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.

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!!

 

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A Thursday For The Ages!!

Sports is the gift that keeps on giving.

Just 24 hours ago, headlines remained quiet, still, virtually unchanged. Then Thursday happened.

Who Doesn’t Love A Reboot??

The XFL is making a comeback. Yes, you read that right. Vince McMahon, WWE Founder, says a drama free, gimmick free, criminal free XFL is making a comeback. In 2020, Vince McMahon will re-launch an 8-team league, designed to play a 10-week schedule. McMahon is looking into a combination of large and medium-sized markets.

McMahon is individually funding this project and will have complete control over the league and all 8 teams. Initial funding is estimated at $100 million dollars. Coincidentally, McMahon just sold $100 million in WWE stock….

While McMahon clearly stated there will be no criminals in his league, he’s taking a hard stance on many hot-button issues. No personal or political stances will be tolerated in the XFL. Ratings magnets will no longer get the nod over other players. The best players will be put on the field, and they will be paid more when they win. And McMahon plans to run faster games. A 2-hour limit is McMahon’s plan.

Essentially, he’s trying to capitalize on every shortcoming of the NFL.

I give it 2 years this time….

“I’ll Take KD!!”

Thursday, All-Star Captains, Lebron James and Stephen Curry, “secretly” selected their teams. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out the order players were picked, so for the love of God, put this thing on TV next year!!!!

lebron and curry

Here’s how it probably went down:

Team Lebron                                             Team Curry

1st pick: Kevin Durant                             2nd pick: James Harden

3rd pick: Anthony Davis                         4th pick: Giannis Antetokounmpo

5th pick: Demarcus Cousins                  6th pick: Joel Embiid

7th pick: Kyrie Irving                  8th pick: Karl Anthony-Towns

9th pick: Russell Westbrook                                10th pick: DeMar DeRozan

11th pick: John Wall                                  12th pick: Jimmy Butler

13th pick: Kristaps Porzingis                 14th pick: Klay Thompson

15th pick: LaMarcus Aldridge               16th pick: Al Horford

17th pick: Kevin Love                                18th pick: Damian Lillard

19th pick: Victor Oladipo                         20th pick: Draymond Green

21st pick: Bradley Beal                              22nd pick: Kyle Lowry

Lebron clearly won the draft. Once you get past the 5th pick, you have to wonder what was going through Stephen Curry’s mind. Picking either Towns, Embiid, Butler, or DeRozan over Cousins, Westbrook, or Irving makes my head spin in a way that feels fairly dangerous. Despite only having 5 Western All-Stars, expect Team Lebron to win 189-179.

Father Time Is Still Waiting

Roger Federer may or may not be human. His accomplishments, at 36, on a tennis court, are nothing short of astonishing. After defeating Hyeon Chung (6-1, 5-2, ret.), Federer has reached his 7th Australian Open Final. Once again, he has NOT dropped a single set en route to the finals. THAT IS INSANE!!

TENNIS-AUS-OPENWhile mere mortals retire due to injury, and potential heat stroke, Federer dabs single beads of sweat from his brow and moves to the next point. His mental game is unparalleled, and his physical talent is 2nd to none. Federer will try to take down #6 ranked, Marin Cilic, in the finals for his 6th Australian Open.

Words simply can not explain the unprecedented nature Federer continues to succeed at the advanced age of 36. It’s like ‘Dog Years’. 36 in ‘Tennis Years’ is 66 in ‘Basketball Years’.

Brewers Are Busy Little Beavers

The Milwaukee Brewers were very busy on Thursday. They made a trade. And they signed the biggest free agent contract of the offseason — so far. Both put the Brewers in the conversation for best outfield in MLB.

The Trade

Brewers Get: OF Christian Yelich

Marlins Get: OF Lewis Brinson, INF Isan Diaz, OF Monte Harrison, and P Jordan Yamamoto

The Signing

They signed OF Lorenzo Cain, to a 5-year, $80 million contract. Until JD Martinez signs on the dotted-line, Cain stands as the highest paid free agent of the offseason.

