Round and Round, Round and Round

Saying Our Goodbyes

Let’s take a second to thank the Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks, Boston Celtics, and Los Angeles Clippers for participating in the 2015-2016 playoffs. Except for the Houston Rockets, everyone played hard. No one was surprised that these teams got bounced. Hey sometimes you’re the champs and sometimes you’re the chum.

Los Angeles Clippers v Portland Trail Blazers - Game Six

I gotta say tho, I have more respect for the Clippers (especially Austin Rivers) for not conceding game 6 on the road in Portland. It was enough of a performance to make me consider downgrading them from complete busters to simply busterish.

I have talked a lot of junk about Austin Rivers, but I think he passed some sort of threshold last night in that loss to the Blazers. I wonder if this will be the impetus for him crawling out of that bottom tier of players, and actually being a viable part of a winning team.

Looking Ahead

 

Even though both are Eastern Conference games, tomorrow’s Pacers-Raptors and Heat-Hornets contests are can’t miss. I’m not foolish enough to think a Raptors elimination will mean I won’t have to see Drake sitting court side at basketball games, rolling lint off his jeans. Homie will be anywhere there is a camera and some NBA. I’m still rooting for the Pacers to knock off Toronto. Indiana has some interesting layers on their squad, and a Heat-Pacers 2nd round would be intense.

Speaking of playoff intensity, last night’s 4th quarter of the Heat-Hornets game was one of the few legit highlights in this first round. Kemba and Dwyane Wade put their “teams on they back” and went to work. Wade had 10 4th quarter points, while Walker couldn’t be stopped (except for a last possession foul by Wade that didn’t get called), getting 11 of his 34 points in crunch time.

I for one am not looking forward to this Hawks-Cavs series starting this week. If I watch any of that series, it will be during the 4th quarter of each game. Bleh. With all the contact, whistles and play stoppage, that series will be as much fun as watching college wrestling. No thank you. I’ll watch as much as necessary to stay informed. I don’t know if the Hawks will even win one game this round.

The Warriors open up the second round against the “stop listening to they” Blazers. The steel and determination in Damien Lillard’s face  makes me a believer in Portland…….but not this year. If the Blazers management can actually make s series of sustainable decisions, I think they can bring a title to Rip City.

They really aren’t that far away. We’ll have plenty of time to dissect their off-season after the Dubs knock them out. Portland fans are playing with house money, and they’ll be happy if their Blazers Boyz get 2 wins (not all that unrealistic). I’m just excited to see Dame go to his hometown and put in some work in front of his people. This will be a fun series.

The real deal Holyfield will be the Thunder-Spurs series starting tonight at 7:30 (CST). I’ve lost a lot of sleep over this potential matchup. This reminds me too much of the 2012 standoff, where KD unleashed the beast four times in a row. The only thing keeping me from a full-blown panic attack is that the Thunder don’t have a James Harden to bring off the bench.

 

For the Spurs to win

 

Their vaunted defense will need to live up to its reputation. Kawhi Leonard is light years better than he was in 2012, when he first had to handle KD. Leonard’s offensive game  is almost enough to make the matchup at small forward a wash.

The bigger problem will be guarding Russell Westbrook. Danny Green and (ahem) Tony Parker can’t do it alone. It will take some team defending and help coming into the lane and forcing Westbrook to make last second decisions. There is no stopping Russ at this point–he’s Kobe 2.0 (except a less reluctant passer), and even though Tony Allen was credited with making Kobe work in the ’08 NBA Finals, that Celtics defense was on a string. The Spurs will have to be in constant communication, in order to keep the Thunder role players from getting involved offensively.

One way to do this will be to take care of the ball when they are on the other end of the court. The more the Spurs can keep OKC from getting easy baskets from fast breaks, the better.

Lastly, the Spurs bench will have to prove itself superior to Oklahoma City’s role players. Besides Dion Waiters and Enes Kanter, the Thunder will have trouble getting their own shots. Ibaka may have a 7/9 game with 16 points, 5 blocks, and 12 rebounds, one game, and then completely disappear behind the 3 point line the next. The Spurs have the better support group, and they can make OKC pay dearly every time Durant and Westbrook aren’t on the floor.

I think the Spurs can survive a game or two if KD and Russ both go nuclear (60-70 combined points),as long as no one else goes crazy. But a night where Kanter gets 18, Ibaka is getting 15, and Waiters is getting 14, means they are probably taking an L.

For the Thunder to win

 

They will need to resurrect the RUN OKC days. The Spurs are undoubtedly the oldest team in the playoffs. After every long rebound I would have the wings pushing up the court to see if any fast break opportunities can shake out. The Spurs are phenomenal at getting back on D, but you figure that somewhere down the line it may add to their wear and tear to the Spurs’ old legs. The biggest problem with this strategy though is that OKC’s bench is pretty thin. An uptempo game means more minutes for Cameron Payne and Kyle Singler. I don’t think that is a good thing, but they’ll need as many easy points as they can get.

The Thunder bigs will need to dominate the boards in order for them to have a chance in this series. There won’t be a ton of easy buckets on either end, which make Steven Adams, Ene Kanter, Serge Ibaka, and Nick Collison’s roles extremely important. One way to keep the Spurs from scoring is to outrebound them–especially on the offensive end.

