“The NBA is BACK!!!! (DTS Podcast – #70)

The NBA is finally back!!

And for the first time in nearly a decade, we don’t know who will play in the NBA Finals.

It really is a special time.

ONE THING will always remain a constant though….

The KNICKS will be a DUMPSTER FIRE!!

And lastly, but most disappointing, the league will be without ZION WILLIAMSON for 2 months.

Don’t cry….he’ll lose 20 pounds….and his knees won’t cry anymore either.

That is all.

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“ESPN’s NBA Power Rankings Are A Disaster!!!!” (DTS Podcast – #59)

ESPN released its NBA Power Rankings this week.

They might as well be backward.

But, as always, I fixed them in today’s DTS Podcast.

Leave YOUR NBA Power Rankings in the comment section below.

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“I Went To A Fight And A Baseball Game Broke Out!!” (DaveTalksSports Podcast – Ep. #30)

If I ever get in a fight, I want Amir Garrett in my corner.

Trevor Bauer gets exiled to Cincinnati.

Yasiel Puig is also tough, but he sort of turned into a hold me back, hold me back “tough guy” when his “shot” was available.

CJ McCollum is now $100 million richer.

Jill Ellis surprisingly stepped down from the USWNT.

And don’t rush Andrew Luck!! He’ll play when he’s good and ready.

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One Of These Things Is Not Like The Other

Some athletes play better against the best.

Damian Lillard has a soft spot for the Golden State Warriors. Seemingly every time Lillard takes on the Warriors, he takes his career best performance to a new level. Wednesday night, Lillard figured he’d slay the Kevin Durant dragon, ya know, while he was at it.

Damian Lillard sprinted out of the gate, scoring 18 points in the 1st quarter, giving the Trailblazers a 40-27 lead. Kevin Durant would spend the rest of the evening chipping away at the Trailblazers’ lead. His 50-point effort simply wasn’t enough, as the Warriors fell 123-117. Durant was literally the only Warrior to show up last night. Seriously, he played 1-on-5 all night. Okay, that’s not true, but that’s how it felt. Durant made 17 field goals, while Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green combined for 18 field goals.

Lillard finished with 44 points, 8 assists, 3 rebounds, and 2 steals in 40 minutes (including going a perfect 12 for 12 from the free throw line).

lillard 2

Add this to the list of Lillard’s outstanding performances against the Warriors:

12/11/17 – 39 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals

4/16/17 – 34 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals, and 1 block

5/7/16 – 40 points, 5 rebounds, and 10 assists

2/19/16 – 51 points, 7 assists, and 6 steals

Not bad for a guy who’s inexplicably made just 3 All-Star teams in his 6-year career.

From the really good..to the REALLY bad….

The New York Knicks.

Just when you think they can’t stoop any lower, they find a way. Tim Hardaway Jr., the 2nd streakiest shooter in the NBA (J.R. Smith will forever hold that distinction), was en fuego last night. Entering last night’s game, Hardaway Jr. was 5 for his last 41 from 3-point range. THAT’S 12.2%!! Last night, he went 6 for 9 from downtown. You figure it out.

hardaway jr

As for the game, the Knicks held a 22-point lead over the Washington Wizards with 11:14 to play in the 3rd quarter. Just 1 minute and 33 seconds later, the lead was 13. And thanks to a 15-point 3rd quarter, the Knicks actually trailed 90-87 heading into the 4th quarter. The end result: 118-113, not them.

How is this possible you ask?!?!

Remember when I told you Hardaway Jr. is streaky??

Well, he dropped 32 points in the 1st half, and just 5 in the 2nd half. That’s how!! Honestly, I’m glad. The Knicks should tank the last 23 games anyway. They should play Emmanuel Mudiay, Frank Ntilikina, and Trey Bruke as much as humanly possible. I swear, if I have to watch Jarrett Jack play 28 minutes 1 more time, I may lose it!!

By the way, the Knicks have now lost 8 games in a row.

As for Kristaps Porzingis, the Knicks will be without his services for approximately 1 year. Porzingis, sent out a photograph, post-surgery, to let Knicks’ fans know he’ll remain positive throughout his rehab process and can’t wait to get back on the court.

kp surgery

So keep your heads up Knicks’ fans. At least you can look forward to 2020….