The Brewers now have a surplus of outfielders, so expect either Domingo Santana, Keon Broxton, or Brett Phillips to be on the move.

Wow Thursday. You didn’t exactly leave room for improvement for Friday….

 

What was the biggest story from Thursday?? Will you watch the XFL?? Spill it 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 6:00 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!!

It’s Snubbing Season!!

I don’t like getting snubbed.

I can’t imagine Paul George does either.

As the NBA All-Star Team Reserves were announced Tuesday, George was the most glaring omission. Each conference is comprised of 12 players, 5 starters and 7 reserves.

Starters are determined by 3 voting groups:

Fans: 50%

Players: 25%

Media: 25%  

Reserves are selected by NBA coaches. And this year, rather than play East Vs. West, a playground style, pick-up game will ensue. Each conference’s top vote-getter (as per the fans), will be named “Captain”. The inaugural captains are Lebron James and Stephen Curry. They will then alternate selecting players (Lebron has 1st pick) no matter their conference.

lebron curry

**NBA commissioner, Adam Silver, decided not to televise the selection process, as he doesn’t want to hurt the last pick’s feelings….

(Hurt their feelings?? Are we in 2nd grade?!?! These are grown men, being paid millions to play the game of basketball, and you’re worried about their feelings over the All-Star Game?!?! Talk about a money making opportunity being flushed down the toilet!!)

Instead, Lebron and Curry’s selections will be revealed on Thursday @ 7:00 P.M. EST on TNT.

While I like the idea of “choosing up teams”, they only got this half-way right.

If you’re going to choose teams, regardless of conference, why would the voting process remain separated by conference????

All-Star voting should simply be the top-24 players in the NBA. Here are the teams, as presently constructed:

Eastern Conference:

  • Starter: Kyrie Irving, G, Boston Celtics
  • Starter: DeMar DeRozan, G, Toronto Raptors
  • Starter: LeBron James, F, Cleveland Cavaliers (Captain)
  • Starter: Giannis Antetokounmpo, F, Milwaukee Bucks
  • Starter: Joel Embiid, C, Philadelphia 76ers
  • Reserve: Kyle Lowry, G, Toronto Raptors
  • Reserve: Bradley Beal, G, Washington Wizards
  • Reserve: John Wall, G, Washington Wizards
  • Reserve: Victor Oladipo, G, Indiana Pacers
  • Reserve: Kevin Love, F, Cleveland Cavaliers
  • Reserve: Kristaps Porzingis, F, New York Knicks
  • Reserve: Al Horford, C, Boston Celtics

Western Conference:

  • Starter: Stephen Curry, G, Golden State Warriors (Captain)
  • Starter: James Harden, G, Houston Rockets
  • Starter: Kevin Durant, F, Golden State Warriors
  • Starter: Anthony Davis, F, New Orleans Pelicans
  • Starter: DeMarcus Cousins, C, New Orleans Pelicans
  • Reserve: Damian Lillard, G, Portland Trail Blazers
  • Reserve: Klay Thompson, G, Golden State Warriors
  • Reserve: Jimmy Butler, G, Minnesota Timberwolves
  • Reserve: Russell Westbrook, G, Oklahoma City Thunder
  • Reserve: LaMarcus Aldridge, F, San Antonio Spurs
  • Reserve: Draymond Green, F, Golden State Warriors
  • Reserve: Karl-Anthony Towns, C, Minnesota Timberwolves

If you say someone needs to be in, someone needs to be out….

Paul George is more deserving than Kristaps Porzingis. I love that the Knicks will be represented at All-Star Weekend, but Kristaps Porzingis DOES NOT deserve to be an All-Star. George is also more deserving than Kyle Lowry, Lamarcus Aldridge, Draymond Green, Kevin Love, and Klay Thompson. These players are having outstanding seasons, but they’re not having the season George is having.