Someone is going to have to help KD and Russ get buckets. The easiest way to spot someone who doesn’t get basketball is to hear them speak as if winning hinges on their superstar player(s). The locals (and the media) here in Oklahoma think that just because they have 2 of the best players in the world on their team that a win is pretty much guaranteed.

They actually think the Thunder were “struggling” this season. It is laughable. What they don’t understand, is that the reason the Warriors and Spurs have been thumping teams at a historic rate, is because they have two of the best benches in NBA history. Having Westbrook and Durant keeps a team in any game, but having dependable role players in a tightly contested, playoff game, is invaluable.

Someone (Waiters, Kanter, Ibaka) has to chip in at a consistent rate for the Thunder to even have a chance at upending the Spurs. Those Heat teams had great role players (Shane Battier, Mike Miller, Ray Allen, Udonis Hasleem), that ’08 Celts team had James Posey, Leon Powe, Tony Allen, and Sam Cassell.

The Thunder no longer haven’t had a big 3 since Harden moved to Houston, and their role players have been okay at best. I think we’ll have to see something extraordinary for them to beat the Spurs, but if they can somehow stretch it to 7 games, then the odds might be in their favor. I think the Thunder will give San Antonio all they can handle, but Spurs will win in six games.

 

BM

thisagoodassgame@gmail.com

#fullsass #thisagoodassgame

 

 

 

Moving Right Along

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Congratulations to the Golden State Warriors on their record-breaking evening. There is a reason only 2 teams in my lifetime have achieved 73 wins. Even the best of teams lose occasional back to back games, or they suffer letdowns to inferior teams. The Warriors only had a couple of losses that had nothing to do with scheduling or injury.

I would also like to take the time to celebrate the end of the Kobe Bryant’s playing career, a man who was the last link to the Lakers’ dynasty. I thought about watching his very last game, then decided I could be doing better things. Hitting the refresher on twitter each time brought me updates as he hit 30, then 40, then 50, then finally 60 points. The man chucked up 50 shots, but what surprised me is that he only had 45 points with about 5 minutes left. The man put on a show for his home crowd and I have to respect that.

I can’t say I agree with people’s G.O.A.T. assertion, or the revisionist history that does not include his sexual assault trial, or that he was such a terrible teammate that no one wanted to play with him; and that is the reason why he only has 5 rings instead of 11 (like say Bill Russell). Most Lakers fans are insufferable, but Kobe fans are twice as hard to talk sensibly with. I for one, am extremely happy that this farcical farewell tour is over with, and that I never have to see Kobe Bryant play on live television ever again.

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Unfortunately, I feel there is a good chance that this also the last season we’ll ever get to see Kevin Garnett, Tim Duncan, Vince Carter, and Paul Pierce play meaningful games as well. I’m just happy they didn’t announce their intentions before the season was over also. It would have been an overload of goodbyes. I have to give Kobe credit though for him scoring 60 and leading the Lakers to an end of the season win. It does make for a good story, and I’m halfway sorry that I did not watch it as it unfolded. But then I think about it, and it makes me feel like the Jazz are some busters–proving to me they didn’t deserve to be in the playoffs anyway, if they can lose like they did last night.

 

PLAYOFFS!!!!!!!

First Round Matchups

 

West

Houston vs. Golden State
Man the Rockets were terrible this year and they managed to suck the joy out of basketball. Warriors in four
Dallas vs. Oklahoma City
I can see Dallas stealing one, maybe even two games out of this series. Give me OKC in 6
Memphis vs. San Antonio
You have to give credit to Dave Joerger and the Grizzlebees for hanging in their after losing Marc Gasol and Mike Conley, but they are just chum in the water. Spurs in 4
Portland vs. Clippers 
This will be the most entertaining matchup of the first round and will certainly have 2-3 “Good Ass Games” before Portland knocks them out in 7.

East

Miami vs. Charlotte
Best games in the east this round.
Detroit vs. Cleveland
I’m happy for Detroit basketball, but it should not take the Cavs more than 5 games to beat Detroit.
Indiana vs. Toronto
This series is going to ride the fine line of being competitive and downright ugly basketball. This sounds crazy but I’m going to take the naptown boys in 7.
Boston vs Atlanta
Will Boston become Al Horford’s next stop? The Celtics will have a two-week recruiting period to give him their pitch. Boston in 7.
Enjoy the first round because it’ll be over before you know it.
Peace,
BM

Stretch Run

We are pretty much in the 4th quarter of the NBA regular season. After losing to the LOL Lakers, the Warriors need to go 18-3 to pass the 95-96 Bulls for the best of all time. If any team is going to beat them 4 times in 7 games, they will have to take advantage of them on the offensive boards where they rank 27th in opponents offensive rebounds (OKC outrebounded them by 30 two weekends ago).

They also turn the ball over a lot. With all that being said, it takes a perfect game to even come close to beating the Warriors for one game. Of course, with all championships, teams have to be good and lucky as well. The Dubs are nicked up, let’s see if this plays a factor in how they finish the regular season.

The Spurs are only 2.5 games back of the Dubs with a 53-9 record–and guess what? They have Kevin Martin and Andre Miller added to their bench now. Come playoff time, they will be well rested.