 

Where does Damian Lillard’s performance rank amongst individual accomplishments this season?? Will the Knicks win another game this season?? Tell me in the comment section below.

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I Wanna Go Home!!!!

Well, they did it again!  They blew another one.  After playing a really solid 1st quarter, the New York Knicks found themselves with an 8 point lead.  At one point in the 2nd quarter they were up 13 (41-28).  The New York Knicks, like I’ve been saying all season, don’t have that killer instinct that you need to close out games.  I know I know it was only the 2nd quarter, but if they keep the pressure on the Trailblazers and sustain their lead going into halftime this game would have played out very differently.  Over a span of 2 minutes and 43 seconds at the end of the first half, the Knicks went from up 10 points to down 3 points.  It’s amazing how a team can play so well for 21+ minutes and in a blink of an eye watch all of their hard work wash away.  It’s almost like high tide coming up the beach, you know it’s coming there’s just nothing you can do about it.  If there was any doubt that the Knicks were going to lose this game when they went to halftime, they erased all doubt with their lackluster 3rd quarter.  The came out of the locker room as flat as they went in and they found themselves down 16 points at the end of the 3rd quarter.  The New York Knicks lost to the Portland Trailblazers by a score of 105-90.

I could write for days and days and days about the Knicks problems and why they are playing so poorly, but I’ll try to keep it simple.  The Knicks don’t play any defense.  I’m not going to sit here and make excuses about their injuries because they don’t play defense when their entire roster is 100% either.  They play defense for 8 minute stretches, but they don’t consistently shut teams down for 48 minutes.  They also are a jump shooting team that relies heavily on the 3-pointer.  When that is your teams strategy you go through ups and downs.  Right now they are clearly trending down.  On the Trailblazers side of things, they may not make any noise in the league this year, but they have a good young team with a lot of potential for years to come.  Damian Lillard is really really good (enough said).  If you don’t know who he is, he is going to be hoisting the Rookie of the Year trophy at the end of the year.  Let me get back to the hopeless Knicks.

The Knicks have played 3 out of 5 games on this tough road trip.  They must be more homesick than a child going to sleepaway summer camp for the first time.  Their road trip is not going to get an easier either.  They will have to head over to Los Angeles next to play the Clippers, and then they’ll finish up this dreadful road trip against the Utah Jazz (good, at least they’ll win 1 game on this road trip).  Side note:  what’s the deal with fans booing former players for literally no reason?  Last night the Trailblazers’ fans made it very clear how they felt about Raymond Felton.  However, just like Carmelo Anthony’s return to Denver, this unruly behavior was uncalled for.  Fans are not smart.  They boo players just because they used to play for “their” team, and now they don’t play there anymore.  They don’t have a valid reason to boo said player, they just do it because, well it seemed like the right thing to do at the time.  Well, once again these uninformed fans are 100% in the wrong to boo Raymond Felton.  Let me just state that I’m not defending these players just because they are on the Knicks, I would feel this way about any player that was treated this way.  Anyway, if you want to boo someone because they played poorly that’s fine but do it while they are on the team.  If someone plays that poorly for your team, you should be relieved that they were traded, no?  Plus, he was TRADED.  He didn’t leave under his own power because he wanted out of Portland.  I think fans should reserve booing for the players who actually caused problems or drama when they were part of your favorite team.  Other than that, get over it.

Like I said earlier you can find the Knicks in action again this coming Sunday at 3:30 P.M. against the Clippers.  They are going to need a miracle if they plan on winning that game.  They will be without Carmelo Anthony once again after having his knee drained Thursday.  Tyson Chandler’s status will also be in question come Sunday.  For the Knicks sake I hope Chandler is ready to go because if he’s not you can expect Blake Griffin and lob city to fill the top ten on SportsCenter come Monday morning.

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 athttp://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it!

