Welcome To New York Big Fella!!

Would anyone care for a Gatorade bath??


I bet Giancarlo Stanton would disagree with you on that one.

Walk-Off In Pinstripes!!

The New York Yankees took their 2nd consecutive game off of the Seattle Mariners in as many days. Tuesday night was an easy 7-2 victory. Wednesday, however, came in the form of an epic comeback:

(Watch the entire video)

Wednesday’s game was a tale of two halves. Heading into the bottom of the 5th inning, the Yankees trailed 5-0. It was all pinstripes from there on in:

An Aaron Judge 2-r.b.i. single in the 5th. A Didi Gregorius sacrifice fly in the 7th. A monstrous Gary Sanchez 2-run home run in the 8th. And an absolute rocket walk-off home run by Giancarlo Stanton in the 9th.


Go watch Stanton’s home run again. Check out the pure elation exuded immediately following the stratospheric blast!! AWESOME. And of course, an otherwise odd occurrence, the infamous Gatorade bath. Because nothing says job well done like getting drenched in an ant farm’s dream vacation.

gatorade bath

Maybe this “Yankee Moment” will finally get spoiled Yankee fans off Stanton’s back. I’m the biggest Yankee fan I know, but sometimes I want to gently place my fist between certain Yankee fans’ eyeballs.

He’s on pace for 41 home runs this season….

Pack Your Bags Sir

NBA: Cleveland Cavaliers at Charlotte Hornets

Dwight Howard is on the move — again.

Wednesday morning, the Charlotte Hornets and Brooklyn Nets agreed to a trade:

Hornets Receive:

Timofey Mozgov and two 2nd round picks in tonight’s NBA Draft (40th and 45th picks)

Nets Receive:

Dwight Howard

On the surface this trade seems wildly lopsided. Despite Howard’s poo-poo attitude, he’s still a walking double-double who adds nearly two blocks every night. However, Howard rubs EVERYONE the wrong way, EVERYWHERE he plays. There’s a reason a potential (relax, I said potential) Hall of Fame talent will soon play on his 6th team in 15 seasons.

On the other hand, the Hornets cleared salary cap space for the upcoming season. Howard was due to make nearly $24 million in 2018 opposed to Mozgov’s $16 million.

I still can’t believe someone (the Lakers) signed Timofey freakin’ Mozgov to a 4-year, $64 million contract.


And the Nets will clear salary cap space beyond this year, as Howard’s astronomical contract comes off the books at the end of this season. Slowly, the Nets are becoming the most attractive place to play — in New York.


Are you dumb enough to think A WALK-OFF HOME RUN MAKES Giancarlo Stanton a “Yankee”?!

You can find me on the Radio as well. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’m on live, every Wednesday from 6:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. Each show is also broadcast on Facebook Live via: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports.

Since you LOVE my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! NOW GO TELL ALL OF YOUR FRIENDS!!


Snow + Sweet 16 = Springtime!!

Now that’s what I call SPRING!!

The 2nd day of Spring brought the Tri-State Area a care package; A FOOT OF SNOW!!

You won’t find whining and complaining here. I LOVE SNOW!!

Go ahead, call me crazy. You won’t be the first. For those who live in New York (like myself), and have for 10+ years, what do you expect?? 60’s and sunny on March 1st?! That’s not how this works people. The Tri-State Area generally gets hit with a major snow storm every March. If you don’t like it, move to Florida….

Anyway, alongside this beautiful snow day; basketball. Before we get to the basketball on hand this evening, let’s take a look at the amazing feats the NBA provided Wednesday night.


dwight howard

Self-proclaimed Superman, Dwight Howard, had a historic Wednesday. He posted the 1st 30-30 night in nearly 8 years, and the 2nd in nearly 40 years. Not since Kevin Love in 2010 (and Moses Malone in 1982) has an NBA player hung 30 points and 30 rebounds on an opponent in a single game. The opponent?? The Brooklyn Nets. I know, I know, it’s the Nets. Listen, 30 rebounds is 30 rebounds. That’s some Wilt Chamberlain stuff right there.

The King

lebron 4

Self-proclaimed King, LeBron James, had a historic Wednesday of his own.

35 points, 17 assists, 7 rebounds, 1 steal, and ZERO turnovers.

That’s insane. Playing without Rodney Hood and Larry Nance Jr., LeBron wanted to send a message to the #1 seed, Toronto Raptors. 132-129MESSAGE SENT. MESSAGE DELIVERED. LeBron, candid as always, said this prior to the game, “I’ll be available, so we got a chance.” Oh, they have a chance alright. With a healthy LeBron James on the floor, expect the Cleveland Cavaliers to represent the Eastern Conference in the NBA Finals — again.

March Madness!!

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-First Round-Miami vs Loyola Chicago

The Sweet 16 commences this evening, with 4 games on the schedule:

#11 Loyola-Chicago vs. #7 Nevada (CBS @ 7:07 P.M.)

