15 Down, 1 To Go


I like this picture. Yes Kevin, you’re only 1 win away from your 1st ring. Soon Karl Malone, Charles Barkley, and Elgin Baylor will go back to being the best players without an NBA championship.

There are countless ways to break down the Cleveland Cavaliers loss in Game 3 (118-113). But we’re going to keep it short and sweet. The Golden State Warriors are simply too good. They are simply too much to handle for the Cavaliers. That’s it. That’s all I have to say. Bye……….





Naaaaa, I’m just messin’ with you..we still need to place blame somewhere. Today, I’m going to blame this loss on 4 people (or things). Lebron James, Lebron James, Lebr………I’m kidding, I’m kidding. Did you just see the Lebron defenders jump out of their chairs?!?!

Seriously though, Game 3’s loss is on Tyronn Lue, Kevin Love, whoever constructed the Cavaliers roster (oh wait that’s Lebron James), and father-time. Let’s start with Tyronn Lue. Lue made numerous mistakes in this game, but none loomed larger than not fouling Golden State immediately with 25 seconds left in the game. Newsflash..when you’re down 1 with 25 seconds left, in a virtual must-win situation, you foul immediately to extend the game. Instead, the Cavaliers waited 13 seconds to foul. This left the Cavaliers with no choice but to jack up a three. But thanks to Andre Iguodala’s extremely risky swipe at the ball, Lebron James never got that chance. Also, you’d think at some point during the game, as the Cavaliers struggled mightily from 3-point range, “Coach” Lue might have suggested taking the ball to the basket. That’s your cue Kevin Love.

Kevin Love was awful last night. He finished with just 9 points on 1-9 shooting (1-7 from 3-point range). The Cavaliers shot just 27.3% from 3-point range. They attempted 44 3-pointers..44!! Who do they think they are the Houston Rockets?? You would think at some point they’d stop trying to jam the square peg into the round hole. Or not. “But if Love hits just 2 more 3’s they win.” Yeah, and if my grandmother had balls she’d be my grandfather. Listen, the Cavaliers put forth a great effort last night, but take the rest of the stats away and consider this: How can the Cavaliers beat the Warriors with Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving shooting a combined 1-14 from 3-point range??


how does Tristan Thompson’s 5-year, $82 million contract look now?? Thompson has just 8 points and 11 rebounds in the Finals (all 8 of those points came in Game 2). I’m sorry, but that is unacceptable. And if you are relying on a 36-year old Richard Jefferson to guard Kevin Durant, you know you’re in trouble.

And last but not least, father-time. I know, I know, I know, I know. Everyone is going to kill me for this, but it’s the truth. Lebron’s numbers are off the charts. He is a top-5 player of all-time, and he has played in 7 consecutive Finals. HE’S TIRED. In 13 NBA seasons, he has played 41, 272 minutes (25th most of all-time). He is on pace to pass Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for most minutes played. I’m not blaming Lebron James. He is definitely doing all he can. He is leaving every ounce of energy on the court and it shows, as he is yet again averaging a triple-double in the Finals (32 points, 12 rebounds, and 10 assists). But believe it or not he’s human. This is why, down the stretch of games, he defers to his teammates too much. The Cavaliers were outscored 11-0 in the final 3:08 of the game. They went 0-8 during that stretch. How many of those shots do you think Lebron took?? ONE!! He only took ONE shot in the final 3:44 of the game. Also unacceptable. Lebron, you are the best player in the world, and this is your team. So don’t kick the ball out to Kyle Korver when you can drive to the basket. Don’t give Kyrie Irving the ball and then stand in the corner like a scared 2nd grade kid in gym class and watch Kyrie jack up a step back 3-pointer. Get the ball and ram it home like you did in the 1st quarter!!

And now..we’re here. Present time. The Warriors are up 3-0 in the NBA Finals. They are 15-0 in the playoffs (which is already a record). And they are looking to become the 1st team to sweep through the playoffs at 16-0. The trio of Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry, and Klay Thompson was fantastic last night. They combined for 87 points and 15 3-pointers. None more important than Kevin Durant’s 3-pointer with 45 seconds left, putting his team up 114-113. The Warriors will try to close out the series sweep on Friday night at 9:00 P.M. EST. Tune into ABC to see if they can continue to make history.

Do you think the Warriors will sweep the Finals?? Give me your hot take in the comment section below.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well. You can also follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like me on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it!


NBA All-Star Weekend(best by default)

The entire All-Star weekend can be summed up in one word, Blah.  It is the best All-Star festivities of all the major sports, but it’s the best by default.  The game itself is what it is, and I don’t expect that to change much in the future.  It is a fun way for the NBA’s best to showcase their skills.  The rest of the world had the pleasure of learning what some of us have known for about a year now, that Kyrie Irving is an exceptional talent.  In two or three years, we will all be talking about Chris Paul and Kyrie Irving as the top point guards in the NBA.  On a side note, everyone can stop talking about Lebron returning to Cleveland to team up with Kyrie, it’s not going to happen.  I watched most of the events this weekend, but I watched simply because it was the only thing on television.  I understand that All-Star weekend is meant for fun, but it needs to be revamped.  It needs to regain it’s oomph.  Yeah, I used the word oomph.  The event with the most room for improvement is definitely the Slam Dunk Contest.  I hope someone from the NBA catches wind of this article and takes the advice I’m about to give (for free).  I spoke to this issue in my preview of the All-Star weekend, but the Slam Dunk Contest needs to be changed drastically.  Literally the only part they’ve gotten right is that the players compete for a charity.  Other than that, the event is a disaster.  I think we can all agree we want to see the premier leapers and dunkers in the game in the contest.  Everyone knows who I’m talking about (cough, Lebron, cough).  The question is how do we get these Superstars to enter the dunk contest?  We all know that money isn’t the answer(lord knows Lebron makes enough of that).  Apparently it isn’t enough of an honor for them to do it willingly.  So, how do we get the best players in the NBA to compete in the lowly dunk contest?  The answer is to call them out; plain and simple.  All the commentators and former players who have transformed into media personnel can joke about how scared Lebron is to fail, but what eats away at a self conscience Superstar like “King” James more than anything else?  You need to tell him he can’t do it.  What inspires athletes to succeed more than adversity?  The answer to that would be nothing.  You must also convince him that it really matters.  You must convince him that it’s another notch that must be added to his belt of career achievements.  And who must implore him and the other great leapers of the world to compete?  None other than the man they all idolized as a kid, Michael “Air” Jordan.  You all saw how quickly Lebron reacted when MJ told everyone he’d take Kobe over him any day of the week.  I think it’s that simple.  All the fans want is a better show.  They want the guys they know can come up with new and innovative dunks to show off on the big stage.  With a new and improved approach to All-Star Weekend, the NBA’s superstars are the only ones who can revive this special event.  By the way, they really need to put a limit on the number of dunk attempts each contestant gets.  A minute and a half is way too long to watch some no name try the same dunk over and over and over again (and they don’t get penalized for missing 1, 789 attempts before finally throwing it down).  As the panel of Shaq, Charles, Kenny the Jet, and C Webb said, “We’ll call it the Birdman Rule.”  All we want to see is the dunk contest come back to it’s original form.  Will there be a savior or will it head toward extinction like the Pro Bowl?