Here are George’s stats:

20.9 points, 5.6 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 2.1 steals, 43.6 FG%, 42.2 3-point%, and 80.9 FT%

Don’t forget, George is also adjusting to life as the 2nd option, for the 1st time, in Oklahoma City. Oh, and George is the front-runner for Defensive Player of the Year.

 

Should Paul George be an All-Star?? Tell me 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 6:00 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!!

 

Celtics D Stifles Warriors, Headline Busy Thursday Night

jaylen brown

You’ve done it again Thursday.

My thumb was reacquainted with the ‘Prev Ch’ button. Football to basketball, basketball to football, NFL Network and TNT got my ratings Thursday night (until I fell asleep on the couch). To the hardwood we go….

NBA Finals Preview??

Thursday’s nights matchup between the Boston Celtics and Golden State Warriors pinned the 2 best records in the NBA against each other. The Warriors were winners of 7 straight, as they travelled to Beantown to take on the red hot Celtics (winners of 13 straight).

The Warriors looked like the Warriors, carrying a 17-point lead past the midway point of the 3rd quarter. Then, Jaylen Brown happened. Over a 49 second span, Brown scored 8 consecutive points. After learning of his best friend’s death just hours prior to tip-off, Brown played inspired basketball (22 points and 7 rebounds). He dedicated his performance to Trevin Steede.

The Celtics didn’t win their 14th straight game because they scored 142 points. They won because they do something that’s very rare in the NBA. The play defense. They held a Warriors team, that’s averaging 117.5 points per game, to 88 points. Unbelievably impressive, but I wouldn’t expect Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green to shoot a combined 11 for 43 (25.5%) from the field again — ever.

The Celtics will revel in their 92-88 victory during their day off on Friday. They’ll seek their 15th straight win on Saturday against the hapless Atlanta Hawks (3-12).

A 4th Quarter To Forget

Marcus Mariota let’s it fly. Rishard Matthews comes down with the deep bomb, scampering 75-yards for a touchdown. That’s one way to start the 2nd half. 16-7 became 16-14 in the blink of an eye. And just like that, we had a football game on our hands. Or so we thought. The Titans final 3 possessions: punt, interception, interception. That, plus Antonio Brown’s 3-touchdown night, put the game out of reach in the 4th quarter. 17 unanswered points brought the totality of destruction to 40-17.

The Steelers now own an AFC best record; 8-2. That is, until the New England Patriots play on Sunday. As for the Titans, they drop to 6-4, leaving the door wide open for the Jacksonville Jaguars to grab an AFC South division lead.

You Scored How Many Points?!

Chris Paul made his return to the court Thursday night. After missing 14 games with a knee injury, Paul played 21 minutes against the Phoenix Suns. Effective minutes I’d call them.

Chris Paul’s Evening: 11 points, 10 assists, 4 rebounds, and 2 steals.

Paul was merely a pedestrian contributor to the absolute smack down the Rockets laid on the Suns. He was 1 of 7 players to score in double figures, led by James Harden’s 48 points. The Rockets set a franchise record Thursday night, scoring 90 points in the 1st half.

No need to readjust your spectacles. The Houston Rockets scored 90 points in the 1st half. I know the Suns are bad, but that’s absurd. The final score of 142-116 included 6 Rockets’ going a perfect 35 for 35 from the free throw line. Only Clint Capela would miss a free throw (0-3).

Harden, Paul, and company will look to improve on their 12-4 record when they take on the Memphis Grizzlies Saturday. Paul will look to ramp up his minutes, while Harden continues his MVP charge.

 

What were you watching Thursday night?? Tell me about it 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!!

NBA Installs Pillows On Every Team’s Bench

lebron-james-rest

It’s Saturday night. Dinner’s ready. Beer’s in hand. And I settle in to that a** groove in the couch directly in front of the TV. I flip to ABC to watch the highly anticipated match-up between the Golden State Warriors and the San Antonio Spurs, ya know, the game ESPN selflessly promoted for weeks, only to find that the game’s 8 best players were “scratched”. Angry, but still happy to have my feet up on the couch next to my wife, we found a movie, and the NBA lost my viewership for the evening.