#7 Texas A&M vs. #3 Michigan (TBS @ 7:37 P.M.)

#9 Kansas State vs. #5 Kentucky (CBS @ 9:37 P.M.)

#9 Florida State vs. #4 Gonzaga (TBS @ 10:07 P.M.)

Loyola-Chicago has won both of their games by a combined 3 points. Nevada is fresh off of a 22-point comeback. Which Cinderella story will prevail??

Score Prediction: 69-68 Loyola-Chicago

Texas A&M manhandled UNC in the 2nd round. With one of the most potent frontlines in college basketball, can Texas A&M do the same to Michigan??

Score Prediction: 70-64 Michigan

Kansas State was given a super early Christmas present when UMBC knocked off Virginia. Their road will get a lot tougher tonight, as they run into a Kentucky team playing as well as anyone in the country.

Score Prediction: 67-60 Kentucky

Florida State took a page out of UMBC’s playbook, knocking out #1 seed, Xavier. Can they continue their strong play against a tournament ready, Gonzaga team??

Score Prediction: 80-72 Gonzaga


Who will advance to the Elite 8 tonight?? Post your predictions in the comment section below.

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

Let The Trades Begin!!


The NBA offseason is more entertaining than the ACTUAL NBA season. The NBA Finals ended 9 days ago, and I ‘ve already had more fun discussing possible trades and the upcoming draft than I did watching the Golden State Warriors embarrass the league. The Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers kicked off the fun Monday with their trade of picks, but that was just the snowball at the top of the mountain. Tuesday had us wondering if that snowball would turn into an avalanche.

Tuesday afternoon, the Los Angeles Lakers traded D’Angelo Russell and Timofey Mozgov to the Brooklyn Nets for Brook Lopez and the 27th pick in Thursday’s draft. This trade makes sense for both teams, however, the Lakers got the better end of the deal. Yes, they lose Russell, who was the 2nd overall pick just 2 short years ago, but his time in L.A. has been rocky to say the least. More importantly, the Lakers rid themselves of an atrocious Mozgov contract. His original 4-year, $64 million contract has 3 years left, so the Nets will eat the remaining $48 million. The Lakers receive the expiring contract of Brook Lopez, which will create oodles of cap-space come this time next year (aka the push for Lebron James). And they receive a draft pick. It’s always good to receive draft picks rather than give them (ahem, Brooklyn, ahem New York, ahem). Lastly, this leads to the assumption that the Lakers will select the walking distraction, Lonzo Ball, with the 2nd overall pick on Thursday.

In their own version of a salary dump, the Atlanta Hawks sent the albatross contract (3 years, $70.5 million) of Dwight Howard and the 31st pick to the Charlotte Bobcats for Miles Plumlee, Marco Belinelli, and the 41st pick in the draft. There’s not much of a story here, as Dwight Howard is a shell of himself. Charlotte shouldn’t expect Howard to bring any Defensive Player of the Year trophies to Charlotte anytime soon.

And then there’s the New York Knicks. My beloved Knicks. Just when you think they’ve hit rock-bottom, they whip out the sledgehammer and drill through the floor. How is it possible that Phil Jackson is shopping Kristaps Porzingis?!

Kristaps Porzingis should be virtually untradeable.

The Knicks are in total rebuild mode. I’m sorry, let me try that again. The Knicks SHOULD be in total rebuild mode. It’s hard to rebuild when you don’t (or can’t) trade Carmelo Anthony. And it would be impossible if you trade the 21-year old, building block that is Kristaps Porzingis. IF, Phil Jackson wants to entertain trade offers for Porzingis, his price should be so obnoxiously high it causes rival general managers to throw up in their mouths. I’m serious.

For example, if Celtics’ General Manager Danny Ainge calls, Phil Jackson should ask for the 3rd pick in this draft, next year’s 1st round pick, and Jaylen Brown. Oh and they’d have to take on Joakim Noah’s contract (quite possibly the worst contract in NBA history). I know exactly what you’re thinking, “that’s crazy, that’s way too much!!” EXACTLY!! Because you SHOULDN’T trade Porzingis!!

Here’s a point I haven’t heard anyone suggest. We all know Phil Jackson is doing a horrible job as the President of the Knicks. All I keep hearing is, “when Phil Jackson is gone, and in 2 years when we aren’t being force fed the Triangle.” Yeah, well why do we assume James Dolan won’t extend Phil Jackson’s contract???? Maybe Dolan thinks Phil is doing a great job. You and I, and anyone who knows anything about sports, would think that’s insane, but our opinion doesn’t matter.

James Dolan’s opinion is the only one that matters.

SOOOOOOOO, imagine a world where James Dolan extends Phil Jackson’s contract 3 more years. That may cause fans to jump ship and root for a new team………..


What would it take for you to trade Kristaps Porzingis?? Who got the better deal in the Lakers/Nets trade?? Tell me all about it 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!