It was a really rough week for the Thunder. Yet for all the doom and gloom coming the way of Oklahoma, the Thunder are 3rd in the west with a 43-20 record. If they finish .500 for the rest of the season, they will still have 50 wins this year. That is not bad at all for a team with 2 superstars and a bunch of scrubs. T

You could say the same thing about the Clippers who have not missed a beat without Beige Blake Griffin. The one glaring *ahem* to the previous statement is that they are only  15-14 against .500 teams and have only 3 wins all year against .600 teams. This just screams pretender to me. But they were suspect even with Blake.

Memphis is trending down despite their 7-3 record over the past 10 games. They just don’t have a way to get easy buckets. Everything is a grind for them. If Mike Conley were playing in the east (and why aren’t they?), he’d be an all-star point guard.

Dallas is just as pesky as ever. I love the addition of David Lee, but they are still a little thin in their frontcourt to make any noise in the playoffs. Mavs (dads) fans should be happy for what many (not me) expected to be a possible lottery season. I think they could take the Thunder to 6 games in the first round if the standings continue to be this way. I’d much rather see them grab that fifth spot and give the world a Clippers/Mavericks first round series.

My boy Knapp is super paranoid about all the love the Trailblazers are getting. The problem they will encounter if they make the playoffs, is that teams will find a way to take away your best options. CJ and Dame won’t be enough to push them into the 2nd round. They’ll need another certified weapon down the road if they wanna go deep into April next season. I think David Lee looks good in Maverick green, but if I’m a Blazer’s fan, I’m not sure I would not thumb my nose up at a 6’7 lefty forward who can get you some easy buckets.

The Rockets are pathetic. I’m going on record now and rooting that Mizzou Quinn can coach the SLC’s into that 8th spot. They at least like basketball. Rockets players just wanna get paid. #cashbeforefame

The Clevelandiers are still a second tier team, but you would be a fool to bet against Lebron in a 7 game series over in the east.

How about that Raptors game on Friday huh? Guess what? I still haven’t watched it yet. We just got internet at my house as of 20 minutes ago. I think the Raptors can give Cleveland a run for their money. Had they one more big man, I’d say they’d have a chance to upend the Cavs for the east title.

The Celtics are standing strong at the third spot. It is an understatement to say they are outpacing their initial expectations. They are one major piece away from being Finals contenders. C’s fans will be happy if they just make the second round this year. Like I said last week, a Hornets-Celtics first round would be a good ass series.

Would anyone outside of Miami and Atlanta be checking for a Heat-Hawks series? This has NBATV written all over it for April.

I would definitely mess with a Raptors-Pacers first round. Pacers are gritty, and I’ll take Frank Vogel, Paul George and Monta Ellis against anyone in the east. Though I have to say, I’m not sure about the Ty Lawson signing. Too many players get into trouble in citiess like Indianapolis and Cincinnati because there is nothing to do except hit the strip clubs and drink. Managment as a precaution, needs to make sure Lawson has Uber on his phone, and never let him drive for the rest of the season.

Will someone please put the Bulls out of their misery? Please? I’m tired of seeing them get beat by Lebron. Let the Pistons have a crack at em. The NBA needs a new narrative. Go to the lottery, trade Derek Rose, and build the team around Jimmy Buckets.

This week will be a slew of good ass games. Conference tournaments for the Power Five, and if I were a betting man, I’d lay money on the Pac-12 being the most entertaining of all the major tourneys. Any combination of  Cal, Oregon, Washington, Arizona,and even UCLA will be worth staying up for.

The Big 12 is the runner up for Good Ass Conference Tourney of the year. Kansas has already locked their 12th consecutive regular season title. I wouldn’t be surprised if Bill extends the bench a bit and let some players get loose for the Big Dance. Barring a major collapse they pretty much have a number 1 seed locked up. This is the most realistically confident I have felt about a Jayhawks team in years, which means they’ll get uset by Richmond in the first round. I wouldn’t leave a dollar bill anywhere near a tournament bracket this year. The field this year is more wide open than……….. well you get the picture.

Have a great week. The Good Ass Games are in bold below:

Peace,

BM

@clickpicka79

#thisagoodassgame #fullsass

thisagoodassgame@gmail.com

 

 

Monday

 

Los Angeles Clippers-Dallas

San Antonio-Indiana

Orlando-Golden State

 

“Tap That Vein Tuesday”

 

San Antonio-Minnesota

Washington-Portland

 

Wednesday

 

Los Angeles Clippers-Oklahoma City

Detroit-Dallas

Utah-Golden State

Cleveland-Sacramento

 

Thursday

 

Atlanta-Toronto

Chicago-San Antonio

 

Friday

 

Detroit-Charlotte

Portland-Golden State

Orlando-Sacramento

 

Saturday

 

Oklahoma City-San Antonio (Good Ass Game of the Week)

Orlando-Portland

Miami-Toronto

 

Sunday

Cleveland-Los Angeles Clippers

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ready? Break!!!!

920x920

 

I apologize for letting you down hoop heads. I took the weekend off to record a new episode of Fullsass, and decided to post today rather than Monday or Tuesday, since there were no slated NBA games until Thursday. There were some college contests the last couple of nights, but not what I would call good ass games (though Iowa State and Baylor was about as good as a college game could get).

Before get into this week’s good ass games, I just want to go on record and say Aaron Gordon got robbed. No disrespect to Zach LaVine–his dunks were on point, but saying Aaron Gordon’s dunks were on the same level as LaVine’s, discredits the difficulty and creativity that went into Gordon’s display. When Gordon dunked over that mascot on the hoverboard, he should have gotten straight 15’s. You be the judge.