This is known as the Resting Epidemic. NBA commissioner, Adam Silver, has acknowledged it is the NBA’s biggest problem, and he feels they have a solution. Their solution is highlighted in the NBA’s schedule for the upcoming season. Here are the most notable changes to the schedule:

  • The season will start 8 days earlier (a move from Oct. 25 to Oct. 17)
  • A record low back-to-back games (an average of 14.4 per team)
  • Elimination of 4 in 5’s (4 games in 5 nights)
  • Protection of Marquee Matchups on National TV

Allow me to elaborate on that last one. Marquee Matchups, such as Warriors vs. Spurs, are broadcast on ABC (National TV). These games carry higher ratings, which brings more advertisers, ergo everyone involved makes more money. So when millions tune-in to check out Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Andre Iguodala, Kawhi Leonard, LaMarcus Aldridge, and Pau Gasol and NONE of them are playing, yeah, I’d say there’s a problem.

Well this year, the NBA will cater to the babie..ahem..I mean NBA players who feel they don’t get enough days off throughout the season. Ya know, the NBA players who get paid millions to play a game for a living. Yeah — those guys. This is the part when I talk directly into the camera….

Listen, I understand playing in the NBA is taxing on your body. You play thousands of minutes, travel thousands of miles, and probably have odder sleeping habits than me. BUT, you have professional trainers at your beckon call. You have personal chefs. You fly on private planes. And you stay in the nicest hotels imaginable. What the hell do you have to complain about?!?! Playing 4 basketball games in 5 days?!?! Boofreakinhoo!! Try working a 12-hour shift, just to race to your 2nd job where you work another 6-hour shift, to make just enough money to put food on the table for your kids (who you barely see). Then come back to me and tell me you still want to complain about playing in the 2nd game of a back-to-back. Spare me….

The fact that resting is the NBA’s biggest problem, is a sad reflection of our society. And the NBA’s response is even sadder. Rather than coming down hard by fining teams and players, they are coddling their superstars, proudly preparing them for nothing that closely resembles real life. So, when you tune-in to ABC this year for any of the Warriors’ 6 National TV games, they will be well rested. In fact, no team playing on ABC this year will be playing in the 2nd of a back-to-back.

The all-important question still remains: Will caving and pandering to every need of NBA’s superstars solve the NBA’s Resting Epidemic?? Or will NBA teams continue to rest players at inopportune times?? Only time will tell. My guess is it won’t help one bit….

 

What do you think?? Do you agree with the NBA modifying it’s schedule to get NBA players more rest?? Will it solve the Resting Epidemic?? Tell me what you think 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 6:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page.

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 called DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

 

One-Liner Fridays!!

espn 8 the ocho

Happy Friday sports fans!! It isn’t a mirage. Friday is actually here. I’m going to get your weekend started a little early with an oldie but a goodie. This is a segment I like to call, One-Liner Fridays. Today, I give my take on the week of sports in One Line and One Line only. “We’re gonna to skate to One song and One song only!” Enjoy!!

 

“Pudge” Rodriguez has taken his nickname, and apparently his eating contests, too seriously.

Voting Tim Raines into the MLB Hall of Fame, after 10 years, is like that bad decision you make right as the lights come on at last call — I get it, she was the only girl left in the bar.

Putting Bud Selig in the MLB Hall of Fame is like asking Adrian Peterson to babysit tonight.

Nothin’ says, “Welcome to New York Sonny Gray” like the Yankees committing 3 errors behind him, in the 1st inning.

I know Pete Rose isn’t in the running for Humanitarian of the Century, but did a woman really come out of the shadows, and accuse him of a crime from 30 YEARS AGO?!

Nice try lady.

Stephen Curry took some time out of his busy, make fun of Lebron James schedule, to play in his 1st professional golf tournament (Ellie Mae Classic).