One Liner Friday’s


Hello everyone and welcome to another stellar edition of One Liner Friday’s. Here you can find the past week in sports wrapped up in one line and one line only. Enjoy!

I’d say Ron Metta Artest World Peace should say bye bye to LaLa Land, but clearly he has a permanent residence there.

Seriously though, the Knicks should sign him since he’s the gritty type of player they need.

As long as he promises not to eat anyone’s face than it will be a good pickup.

Why does everyone keep telling me how clean cut and ‘proper’ the Patriots franchise is?

The Patriots cornerback (Alfonzo Dennard) who was just arrested for the second time (for a DUI this time), was drafted by the Patriots just a week AFTER he was arrested for assaulting an officer.

What in the wild world of all things that are holy is Ilya Kovalchuk thinking?

This man just retired from the NHL at the age of 30 and left $77 million on the table (yeah I’m sure he won’t regret that move down the road).

Speaking of Russians, The Brooklyn Nets signed wild hair-do man Andrei Kirilenko to a 2 year $6 million contract.

It’s official, the Net’s are no longer “making splashes”, they’re flat out doing cannonballs in the middle of the pool.

By the way, The Nets Russian owner Mikhail Prokhorov is obviously going to buy fellow Russian Andrei Kirilenko an extra special Christmas present this year considering he left about $7 million on the table in free agency.

I’m just saying.

The Cleveland Cavaliers are the next victims of the I think Andrew Bynum can play basketball movement.

Man, it’s going to be embarrassing when Major League Baseball tries to suspend players again, and they come back with a handful of lint, again.

I don’t care what his MRI says, The Yankees brought Derek Jeter back too early, again.

You heard it here first, Miguel Cabrera will win back to back Triple Crown’s this year.

Yasiel Puig not being an All-Star makes about as much sense as an Interstate Highway in Hawaii (they really have those).

Dwight Howard to the Rockets?

So he wants to continue NOT filling the shoes of the game’s all-time great centers?

Want the list?

You got it: Shaquille O’Neal, George Mikan, Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, and now Hakeem Olajuwon.

Yeah, that shouldn’t tarnish your already sterling legacy.

You all realize that Anderson Silva still believes he won that fight on Saturday night right?

How happy does it make you to watch someone so cocky and so full of themselves get knocked the bleep out?

If you haven’t seen it just click here:

Who knew you could be fat and still win Wimbledon?

Apparently, Marion Bartoli was the only person who possessed such knowledge.

Andy Murray wins his first Wimbledon and then proceeds to high five and hug like 85 people before forgetting to acknowledge his own mother.

Way to man up with those bulls Rex Ryan.

I’ve never seen Rex move that fast before, he looked like a cheetah chasing down his prey the way he skyrocketed up that fence.

Nice face Nick Swisher.

How about you do your job that you get paid millions for and trot down to first base there chief.

If you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well. Also you can 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!

One Liner Friday’s


Hello and welcome to another edition of One Liner Friday’s. Here you’ll find the wide world of sports from the past week wrapped up in One Line and One Line only. Enjoy!!

Yeah so I decided to sit down and eat 70 hot dogs in a little under 12 minutes yesterday.

Is that a lot?

How cool would it be to be a competitive eater?


Just me on that one huh?

Dwight Howard is about as irrational and indecisive as a pregnant woman.

Listen up Dwight (you moron), go to Houston or Golden State because they are the closest to winning a championship and that’s all that should matter.

Yasiel Puig for President!

Seriously though, Jonathan Pabelbon should shut his mouth and Puig SHOULD be an all-star this year.

Also, Met’s pitching sensation Matt Harvey should start the All-Star Game at Citi Field this year.

If Harvey didn’t play for the worst team known to man he might be in the CY Young race right now.

Need a good laugh?

The New York Islanders will pay Rick DiPietro, that’s right RICK RIPIETRO, $1.6 Million per year for the next 15 years (hahahahahahaha).

The NBA made history when The Boston Celtics hired a middle schooler as their head coach.

Oh wait sorry that’s Brad Stevens.

With the acquisitions of Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett by the Brooklyn Nets, the Yankees won’t be the only team in New York with an old timers day.

Speaking of the Yankees, you know they’re in dire straits when they are broadcasting a washed up, over the hill, controversial, injury prone A-Rod’s rehab at bats in the Minor Leagues.

Although he is their best option by far at 3rd base (oh 1998 how I miss thee).

Why is it that most of these are about my New York teams?

This is not a sign of good things to come (I hope China doesn’t read this one).

Andy Murray vs. who?

His name is Jerzy Janowicz and doesn’t always drink beer, but when he does he drinks Dos Equis.

No, he is the 24th ranked player in the world, and as long as Murray can bounce back from his 5 setter on Wednesday he’ll mop the floor with him.

Enjoy the rest of your 4th of July weekend everyone! Be safe!

