easy feat for a team that was 11-17 before the final seconds).

Pierce was 2-9 last night and not really a factor. It might be the injured knee, but I sure wouldn't put any money on that. I fully expect him, injured or not, to put up a 33 point game with 15 coming in the 4th quarter before this series is over. Ray Allen was a lot more aggressive than he had been so far in the playoffs, looking like he's stepping in to do what Pierce was not able to do. He hit 2 threes, but when the 3 wasn't there he took the ball to the basket. I haven't seen Allen do that in a while, and it seemed he was becoming more of a Steve Kerr-like specialist instead of a reliable scorer. Philly doesn't seem to have an answer for Garnett. Hawes doesn't have the vertical ability to challenge Garnett's shot. They did a pretty good job double teaming him and for the most part recovering on the passes.
   927. JJ1986 Posted: May 15, 2012 at 10:09 AM (#4131717)
I think Pierce shot the 3 after he heard the whistle.
   928. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: May 15, 2012 at 11:15 AM (#4131788)
I'm excited for tonight's Miami-Indy game. Game 1 was tightly contested, plus LeBron is so damn good. I'm of two minds: I'm pulling against the Superfriends on principle, but if they end up winning the title, at least the "yeah, but..." will be off his back.
   929. AROM, Instagram Gangsta Posted: May 15, 2012 at 11:30 AM (#4131805)
I think Pierce shot the 3 after he heard the whistle.


But at the time he hears it he wouldn't know who it's on. He might have thought it was being called on his defender for being so brazen as to challenge him in his building, setting up a possible 4 point play.
   930. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 15, 2012 at 12:30 PM (#4131869)
Post-game news conference:

Reporter: Can you guard them?

Kobe: Excuse me?

Reporter: Can you guard them? As a team?

Kobe: No.
   931. rr Posted: May 15, 2012 at 01:02 PM (#4131913)
Kobe: No.


Before the series, Kobe was asked how badly the lack of rest due to going 7 with Denver would hurt the team. He said, "It doesn't matter. We could rest for a year and we wouldn't be any faster."
   932. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 15, 2012 at 01:15 PM (#4131928)
Not only that, but Game 2 is tomorrow night, and then Games 3 and 4 are back to back. The Laker season may be over by the end of the week.
   933. andrewberg Posted: May 15, 2012 at 01:54 PM (#4131974)
Reporter: Can you guard them? As a team?

Kobe: No.


Sounds like mind games, and probably a good tactic. The Thunder have always made an effort to stay focused on the short term and have kind of positioned themselves as underdogs. Kobe may be trying to get them out in front of themselves a bit.
   934. Jimmy P Posted: May 15, 2012 at 01:58 PM (#4131982)
Sounds like mind games, and probably a good tactic.

I thought it was a good way to get a reporter to shut up. I think the reporter thought he could bait Kobe into an argument. Just giving him that answer gets him to be quiet.
   935. rr Posted: May 15, 2012 at 02:02 PM (#4131988)
Kobe may be trying to get them out in front of themselves a bit.



Doubtful, IMO. I think he mostly just says what he thinks when he is in the mood, as much as a big name can at the podium. As I said, he has been making comments about how slow the Lakers are all year.

Anyway, I thought it was funny, but I do want to see the Lakers make a better showing in Game 2, even though it is clear--and was clear going in--that they have little chance of beating this team. I suspect Bryant knows that.
   936. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 15, 2012 at 02:09 PM (#4131998)
Bryant's been making these type of comments for the last couple of years now. After over a decade of trying to be alternately polite and politic to whiny and uncooperative, he's settled very nicely on brutal honesty.
   937. Fourth True Outcome Posted: May 15, 2012 at 02:22 PM (#4132014)
he's settled very nicely on brutal honesty.

The post-objective pipe Kobe Bryant has been a revelation. He gives the best press conferences in the league these days, hands down. He's pithy, a touch prickly, but mostly not trying to sugar-coat the truth. It's really deepened my appreciation for the man.
   938. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: May 15, 2012 at 02:31 PM (#4132027)
The post-objective pipe Kobe Bryant has been a revelation. He gives the best press conferences in the league these days, hands down. He's pithy, a touch prickly, but mostly not trying to sugar-coat the truth. It's really deepened my appreciation for the man.