It appears, Steph Curry (who shot a 74) is now better than Tiger Woods at golf.

House, no — Cars, no — Travel the world, no — Put my kids through college, no — Invest, no — Purchase Neymar Jr., YES!!

I literally couldn’t think of a better way to spend $262 Million either.

I love how Dolphins fans are distraught today after seeing Ryan Tannehill go down with a knee injury in practice yesterday — Yeah, because NOW your season’s over.

At least it’ll keep the Colin Kaepernick conversation going, so we’ve got that goin’ for us.

We saw more punches thrown on the 1st day of New England Patriot’s Training Camp than we will see in the entire Mayweather/McGregor fight.

Thank you Paul Malignaggi, for leaving the “Circus”, as you called it, of McGregor’s camp, and daring McGregor to go public with their sparring video — which would allegedly show what really happened.

And in case you somehow didn’t notice, yesterday was Tom Brady’s, not to be confused with Jesus’, 40th birthday….

At least ESPN didn’t replay every minute of every game of Tom Brady’s career….

Speaking of ESPN, fantasy will become reality when ESPN U morphs into ‘ESPN 8, The Ocho’ for one day, August 8th.

That’s awesome!!

Cotton McKnight:
“In 23 years of broadcasting I thought I’d seen it all, folks, but it looks like Peter La Fleur has actually blindfolded himself.

Pepper Brooks:
“He will not be able to see very well, Cotton.”

 

If you have a One-Liner of your own, please post it below in the comment section.

Enjoy your weekend everybody!!

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 6:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page.

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 called DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

Chris Paul Must Hate Paying Taxes

Houston Rockets v Los Angeles Clippers

A huge name in the NBA is on the move. While nothing is official until free agency begins (July 1st), the Los Angeles Clippers and Houston Rockets have agreed on a trade. News broke yesterday that the Clippers would send Chris Paul to the Rockets in exchange for:

Take a deep breath..starting..now….

  • Patrick Beverly
  • Lou Williams
  • Sam Dekker
  • Montrezl Harrell
  • DeAndre Liggins
  • Darrun Hilliard
  • Kyle Wiltjer
  • A top-three protected draft pick in 2018
  • And last but not least, $661,000 (aka the Trade Kicker – 15% of Paul’s annual salary).

It sounds like a lot more than it is. A lot of dominoes had to fall in place, but this trade benefits both teams. Chris Paul, in his own self-interest, did the Clippers a favor. What is it they say?? There’s no such thing as a selfless act. I don’t believe that, but that’s a story for a different day. The point is, Paul could have walked away from the Clippers, leaving them empty-handed, to test the free agency waters. Instead, he grabbed the Clippers’ organization by the ear and said something to the effect of, ‘I’m going to Houston, so make this happen.’ Which brings us to the Rockets sending cash considerations seemingly all over the world for the 3 no names in the deal, and the Clippers and Paul executing a sign-and-trade deal. Goodbye La La Land, hello no state income-tax.

*This is the only way Paul could have gone to the Rockets. They couldn’t afford him as a free agent.

Now, all I keep hearing is, ‘this isn’t a good idea, Harden and Paul aren’t a good fit‘. I’m here to tell you that’s NONSENSE. You know what’s a good idea?? Putting multiple all-stars on the same team. Newsflash: that’s how the NBA works. Allow me to remind everyone that the pairing of Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry was doubted prior to last season. Please stuff your revisionist history back in your pocket.

Yes, there’s only 1 ball, but on a Rockets team coached by run-and-gun Mike D’Antoni, I’m pretty sure they’ll figure it out. Paul brings a new element to the Rockets as well. It’s this little thing I’m certain James Harden has never heard of before, called DEFENSE!! Chris Paul is a premier defender from the point guard position. He also possesses one of the best mid-range games in the league from the point guard position. Yeah..this all sounds terrible to me.