If you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well. Also you can 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!

2013 NBA Draft In Review


I just love surprises don’t you? Nerlens Noel was considered by most to be the best player in this years NBA Draft, and was projected to be the #1 overall pick. Boy was everybody wrong. Noel fell all the way to the 6th pick as his flat top surely shrunk as he waited to hear his name called. Upon his selection to the New Orleans Pelicans, he immediately got shipped off to Philadelphia. The 76ers did what everybody does and made a trade based on money and money alone. No one in their right mind can tell me that Nerlens Noel (a virtual unknown coming off major surgery) is worth up and coming superstar Jrue Holliday AND a future 1st round pick. The only positive for the 76ers here is that they cleared $41 million in cap space for the future, but in the process they lose one of the best young talents in the NBA. Yeah that decision shouldn’t haunt you for the rest of your life. Now, back to the task at hand: Who was the first overall pick in the draft you ask? The Cleveland Cavaliers selected Anthony Bennett of UNLV to play alongside the über talented Kyrie Irving. Cleveland management clearly wants to win now as Bennett is regarded as the most NBA ready player of anyone in this years draft (I have to respectfully disagree with that). From there the shocks and surprises kept on coming. I believe there were two picks in the top 10 that stood out. Cody Zeller going 4th overall is egregious. I’m starting to figure out why Michael Jordan is not a good executive and should never be allowed to make decisions for his team ever again. If you think Cody Zeller is going to live up to his draft position, then you must be sipping on the same stuff MJ is. On the other hand, the best value pick has to be Ben McClemore as the 7th overall pick. McClemore is probably the most talented player in the entire draft, and I think between he and Victor Oladipo, they will be duking it out for Rookie of the Year honors next season. Overall it was a very active day in the NBA, and I will break down all the important moves right here.

Thursday’s NBA Draft represented David Stern’s 30th and final draft. Over those 30 years he has stood on that stage with some of the NBA’s greatest players of all-time. As most of you know, Stern will be stepping down as commissioner in February making way for a new era in the NBA. This years draft, while not as deep in terms of obvious talent, certainly did not disappoint. It was a wild night as 11 of the first 30 picks were traded, and the host site of the draft made the biggest splash of all. The Brooklyn Nets have brought new meaning to the term win now as they traded away 5 players and 3 future draft picks to the Boston Celtics. Here is how the trade breaks down:

The Nets get:
Paul Pierce
Kevin Garnett
and Jason Terry

The Celtics get:
Gerald Wallace
Reggie Evans
Kris Humphries
Keith Bogans
Tornike Shengelia
and 1st round picks in 2014, 2016, and 2018

The Nets starting lineup instantly gets better, and this makes them a top 3 team in the NBA on paper. However, as we all know, a bunch of names thrown together doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to work (especially with a rookie head coach in Jason Kidd). The way I see it, the Nets have to win the championship this year, or this will be considered a failure. Forget who they traded, they traded away 3 1st round picks. If this doesn’t work out then they’ll be in the proverbial hurt locker for some time now. What I see happening is they will finish with a solid record (probably 50 wins), but come playoff time they will meet their match against the Heat. As for the Boston Celtics, this is simply the final move to having a clean slate to rebuild on. It’ll be years before Boston competes again in the East, so get comfy. If you take a quick glance at the Eastern Conference, it is strong. For the Knicks to be the 5th best team in the Conference, you know the East is ready to dominate the NBA yet again. Speaking of the Knicks, I did like their draft pick from last night. They chose Tim Hardaway Jr. with the 24th overall pick. If your team likes to shoot then draft a shooter.

All in all it was a crazy night in the NBA. We saw a shocker at #1, we saw a blockbuster trade, and we saw a staple in the NBA conduct his final draft as commissioner. Now all that’s left to do is find out where Dwight Howard will suit up next year, and we’ll be ready for another action packed NBA season. What team do you think had the best draft? Who had the worst draft? Leave me your answers and comments below.

If you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well. Also you can 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!

One Liners Part II

“So Long, Farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, Goodbye”….Bye bye Mr. Tebow, it was absolutely no fun while it lasted (enjoy the Arena League).

I’m glad to see Dwight Howard has made strides toward maturity at the ripe old age of 27.

J.R. Smith should team up with Dwight to teach immature youth groups.

Trivia Question: Which takes longer, the NFL Draft or the first round of the NBA playoffs?

Well, the Milwaukee Bucks are good.

The Miami Heat are so good they are resting players during the playoffs!!

No, hell has not frozen over, the New York Islanders are IN the NHL playoffs.

UFC fans are happier than a kid on Christmas morning that Jon Jones put a whoopin’ on Chael Sonnen.

That last one makes me pretty happy too.

Jones’ new nickname has officially been changed to Jon ‘Broken Bones’ Jones.

Did you see his toe after his fight on Saturday?

That’s what you call a BROKEN toe.

