2016-2017 Season Preview: Top 26 Storylines Part One

[This preview also appears as a post on fullsass.com. What does Fullsass mean? Well check it out for yourself.] 

All Illustrations by Louis Eastman

We are only a few days away from the beginning of training camp, time to dust off the cobwebs and fire it back up. Although the biggest story of the off-season was the Kevin Durant free agency, there are plenty of other story lines to follow this year. I’ve listed (from A-Z ) the ones that I find the most compelling for the 2016-2017 season.

Amin Elhassan fullsizerender-4

ESPN’s most merciless twitter troll is a must follow this season.

Amin is great not only for his tendency to roast any unlucky soul stupid enough to tweet some dumb shit, but also for his great insight into how things operate behind the NBA scenes. Having worked in both the Knicks and Suns front office before his stop at ESPN, Elhassan is a wealth of insider knowledge.

What I love most about him is that he does not hold back in any of his funny–but often wickedly straight forward analysis. His creation of the #Pitino game is one the more underappreciated social media phenomenons you’ll experience during playoff elimination games. #Pitino game is just as a part of the playoff pageantry as TNT’s Gone Fishing segments, but more interactive and way more clever. 

Buddy Hield

fullsizerender-2

Back in 2015 he simply slid into place. Buddy Buddy Buddy All up in my face.

Is Buddy Hield the Real Deal Holyfield? Inquiring minds want to know. It is a little too early to anoint him as the sidekick to Anthony Davis, but if Hield shoots as well as his reputation suggests, then this could be a good working relationship for the two. Hield wasn’t exactly a defensive stopper in college, but that hasn’t kept James Harden from receiving tons of (mostly deserved) accolades. He could be a nice small ball option for Pelican’s coach, Alvin Gentry, who is looking at a very thin back court-especially with Jrue Holiday absent from the team for personal reasons. 

Celtics Are Legit Contenders

Had the C’s managed to get Horford and Durant this off-season, you could have  penciled them in for the NBA Finals (and I doubt anyone one would have argued with you). As it stands, they only have two reliable scorers, Isiah Thomas and Horford (who has never averaged a 20 and 10 at any point in his career). Isiah Thomas is great at getting his own shot, but he isn’t much of a distributor.

Avery Bradley is an all NBA defender, but anything he gives you on offense is considered icing on the cake (Bruce Bowen 2.0?), and their outside shooting is too reliant upon Kelly Olynk shooting a high percentage. I think they are still two really good players away, or one superstar and a role player (probably a backup pg) away from being in the conversation to knock off the Lebrons for the Eastern Conference crown.

Draymond Green

image1-1

Steph Curry may be the league MVP, but I think the team MVP for the Golden State Warriors is Draymond Green. Klay Thompson, Curry, and Green are all irreplaceable, but the intangibles that Dray provide for that team are immeasurable. The league’s decision to suspend him changed the course of that series, as the Warriors were dead in the water after game 5. Regardless, had Dray kept his head, the hometown of Jive Ass Don King would still be without a title today. 

Had we laid money on “Finals player most likely to send pictures of their ding-dong to all their Snapchat followers”, most people would have place their bets on J.R. Smith. I think the public opinion of Draymond Green will be cemented for the rest of his career, according to how he performs both on and off the court this season. The Warriors need his fire, but he has to learn to harness it if they are going to get back to the Finals.

Everybody Eats This Season 

The NBA has never been a better league to play in. Owners are making money hand over fist. The league just signed a lucrative television deal that allows even scrubs *ahem* players like Matthew Dellavedova to cash in a meal ticket. Allen Crabbe made 70 million to stay in Portland.

The Grizzlies’ Mike Conley leveraged his way into a 153 million dollar contract and for a couple of months, was the highest paid player in league history. This year’s 90 million dollar salary cap is only going to get larger (reportedly $118 million next season), so dudes are about to get paid. Now that everybody is eating, let’s start taking bets on who will eat themselves out of the league.

Finals Rematch (Again)

We can just stop this right now huh? No need to even play the season out. Forget preseason. Let’s put it on simulation mode like NBA Live 95? Barring any major injuries, I don’t see how anyone out west beats Golden State, or anyone out east beating Lebron.

I’m looking forward to the rubber match between these two teams. Kevin Durant is going to be the deadliest 4th option you’ve ever seen in the NBA Finals. The running thread all season will be “If Lebron beats the GSW super team will he be the greatest?” or “Will this championship validate KD’s career even though he joined a super team?” I personally don’t blame Durant or the Warriors for signing him. I bet it sucks losing to Lebron, but I bet it sucks even more losing to him after getting spotted a 3-1 series lead. This is the best reoccurring story line since Lakers vs.Celtics last decade. Stay tuned.

Giannis Antetokounmpo Playing The Point 

image1

I’m not saying the Bucks will be in the Eastern Conference Finals. I’m not saying that I think they will get back in the playoffs. I’m not even saying they will be fun to watch, but there will be at least 20 nights this season where Giannis does something to make Sportscenter top 10 highlights. 

Harrison Barnes: The 94 Million Dollar Man

I personally think Barnes will do well in Dallas. The city has a way of being a decent stop for exorbitantly rich black athletes (if they perform decently ). Of course, you have to wonder what is considered reasonable expectations for a contract like the one Barnes signed. For what it is worth Mavs fans, he will be a better investment than Roy Tarpley, Cherokee Parks, Erick Dampier and Shawn Bradley all put together. He can’t be any worse………right?

Iggy’s back  

fullsizerender-6

No I am not talking about the Nick Young’s ex fiancee’s booty (although it makes for an interesting google search #therabbithole). If Andre Iguodala is unhealthy, forget about the Warriors getting a chip for Kevin Durant. Iggy is one of their best defenders, and he was the guy who guarded both Durant and Lebron down the stretch of last year’s playoffs. By the time games 6 and 7 of the Finals came around, he was gassed (who is to say that a healthy Iggy doesn’t try and dunk the ball on that infamous Lebron chase down block?). 

Now that Durant is a teammate, there is no one in the west (outside of Kawhi Leonard) to push him defensively. Theoretically, he should be fresh for his Finals dance with Lebron. Then again, 30-year-old backs are more fickle than 23-year-old girlfriends. You never know how things will flare up from night to night. 