This. Come to think of it...have Kobe Bryant and Brian Cashman ever been seen in the same room?
   939. rr Posted: May 15, 2012 at 02:33 PM (#4132031)
I would add that I think Jimmy P is right as well--I think Kobe was partly sending a message to the reporter. But I also think he was telling the truth as he sees it.

Think tonight's IND/MIA game will be very interesting.
   940. jmurph Posted: May 15, 2012 at 02:40 PM (#4132039)
I saw the video on sportscenter- am I crazy for thinking he was being obviously sarcastic? He got up after answering, sort of rolled his eyes or scowled, and then left. I thought it was sort of a "that's a dumb question" response.
   941. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 15, 2012 at 02:41 PM (#4132040)
Bryant's made several comments about the Lakers being behind OKC on the totem pole. In the first game the two teams played this season, OKC curb stomped the Lakers, prompting Bryant to say, "Times change. That used to be us."
   942. rr Posted: May 15, 2012 at 02:50 PM (#4132046)
I saw the video on sportscenter- am I crazy for thinking he was being obviously sarcastic?


Like I said, I think it was both. Kobe leads the NBA in both fallaway jumpers and in disdainful looks at reporters. But as Hombre and I have shown, this has been a theme with him all year.

The Lakers match up worse with OKC than with any other team, including Miami and San Antonio. I think Bryant knows that.
   943. JC in DC Posted: May 15, 2012 at 04:00 PM (#4132105)
Bryant's been making these type of comments for the last couple of years now. After over a decade of trying to be alternately polite and politic to whiny and uncooperative, he's settled very nicely on brutal honesty.


I really disagree with this. I saw the press conference. He was pissed by the stupidity of the comment. He was being sarcastic, not honest.
   944. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 15, 2012 at 04:47 PM (#4132163)
I saw it, too (which I then quoted here). We all saw the beatdown, but he actually had to live it, so I'm sure he obviously didn't like a question that was setting him up to either (a) gush about how wonderful the Thunder were last night, or (b) how stoppable the Thunder would be if only they made Adjustment X. However, the actual answer is totally consistent with much of what Bryant's been saying about the OKC-LAL match-up over the course of the season.

EDIT: The third answer, of course, is that there are at least three more games to play, so he's not going to tongue bath the Thunder when he and his guys are going to have to try and do exactly that — guard them — the entire rest of the series.
   945. rr Posted: May 15, 2012 at 05:00 PM (#4132186)
He was being sarcastic, not honest.


Trust me on this one: Bryant multi-tasks with those two adjectives. He could have poked the reporter in other ways.
   946. JC in DC Posted: May 15, 2012 at 05:06 PM (#4132192)


Trust me on this one: Bryant multi-tasks with those two adjectives. He could have poked the reporter in other ways.


I don't understand, to be honest. He had just finished answering questions with details about how they could guard better (e.g., guarding the pick and roll, weakside help, etc) and then the bozo asked his question, he paused and gets visibly angry and says, "no," despite the whole preceding conversation being about how they COULD guard them. I read him as sarcastic, and as Jimmy said, in a STFU way.
   947. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 15, 2012 at 05:12 PM (#4132204)
So Rose had his ACL surgery the other day, and the Bulls had their press conference today. The comments are the usual mix of good and bad. Some tweets:

KCJHoop: Dr. Brian Cole estimates 8-12 months for DRose recovery.
KCJHoop: #Bulls Dr. Brian Cole: "Derrick didn't tear his medial collateral ligament, which made his pre-hab go much smoother."


So optimistically, he'll be back for the second half or so of next season. Pessimistically, he misses the whole year. Ugh.
   948. JC in DC Posted: May 15, 2012 at 05:50 PM (#4132252)


So optimistically, he'll be back for the second half or so of next season. Pessimistically, he misses the whole year. Ugh.


That stinks for you guys. I'll miss Shump next year.
   949. rr Posted: May 15, 2012 at 06:10 PM (#4132292)
I don't understand, to be honest.