As for the game itself, well its weird to say this, but watching three straight alley-oops thrown off the backboard can get a little…..tiresome?? All Star games sometimes play out like BET hip hop cyphers, huge and overblown, vulgar, repetitive and sloppy, but also kind of exciting at times.

I watched the first half with some friends, and no one argued against doing something else for the second half of the game. As much as I like Toronto, there is no way in hell I’d want to be up there this time of the year. It looked like everyone enjoyed themselves, and thanks to a longer break, I was able to recover from my long weekend.

I spent a lot of time thinking about this upcoming deadline. There are some role players around the league that could have a serious impact on the few contenders. Jeff Teague, Joe Johnson, P.J. Tucker, and Markieff Morris could really make a difference down the stretch if they go to the right team.

Outside of OKC, Golden State, Cleveland, and San Antonio, there aren’t any other teams who can realistically win it this year. Unless the players moved are game changers, it seems like it would be best to stand pat on any major moves (though I would love to see a Blake Griffin for Carmelo Anthony).

I plan to watch more games this second half (Although I’m certainly getting my money’s worth on League Pass); in particularly Utah, Portland, Boston, Toronto, and Denver. These teams are certainly better this year, and could make some noise in the years to come.

Now that all that is out of the way, let’s get to these good ass games:

 

 

Monday

Nada Wey.

 

 

Tuesday

Texas 85 West Virginia 78

Baylor 100 Iowa State 91

Don’t be disappointed if you missed these games. You can re-watch them on ESPN if you are really jonesing. I’ve watched about 5 full college games and only 1 of them lived up to the hype. That being said……..

 

Wednesday

Duke-North Carolina (Good Ass Game of the Week)

This is worth watching for the atmosphere alone. The first of this 2 game series is in Chapel Hill, and I have a feeling this will be as good as the time Austin Rivers hit that shot at the buzzer to upset the Tarheels. Plus, its Michael Jordan’s birthday. michael-jordan-sam-perkins2

 

 

Thursday

 

Los Angeles Clippers vs. San Antonio

Spurs still on the road. Clippers still without Blake.

By the way,  “Verse of the Year” so far goes to Kendrick Lamar on “No more parties in L.A.” He and Kanye did justice to that beat. #MURDEREDIT

 

 

Friday

 

 

Golden State- Portland

This may be a blowout, but you know C.J. and Dame will come with it. 2 years from now, if things continue to go well for both teams, this could be the Western Conference Finals.

 

 

 

Saturday

 

Milwaukee-Atlanta

New York-Minnesota Rising Stars Game Part Duex.

Los Angeles Clippers-Golden State 

This would be the “Good Ass Game of the Week” if Blake were healthy. Clippers may be able to hang with the Dubs for 3 quarters before it gets busted open.

 

 

Sunday

 

Utah vs. Portland

I think I would have a lot more respect for the Utah franchise changed their name. How many times have you heard people say, “There’s no jazz in Utah.”? Please! Send the name back to New Orleans (The Pelicans name may be exhibit #1 in Tom Benson’s capacity dispute case) and take on a more apt nickname. The Utah snowboarders, the Salt Lake City Punk with Matthew Lillard as an ambassador, or maybe even the Utah Squares…….Bring the Jazz back to New Orleans!

 

Cleveland vs. Oklahoma City

I’m curious what is going to happen between now and Sunday. Both teams need to bolster their bench. Otherwise,this game will only be as good as the role players’ contribution.

 

black-mamba

 

The Kobe countdown has officially begun. This is the last half of his final year. Enjoy it you Black Mamba sycophants. It’s about to be over. I wonder if he’ll be an analyst, and work with one of the major networks. I can imagine what that first year of retirement will be like. Can you imagine being a house guest at his spot and waking up with Kobe standing over you at 3:45 in the morning?

Kobe: “Sup dawg? You tryna hit these weights with me? There’s this 16 year old who wants to work out at UCLA.”

Friend: “Man we just went to bed 3 hours ago.”

Kobe: “C’mon bro. We gotta beat this traffic. After we get through working out. We’ll pick up the girls and go get some pizza.”

Friend: “Pizza Buona?”

Kobe: [laughs] “Nah man. We gotta fly out to Italy actually. It’ll be dope. On the way there we gotta stop in Germany to get my knee drained. C’mon dawg. We’ll only be gone for a few days.”

Friend: [sighs] “Fine. I’m getting up.”

Kobe: “Good. Bring your winter jacket too. I booked us a rock climbing lesson for when we hit Iceland on the way back.”

Dude has no chill.

 

It will be an interesting week full of good ass games. Enjoy the trading deadline. Hopefully some stuff pops off.

 

Peace,

BM

#thisagoodassgame #fullsass

@clickpicka79

YAY AREA!!!!

It was a festive weekend out in the Bay Area. The Super Bowl was in San Jose, and all the celebs and big time ballers were in town to take it in. When you’re rolling in dough it makes sense to peep the “Good Ass Game of the Week.”

Just because a game is close doesn’t mean it was a “Good Ass Game.” The “Roaracle” was strangely silent Saturday night, and it took me half the game to figure out why. I was thinking the game would be ridiculously hype, but then I realized that a lot of the real fans got priced out. The average ticket price online for Warriors-Thunder was $1400 bones (rumor was that it was easier getting into the Super Bowl).