 

The 3 J’s (reboot)

My dude Joakim Noah is back in his hometown playing for the Knicks. No matter how he does on the floor, homie is going to be slaying it off the court. It is good to see Jeff Hornacek get another head coaching shot. He got a raw deal in Phoenix. Robert Sarver pulled the old bait and switch with Hornacek. The Suns front office didn’t bring back key players, but kept expecting the same results . It was unfair to everyone involved; Hornacek, the players, the fans, and League Pass subscribers who were unexpectedly treated to a near playoff run in 2014.

As for Phil, no one could figure out why the hell he hired Derek Fisher; but he corrected that mistake by firing D-Fish midway through the season. This is his third and most pivotal season as Knicks GM, because if they suck again this year, it will be tough to lure free agents to sign with the club next season. 

Are they going to make the playoffs? Maybe, if 40 wins is enough to get in the Eastern Conference playoffs. Courtney Lee was a good pickup, and Derrick Rose may be able to add some punch if he can find the basketball court, and stay out of the criminal court. Rose thinks they have a super team in New York, but kind of like the word consent,there may be some confusion as to what the definition of a super team is.

40 wins for this roster would be the equivalent of making the Finals. I’d play with them on NBA2K, because you don’t really need subs on a video game, but in real life, their bench is thin. Pencil them in for 30 wins.

Klay “ I’m Not Sacrificing Shit” Thompson

fullsizerender-3

I’ll fight anyone who says he isn’t the best 2 guard in the league. He may not be able to attack the rim like Demar Derozan (apparently the 46th best player in the NBA), but the man is the best defensive 2 guard; and his shot is wet. He is Ron Harper with a knock down J. Klay Thompson only benefits from the arrival of Kevin Durant.

TO BE CONTINUED:

 

BM

 

 profile pic b mick  Bobby Mickey is the alter ego of writer and poet Edward Austin Robertson. When he isn’t involved in some basketball related activity, actively looking for parties to deejay or venues to perform comedy, he can be found recording podcasts with Craig Stein at Fullsass Studios. Follow him on twitter @clickpicka79. For booking inquiries, send contact info to thisagoodassgame@gmail.com. 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

The Finish Line

Here we are at the finish line. If the season ended today, the first round would look like this:

Eastern Conference

Cleveland vs Indiana

Toronto vs. Detroit

Atlanta vs. Charlotte

Boston vs. Miami

Western Conference

Golden State vs. Utah (please Hoops Gods, for the love of everything sacred about basketball, don’t let the Rockets get in)

San Antonio vs. Dallas

Oklahoma City vs. Memphis

Los Angeles Clippers vs. Portland

Wednesday is the last day of the regular season. By Thursday the playoff matchups will be set, and by then it will be fairly easy to predict what the Finals matchup will look like. At this point, Golden State vs. Cleveland seems to be a forgone conclusion, but anything can happen in 2 months of playoff ball.

Spurs fans should pray that someone beats up, or knocks off the Warriors before a potential playoff meeting, because that is a really bad matchup for them. The length and athleticism on Golden State is just too much for San Antonio. Watching them play reminds me of the Mike Tyson-Lennox Lewis fight. Lewis was too fast, too strong, for the past his prime Tyson.

The Warriors have a far superior backcourt, and the slim advantages that the Spurs have in depth and coaching aren’t enough to overcome that mismatch (Not to mention that Harrison Barnes is a huge x factor to plan against, Barnes is about to get PAID).

Despite the postseason outcome becoming fairly apparent way early in the season, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed what this year brought. The Timberwolves were a nice little story despite the Flip Saunders tragedy. Karl Anthony Towns is going to be a force to reckon with, and Andrew Wiggins can be the Kobe to his Shaquille (but without the fight for Alpha dog status). The Spurs had a very fun and memorable season and despite what happens going forward, it will be remembered as a success.

There was a lot of goofy shit that happened off the court that isn’t worth getting into, but it did affect the on the court product for the Lakers, Clippers, Sixers, the Cavaliers, and the Kings. People who expected the Pelicans and Bucks to improve upon last year’s success were disappointed.  Hopefully next year will be just as exciting on the court, but with less off the court b.s. My wish list? Alright, twist my arm.

  1. Shabazz  Muhammad to the Mavericks. I think he and  Rick Carlisle would be good for each other.
  2. Tom Thibodeau to Sacramento. All I want in this life is to see Ben Mclemore and “Boogie Down” Cousins to play for a real coach.That Kings team was too talented to not make the playoffs this year. #dysfunctionjunction
  3. Kevin Durant to Golden State and Harrison Barnes to Portland. Aren’t you just a little curious? Despite what people think, I’m not sure KD is obsessed with getting his touches. I bet he’d be satisfied with an 11 for 15 line and a legitimate chance at a chip. For some reason I think Barnes with Damien Lillard and C.J. McCollum would be a great trio to build around. All you would need to do was add a rim protector and suddenly they are a contender.
  4. Thomas Robinson to the Spurs. T-Rob has not gotten a fair shake in this league yet. I think Gregg Popovich could use a guy like that. Imagine Dejuan Blair, but with knees.
  5. Shelvin Mack and Gordon Heyward to Boston. I know it is unrealistic, but I can’t be the only one fantasizing about them reuniting with Brad Stevens. The “Salt Lake City Punks” would be crazy to give up Heyward. It is in Utah’s contract to always have a white superstar for their franchise, and Heyward is that face. gordon-hayward-nba-utah-jazz-golden-state-warriors5

If at least one of these things occurs, I will consider the 2017 season a success.

I’m not sure how many of you have subscribed to Shea Serrano‘s Basketball and (Other Things) Newsletter, but I would recommend you peep game. Last week’s “Assault on Precinct 1” issue was easily one of the funniest things I have come across this year. It was so good that it inspired me to do an ESPN REMIX using the exact same premise. You can’t be the “World Wide Leader” without having snitches, police, double agents, and confessions. So according to the format provided by Serrano, just who on ESPN is police?