You haven't been listening to him all year. To be clear, I am not saying Bryant deserves any props for his habit of short, honest soundbites, although it is entertaining at times.
   950. billyshears Posted: May 15, 2012 at 06:18 PM (#4132302)
So optimistically, he'll be back for the second half or so of next season. Pessimistically, he misses the whole year. Ugh.


I wouldn't worry. The Bulls will finish just barely in the lottery and get the #1 pick in the draft again, setting themselves up for a dynasty. Yes, I'm still bitter about Derrick Rose being on the Bulls in the first place.
   951. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: May 15, 2012 at 09:07 PM (#4132410)
Dwyane Wade adds another dirty play to his hitlist. I assume this will be forgotten about just like the rest.
   952. Greg Maddux School of Reflexive Profanity Posted: May 15, 2012 at 09:09 PM (#4132411)
The Stackhouse precedent would seem to require his sitting for a game.

I won't hold my breath.
   953. Yardape Posted: May 15, 2012 at 09:14 PM (#4132412)
Dwyane Wade adds another dirty play to his hitlist. I assume this will be forgotten about just like the rest.


Better yet, this one seemed to be born out of frustration for his flopping going unrewarded two trips earlier.
   954. steagles Posted: May 15, 2012 at 09:31 PM (#4132423)
Better yet, this one seemed to be born out of frustration for his flopping going unrewarded two trips earlier.
i believe collison pushed/tripped/threw lebron onto the floor a few possessions earlier, so i wouldn't be surprised if he was targeted because of that.
   955. Squash Posted: May 15, 2012 at 09:35 PM (#4132425)
This Kobe article about taking charges is very interesting. I had never really put the two together, and come to think of it I never saw MJ take a charge either. I'm not a huge Kobe fan, though the Lakers are my #2 team, but he is very cerebral about the game in a way that pretty much no other star in the league is.
   956. Srul Itza Posted: May 15, 2012 at 09:35 PM (#4132426)
Missing two free throws like that, right then, is NOT the way to build a legacy.
   957. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: May 15, 2012 at 09:45 PM (#4132430)
[955] I was about to post that link. I have no idea how much truth his comments have, but...####, I love a Kobe sound bite.
   958. Squash Posted: May 15, 2012 at 09:49 PM (#4132433)
Bill Simmons is going to masturbate over this game for a solid 2-3 days. Longer, if possible.
   959. rr Posted: May 15, 2012 at 10:19 PM (#4132451)
Is Stern ready for Pacers/76ers in the ECF?
   960. tshipman Posted: May 15, 2012 at 10:51 PM (#4132473)
Is Stern ready for Pacers/76ers in the ECF?


God, I don't know if I'm ready for STEAGLES to post about it in this thread.


This. Come to think of it...have Kobe Bryant and Brian Cashman ever been seen in the same room?


If Kobe Bryant's whole career has been secretly Brian Cashman wearing platform shoes and face paint, that would be the greatest moment in sports history.

It is odd that they both seemed to discover the objective pipe around the same time. I wish more sports figures would similarly liberate themselves. I used to think that Rasheed's quotes could not be topped, but perhaps, one day, Kobe could get there.
   961. rr Posted: May 15, 2012 at 11:05 PM (#4132485)
Another plus to Pacers/76ers would be how much it would piss off Simmons.
   962. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: May 15, 2012 at 11:22 PM (#4132502)
Missing two free throws like that, right then, is NOT the way to build a legacy.


It'll definitely be interesting to see if Paul George can bounce back from it.

Boris Diaw is having a hell of a game.
   963. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: May 15, 2012 at 11:24 PM (#4132503)
Spurs are just relentless on offense... I swear they almost never make a bad pass or fail to find the open man.
   964. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: May 15, 2012 at 11:53 PM (#4132520)
Man, Kawhi Leonard.
   965. Booey Posted: May 16, 2012 at 01:19 AM (#4132550)
#955 - I agree with Kobe's comments about flopping (though I'd remind him that flopping on offense really isn't much different than doing it on defense), and I'm glad Stern is finally considering doing something about it. That said, I've always thought the burden is and has always been on the refs. If the refs buy into that crap, then the players will continue to do it. Stop calling it and we'll eventually stop seeing it.