If you haven’t seen it yet, click here and scroll down (WARNING, this picture is graphic and may not be suitable for everyone): http://m.bleacherreport.com/articles/1621382-ufc-159-results-heres-that-photo-of-jon-jones-broken-toe

How bout dem’ Yankees!

On a serious note: What a special moment it is for football players to be drafted into the NFL.

Especially for D.J. Hayden, with his miraculous recovery from life threatening surgery to NFL player in just 5 short months.

On another serious note: Congratulations to Jason Collins for becoming the first openly gay athlete in professional sports.

It was only a matter of time, and now maybe we’ll see a breakthrough for humanity in sports.

Seriously though, the Jets should start Mark Sanchez this season.

Or they can pickup Tim Tebow in free agency to be their running back (I hear he’s available now).

Apparently David Price is the only person on the planet that didn’t know that baseball umpires have potty mouths.

I’m about as excited for the NHL playoffs as I am for my grandma’s bridge game this Saturday.

I enjoyed Floyd Mayweather much better when he was in the hole.

Some one go tell him he’s not the best boxer ever, he’ll assault you, and then we won’t have to listen to him talk.

The Boston Celtics are old.

You know what would have been funny on draft day is if some one prank called Manti Te’o and told him he got drafted to the Lingerie Football League (I’m pretty sure he would have fallen for it).

If you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well. Also you can 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!

Everybody Ready For the Miami Heat To Start Trying??

Ready or not here come the NBA Playoffs. They will start today Saturday, April 20th at 3:00 p.m. when the Boston Celtics travel to New York to take on the Knicks. This is a very interesting series that carries many subplots on and off the court. As you all know, the city of Boston has gone through a heart wrenching week. While all are relieved that the persons responsible for the tragic bombings in Boston are dead or in custody, the city is still emotional right now. They also have a great sense of pride right now (as they should). The Boston Celtics would love to show their support to their great city and give it’s people something positive to cheer for. Beating the New York Knicks in the scheme of life means next to nothing, but it would even further unite the great people of their city. I personally feel for Boston. I think it is a great city filled with great people, and no one should have to experience what they have experienced over the past week. Again, sports are what they are, they are just games, but at times can mean so much more. New Yorkers know a little something about that. I feel that the Celtics team will give it their all and will take the Knicks to the limit in this playoff series. Now let’s talk about basketball for a minute. From a skill standpoint the Knicks are the better team with better players. However, if the Celtics are healthy and the Knicks are not, Melo and his boys might be in some trouble. The Celtics are a veteran squad who have playoff tested warriors. They know exactly what it takes to win. With all that being said, I still believe that Melo and the Knicks will be too much to handle for the Celtics. I believe this will be a hard fought series that will go the full 7 games. The home teams will stay undefeated throughout this series, and the Knicks will pull out a win at home in game 7. As for the rest of the playoffs, let me run down the schedule of games with each matchup and who I think will prevail:


Game 1 @Miami: Sunday, 7 p.m. ET, TNT
Game 2 @Miami: Tuesday, 7:30 p.m. ET, NBA TV
Game 3 @Milwaukee: April 25, 7 p.m. ET, TNT
Game 4 @Milwaukee: April 28, 3:30 p.m. ET, ABC
*Game 5 @Miami: April 30
*Game 6 @Milwaukee: May 2
*Game 7 @Miami: May 4

Game 1 @New York: Saturday, 3 p.m. ET, ABC
Game 2 @New York: Tuesday, 8 p.m. ET, TNT
Game 3 @Boston: April 26, 8 p.m. ET, ESPN
Game 4 @Boston: April 28, 1 p.m. ET, ABC
*Game 5 @New York: May 1
*Game 6 @Boston: May 3
*Game 7 @New York: May 5

Game 1 @Indiana: Sunday, 1 p.m. ET, TNT
Game 2 @Indiana: Wednesday, 7:30 p.m. ET, NBA TV
Game 3 @Atlanta: April 27, 7 p.m. ET, ESPN
Game 4 @Atlanta: April 29
*Game 5 @Indiana: May 1
*Game 6 @Atlanta: May 3
*Game 7 @Indiana: May 5

Game 1 @Brooklyn: Saturday, 8 p.m. ET, ESPN
Game 2 @Brooklyn: Monday, 8 p.m. ET, TNT
Game 3 @Chicago: April 25, 8:30 p.m. ET, NBA TV
Game 4 @Chicago: April 27, 2 p.m., TNT
*Game 5 @Brooklyn: April 29
*Game 6 @Chicago: May 2
*Game 7 @Brooklyn: May 4


Game 1 @Oklahoma City: Sunday, 9:30 p.m. ET, TNT
Game 2 @Oklahoma City: Wednesday, 7 p.m. ET, TNT
Game 3 @Houston: April 27, 9:30 p.m. ET, ESPN
Game 4 @Houston: April 29
*Game 5 @Oklahoma City: May 1
*Game 6 @Houston: May 3
*Game 7 @Oklahoma City: May 5