The only problem the Rockets still have is the Golden State Warriors (don’t we all). The Rockets, just like the Cleveland Cavaliers, are 1 star and 1 big man away from being true contenders. Rockets’ fans should be pleased to know their team is going ‘all-in’, as they are currently pursuing Indiana Pacers’ star, Paul George. Because who doesn’t love a ‘Big 3’??

There’s another reason Chris Paul could potentially benefit from this sign-and-trade. Yup, you guessed it, MONEY. Paul, who’s 32 years old, can receive a max-contract of 5 years, $201 million.  Which begs the question, how long does Houston want to commit to Chris Paul?? While Paul is still great, the Rockets will assuredly regret the last 2 years of this contract. I say shove all those chips to the middle of the table!!

Hey — what’s the worst that can happen??

 

What do you think of this trade?? Should the Houston Rockets give Chris Paul a Max Contract?? Don’t hold it in, let it out in the comment section below.

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

 

Durant Wins 1st (of many) NBA Title

durant nba title

There are 9 words in the English language we should all get used to hearing..again..and again..and again: “The Golden State Warriors are NBA Champions once again!” With Kevin Durant as the new sheriff in town, this may become a common theme in the NBA. And as impressive as the Warriors were this season (I will give them their deserved praise), they are not helping the NBA’s cause. Many thought the NBA had become a 2-team league. Correction. It has become a 1-team league. Think about it. What is the question Cavaliers ownership and management are asking themselves right now?? Exactly! Who can we add to this roster in order to compete with the Warriors?? You laugh but it’s true. In the not so distant future, I picture the entire All-Star starting lineups donning Cavaliers and Warriors’ jerseys. We’ll get back to the mess that is the NBA, but for now, let us give the Warriors the standing ovation they deserve.

Kevin Durant did what he set out to do. He captured his 1st NBA title after jumping ship in Oklahoma City and joining forces with Stephen Curry and company. There’s only one way to put this, Durant straight up balled out. After missing 20 games due to injury this season, Durant returned and peaked at the perfect moment. He averaged 35.2 points, 8.4 rebounds, and 5.4 assists in the finals, making him the unanimous Finals MVP. He unquestionably deserved the Finals MVP, however, he completely overshadowed the spectacular series Stephen Curry had. Curry averaged 26.8 points, 9.4 assists, and 8.0 rebounds in the Finals. Those are video game numbers, normally MVP worthy, however, Curry was the 3rd best player in the series. Again highlighting the state of the NBA.

Let’s rewind to the 2014 offseason. The Warriors roster was constructed with only 1 thing in mind; winning multiple championships. 2 down, at least 1 to go. Assuming this roster remains intact (only Andre Iguodala is a free agent this coming offseason), this Warriors team will remain a dynasty in the NBA. Which begs the question, where does this Warriors team rank amongst the all-time great teams?? We only ask the tough questions here at DaveTalksSports!! Here is a list of the NBA’s all-time great teams:

  1. The “Showtime” Lakers
  2. The 80’s Celtics
  3. The “Bad Boy” Pistons
  4. The Bill Russell Celtics
  5. The Shaq and Kobe Lakers
  6. The Spurs’ Dynasty
  7. And last, but certainly not least, the Jordan-Era Bulls

When we say teams, we really mean an era or dynasty that won multiple championships. Many teams flashed greatness for 1 year, but how many franchises ran off streaks of multiple championships??

The Warriors have now been to 3 straight NBA Finals (winning 2 of 3). In the 2015-2016 season, the Warriors broke the record for most wins in the regular season (73), previously held by the 1995-1996 Chicago Bulls (72). The Warriors made a historic run through the postseason this year, dropping just 1 game. Their 16-1 record is the highest winning percentage (.941) of any championship team in NBA history, and they also became 1 of only 3 1-loss teams to win a championship.