I've always wondered why people seem to think flopping is a recent epidemic; it's been the "properly" taught way to take a charge for as long as I can remember. As soon as someone makes contact in the lane, the defender is supposed to crash to the floor like he's been hit by a truck. These guys are like 6'8 and 250 pounds - they don't really go skidding across the ground every time a 190 pound point guard bumps them during a drive. But the officials will never call it if they don't. It was pretty much inevitable that flopping would evolve to become rampant in other situations as well.
   966. Booey Posted: May 16, 2012 at 01:22 AM (#4132551)
Do the Spurs have ANY weaknesses? They can score in the paint, they can drive into the lane, they're pretty much automatic when left open for 3's, they don't commit turnovers, they play great D, they have probably the best coach in the league, etc, etc.
   967. PJ Martinez Posted: May 16, 2012 at 01:51 AM (#4132560)
they don't commit turnovers, they play great D, they have probably the best coach in the league...

Define "great D." They were only 10th in the league in Defensive Rating during the regular season (one spot above OKC, well behind BOS, PHI, and MIA). Maybe they're playing better D in the playoffs; I haven't watched them yet and I haven't looked at the stats. But if they have a weakness it may well be that, should they make it to the Finals, they will likely face a team that is significantly better defensively than they are.
   968. rr Posted: May 16, 2012 at 02:21 AM (#4132565)
The Spurs are not a particularly athletic team--they were 24th in forcing TOs, 17th in FTA, and 24th in blocks. One of the reasons Hollinger has basically been laughing at anyone who has suggested that another team can beat SA is that Parker, Ginobili and Duncan hardly played together during the season, and when they did, SA was awesome. Personally, I think OKC or Miami with Bosh can beat them, but we will find out soon enough. One issue Miami would have is that Miami isn't too hot on 3s, either way (Miami is 1/22 on 3s so far against Indiana). But both Miami and OKC get to the stripe better than SA does, and I think that will matter. OTOH, maybe more minutes from Ginobili and Parker will even that out.

Miami may get to the Finals without Bosh, but I am almost certain that they will have to have him to win the whole thing. If they don't have him, the OKC/SA winner gets the banner.
   969. JC in DC Posted: May 16, 2012 at 09:04 AM (#4132638)
My favorite play in the SA game is when Ginobili fakes the highpost screen for Duncan and pushes backdoor and Parker hits him for the weakhand layup. Just a beautiful, precise, bball play. They are a fun team to watch.
   970. Booey Posted: May 16, 2012 at 10:35 AM (#4132719)
Miami may get to the Finals without Bosh, but I am almost certain that they will have to have him to win the whole thing. If they don't have him, the OKC/SA winner gets the banner.


Agreed. Miami has been my pick the entire year, and I'm sticking with them as long as they're healthy. OKC has been my pick from the West the entire season, but I'm a little less confident about that now (but I'll stick with them, just for consistency's sake). Yeah, they're still undefeated too, but SA has just looked invincible so far. Every time the Jazz/Clips made a mini run and pulled within single digits, the Spurs would hit a couple 3's and the lead was back up to 12. It's like they can do it at will.

Maybe OKC is just as good or better and I just haven't watched their games as closely since they weren't playing my team. But SA has looked very, very good.
   971. Booey Posted: May 16, 2012 at 10:38 AM (#4132724)
I think it would be cool if SA and OKC both swept LA and met in the conference finals undefeated. Has that ever happened before?
   972. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: May 16, 2012 at 10:45 AM (#4132732)
Another plus to Pacers/76ers would be how much it would piss off Simmons.

No, he'll just say "When we all anointed the Celtics and Heat the best in the East, what we all didn't realize was that the Heat have no Alpha Dog, and the Celtics had the Winners' Curse, and both teams were hurt by the shortened schedule (You're telling me LeBron doesn't get hurt? Come on. He's been playing every day for years! By the 47th minute of Game 6 it was obvious that he was dragging.), and Jrue Holiday is the world's new #1 Irrational Confidence Guy. And the Avery Bradley injury is the most tragic thing since Shaun Livingston. We were all going to see how great Avery Bradley really is. That killed this season like the Perk trade killed last season. And what we also all didn't realize was the Pacers have Leandro Barbosa. He's clearly this season's J.J. Barea. Dare I say ... en fuego?"