Are Skip Bayless and Stephen A. Smith police?  Typically in comic books, graphic novels, Edgar Allen Poe short stories, movies and television shows, the police are depicted as inept, bumbling and comical—“so dumb that they have to be told to come out of the rain” as an English professor once told me. Bayless and Smith, if they are cops, would be likened to the Smitty and Hoppy characters from Sanford and Son. Bayless and Smith are mostly on some harmless buffonery in ESPN’s attempt to get ratings. I guess it works. People watch them and let themselves worked up. Do they mislead people to get ratings? Do they take quotes out of context and run with them? Oh you betcha. Do they say things they really don’t believe just to stir up controversy? Absolutely. They are definitely the “Po-Po.”

Is Bill Simmons the police? You ever see those cop shows, where there is a detective who always thinks he is the smartest guy in the room? You know– the cop who does things according to his rules, they call them “rogue cops.” That is Simmons. Simmons thought he was Dirty Harry, but went out more like Officer McNulty from the Wire.  Simmons got wind of the corruption in City Hall and threatened to expose it. Tired of the office politics at his particular station, Simmons goes rogue once too many times, and gets shown his walking papers. The police chief, John Skipper said “Gimme your badge Simmons. You’re done here. Consider yourself retired, you can cash in your pension at the district offices.” Then Simmons was like ” Fuck this department. You know where you would be without me? You’d still be showing Roy Firestone interviews on ESPN2, on the 4pm time slot, if it weren’t for my brilliant police work.” Then on his way out, he slams the office door so hard that the glass shatters everywhere. Skipper’s personal assistant immediately tries using his stack of paperwork for a dustpan as Simmons walked past him, but Skipper tells him to just leave it. Simmons then waits outside the station for his Uber before the scene cuts to a commercial. So yes. Bill Simmons was once police. Now he is not. He’s more like a private detective now.

Is Dan Lebatard the police? Yes, but in the way that David Simon was police. Simply putting reporting crime in hopes of weaving together a tale that will someday get him a tv deal.

Is Zach Lowe the police? No. Even in a fictional world, Zach Lowe is a reporter who just wants to do good work and go home to his family. He is thorough, and methodical and enjoys his job. He is a man above the corruption and politics. He usually asks the right questions that hint at plot twists, and reveals. In a police movie, he would be the reporter who got himself kidnapped because he got a little too close to the truth.

Is Jason Whitlock police? HA! Have you seen Jason Whitlock? He wouldn’t be able to pass the physical exam. If he were police, he’d be an extra on a Police Academy remake. That being said, Jason Whitlock has a reputation of being a hater, and a suspected snitch.

Is Adam Schefter police? Man. What do you think? Is there anybody on that staff with more eyes and ears on the streets than Adam Schefter? Schefter is the kind of cop whose motto is you are only as good of police as your informants.” Hell yeah he police.

Other notable ESPN police:

Amin Elhassan- Yes. A dirty one. Officer Friendly from Master P’s “I’m Bout it” movie. He is every black cop you’ve ever seen (on tv or in real life) who is an asshole for no reason at all. That being said, a great twitter follow. The man is such a fantastic shit to everyone (to be fair he’s bombarded with tons of idiotic tweets) that it is impossible to take your eyes off his timeline, but it may be better just to avoid this guy altogether if you to. 

David Jacoby –Maybe he is, or maybe he isn’t. But anybody who claims to love hip hop and says they don’t know about Nelly’s “Tip Drill” video, is in my mind suspect. “Pleasssssse. Check him for a wire or an ear piece.”

Notable Non-Police:

Jalen Rose– Just that dude from the neighborhood who knows everything that is going down before it even happens. Homie is like Huggy Bear from the Starsky and Hutch series. He may work with police, but he ain’t police. Also check out his autobiography, “Got to Give the People What They Want.” It is a pretty entertaining read. I’ll be doing a book review on it later this week on the site.

5f6a7a0fc47ed54a4252a001a224b2ed

Bomani Jones– HELLLLLLLLLLL NO!

jones

 

Big ups to Shea Serrano, one of my favorite writers right now, who I hope isn’t offended that I borrowed his format and ran with it. As a hip hop fan (whose book I will be purchasing this week sometime), I hope he thinks of this as someone freestyling over a beat he made hot, as opposed to straight biting his style (Call me crazy, but I think we may be able to get him on the Full Sass Podcast someday).

Good Ass Games of the Week are posted below, and remember folks, “Be careful out there.”

 

Peace,

BM

#fullsass #thisagoodassgame

thisagoodassgame@gmail.com

 

Good Ass Games of The Week:

 

Monday

Dallas-Utah 

Somebody has to play the Spurs, and somebody has to play the Warriors.  This game is basically flipping a coin to determine their team’s playoff fate.

Charlotte-Boston

Both teams are just jockeying for seedings, but no matter the result, it looks like those first round matchups out east are pretty much set.

 

“Tap That Vein” Tuesday

Memphis- Los Angeles Clippers 

This may be a preview. We may see these teams face off in the playoffs. This is like getting a first round bye for whoever gets to play Memphis. They got decimated with injuries this year and still made the playoffs. #respect

Oklahoma City- San Antonio

I doubt either team will play their starters, but it is always fun to watch the Spurs bench whup on the other teams’ reserve players.

 

Wednesday

Spurs-Dallas

Dallas will try to win this game and still may get blown out.

Memphis-Golden State (Good Ass Game of The Week)

This could be win number 73 or this could be win number 72. We’ll see how San Antonio plays things tonight against the Dubs.

 

END OF SEASON. NEXT WEEK: FULLSASS PLAYOFF PREVIEW

 

 

Easin’ into the Grind

I haven’t had as much time as I’d like to watch NBA this season. The number of games I want to catch up on are piling up. The bandwidth at my local Starbucks is weak, and I’m afraid that if I get internet at my house that I’ll become a hermit. By December, I’ll be a bit more adjusted, and will have caught my breath by winter break. I plan to devote at least 5-6 hours a day during this period to watching basketball. Only 4 more weeks until this is a reality. The marquee “Good Ass Game of the Week” matchups have been as good as advertised, but the biggest surprise to me is how much better ball is in the Eastern Conference. The quality of play is improved, and instead of 89-76 games, teams are actually scoring into the 100’s.