With Drake, Bey-Z, K-Dot, Pharrell, and Wallace from “The Wire” in attendance, the game took on the feel of an event than a regular season game (Beyonce dropping her new video and tour announcement only added to the hysteria). I have a friend who went to both games (I’m giving him some time to cool off because he is a Panther’s fan), and he said it felt like he was at the Staples Center Arena. It was weird for sure, because I’m not used to it being so quiet there. Someone on twitter said it was only a preview of what games will be like when they move across the bridge.  God I hope not.

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The game itself was decent. A lot of people are ready to say the Thunder can run with the Warriors. I’m not one of those people. Its weird to say this, because Steph Curry almost had a triple-double, but the Warriors backcourt struggled a bit; offensively. Curry missed 16 shots, and he and Klay Thompson were a combined 2-15 from the 3 point line.

I’m not saying that the Thunder can’t get lucky and win one or two games in a seven game series, but it is laughable to come away from that game with any sense of a moral victory.

By the way, I find the fake indignation coming out of the Thunder locker room laughable. The Thunder have casually become of the more busterish teams in the NBA. When I hear Durant and Westbrook say things like, “We’re not scared of the Spurs or the Warriors” I just shake my head. No one expects NBA players to be intimidated by anyone else’s team  in the league, but can we just at least be honest?

Admitting there are some fundamental problems in the way your team plays isn’t being weak–it’s just being real. How can you say stuff like that with a straight face, when your bench was outscored 42-17? The Thunder can go into the next game against the Warriors with that same attitude,but the next time Dion Waiters is the leader in +/- ratio with a +1 rating , the result will probably be a blowout.

This week’s slate of games:

 

Monday

 

Sacramento-Cleveland

Tonight’s pick to click in the NBA. Besides the various in game matchups between Rondo and Kyrie, Boogie and anybody Cleveland throws out there, this game becomes even more intriguing because this may be George Karl’s last as the Sacramento head coach. By week’s end, Karl could be joining Jeff Hornacek, David Blatt, and as of today, Derek Fisher on the unemployment line. The Kings are a bit messy right now.

OU-Texas (Good ass game of the week)

I think this will be the hypest game of the week from a crowd standpoint. Oklahomans have a lot of panhandle envy, and the only reason they are relevant in sports is beacuse they get all the Texas players not good enough to stay in state. This (for good reason) creates a lot of resentment. I can’t tell you how many Okies hate Texas and Texas teams (outside of the Cowboys–they love the ‘Boys) but have spent little time in the Lone Star State . Most Texans barely bat an eye at this.

The dismissive attitudes that Texans have towards Oklahoma only adds to the resentment. Having lived in both states for a number of years, I can honestly say that Wacklahoma is only vaguely different from Texas. Texas is only better because it is bigger and has more money. They are almost the  same place politically, and if you took away Austin, then Texas would really suck. I’d still take San Marcos and Denton over any college town in Oklahoma though. OU sucks, and you won’t catch me going to Stillwater after the sun goes down. #Hookem

 

Tuesday

 

San Antonio-Miami

The beginning of the Rodeo trip for the Spurs. Usually this 8 or 9 road game swing is indicative of what kind of team San Antonio has. No Timmy. No Manu (poor guy) for at least a month, and Tony Parker is looking his age. The young guns are going to have step up if the Spurs are going to make the Western Conference Finals.

 

Warriors-Rockets

I don’t know how the Warriors even take these guys seriously. You know a team is busterish when their own fans don’t defend their players. They know what it is (right Phil?).

 

Wednesday

 

 

Charlotte-Indiana

Mildly competitive, this will be one of the best Eastern Conference games you will watch this week.

 

San Antonio-Orlando

This could be one of those L’s that Pops penciled in on the calendar. The good news is that Boban may get some serious run that night.

Toronto-Minnesota

This will be the Rookie-Sophomore and Slam Dunk Contest all rolled up into one game. Also, I didn’t realize that Kyle Lowry has been in the league so long. It must be that baby face of his.

Los Angeles (Clippers) -Boston

Get that shit out!!!!” Celtics might fuck around and get a #2 or #3 seed in the East.

Golden State-Phoenix

Its a long season and you gotta take things one blowout at a time.

Houston-Portland

Man, Portland has been a lot more entertaining to watch than I gave them credit for. It is a slippery slope with west coast basketball. One day you’re staying up later than normal to watch C.J. and Dame get buckets, then before you know it you’re dropping all your  plans to watch Oregon and Washington fight it out for the Pac10 Pac12 title.

 

 

“Tap that vein Thursday”

 

 

Thunder-Pelicans

I don’t even think I can stomach this one. I’d like to talk you into it, but as your attorney I advise you to use this as a catch up evening.

 

All Star Weekend

Refer to last week’s post if you are on the fence about this weekend’s activities. I’ll be taking the weekend off from watching basketball in order to catch up with old friends. I suggest you do the same. I’d rather play a pickup game than watch one.

 

Buster (s) of the Week Award goes to the Carolina Panthers offense. Wow. They really spit the bit. Not to take anything away from the Denver Broncos defense–they were animals– but how can you not make any adjustments to get Cam out of the pocket?

The amount of mental errors they made in the biggest game of their lives, was unfortunate. Fumbles, false starts, drops, interceptions, and sacks will do any team in, but this was the wrong time to do that. The last game of the season is supposed to be your best game.