   973. Squash Posted: May 16, 2012 at 11:08 AM (#4132752)
#955 - I agree with Kobe's comments about flopping (though I'd remind him that flopping on offense really isn't much different than doing it on defense), and I'm glad Stern is finally considering doing something about it. That said, I've always thought the burden is and has always been on the refs. If the refs buy into that crap, then the players will continue to do it. Stop calling it and we'll eventually stop seeing it.

I agree with all that - I was more interested in his comments about taking charges leading to injury. A 230 lb. guy crashing into you at near full speed 40 times a year (drawing a charging foul on 10 or so of them or whatever) while you're standing still as a statue does seem like a good way to get nagging back issues. He was talking about the baseball version of outfielders crashing into walls - sure it's great to get that out, but would you trade the out for not having your star player miss 15 games? Yeah.
   974. Booey Posted: May 16, 2012 at 11:46 AM (#4132800)
He was talking about the baseball version of outfielders crashing into walls - sure it's great to get that out, but would you trade the out for not having your star player miss 15 games? Yeah.


Yeah, it doesn't seem worth it, does it? Problem is, the players who sacrifice their bodies to make great defensive plays are considered "gritty" and get lots of praise for it. And rightfully so, for the most part. But I also completely understand and agree with Kobe's point that in the long run it may do more harm than good for your team for a key player to consistently try and take charges. There's certainly a place in the game for the "hustle" type of players who come off the bench and take a charge (Jarron Collins was this player for the mid 2000's Jazz), but I wouldn't want my teams star players doing it very often. I don't consider Kobe a diva or anything for not being willing to do it.

Did I just defend Kobe? Dammit...
   975. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 16, 2012 at 12:14 PM (#4132846)
I don't consider Kobe a diva or anything for not being willing to do it.

Has anyone ever considered anyone a diva for not taking a charge?

As to why it's an issue now, I'm not sure. I do feel that every year you see fewer and fewer guys actually challenging shots and drivers and are instead settling for trying to draw charges. And it's creeper further and further away from the basket, to the point that the offensive player doesn't even have to be making a move towards the basket and could simply be curling off a screen.
   976. Backlasher Posted: May 16, 2012 at 12:27 PM (#4132868)
This Kobe article about taking charges is very interesting. I had never really put the two together, and come to think of it I never saw MJ take a charge either. I'm not a huge Kobe fan, though the Lakers are my #2 team, but he is very cerebral about the game in a way that pretty much no other star in the league is.

It would be tough to really put Kobe's theory to the test. I don't know of any quote or source that states Bird's back injury was due to taking charges. My memory is not good enough to remember how many charges Bird has taken or how many that Jordan was taking in relation to the league. Historical information on charges taken is sparse, and even new means of tracking have problems getting it correct. For instance, there is a dearth or reliable sources for 2010-2011 charges taken. I presume that HoopData has accurate numbers for all other seasons on their CHG column. If so, we can use it to get more information about Kobe's assertion (hereinafter, the "Mamba Hypothesis"). If HoopData has bad data or CHG has a different meaning, then please ignore the rest of this post

By my count, the five oldest players in the league are Kurt Thomas, Grant Hill, Juwan Howard, Jason Kidd and Steve Nash. Their charges taken from 2007-2012 (minus the 2010-2011 season) are:

Thomas -89
Hill-121
Howard-41
Kidd-67
Nash-206

compared to Mamba at 48.

Of the geezers, only Juwan Howard has taken less total charges over the five season sample. If you look at the PER40 minute rate, he still takes more having the following rates

2006/2007- 0.34
2007/2008-0.68
2008/2009 - 0.18
2009/2010 -0.34
2010/2011 - NA
2011/2012 -0.21

Compared to Mamba at:

006/2007- 0.25
2007/2008-0.10
2008/2009 - 0.10
2009/2010 -0.15
2010/2011 - NA
2011/2012 -0.03

That would seem to indicate that Juwan isn't trying to avoid a lot of charges; he just plays less. His playing less seems more related to deterioration from skills that don't necessarily involve his having taken too many charges.