All that being said, I still fux with the Western Conference teams more heavily than the East–no doubt. Right now my favorite squads to watch are the Warriors (unreal the kind of ball they are playing. I don’t think an offense has generated this kind of round-the-league since the Showtime era Lakers), the Bulls (can actually stretch the floor with shooters), the Teen Wolves (could conceivably have two of the best 2 way players in the league someday with Karl Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins–I’ve watched more games by them this year than I have in the entire KG “Big Ticket” era), Kings (those throwback powder blue jerseys are sick), and of course the Spurs.

This week Kawhi supplanted Kevin Durant as my favorite player in the NBA. Curry stays on at #2, while KD slips to three. Steph and KD are both electrifying to watch, but Leonard is slowly building up his case for being the best 2 way player in the game (after Lebron of course). But Lebron won’t be around forever, and we’re only 3-4 seasons away from Lebron’s body betraying him, making him merely great rather than otherworldly. Who’ll supplant Lebron? Well it could be any of these guys in no particular order:

Andrew Wiggins

Victor Oladipo

Jimmy Butler

Kawhi Leonard

Anthony Davis

Paul George

Anthony Towns

The NBA product is in good hands for the next 8-10 years. Let’s get to these games:

Monday

Portland-San Antonio 

This will be close for about 3 and a half quarters if we are lucky. Seriously though, if you like to watch good defenders, and you haven’t been watching Kawhi, do yourself a favor and peep. First hit is free, after that…….

OKC-Memphis

Always a good battle with these two teams. No Durant adds more pressure on the supporting cast to step it up, because you know Hustle Westbrook is going to fill the stat sheet.

“Tap That Vein” Tuesday

Minnesota-Miami 

Young guns. This will be a fun watch. I’m especially looking forward to the Towns-Whiteside face-off.

Toronto-Golden State

Warriors  gonna rock the “Throwbacks” that night. MMMMMPPPPPPPHHHHHHHH!!!!

[If College hoops gives you that buzz, then get on those Duke-Kentucky, Kansas-Michigan State games]

Wednesday

Sacramento-Atlanta

Even when the Kings get blown out, it lends for entertainment.

Dallas-Boston

This strikes me as the type of game one would live-tweet while watching.

Chicago-Phoenix

Suns just aren’t a hoops sexy team this year. It’ll still be a fun game though. Its good toe See Doug McDermott out on the court this year. Homie can ball.

Thursday

Sacramento-Miami

Cousins vs. Whiteside??? Insert “banging in the post” joke here. GO!!!

Milwaukee-Cleveland pt. Duex

The Bucks match up well with the Cavs. Imagine the length of Golden State without the outside shooting threats. That’s the Bucks.

Golden State vs. Lol Clippers “Good Ass Game of the Week”

Good night to make some chili on the crock pot, and stare at the computer (or tv) screen. Warriors have Bogut back for this one. I’m not a betting man, but if I were, I’d put money on Blake Griffin getting a tech this game.

Friday

Detroit-Minnesota 

Some young talent in this one. Andre Drummond vs. Karl Anthony Towns. Remember when they said big men in the post were a dying breed?

Spurs-New Orleans

To quote the great Jordan Paladino, “New Orleans is trash.” The only way I’ll be watching the Pelicans again this year is if they play a marquee  game. I know its early in the season, but not only do they not look like they’ve gotten better, but it seems like they regressed. Its pretty disappointing.

Clippers-Portland

Lillard against Chris Paul sounds slightly amusing. Its hard to watch the Trailblazers even with their sick back court. When Lillard and McCollum are off the floor, it feels like I’m watching a pickup game at the Lewis and Clark Recreation Center–especially with Plumlee, Leonard, and Connaughton on the team.

Chicago-Golden State “Good Ass Game of the Week PART 2”

Last February’s affair was one of the “Good Ass Games of the Year” in my book. I have three words for you: HIGH LEVEL BASKETBALL. Plus two of my favorite college players from back in the day are now coaching against each other. That is correct, I am old enough to have seen the “The Mayor” play in college. #DON”THATECUZYOULATE

Saturday

Sacramento-Orlando

This week definitely has some bite to it. Good ass games every single night. Orlando is pesky. Scott Skiles knows how to get the young bucks fired up to play. Its the veterans who get tired of his overbearing style though. This is the perfect situation for him. In 4 years, maybe not. He is like the Buck Showalter of NBA coaches.

Memphis-San Antonio

Memphis looks a step behind this year. I’d be shocked if this were a double overtime affair like last season. Then again, so was this shot.

Sunday

Definitely the kind of setting that would precipitate a live-tweet session.

Big Ups of the Week to the person who designed this year’s Mavs’ jerseys. Those are the best looking ones I’ve seen in al the years they been rocking them shits.

I wish I could say the same for the Thunder jerseys. HELL NAW!!!

They would get the Buster of the Week Award in a regular week, but last week’s events (the bombings in Lebanon, and the shootings in Paris), have me thinking more sobering thoughts. In order for a tragedy of last week’s magnitude to occur, it takes multiple parties have to be complicit.

I’m not naive enough to think that international conflict can be avoided. Its unavoidable. But the fact that people can’t go to a movie, or see their favorite band without fear of being shot in a public place is discomforting. We have to figure out a way to be better people towards each other. There’s no way around it.

One minute you are ordering a dish in French for the first time, and in the next breath, there can be bullets whizzing by your head.Life really is that fragile.

#shoothoopsnotpeople

Peace.

BM

#thisagoodassgame # fullsass

@clickpicka79

Fullsass.com

bobbymickey@gmail.com

First Impressions: This Week’s Good Ass Game Viewing Guide

If there were ever a year to get introduced to NBA League Pass, this is the year to do it. There are so many good players to watch on so many teams right now, and so little time. I don’t have internet at my apartment yet (we only get paid once a month in my school district), and the only time I can catch games is either at the bar, at work when I’m working late, or at the local Starbucks on their Wi-Fi. 17 more days of ducking and dodging, creeping and crawling, before I can start curling up in bed and falling asleep to west coast games.

The great thing about having that pass is that I can watch games retroactively. I’ve watched so many games retroactively that I no feel like less of a fan, and more like a university student doing homework. I can’t believe people get paid to just sit in dark rooms and watch film all day. There is an NBA Hardwoods Classic feature that lets you go back and watch classic games on there, but the best feature of all is the Condensed game; where you can watch what amounts to an extended highlights clip. This is the only way I can get through a Clippers or Rockets game, because their games take an extra hour because of all the whistles and flops.