Game 1 @San Antonio: Sunday, 3:30 p.m. ET, ABC
Game 2 @San Antonio: Wednesday, 9:30 p.m. ET, TNT
Game 3 @Los Angeles: April 26, 10:30 p.m. ET, ESPN
Game 4 @Los Angeles: April 28, 7 p.m. ET, TNT
*Game 5 @San Antonio: April 30,
*Game 6 @Los Angeles: May 2
*Game 7 @San Antonio: May 4

Game 1 @Denver: Saturday, 5:30 p.m. ET, ESPN
Game 2 @Denver: Tuesday, 10:30 p.m. ET, TNT
Game 3 @Golden State: April 26, 10:30 p.m. ESPN2
Game 4 @Golden State: April 28, 9:30 p.m. ET, TNT
*Game 5 @Denver: April 30
*Game 6 @Golden State: May 2
*Game 7 @Denver: May 4

Game 1 @Los Angeles: Saturday, 10:30 p.m. ET, ESPN
Game 2 @Los Angeles: Monday, 10:30 p.m. ET, TNT
Game 3 @Memphis: April 25, 9:30 p.m. ET, TNT
Game 4 @Memphis: April 27, 4:30 p.m. ET, TNT
*Game 5 @Los Angeles: April 30
*Game 6 @Memphis: May 3
*Game 7 @Los Angeles: May 5

“*” = if necessary

I will start with the Eastern Conference, as I think this it is the easier conference to predict. The Heat will sweep the Bucks. If they don’t it means something went horribly wrong. As I stated earlier I believe the Knicks will beat the Celtics in 7 games. The Pacers will take out the Atlanta Hawks in 5 low scoring affairs. Now, the Nets vs the Bulls will certainly be a fun series to watch. You have the tough physical defense of Chicago going up against the tough physical offense of Brooklyn. While I like Chicago’s style of play, I think they are too banged up and Brooklyn’s roster will prove to be too much. I like the Nets in 7 grueling games.

Let’s move on to the Western Conference and see what’s going to happen. James harden had a great season. He will also have the privilege of facing his former team in the 1st round of the playoffs. Sorry James, you are going to get swept. If you go off for 45 at home in game 3 or 4 you may have the pleasure of losing in 5 games. Otherwise you’ll get a souvenir broom to bring home with you. Everyone is telling me how good of a matchup this is for the Lakers. To that I say HAHAHA. The Spurs will handle Dwight Howard and the Lakers without much of an issue. Yes, Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol will play well, and two 7 footers are a lot to handle, but the Spurs are too good for the lakers. Period. I have the Spurs moving on in 5 games. The series that will be the most fun to watch is the Nuggets vs the Warriors. These are too fast paced high powered offenses that should try to outs ore each other. If you haven’t seen Stephen Curry play basketball yet, I have one word for you. Enjoy. However, Curry and David Lee can’t beat the Nuggets by themselves. Plus the Nuggets don’t exactly lose at home. I like the Nuggets in 6 games. Lastly, you have the best team in Los Angeles (the Clippers) taking on the Grizzlies. The Grizzlies are big and physical and they play defense, but they can’t beat the Clippers in a 7 game series. Sorry Memphis, but you will be going home in 6 games. Better luck next year.

Check back next year when the 1st round is finally over and I’ll give you my predictions for the 2nd round. Cut down the number of teams in the playoffs and you’ll solve a lot of problems. You may take money out of someone’s pocket, but it would be the right thing to do for the sake of the game. Enjoy the games everybody, and for objectivity’s sake: Let’s Go Knicks!!!!

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NBA Trade Deadline in Review

The NBA trade deadline came and went without much noise.  All week Josh Smith’s name had been circulating in trade talks, and it all amounted to nothing.  Personally, I don’t understand why they didn’t deal him, as well as why the Lakers didn’t deal Dwight Howard.  Why would teams not trade players who are going to walk away in free agency at the end of the year?  Josh Smith is definitely leaving Atlanta, so the fact that they didn’t trade him is idiotic.  Dwight Howard may stay in Los Angeles, so I understand the Lakers keeping him in hopes to re-sign him at the end of the year.  The biggest name that was traded yesterday was JJ Reddick.  The Orlando Magic traded him to the Milwaukee Bucks, along with Gustavo Ayon and Ish Smith for Beno Udrih, Doron Lamb, and Tobias Harris.  It was not a big trade by any stretch of the imagination.  However, the name of the game in the NBA is money money money.  Trades get made in the NBA once the money matches on both sides.  The Magic are in rebuilding mode (as they always are), and they were looking for some young talent which they received in Doron Lamb.  I think the Bucks got the better of this trade, with the addition of a solid perimeter shooter.  The New York Knicks did not make a big splash in the trade deadline either.  They traded Ronnie Brewer to the Oklahoma City Thunder for a 2nd round pick and a trade exception.  And we all know what the Knicks did next right?  Come on, it made so much sense.  You can’t think of it?  Okay, I’ll tell you.  They signed Kenyon Martin to a 10-Day Contract.  Yes!!!!  That is just what they need, another mid thirties player who if his life depended on it couldn’t stay healthy.  Now, if, and this is a BIG IF, he can stay healthy he will help out their front line.  He can add some much needed rebounding, defense, and toughness.  That gritty warrior’s mentality is what the Knicks are lacking, big time.  Overall, I’ll give the Knicks an average grade of a C for their trade deadline moves.  Even with the inactivity at the trade deadline, we should have some good competitive basketball to watch over the last two months of the season.  Enjoy!!