Carmelo’s Return Spoiled

Wednesday night marked the first game for Carmelo Anthony in Denver since being traded from the Nuggets.  The Denver Nuggets traded Anthony for a host of players and draft picks to the New York Knicks back in 2011.  When it comes to players being traded, sometimes you have players that become a cancer in a locker room or bring more drama to a team than a daytime soap opera.  However in Melo’s case, he and the Nuggets were in mutual agreement that it was time to move on.  Carmelo had always wanted to come back home and play in the city where he grew up, the one, the only, New York City.  At the same time, the Denver Nuggets found a way to get numerous promising young players and future draft picks in return for Anthony.  The trade turned out to be a win-win situation.  With that being said, I have never been more embarrassed for an entire fan base than I was for the IGNORANT Denver Nuggets fans that were in attendance Wednesday night.  From the second they introduced Carmelo Anthony to the starting lineup, they booed him.  As if that wasn’t bad enough, they booed him every single time he touched the ball.  To that I say, ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?!?  And to make matters even worse, when Melo left the game in the 3rd quarter due to a banged up knee, the fans felt it was necessary to chant, “Where is Melo?”  Really?  Does that make you feel better?  This is not like Lebron James’ situation, where he left his team high and dry and they reverted back to the horrible team they were prior to his arrival.  It is not like Melo left the city he grew up in to chase the money.  NO, he wanted to come home and play basketball in the greatest arena on earth.  Now I know that fans aren’t always as smart as they let on, but I thought they were going to get this one right.  While everyone was wondering what kind of reception Melo would get from the crowd, I kept saying they have to cheer him.  For all he did for this team, they’d be the dumbest fans in all the world to boo him.  Well, if the shoe fits…….  So clearly, the fans that filled the Nuggets arena are classless and don’t understand anything about the NBA.  They clearly can’t look at Carmelo’s career as a Denver Nugget objectively and say, man he was great, he took us to the playoffs literally every year he played here (including his rookie season).  Say what you want about Carmelo Anthony’s game.  Tell me he’s not good enough to win a championship.  Tell me his style of play is not conducive to the “team” mentality.  You can even tell me he doesn’t have the work ethic of a Lebron James or a Michael Jordan.  But don’t tell me he didn’t give the Denver Nuggets everything he had for 7+ seasons.  Don’t tell me the Nuggets would have been a playoff team 7 years in a row without him.  And, you definitely can’t tell me that he wasn’t the reason you came out to the arena to watch the team every night.  So to all the Denver Nuggets fans who booed and heckled Carmelo Anthony, I say go back to school because you obviously don’t have any class.

As for the game, it was pathetic.  Man I get tired of using that word.  As I stated earlier, Carmelo Anthony left the game in the 3rd quarter due to his knee acting up again.  Carmelo Anthony is clearly not 100%, and they need to rest him so he’s healthy for the playoffs.  If a player is going to suit up, they need to be able to give it their all, every night.  And right now, he can’t do that.  Will having his knee drained solve all of his problems?  I don’t know, but I sure hope it does.  A very scary moment came in the 2nd quarter when Tyson Chandler went down after banging knees with Corey Brewer.  As of now the Knicks are calling it a knee contusion.  When asked about it after the game, Chandler said it shouldn’t be a problem and hopefully we’ll see him in uniform Thursday night.  Thursday night they continue their tough road trip against the Portland Trailblazers, and it would serve the Knicks well to have Chandler in there to slow down LaMarcus Aldridge (he’s pretty good).  If you haven’t figured it out by now the Knicks got blown out for the second straight game.  They lost the game 117-94.  While Melo and Chandler left the game and Raymond Felton’s woes continued, there was one positive to be taken away from Wednesday nights shellacking.  Iman Shumpert showed us that he can actually score the basketball.  Since always, I’ve been preaching that he is wildly underrated on the offensive end and once his knee is back to 100%, he will show the world that he can shoot.  Last night was a prime example of that.  Shumpert scored 20 points on 8 of 10 shooting from the field (which included going 4 for 5 from 3-point range).  So being the glass half full guy that I am (haha), let us take away only the positive (yes that’s positive in the singular form because there was only one) from last night’s game.  Other than that last night’s game was a complete and total disaster, and I’m not sure it can get any worse for the New York Knicks.  They need to pick off 1 or 2 of the 3 games remaining on this road trip and crawl their way back to New York with some confidence.  Luckily for them, the Utah Jazz are playing like the worst team in the galaxy right now, and that is where they finish their road trip.  But first, they will be in Portland Thursday night to take on the Blazers.  You can find that game on TNT at 10:30 P.M.  Personally, I can’t wait for them to finish this road trip so I can start going to bed at a reasonable time.  But hey, it’s not all about me now is 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 athttp://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it!