A couple of weeks before the season started, a friend cautiously suggested that the Kings could make a run for that 8th seed in the West. I thought it was ludicrous because of the crazy front office situation, but I’ve watched at least a little of every Kings game so far, and they look good. Part of that has to do with Rajon Rondo. Anyone who has dated someone right out of a serious long term relationship, can understand that the Mavericks just ran into a buzzsaw. Here’s a guy whose formative NBA years were spent with one team–a team that won an NBA championship.

It wasn’t the best of endings, and before he even had a chance to process his feelings, he in another relationship with another team. This team thinks its found its point guard of the future, but Rondo I’m sure is looking at the roster thinking “I just left an old ass squad that is too slow to run with me, and I’m now I’m about to commit the remaining years of my prime to the same kind of team.”

Now Rondo is with an athletic team with the right mix of veterans and up and coming stars. That roster is loaded with talent, and is better than those Nuggets teams that George Karl was coaching with Carmelo. I slept on the Kings, but I’m sure taking them seriously now after watching their first 3 games of the season. They will be a hard team to blowout.

A few things crossed my mind during this week:

  • If there were an “NBA Face Time” team for guys whose play makes you want to punch them in the face, the Clippers would be well represented. It’d be like that one year where the entire starting five for the Pistons almost made the All-Star Team.
  • I should have studied the Milwaukee Bucks point guard situation more closely before I predicted they would be in Eastern Conference Finals. I’ve never been a fan of Jerryd Bayless (and not just because he’s light skinned). I guess if anyone is going to get the best out of that backcourt, it will be Jason Kidd. I do really like their uniforms though–they look pretty crispy.
  • New Orleans can’t afford to have too slow of a start out West. Their defense has not looked good in the first few games. After giving up 39 in the first quarter in their first game against Golden State, they gave up 40 to the Trailblazers (My boy C.J. had 22 of them in a 37 point effort). I feel like I have been saying this every year since 2008, but the West has only gotten better.
  • The Teen Wolves have been a fascinating story this year. Their season has an extra melancholic milieu to it with the passing of Flip Saunders. If Ricky Rubio can finally stay healthy, I think he can be the Spanish version of Tony Parker. I think Andrew Wiggins will be an All NBA defender within the next 3 years, and Karl Anthony Towns is my front runner for Rookie of the Year. What I really like about this roster is that they have KG, Tayshaun Prince, and Andre Miller in the locker room as player-coaches. This teams reminds me of the ’09 OKC squad that was right on the cusp of being in the playoffs. We’ll see what happens, but they may be a few off-season moves away from really giving teams some headaches next year.

Let’s get to these games:

“Tap that Vein” Tuesday

Atlanta-Miami (meh) Remember that condensed version mode? That’s how I’ll be watching this game.

Memphis-Sacramento Unfortunately our boy Boogie is on day-to-day status with an Achilles strain. The scrappy factor just went down a few notches because of that injury. Don’t rush back Boogie. WE NEED YOU THIS SEASON!!!!

Wednesday

Golden State-Los Angeles Clippers (GOOD ASS GAME OF THE WEEK)

Cancel. All. Your. Plans. This. Evening.

Thursday

OKC-Chicago Two rookie coaches from the college ranks facing each other for the first time. I like the depth of the Bulls this year. I watched them play Orlando the other night, and I couldn’t help but wonder how relaxed the atmosphere must have been at training camp this year. I don’t agree with the method, but a coaching change had to happen up in the Windy City. Thibs is a grinder, and that roster didn’t need that. Let’s talk about that backcourt for a minute. Jimmy Butler may be the best two way guard west of Lebron James, and Derrick Rose may be the perfect sidekick to Mr. Buckets (Yeah I said it).

Speaking of coaching changes, I realized last night that Billy D. may be the best coach that either Westbrook or Durant have ever had. That kinda makes me sad.

Friday

Houston-Sacramento Did you ever think that the Kings would be making the Good Ass Games list twice in a week?

Saturday

Minnesota-Chicago This will be a good gauge for the Teen Wolves. I’ll prolly be watching this one from a booth at Starbucks….grading papers or some shit to make me feel productive.

New Orleans-Dallas One of these two teams might miss the playoffs. For some reason this reminds me of the time I told my cousins that whoever won a fight between them could get next on the X-Box. Of course, I immediately felt bad afterwards and tried to play it off as a test of their character. By then it was too late, because one of them was crumpled into a ball after receiving a drop kick in the chest from his young brother. Needless to say neither of them were allowed to play the video games that day. #NONSEQUITUR 

Golden State-Sacramento 

This is gonna be an old fashioned ass whupping, but it’ll be way better than watching the snuff film that the will be the Clippers-Rockets game.

Sunday

Phoenix-Oklahoma City This game may get up into the 120’s. Running and Gunning. Gunning and Running.

Portland-Detroit if you really wanna tap that vein or avoid NFL (Is it the playoffs yet????).

Monday This will be the best day of the week for watching hoops.

Grizzlies-Clippers, Detroit-Golden State will be interesting (at this point I have to tune into every Dubs game just on principle). Ditto to the Spurs-Kings, and I must admit that I’m curious about that Hawks-Teen Wolves matchup.

Alright. Time to bounce before I burn up all of my planning period.

Peace.

BM

#thisagoodassgame

@clickpicka79

bobbymickey@gmail.com

Fullsass.com

THE JUMP OFF

Its been a busy week for ya boi Bmick: Went to Austin to record a podcast with my Craig on fullsass.com, threw up a couple of blog posts (big ups to my boys Jordan and Alex for blessin’ the game), and last night worked my first private gig as a standup comic (also did my first clean set ever–who knew I had it in me?).