As John Wooden says, “being at your best when your best is needed” is part of being a champion. Too bad. The Panthers’ players will feel nothing but regret when they think about this season, and know they were better than the Broncos–who did just enough on offense to help that savage D. They had a great defensive game plan. On offense, they were meh (Carolina’sD played well.Special teams–not so much).

Honorable mention still goes to Pete Carroll who didn’t give the ball to Beast Mode in last year’s Super Bowl, and now Marshawn Lynch is retiring. Ya’ll some bitches too Seahawks. Don’t think I forgot about ya’ll because the Panther’s played like some busters in a weak ass Super Bowl. That game ending interception was Wackarnold’s for real. Anyway, have a good week, and enjoy the All Star break. If you fumble the ball in life, at least try to get it back. Don’t just stare at your mistakes like you are stuck on stupid.

 

Peace,

BM

thisagoodassgame@gmail.com

@clickpicka79

#thisagoodassgame #fullsass

 

 

 

F#@$in’ up

david20blatt

I can’t say I’m shocked that the Cleveland Cavaliers fired their coach midway through the season–a season where they only had eleven losses and are almost assured to come out of the Eastern Conference, but I am a bit surprised. I foresaw a panic move after last a loss to the Spurs, and a Warriors beat down on MLK day, but I thought that would involve a trade.

Blatt’s regular season record makes him the coach with the highest winning percentage to ever get canned in the middle of a season. The front office couldn’t even wait until All-Star weekend to quietly make a move. They wanted this guy out immediately.

Don’t get me wrong, I never thought Blatt was the guy for the job. I was shocked to see him return after all the sneak dissing thrown his way last year. So it makes me wonder what changed between June of last year (after they got that ass whupped in the Finals) and Friday.

This move reeks of desperation and dysfunction. It’s just such a “Clevelandish” thing to do. Unless you plan on suiting up Tyronn Lue as a player-coach (something I certainly don’t wanna see, I don’t see how this is going to help the team right now.

Is it David Blatt’s fault that the front office has whiffed on every lottery pick not Kyrie Irving? It isn’t a stretch of the imagination to say that Cleveland could easily throw out a crunch time lineup of Andrew Wiggins, Victor Oladipo, Tristan Thompson, Lebron James, and Kyrie Irving.

The Anthony Bennett pick over Oladipo was a major setback, and I’m not sure Kevin Love isn’t a “good stats,bad team” kind of player (a theory espoused years ago by the great Charley Rosen). The Cavs just don’t have the horses right now to keep up with the Spurs and Warriors. Phil Jackson could be coaching that team and they’d still get beat in the Finals.

As for Blatt, kudos to him for making the best out of a bad situation. He may be getting off lucky. No one should have to coach on a team where the superstar undermines your authority, and the front office won’t give you any support. In all honesty, Blatt seemed a bit overwhelmed anyway.

The good news is that he got the opportunity to get the hell out of Ohio. The best things to come out of that state are Raymond Bradbury, Bone Thugs N’ Harmony, and Ken Griffey Jr. Some sports cities just don’t deserve championships, and Cleveland may be one of those cities.

None of the major franchises there can keep a coach for longer than a season or two, they fire people before they have a chance to get a foothold on the team. That kind of impatience is a recipe for basement dwelling in any sport. But judging from the way the city’s infrastructure is run, this can’t be too surprising. This city is getting exactly what it deserves. I can’t wait to see their crying fans at yet another Finals loss in June. #$%# em!!!

 

This week’s Slate of Games:

 

 

Monday

 

Golden State-San Antonio (Good Ass Game of the Week) 

No Timmy D. No problem. But damn it if it doesn’t take a little bit of luster off the matchup. You can’t replace Duncan’s presence on the court, no matter how deep the Spurs frontcourt is right now. I doubt there will be a Boban sighting tonight, but then again you never know. Speaking of Boban–you figure he’d be the first choice if there was ever a Princess Bride redux right?

boban-crate

Geezus those shorts are scary! Alright moving on.

Tuesday

 

Oklahoma City-New York

Thunder players have 2 nights off in New York before this matchup. That is a lot of time to get into some stuff. Its always fun to watch KD come to New York, but now that the Knicks have Godzingis to complement their decent lineup, the Knickerbockers are suddenly watchable.

Los Angeles Clippers-Indiana 

Even without Josh Smith, this team still has too many busters in their locker room. Maybe they should try and trade Lance Stephenson to Brooklyn. that may be the only team crazy enough to take on that contract.

Sacramento-Portland

Speaking of crazy, the “Boogie Down Productions” crew in Sactown snuck up in that eigth spot. Cousins has 7 games of 30 plus points, 10 rebounds  this month. No one else in the NBA has more than one in January (thanks to my boy Phillip for hippin’ me to that stat).

This battle of Rondo vs. Lillard will be a fun one. I will certainly be all curled up in bed watching this one.

 

Wednesday

 

Los Angeles Clippers-Atliens

If you are really jonesing.

Houston-San Antonio

As if Houston weren’t busterish enough………that being said, they’ve been winning of late. Who was that one guy who said don’t overreact to the early trend of the East playing better than the West? Some blogger–I hear he moonlights as a teacher or something like that? I hope he doesn’t dislocate his shoulder patting himself on the back for pointing out something so obvious.