The Los Angeles Lakers….Oh how the mighty have fallen

So I have this friend that is a “Big” Lakers fan.  You know the type, they talk all kinds of smack when they’re great, and they try to explain to you how they knew this was going to happen now that they’re spiraling out of control.  He’s the type of fan that probably hopped on the Lakers bandwagon around the turn of the century, you know when Shaq was still there and they started winning consecutive titles again.  So rewind to before the preseason even started, and let me recap what this “fan” had to say.  “Dude, there is no way the Lakers aren’t going to win the title this year”.  “Did you see that picture of our starting five?”  Yeah, well that “all-star” caliber starting lineup has only played 132 minutes together so far this season.  How’s that working out for you?  I’m here to tell you who’s to blame for this train wreck, and that their season, while it has been a disaster so far is not completely lost yet.  Any major problem you have in an organization, a business, or even your own family always starts at the top.  Let me see how I can say this without having a potty mouth, ummmm, okay got it: “poo doesn’t travel uphill.”  The problems in a family don’t start with the kids, they start with the parents.  The problems with a business don’t start with the $12/hour employee, they start with the owner(s).  So, why would the dysfunction that is the Lakers have started with the players?  It obviously started with ownership and upper management and trickled down to the coach and finally has effected the players negatively.  So when you watch the Lakers struggle on both ends of the floor, you can’t blame Kobe Bryant, and you can’t even blame Dwight Howard.  For the root of the Lakers struggles let’s look up, first at Jerry Buss.  Yes, I said Jerry Buss.  Who is that is ruining one of the greatest franchises in sports history?  That would be Jim Buss.  And, who is it that made Jim Buss Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations for the Lakers?  Yes! You are correct again, that would Jerry Buss.  I’m tired of these ultra wealthy business men whom mostly created their multi-million dollar businesses on nothing but hard work and a brilliant idea, just handing over their fortunes to their self-entitled kids.  Our kids don’t always turn out to be carbon copies of the best form of ourselves(as much as we want them to).  Just because daddy was a great entrepreneur and knew how to run one of the most successful sports franchises of all time, doesn’t mean little Jimmy Buss can follow suit.  With that being said, and now that Jim Buss is making decisions in Los Angeles, we can all point our fingers at him.  Jim Buss decided this past November to hire Mike D’Antoni, not Phil Jackson.  I know that all of you reading this already knew that but let me write that again.  HE HIRED MIKE D’ANTONI OVER PHIL JACKSON!  So as hard as it was to get past that, let’s get past that.  Now am I saying that the Lakers would be 25-17 instead of 17-25?  Most of you might say no, but I’d say uh, yeah maybe they would be.  We are talking about PHIL JACKSON HERE!  He’s one of if not THE greatest coach of all time.  Again, we can’t change the past so let’s analyze the present.  Let’s keep playing the blame game(I don’t know about you, but I’m having fun with this)and all point our fingers at Mike D’Antoni.  Mike D’Antoni is not the answer for the Lakers.  With that being said, I don’t know if Mike D’Antoni is the answer for anyone in the NBA.  His style of coaching, if you can call it that, just doesn’t win championships.  See, this is isn’t the Minnesota Timberwolves who were content just getting to the Conference Finals.  The Lakers are like the Yankees, it’s championship or bust.  Everyone is asking if the players should be adjusting to their coach or if the coach should adapt to the players on his roster?  This is a very dumb rhetorical question if you ask me.  Obviously, the answer is the coach must tweak his coaching “system” to fit the players on his roster.  Players in the NBA are who they are.  That mind sound vague or confusing, but it’s true.  You can’t ask Kobe Bryant to lock down the other teams best player and then score 30 points on 65% shooting every night.  As great as he still is, he’s not 24 anymore.  You also can’t expect Steve Nash and the rest of these three toed sloths to sprint down the floor and play at a pace that’s better fit for an Olympic track.  No disrespect to Steve Nash, Pau Gasol, Dwight Howard, and that guy who changed his name to the most outrageous thing I’ve ever heard, but they are just too old and too slow to play at this frenetic pace.  That’s like taking a 1988 Pontiac station wagon out to the race track and expecting to blow by people on your way to the checkered flag.  It just doesn’t work like that.  Now, like I said earlier, I don’t believe D’Antoni is the answer in L.A., but I don’t see the Lakers firing another coach mid-season and carrying anymore extra payroll.  So it looks like they’re stuck with D’Antoni, for now.  I read an exchange between Grantland’s Zach Lowe and Bill Simmons last night.  It was actually pretty interesting.  