Out of all that activity, the most important thing I did was get that NBA League Pass. Its a game changer no doubt. Now I’m ready for “Tip-off Tuesday” So let’s get it:

TUESDAY

Detroit-Atlanta

Cleveland-Chicago

New Orleans-Golden State

Three good ass games that night. I’m curious how my boy Stanley Johnson plays. I was so hype on Justice Winslow this season that I forgot all about Stanley Johnson being on the Pistons. Detroit has interesting squad. If they were playing out West they’d be trash, but they benefit greatly from being out east. Later on in the season, I will tell you to avoid this game. But its “TIP OFF TUESDAY DAWG!!!!” We ain’t had no basketball in months. You gotta get it in!

Unless you napping, or peeping game 1 of the World Series, you should at least watch the second half of this game. Don’t get too up or down on either team for Cleveland-Chicago game. Media gonna be overreacting the next day no matter who wins. ESPN will have some bullshit narrative to run into the ground, as Bill Plaschke and other talking heads talk about early warning signs for the losing team. GUYS!! GUYS!! GUYS!!! Calm the fuck down. It’s only game 1 of an 82 season.

You best believe I’ll be up late  watching that Golden State-New Orleans game. Coach Gentry getting his ring will be a nice thing to witness for the Pelicans players, but minus Anthony Davis, they really don’t have anything. That is how good “Lil Brow Wow” is. He’s my MVP pick for the year.

Wednesday

Spurs-Thunder (Good Ass Game of the Week) 

I was supposed to work my second job this night, but I can already feel this developing cough coming on. [COUGH COUGH WINK WINK ELBOW NUDGE]

Dallas-Phoenix

Battle for the eighth seed begins.

Cleveland-Memphis

I’m not saying Cleveland is going to punk out, but this going to be a physical game on the 2nd of back-to-backs for the Lebrons. Go ahead and get that ice bath ready fellas. You’re going to need it. Speaking of physical:

Clippers-Kings 

Will be a game chock full of testosterone. If I were a groupie trying to get a meal ticket, this game would be circled on my calendar. There’s some young entrepreneurs holed now in some Sacramento hotel right now, poking holes in condoms and vacuum sealing the packaging.

Minnesota-Los Angeles

This game will be full of cool highlights, but will also have loads of stupid turnovers. This may as well be a Rookies vs. Sophomores game with KG and Kobe as the head coaches. I’ll fight off sleep just long enough to watch the first half. I like to leave the betting to Alex Knapp, but I’ll say that there will be at least 3 insane dunks that makes Sportscenter from this one.

“Tap that Vein Thursday”

You’ll have plenty of opportunities to watch the Pacers play, so unless you really need to see them unveil the

Hickory High uniforms, use the Memphis-Indiana game to be productive.

Side note: Am I the only one who thinks Memphis would be better off playing in the Eastern Conference? They would be beastin’ if they were over there (and they probably should be, they are no longer from Vancouver–also, how many Grizzlies are really in Tennessee?). If they were in the east they’d easily be a top 3 contender.

Dallas-Los Angeles Clippers

I don’t know about this one either. Use Thursday night to build up cache with your loved one. Its early in the season, but every little bit counts. Unless you and your wife are hardcore Mavs fans, and you want to brainwash your infant into being a Mavs fan too, I’d say do something else. Its only the first week. This matchup will mean a lot more as the season moves along.

Friday

Its going to be a busy night for the Mickster. The World Series will have moved to what is currently my favorite American city (Queens representin’), I’ll be showing my face at a Halloween party that night (dressed as you guessed it, an NBA ref), and there are a ton of games.

Houston-Golden State and Miami-Cleveland will be the main attractions, but with NBA League PASS, I can go home and watch the Portland-Phoenix, Lakers-Kings, and Bulls-Pistons games after the fact. #GAMECHANGER

Saturday

Its Halloween. Don’t bother. Golden State-New Orleans play again for the 2nd night in one week, and on the 2nd night of a back-to-back.In fact, everybody plays back  to back on Halloween. Do yourself a favor and go get liquored up and make a bad decision or two (nothing that you can’t videotape or that will get you thrown in jail).

Sunday (First of tha month)

Can you think of a better way to nurse a hangover than to watch the Spurs beat the Celtics?

Houston-Miami won’t be a bad watch either, and you could do worse things than tune in to Milwaukee-Toronto.

Monday

Oklahoma City-Houston

Runner-up to the Good Ass Game of the Week.

Memphis-Golden State

“YUP!!!!”

~E-40

Portland-Minnesota and Suns-Clippers 

are worth checking out during timeouts and commercials, but honestly the highlights will be better than the games themselves. No disrespect to the fan base of either franchises, but you know what it is.

Big Ups of the Week to:

Jerry Colangelo USA basketball committee for finally doing what is right. Gregg Popovich has done as much for the game of basketball as anyone not named James Naismith. This is a win for everyone involved, but most of all this is a win for the game of basketball. I’m getting choked up just writing about this. Big ups!

So that’s it. The NBA season starts on Tuesday, and I couldn’t be happier. Basketball season is finally here. GOOD NEWS. GOOD NEEEEWWWWWWWWHHHHHHOOOOOOSSSSSSS.

Shout out to the Mets and the Royals for what will be a classic World Series. I think the Royals will take it in 7. I’ll be happy for either fan base no matter who wins. Although,I’ll just be more happier Mets fans. Kansas City is in Missouri after all. And we all know how I feel about that state.

Be cool.

Bobby Mickey

@clickpicka79

#thisagoodassgame

fullsass.com

bobbymickey@gmail.com

2015-2016 Basketball Season Preview

The wait is almost over. It was a good ass off-season, but it is time to start cranking it back up. Hoops season is back, and I couldn’t be happier. Let’s skip the foreplay and talk about the upcoming season– my favorite story lines A to Z.

ADIDAS

You could put Damien Lillard, Andrew Wiggins, and James Khardasian Harden on a barnstorming tour with 2 scrubs and they’d run shit……that is until they ran into the top 3 Nike ballers and their 2 scrubs.

If you were ever thinking about buying some Adidas stock, now would be the time to do it before the season starts (It has risen 10 points since I first checked it in September). But before you do that, ask Ray J, Reggie Bush, Kris Humphries, Bruce Jenner, and Lamar Odom, how much better their lives are after getting involved with that family. 