Dallas-Golden State

Speaking of misplaced self-fellatio, the Mavericks are low-key trending downwards. They have beaten a few decent teams. I think I placed them appropriately as a middle tier team in last month’s power rankings. The bottom may fall out real quick in a couple of years once Dirk retires.

“Tap that Vein” Thursday

 

New York-Toronto

The Raptors right now are more entertaining off the court than they are on it.

 

 

Friday

 

Cleveland-Detroit

I think Van Gundy’s boys could push Cleveland to a six game series if they met in the playoffs.

Charlotte-Portland

Kemba vs. “Good Ass game” Dame. Lillard is the hottest player this month not named Demarcus.

Houston-Oklahoma City

You will need to take a shower after this game. This is like “Buster Brown All NBA Buster” showcase. If this were a real showcase, it would probably be

Josh Smith, J.R. Smith, Dion Waiters, and Nick Young vs. Austin Rivers, DeAndre Jordan, James Harden, and Evan Turner. They could run 4’s at the Staples Center with pickup ball rules. You wouldn’t be able to give tickets away to this game.

Saturday

 

San Antonio-Cleveland 

All six of the Spurs losses have been on the road. I could see them dropping tonight’s game and not even starting the major players for this rematch against Cleveland.

Kansas vs. Kentucky 6pm

Allen Fieldhouse will be rocking. People don’t know that John Calipari had a brief stint in Lawrence working for Larry Brown. I hope the score gets up into the upper 80’s. #loweredexpectations

Sunday

 

Golden State-New York

Knicks may hang an L on the DUbs this week. By the way, The warriors play the Spurs and Thunder a combined 7 times the rest of the season. I can see them losing 2–maybe even 3 games. It will be difficult getting that 74th win. I don’t even know if its worth it really. If they have to go through Thunder and Spurs on the way to the Finals, then I’d rather my team be well rested. Just a thought.

Minnesota-Portland

Could be a fun way to spend bye week Sunday.

Chicago-Los Angeles Clippers

It is hard to write this with a straight face. I don’t even enjoy watching these two teams play– you know what. Don’t do it. THe highlights will be better than the game itself.

 

As for the Super Bowl, don’t bother watching if you are rooting for a Manning win, or you are a Cam Newton hater. You’re bound for a long evening of disappointment. It is going to be a lot of people mad this year, because Cam gonna dab on fools. That Denver offense will be worth at least 3 turnovers. You may as well watch the Super Bowl from a couple of years ago, because it will be a similar result.  But you never know, anything can happen. I wouldn’t put my money on the Broncos though, unless you like giving away money.

Cam Newton

Enjoy the games this week. Tonight’s has the potential to be as memorable of a regular season game as you will ever see.

 

Peace,

BM

@clickpicka79

#thisagoodassgame #fullsass

thisagoodassgame@gmail.com

 

 

 

(Separation)Tried to Told Ya’ll

Thursday’s Finals preview between the Cavaliers and Spurs gave us a glimpse into what we can expect in June (Next Monday will give us a glimpse into what we can expect during the Western Conference Finals if the Warriors and Spurs meet). I am convinced that there is no way that Lebron James woke up Friday morning and thought to himself,”We have the horses to beat San Antonio or Golden State in the Finals.”

Like most teams, the Cleveland  1-5 starting lineup can run with anyone. You can roll out Kyrie Irving, Kevin Love, Lebron James, and 2 role players against any team, and 9 times out of 10 will result in a W.

What the average fan doesn’t realize is that championships are won with players 4 through 9. Once teams are deep into the playoffs, the 1-3 matchups are more often than not nuetralized by the other team’s superstars.

This will be Cleveland’s fatal flaw if they run out the same role players for the NBA Finals. Matthew Dellavedova is a decent player, but his deficiencies get exposed if he is on the court for longer than 15-20 minutes a game.

If this were 2002, I’d be impressed with Richard Jefferson coming off the bench for the Cavs. I’m not sure if Timofey Mosgov is hurt or not, but he hasn’t been playing all that well either. He’s only averaging 4 rebounds in 15 minutes, the last 10 games he has played.

The Cavs frontcourt thins out after Lebron and Tristan Thompson, and Kevin Love looked like a major defensive liability the other night against the Spurs.  If the Cavs are serious about winning in June, they will need to make a deal or two during February.

It was a good week for Los Spurs however; their home winning streak is still intact. They are also on a 10 game tear after smashing on the Mavericks last night.

If anyone is equipped to knock off the defending champs, it is San Antonio. They are deep in the back court, their front court has David West coming off the bench (who by the way really changed the game once he came onto the court against Cleveland on Thursday. I’m a huge fan of West).

Never forget the ever refined Boris Diaw on the second unit. Not only does he rebound, pass well, and can score anytime he wants, but the man keeps an expresso machine in his locker. Jordan made people want to be better ballplayers. Diaw makes me want to be a better man. He is like the Gordon Parks of hoops.

I understimated how good the backcourt for the Spurs would play. They are deep and at times long. Jonathan Simmons and Kyle Anderson complement Patty Mills quite well on the wings.

And of course, my pick for this season’s MVP, Kawi Leonard played a spectacular 2nd half against Lebron on Thursday. James still put up his stats, but he had to put in some serious work to get 22 points. Kawhi is the only player I can think of who can hold Lebron under 30 semi-consistently.