They were pretty much saying how D’Antoni is so stubborn, he’d rather go down with the ship then try to adjust his own style.  Here is an excerpt from Bill Simmons:”He’s basically saying, I’m here only because of my system.  I can’t actually coach.  If you give me the wrong players for my system, it doesn’t matter – I will keep using the system anyway, because Plan B would be coming up with a more inventive way to coach these guys.  And I can’t do that.  I’m not good enough.  So if it’s OK with you, I’d like to go down in flames with my system.”  Personally I think he is spot on with what should be going through D’Antoni’s head.  I’m sure he’s already gone through this kind of inner conflict, when he was the coach of the Knicks.  If only someone in the Lakers organization had sat down Jim Buss, taped his eyes open so he couldn’t look away, and forced him to watch the first half the Knicks 2011-2012 season, they might not be in this predicament.  This is like a horrible remake of an already horrible movie.  We all know how it’s going to end.  So now that we’ve established the chain of command that put this in motion, let’s talk about the players on the floor.  Everyone is also trying to blame Kobe Bryant for the Lakers troubles.  To those critics I say, are you out of your mind?  Kobe Bryant is 34 and is having another phenomenal season.  Also, to the critics who try to call Kobe a selfish player, he is in a system that asks him to shoot as many times as possible.  People are also trying to blame Dwight Howard for their struggles.  Yes, he’s having a down season compared to his own standards, but he’s still averaging 16.7 points, 12 rebounds, and 2.5 blocks per game.  Man, what horrible numbers, especially on a team that has Kobe Bryant shooting as many shots as humanly possible.  What also boggles my mind is why Dwight Howard has been playing through an injury that is obviously affecting his play.  They should have rested him until he was 100% or as close to 100% as he can get before playing him.  Dwight Howard can become a free agent at the end of this season, so the Lakers should be doing everything in their power to keep him healthy, happy, and in purple and gold next season and many more seasons to come.  Now on to Pau Gasol.  He is a special talent, and can be a key component to a championship caliber team.  Don’t believe me?  Just check Gasol’s numbers and minutes from their last two championships.  This, just like every other players struggles can be attributed to one person, Mike D’Antoni.  Which leads me to another great point that Bill Simmons made yesterday, he said: “I’m glad we finally got to Pau.  Here’s a good rule of thumb: If you’re a professional basketball coach and your system is telling you, “I should play Early Clark more than Pau Gasol,” you need a new system.”  I couldn’t really come up with a better way to say that, so I let him say it for me.  Thanks Bill.  In closing, if you ask me what the solution is, you have to do what no one in the world would do, fire D’Antoni, and hire a 3rd coach in a single season.  From a purely wins and losses perspective, this is the only move Jim Buss should be thinking about.  Unfortunately we all know that owning a sports team is strictly a business venture for 99.9% of owners, and he’s not going to come out of pocket to hire a 3rd(even if it would be the right one, cough, The Zen Master, cough)coach.  Little Jimmy is probably upset that Phil’s setting up shop with his little sis.  Resentment is an ugly character trait, Jim.  Especially when it aids in your own self-sabotage.  The other fix I would make is to play to Kobe, Pau, and Nash’s strengths.  And that is to let Nash orchestrate the offense like he knows how, while favoring the Kobe side of the floor slightly in each possession.  Let Dwight Howard get healthy, and I’m sure you’ll see the production we’ve all been expecting.  Now as for Pau, get him the damn ball inside the post!  He’s a great passer for a big man so even he can find Dwight Howard from there.  And most importantly he is a great low-post player, stop forcing him to shoot 18 footers.  If you take time to look at his numbers, you’ll see that they are far better when he is inside the paint opposed to outside roaming the earth, like Quentin Richardson in that old D’Antoni Pheonix system.  How dumb are the Knicks by the way(says the Knicks fan)?  Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me, and fool me 3 times, well I don’t know what you call that.  The D’Antoni “system” got us with Quentin Richardson, Amare Stoudamire, and then Mike D’Antoni!!  Really?!?!?  Come on Man(said in a Keyshawn Johnson voice)!  Finally, let Ron/Metta I’m not calling him that scare the other teams best player into submission.  Or play physical, whichever way you want to go with it.  The Metta guy isn’t what he used to be either, but if he stops expending energy on the offensive end and focuses all his efforts to the defensive end, they might have a recipe for success.  Back to reality we go, the Lakers need to win between 25 and 29 games to have a shot at the playoffs.  Is it likely? No.  But, I’m telling you there is a chance.