Moreover, the amount of charges do not seem to directly correlate to total career longevity or the amount of games played. Steve Nash has taken a crapton of charges and through 2010-2011 had played in 1090 games. He only has two seasons where he played less than 60 games and both of those occurred early in his career, and not during the crapton charge interval shown above. (By comparison, Shane Battier has taken 30 less charges during the same five year interval, and Battier is the poster boy for taking charges).

If we want to keep a watch on this, here are the top 10 charge takers this year:

DeMarcus Cousins

Jose Juan Barea

Marcin Gortat

Ersan Ilyasova

Kyle Lowry

Blake Griffin

Kemba Walker

Nicolas Batum

Brandon Knight

John Wall (tied)

Thaddeus Young (tied)


There are some young guys in this list. We can partially test the Mamba Hypothetical in future years by seeing if they break down more frequently compared to a random group of NBA players. (Personally, I would exclude Griffin b/c his game seems more likely to cause injury from other acts).

Nevertheless, I will give Mamba credit for this-- in the past, his unwillingness to take charges may not have had a net effect. He was still able to force turnovers by creating steals (at about twice the rate of Nash). However, over the last two years, his steal rates are dropping. He is not as effective at creating turnovers as he was in the past. That would be a valuable skill in this series.


   977. Backlasher Posted: May 16, 2012 at 12:41 PM (#4132887)
Has anyone ever considered anyone a diva for not taking a charge?

No, but it is like a RB running out of bounds rather than engaging the defender. There is a time and place when it is appropriate. If you do it all the time you look soft.

And it's creeper further and further away from the basket, to the point that the offensive player doesn't even have to be making a move towards the basket and could simply be curling off a screen.

That is probably because screening is becoming more liberal. You have players moving with their screens like its a flag football game. KG uses offensive linemen techniques.

I do feel that every year you see fewer and fewer guys actually challenging shots and drivers and are instead settling for trying to draw charges.

The average number of charges taken per player in the league over the same Mamba-adjusted period cited above is:

0607 11
0708 9
0809 9
0910 9
1011 NA
1112 7 (adjusting to 82 games is about 8.7)

For blocks its,

0607 23
0708 23
0809 23
0910 23
1011 22
1112 20 (adjusting to 82 games is about 24.8)

Looking at those numbers, the only conclusion I can draw is that 2006 is the first year that Anderson Varejao was a regular.
   978. Booey Posted: May 16, 2012 at 12:47 PM (#4132895)
I don't consider Kobe a diva or anything for not being willing to do it.

Has anyone ever considered anyone a diva for not taking a charge?


I don't know. But if players who do are praised for it, then it wouldn't surprise me if some critics might call players who don't selfish for not being willing to take one for the team, etc, etc.

Edit: Or, what Backlasher said in 977.
   979. rr Posted: May 16, 2012 at 01:05 PM (#4132921)
He is not as effective at creating turnovers as he was in the past
.


Well, he is pushing 34 and is in his 16th season in the NBA.

As I have noted a few times, the Lakers are dead last in the league in forcing TOs, and had a -200 or so in that caterory. They are old in spots, slow, and lack disruptive defenders. OKC had the most TOs in the NBA but had only four on Tuesday. This is one of many reasons OKC is a hopeless matchup for them.

   980. rr Posted: May 16, 2012 at 01:18 PM (#4132936)
As to whether the charge thing is a good trade-off...Nash is an unusually well-conditioned and durable guy, as is Bryant. At the same time, I think Bryant has earned the BOTD on how he should manage his body and stay on the floor--even from the likes of BL.

   981. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: May 16, 2012 at 01:19 PM (#4132939)
Fun read:
Just kidding, as this might count in his favor. In fact, Duncan hates Kevin Garnett. Hates him the way liberals hate Sean Hannity. This information comes from very reliable sources, who talk about how KG has made a career of trying to punk Duncan, baiting him and slapping him and whispering really weird smack into his ear. They talk about how funny this is, because the worst thing you can do as an opponent is piss off Duncan. Then, as Malik Rose says, "he f------ destroys you." Duncan's lifetime numbers versus Garnett's teams, by the way: 19.4 points per game, 11.6 boards and a 44--17 record, including the postseason.