The Spurs are lucky to have such depth, to the point wherre Tim Duncan and Lamarcus Aldridge don’t have to get 20 and 10 every night for a win. Having that kind of depth lends to a well rested team come playoffs. A lot can happen between now and then, but I’m hoping for everyone’s sake that all of the elite teams have their superstars when the big money games begin.

To be continued.

This Week’s Good Ass Games:

 

 

Monday (Good Ass Game of the Week)

 

Golden State-Cleveland

This will be a good test for the Warriors, who to me, seem a little bored the last couple of weeks. Ever since they lost their first game, the aura of invinciblity around them has popped. They are like Super Mario after he loses his invincibility star. I doubt this will be as bad as the Christmas game.

 

 

“Tap That Vein” Tuesday

 

Oklahoma City-Denver

I watched my first Denver Nuggets game of the year last night, and somehow forgot that Mark Malone was their coach. They play an entertaining brand of ball. Despite playing in hoops obscurity, Kenneth Faried is still bodying dudes. Will Barton had some highlight worthy plays last night against the Pacers.

Malone seems to bringing along the youngster Mudiay, and Randy Foye hit a couple of timely shots. They may get murked by the Thunder, but I think this will be a better game than Milwaukee against Miami.

Speaking of Oklahoma City, I finally got to see them in person this year. Russell Westbrook got ejected in the 2nd quarter, but it didn’t matter. The Mavericks sat all five of their starters. The Mavs are a pretty thin team this year, especially in the front court, and they got drubbed.

Dion Waiters was feeling himself too, slicing to the rim during garbage time and post dunk posing for the crowd. The problem with that he did this during a live ball, which led to a 5 on 4 fast break, and someone had to foul to stop the ball.

Then about a minute later, this joker starts making snow angels on the court after getting fouled for an “And 1”. Dion Waiters strikes me as the type of dude who habitually leaves a woman hanging because he “got his.”  I mean, look at this cat.

 

the-cleveland-cavaliers-shocked-everyone-by-taking-dion-waiters-4th-overall-in-the-nba-draft

Good luck leaving your woman alone at the table if this guy is in the restaurant.

 

 

 

Wednesday

 

 

Golden State-Chicago

This will be some high level basketball. Golden State will either be licking their wounds after that Detroit loss and tear into the Bulls, or they will ride their momentum into tearing into the Bulls. I don’t care how many points Jimmy Buckets gets in a game (53 to be exact), I can’t bring myself to watch the 76ers.

Atlanta-Portland

Two teams I haven’t had a chance to watch enough. I may have to make time to peep. Lillard is balling right now. By the time you read this, he may be the conference player of the week.

Charlotte-Oklahoma City

Kemba vs. Russ. L.A. vs. New York. I expect this to be a decent run just from this matchup alone. I think it will at least be entertaining even if it isn’t close.

Minnesota-Dallas

This will be a fun one to watch, but it bums me out watching the Timberwolves. Like most young teams, they keep finding ways to lose. I’m still not convinced Zach Lavine is their third dude. There is a guy on my rec team who went to UCLA during the Lavine, Shabazz, Jordan Adams, Kyle Anderson era.

When he told me that Lavine is an extraordinarily nice guy, I initially winced. I almost felt bad talking shit about him until I realized that I didn’t say anything over the line. It isn’t like I said I wanted to punch the dude in the face. I just want to see him pass more. Nothing personal.

 

 

Thursday

 

 

Clippers-Cavaliers

I have as much interest in this game as I had in watching the Steelers-Broncos yesterday. Kyrie vs. Chris Paul is a very seductive matchup though. I’d rather just watch highlights. Too much whining, and too many fouls, and too many scrubs at the end of the bench.

Atlanta-Sacramento

Even if the Kings landed the number 1 pick, I’m not sure they would do the right thing with it. I’d rather see them get knocked out in the playoffs than Utah. Who doesn’t want to see Boogie and Rondo in the first round? It would be a fun and new narrative no?

 

Friday

 

Indiana-Golden State

A good week to watch the Warriors. They’ll have to be attentive this week, because they could easily take a couple of L’s if they try going half sass on this road trip.

Oklahoma City-Dallas

I love me some J.J. Barea. Dude is fiery, and he refuses to get pushed around. At 5’8, I figured he was kind of a novelty act–basically a Puerto Rican Mugsy Bogues, but homey can ball. I love that he didn’t back down from Russell Westbrook’s horsehshit. Off the Court, Russ is closer to Kirk Cameron than he is Cam’ron. #faketoughguys

russell-westbrook-shirt

Los Angeles Clippers-Knicks

Don’t sleep on the Knicks. This will be a physical game. I hope it gets chippy.

 

Charlotte-Orlando

Kemba vs. Elfrid? I’ll take it.

 

 

Saturday

 

Chicago-Cleveland

You’ll get plenty of this matchup during the playoffs. If you have to choose between Friday and Saturday as your “date night”  I would advise you to go out Saturday.

 

 

Sunday

 

Dallas-Houston

Ugh. Poor Rockets fans. Making the playoffs is “Fool’s Gold.” Blow the team up. Just start over. Your window has closed.

Los Angeles Clippers-Toronto

Meh.

 

Enjoy your what is left of your holiday weekend. Championship weekend will be worth tuning into as well. Have fun this week.

 

Peace,

BM

#fullsass   #thisagoodassgame

thisagoodassgame@gmail.com

@clickpicka79