The question, when comparing teams from different eras, isn’t who would win (as fun as it would be to watch Jordan and the Bulls play Durant and the Warriors), rather who has a more impressive resume. The Warriors still have room for improvement (which is scary), but right now I’d rank them 7th all-time, behind everyone on the above list besides The “Bad Boy” Pistons. Every other team on that list won at least 3 championships and had at least 4 Finals’ appearances. Unless the Cavaliers add another piece to their championship puzzle, the Warriors should repeat next year (yes I already decided next year’s champion) and climb the all-time ranks.

For now, we close the book on the 2016-2017 NBA season. And we open a new book to a clean page to start the debate. Where do the Warriors rank amongst the all-time great teams?? Post your ranking 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!

 

15 Down, 1 To Go

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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!

 

That Wasn’t Very Close Either….

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Nice try Cleveland! Following a Game 1 blowout loss, which felt like 147 days ago, many expected a more competitive Game 2. Ehhh, not so much (132-113 – not Cleveland). The Cleveland Cavaliers made many visible adjustments at the start of Game 2, many I agreed with, however it wasn’t quite enough to slow down the juggernaut that is the Golden State Warriors. Lebron James and the Cavaliers stormed out of the gate with a different intensity on Sunday night. Lebron attacked the basket in a way that said this is still my league, so get out of my way. Is it me or did you just picture Ludacris rapping..”If you do the speed limit, get the f*** out of my way!” Anyway….

The Cavaliers showed their willingness to defend, as I guess they were tired of watching Kevin Durant slam home uncontested dunks. Unfortunately for the Cavaliers, these adjustments weren’t nearly enough to pull off a victory let alone make the game competitive. The Cavs are lacking one major adjustment, and I hope they’re listening (or reading). They CAN NOT beat the Warriors at their own game. Trying to run up and down the floor and outscore the Warriors is a recipe for disaster. I hear it can also bring about darkness, despair, and plague, but who doesn’t enjoy those things??

Lebron James and company need to slow down the pace of the game. Let me digress again. Thanks! Did you see Lebron James when he went to the bench in the 3rd quarter. That is as tired as I’ve ever seen him..ever! No, this is not a knock on Lebron. It is simply an observation that not only can he not beat this Warriors team by himself, he can’t beat them with Kevin Love (who’s on fire) and Kyrie Irving. Now, back to business.

They need to pound the ball into the floor and turn this into a half-court snore fest. Otherwise, this will turn into a 5-game series. I know I know, a playoff series doesn’t start until a home team loses a game. Well I guess this series is going to start very soon. Allow me to contradict myself..here ——–> I actually think the Cavs pull off a victory on their home court in Game 3, but that is strictly predicated on my faith in Lebron James. I don’t envision him being embarrassed on his sports’ biggest stage. Outside of that I have no reason to believe the Cavs can compete with the Warriors in any facet of the game.

For example, last night, the Cavs had 3 players in double figures, the Warriors had 6. The Warriors led in every statistical category besides steals/turnovers. The Warriors are also the superior defensive team. Everyone clean out the wax from your ears and listen: KLAY THOMPSON IS AN ELITE DEFENDER. Yes, he can shoot 3’s from anywhere in the gym, but he is showing the world he is an elite defender. Thompson has locked down Kyrie Irving, one of the games best ball-handlers, through the first 2 games of this series.

It’s not THAT the Cavaliers have lost both games, it’s HOW they’ve lost.

Let us close out this fantastic article with ‘The Play of the Game’. If you had already shut off the game or fell asleep, it took place 3 minutes into the 2nd half. The 3rd quarter has been the biggest difference in this series by the way. Steve Kerr, who’s back after an 11-game absence, must give motivating halftime speeches. Anyway, Stephen Curry put on a spectacular dribbling show. My words can’t do it justice, so please click here and enjoy. He is unreal. And he doesn’t just shoot. He is an all-around player, and last night displayed those skills with a triple-double (32 points, 11 assists, and 10 rebounds). Oh yeah, and they also have Kevin Durant..hahaha.

Tune into ABC on Wednesday at 9:00 P.M. EST to see if the Warriors will lose a game this season.

How many games will it take the Warriors to close out the series?? Let me know 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!