BILLY DONOVAN

300.ButchPatrick.EddieMunster.tg.111110

I was a little skeptical about the Billy Donovan hire. A year before KD’s free agency seems like bad timing to try and shake things up. But after reading a couple of interviews, and after Monty Williams and Mo Cheeks were hired as assistant coaches, I feel a lot more optimistic about the Thunder’s upcoming season, and their chances of re-signing Kevin Durant. There will be a learning curve, but not nearly as steep as most first year head coaches.

He has all the tools (assuming his star players are healthy) to make the Western Conference Finals. Only a fool however; would try and compare his rookie season to Steve Kerr’s first year as coach. Kerr has been a GM, an announcer, and played for Lute Olson, Phil Jackson, and Gregg Popovich.  This is Donovan’s first season IN THE LEAGUE. It will take a series of fortunate bounces for Donovan to make it out of the West, and beat Lebron in the NBA Finals.

C. J. McCOLLUM

This is the year my man shows the world he was the player I thought he was way back when he was saucing up Duke in the first round of the NCAA tournament. 

 The dude can get buckets, and he will be asked to help out with the scoring load for the Trailblazers. When they let Wes Matthews go, I think the front office was banking on C.J. staying healthy (he hasn’t played a full season in 3 years counting his senior year at Lehigh) and taking his game to a higher level. This could be a fun backcourt to watch in years to come.

DURANT

That is right. KD is back and he says he is feeling fine. The playoffs are not the playoffs without KD playing involved. I had gotten so used to the Thunder making the post season, that it felt odd to not have them around. It shows how fast six years can go by.

The EASTERN CONFERENCE

Not quite as wack as last year, but still kind of an eye sore for the basketball purists. Fred Hoiberg will be a breath of fresh air in the Chicago locker room. The Heat will be competitive again (more on them later I promise) and the Celtics will look to improve on their season by actually being .500 again. Lebron will have to work for it a little bit more; meaning they may lose 3 more games in the post season than last year. Unless there is a catastrophic injury to LBJ, you can pretty much pencil them in for the Finals. You cannot say that about ANY team in the west.

FEAR THE DEER

150414_EYE_OldNewBucksLogo1.jpg.CROP.original-original

J-Kidd and the Milwaukee Bucks will push the Cavs to 6 games in the Eastern Conference Finals. Mark it! They are long, young, fast, and Jason Kidd, who was already a head coach on the court as a player, will be worth at least ten regular season wins alone.

The man is brilliant, and if you’ve ever wondered why people complain about Chris Paul as a leader, then go watch some old game footage of Kidd. Everyone who has ever played with Kidd talks about how great of a teammate and leader he was. As great of a player as Paul is, I’ve never once heard a teammate describe him as supportive. 

GRAYSON ALLEN

Yep. If you were worried that there wouldn’t be a white Duke player to root against this year, I just served you one up on a platter. Grayson kept the Dukies in last year’s national title game, with some tremendous energy off the bench. If you took Steve Wojciechowski’s antics and gave Ron Paulus hops, then you would have this guy. I actually like this cat. He plays hard. He works hard. He can bang on you if you sleep on him, and from every interview I’ve seen he seems like a great teammate. 

He does not strike me as someone who takes anything for granted. But yeah, fuck Duke. I’d be shocked if they won it all this year. Tyus Jones is in the pro’s now, and that guy was the best PG they’ve had since Jay Williams. Go ahead and pencil in another early round exit for the Blue Devils. Nothing makes me happier than typing those words.

HASSAN WHITESIDE

This cat is like Andrew Bynum without the knee injuries. Homie can ball, but dude is a little “Goof Troop.” His 2K rating will surely go up this year, because he when he is in the lineup, you can expect bro to put up a double double—and that is just in rebounds and blocks. He doesn’t even need to score to affect the game. That being said, he can just easily do something stupid to get himself taken out of the game. But if rebounding and defense get you aroused, then grab a Kleenex and tune in to Miami Heat games.

 INJURIES

Fuck Injuries. Let’s pray for a year without any major injuries to the superstar players. We already know the score concerning Derrick Rose and Kyrie Irving, but last season was just ridiculous.  Can we at least have every team playing in the post season relatively healthy? I’ll sacrifice a bucket of chicken to the injury gods. I suggest that you all do the same.

JUSTICE WINSLOW

What the fuck? I started out writing a basketball preview column and it has turned into 2014 Duke Blue Devils tribute. I cannot believe that Winslow fell to the number 10 pick. Every team that had the 4-9 picks are going to be kicking themselves. Winslow is fast, he plays defense, and he is athletic. You want to know why Duke won it all last year? It was because of this guy.

Winslow should have been playing in New York or Charlotte. He is my preseason pick for Rookie Of the Year. As my mother used to say to me whenever I was one strike away from an epic ass whupping , “If you don’t believe me then just hide and watch.”

KRZYZEWSKI KANSAS BASKETBALL  

As in the state of Kansas. This year there will be three Kansas teams in the top 25, and two of them, Wichita State and University of Kansas, have legitimate chances of being in the Final Four (if they can somehow avoid being put in the same bracket). The Shockers bring back the best backcourt in the country with Fred VanFleet and Ron Baker (Baker played in the PanAm games up in Toronto this summer with my boy Keith “K-Freeze” Langford). They are also bringing on Connor Frankamp to help out with the ball handling duties (he can shoot too). They are poised for a deep run into the tourney this year.

As for the Jayhawks, well this is finally the year I’ve been waiting for when Frank Mason and Wayne Selden came onto the campus as freshmen.  They are finally mature enough to take the helm, and you know Perry Ellis is going to quietly get his 20 points and 8 rebounds during his senior campaign.

Devonte Graham has one more year of experience under his belt, and Svi Mykhailiuk will be ready to contribute more on the court as a super sophomore. Self has a rotation of big men (Chieck please!!!!) in the front court, and they have the depth to wear a team down.

With Hoiberg coaching the Bulls now, Self will have even less competition this year en route to his 13th straight Big 12 championship. Self’s stranglehold on the conference will end soon, now that UT has made a major upgrade, with Shaka Smart taking over for Rick Barnes.

 As for K-State? No one gives a shit about them. Although I’ll give them props for almost beating TCU the other night in football.