Duncan is diplomatic about the topic. Asked if perhaps all those years battling Garnett have softened his feelings for the man, led to a Magic-Larry type of kinship, Duncan leans back on the couch in his hotel room and grins. There is a pause. A longer pause. Finally he says, "Define kinship."
   982. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 16, 2012 at 01:33 PM (#4132966)
KBergCBS: #NBA announces scaled-down competition committee that will consider and recommend rules changes to Board of Governors.
KBergCBS: Previously, the committee was compromised of the league's 30 general managers. The new committee will have 10 members, including two owners.
KBergCBS: Oddly, the new committee is called the General Managers' Committee and also includes four GMs, three head coaches and a rep from @TheNBPA.
KBergCBS: Owners are Dan Gilbert (Cavs) and Joe Lacob (Warriors), along with GMs Bryan Colangelo, Mitch Kupchak, Kevin O'Connor and Sam Presti.
KBergCBS: Head coaches on committee will be Rick Carlisle, Lionel Hollins and Doc Rivers. @TheNBPA will designate one of its members to serve.


He's since corrected the one tweet, saying it's not called the GM Committee.
   983. Fourth True Outcome Posted: May 16, 2012 at 01:45 PM (#4132983)
Something worth consideration on the taking of charges is that it's also a way to protect the rim. On a team with a good interior help defender who can block a shot, taking a charge to stifle a drive might be less important than on a team where the second line of defense is iffy or not forthcoming.
   984. Backlasher Posted: May 16, 2012 at 01:57 PM (#4132999)
At the same time, I think Bryant has earned the BOTD on how he should manage his body and stay on the floor--even from the likes of BL.

I agree. Its Kobe's choice what to do with his body. I am not making a political statement. The only time I'll talk about Roe v. Wade on this forum is if Delvon makes a comeback and has a great game versus the Heat.

What is interesting is the Mamba Hypothesis on whether taking charges can have a negative effect on your career. Expanding the Mamba Hypothesis is whether it can have a greater effect on your career than other high impact activities like:

(1) Throwing oneself into defenders trying to draw a file.
(2) Unnecessary high impact jumps for showmanship.
(3) Running into a lot of screens.
(4) Playing tight cover defense.
(5) High Rebound Rates

My initial thoughts are that it would be less debilitating than other activities. When you take charges, you control and can absorb the impact. I would hypothesize that you get more charges from the 200 lb size guards than you do the 250+ front-court players.

When you throw yourself into defenders, it would seem you get a lot more targeted impact to the joints, hands and head. I'm on record about item 2 with all my past comments on Oden, so I will not bore this audience by repeating them. Many of the screens are from contact with other players that are probably bigger. The NBA is increasingly allow those screens to be blinder and blinder. I really have never thought about the latter two items until now.

What is the career span of the "energy" players? I can recall the outliers such as the great career from Rodman; however, what does the future hold for a Faried. When I think about some of the association changing injuries, I think about Bernard King giving a foul to Reggie Theus.

If you are setting for a charge, you are on the ground and with support. The only real issue is guarding your gonads.
   985. andrewberg Posted: May 16, 2012 at 02:00 PM (#4133005)
Jose Juan Barea


Barea doesn't actually "take charges." He bodies his man when he has the ball 30 feet from the hoop, then flails wildly backward at the first contact. He does this every game until it gets called. It is awesome.

he f------ destroys you." Duncan's lifetime numbers versus Garnett's teams, by the way: 19.4 points per game, 11.6 boards and a 44--17 record


The Spurs have obviously been better than most of KG's teams, but those numbers aren't anything special for Duncan. Garnett averages 20, 10.4, 4.1 in 50 games against SA.

   986. Jimmy P Posted: May 16, 2012 at 02:21 PM (#4133027)
Larry Bird has been named Executive of the Year
   987. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 16, 2012 at 02:32 PM (#4133034)
Fun read:

I enjoyed it, but laughed at this from the first point:

Throughout, Duncan's expression will run the gamut from stone-faced to indifferent.


They forgot this face, which is the most common nowadays...(I like the guy, I'm just sayin').
   988. baudib Posted: May 16, 2012 at 02:33 PM (#4133036)
I think Bryant has earned the BOTD


why does Kobe get the Babe of the Day?
   989. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: May 16, 2012 at 02:43 PM (#4133046)
[987] I thought that was an oversight as well. And I haven't clicked on your link, but I'm pretty sure I know what it is. *Clicks link* Yep.
   990. Booey Posted: May 16, 2012 at 03:35 PM (#4133096)
I think Bryant has earned the BOTD

why does Kobe get the Babe of the Day?


Didn't he wear those Dwyane Wade tights for a while some years back? Sexy...
   991. Backlasher Posted: May 16, 2012 at 04:06 PM (#4133136)
Something worth consideration on the taking of charges is that it's also a way to protect the rim. On a team with a good interior help defender who can block a shot, taking a charge to stifle a drive might be less important than on a team where the second line of defense is iffy or not forthcoming.

This can also apply at a personal level. Good shot blockers also tend to not take a lot of charges. Of the 15 players that took 2 or less charges, only five of those players also blocked less than the league average of 34 shots (Boozer, Marcus Thorton, Beastley, Roddy buckets, Mamba, and Thabo). OF those guys, only Beastley was less than league average in steals. The only players that blocked more than 50 shots and had more than the league average of charges taken were Marc Gasol, Josh Smith, Marcin Gortat, Tyson Chandler, Joel Anthony, DeMarcus Cousins, Kris Humphries, Nic Batum, John Wall and Paul Millsap.

The reverse is not true for the steals leaders. OF the top 20 steals players, only five are also below the league average in charges taken (Westbrook, Brandon Jennings, Tony Allen, Jrue Holiday, Rudy Gay)

NOTE: All averages are based on populations of players with 40+ games and 20+ minutes per game.
   992. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 16, 2012 at 04:48 PM (#4133185)
why does Kobe get the Babe of the Day?
And do they get gift baskets afterwards?
   993. rr Posted: May 16, 2012 at 04:53 PM (#4133191)
I would have gone with Stern for Exec of the Year. /whining

Bird was a good pick.
   994. rr Posted: May 16, 2012 at 04:55 PM (#4133193)
why does Kobe get the Babe of the Day?


The suits. The guy wears awesome Italian suits.


   995. rr Posted: May 16, 2012 at 04:56 PM (#4133194)

   996. rr Posted: May 16, 2012 at 04:59 PM (#4133203)
Also, BL adds a lot to the thread. I may disagree with him a lot, but it is always edifying when he posts.
   997. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 16, 2012 at 05:55 PM (#4133276)
Some people are taking the Heat to task for complaining about the Pacers celebrating (and really, that seems a little strong of a word) their win last night. Righfully so, considering the post-signing stuff.

Zach Lowe brings up a good point in comparing the Wade flagrant to the Jason Smith on Blake Griffin one. After reading that, I'm convinced the league should have suspended Wade a game (they've announced they're not going to).

And yet, nothing from Simmons yet, 958/972.
   998. andrewberg Posted: May 16, 2012 at 06:06 PM (#4133287)
Every time the Thunder or Spurs play, I switch my opinion of who looks best right now. They are both playing so well, it is like they keep upping the ante. They are doing it in different ways, too, since SA executes on offense to death and has guys who fit into specific roles, while OKC has three guys who are so dynamic that it is hard to plan around them. The Spurs are like a great big band and the Thunder are like a jazz combo. I really hope we see them play each other.
   999. Booey Posted: May 16, 2012 at 06:16 PM (#4133298)
The Spurs are like a great big band and the Thunder are like a jazz combo. I really hope we see them play each other.


I think it's pretty much a lock that we will. Either LA team should feel pretty proud of themselves if they can extend their series beyond 5.
   1000. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: May 16, 2012 at 06:21 PM (#4133303)
Spurs v. Thunder will be the best series of this season. I'll be sad that my Lakers won't be there, but I'd definitely watch that. Flip.
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