LEAGUE PASS

This is the year I finally get it. Fuck this streaming shit. “Ain’t nobody got time for dat”

METTA WORLD PEACE

The Panda King is back on the LOL Lakers who may not be so LOL this year. It is still a rebuilding year, but did you ever think you’d see the day where you’d feel less hatred for the Lakers locker room than the Clippers? More on those busters later. If you ever want to take a trip to the twilight zone, follow Ron –ahem Metta on Twitter. Dude is out there. He elbowed Harden in the head way before it was fashionable to even feel that way. Maybe homie is Meta.

NEW FACES, NEW LACES, BUT NOTHING REALLY CHANGES

Other than Oklahoma City, the same teams will be in the playoffs. It was much harder to talk myself into Utah and Quinn Snyder (fuck Mizzou), and Phoenix,than it was to talk myself out of Memphis’ old ass roster.

ONE LAST DANCE

We are on the cusp of a new age in San Antonio. The new big three for the Spurs going forward will be “Lamarcus!!!!”,  Kyle “Slo-Mo” Anderson, and Kawhi Leonard. I think this is the year where the Spurs may actually be “too old” to win the NBA title.  I’m not sure how much Parker has left in the tank, Duncan will be fine, but this is certainly Manu’s last year to play in the NBA. I still think the Spurs would have beaten the Clippers last year had they played Patty Mills more. They may need Patty and every other guard to chip in and lighten the load for Monsieur Parker.

PAUL PIERCE RETURNS HOME.

Jalen Rose correctly points out that this is the best roster that the LOL Clippers have ever had in the history of the franchise. 

You have a locker room filled with so many strong personalities that I think that this will be Doc Rivers finest job as a head coach, if he somehow gets this team to the NBA Finals (An NBA Finals that I will have no choice but to root for Lebron if the Clippers win the West–kind of like when I had to root for Chicago back in the late 90’s vs. Utah). I am extremely curious how things play out with Chris Paul, Josh Smith, Lance Stephenson,Glen “Big Baby” Davis, and Austin Rivers.

What is the over/under on how many times Paul Pierce utters the phrase  “Ya’ll childish” as he exits the locker room while shaking his head? Who will be the guy who gets cut by the team for breaking Austin Rivers’ jaw? Remember when the Wizards had Javale McGhee, Javaris Critendon, Deshawn Stevenson, and Gilbert Arenas on the same team? If managing that team was like handling nitro glycerin, this Clipper roster is like juggling grenades.

QUICKEN LOANS ARENA

I think the Cavs go at least 37-4 at home this year. There is talk about them being “angry”, more focused and all that nonsense. They can do all that, but it’s a long season. They should focus more on being healthy. It isn’t a matter of if Kyrie will hurt himself again, but when. They will be a more cohesive unit than they were last year heading into the playoffs, and I can’t expect Kevin Love to lay another egg this season (I mean for him at least—he still put up decent numbers).  They will figure it out. They would have to try to not make the Finals in that conference.

RICK CARLISLE

He is reason enough that the Mavericks will make the playoffs.  He is poised to win Coach of the Year honors for the roster he is working with this season. Like I said before, he is the second best coach in the league behind “Pops.”

SIDELINE REPORTING

Just isn’t the same without Craig Sager and those goofy ass suits. I miss that dude.  I hope he gets well soon.

sager

TY LAWSON

Ty

If the Spurs would have somehow gotten Lawson, this season would have been a wrap. Ty finally has something to work with, and he has a lot to prove to all his doubters. The Rockets are going to get up and down the court and will average at least 110 points a game. Rockets games will be easier to digest—well that is until the 4th quarter where Harden starts initiating the free throw contests. But the first 3 quarters will be good. Give me a Rockets vs. OKC/Golden State/ San Antonio any night of the week though.

UNDER ARMOUR

Check the stocks. Under Armour is killing the game right now. Shares are like 102 points the last time I checked. Steph Curry is winning on the court and off of it. Homie got a little piece of the action and has bought stake in the company (Getting a little bit of everything in today’s preview at zero to little cost).

Speaking of winners, can we give props to Dell Curry? The guy had a very solid NBA career, married a beautiful and smart woman, and has two sons in the NBA. One of them is coming off of an NBA title, and the other played 4 years at Duke and just got a legit contract with the Kings. #Winning.

VUJACIC

Yes Sasha Vujacic is still in the league, and may be playing with the New York Knicks this season. Need I say more?

WILLIE CAULEY STEIN

The best player to come out of the state of Kansas in a very, very long time. He has height, lateral quickness, defense, and ups. He will get 8 points a game just from Rondo throwing him oops all season. Imagine if you could  let  Tyson Chandler play defense out on the perimeter. Exactly!!!

 

XAVIER (As in David West’s alma mater)

 I’ve always thought D. West would be the perfect Spur, and he will prove his worth on this roster. He is a true professional. After seeing him beat up on San Antonio throughout the years, it is cool to see him on the side of the good guys. I want so badly to pencil them in for the Finals. I just don’t know if they enough backcourt depth to make it happen. 

david_west_jersey_swap___san_antonio_spurs_by_newtdesigns-d90cjzf

YOUNG GUNS

New stars are good for the league. I’ve already talked about some of this year’s rookies, but the Teen Wolves will be the most fun 20 win team you’ve ever seen. They will compete, but they still not quite there yet. Kevin Garnett in that locker room will be nothing but an asset.

He’s already teaching those Youngbloods what it means to be a professional. They would make a great NBA Jam team. Wiggins, Lavine, and Shabazz Mahummud would be a fun trio to run with (Rubio as the alternate). They are not too far away from being where OKC was back in ’08-10. They just have to be smart (don’t laugh its possible—anything is possible) with personnel moves the next 3 years.

Utah has a decent core coming back. Going up to Salt Lake City is no longer an easy W. They are going to make teams earn it. I like Heyward. Trey Burke still has yet to hit his full potential, Rudy Gobert aint no punk, and we still don’t know where Dante Exum will be as a player. If they were in the Eastern Conference, I could be talked into them making the playoffs.

ZAZA PACHULIA, DERON WILLIAMS and WESLEY MATTHEWS

The three biggest additions to the Dallas Mavericks, and they will still make the playoffs. I rest my case.

 BM

 

West Standings (in no particular order)

Oklahoma City (if healthy)

Houston

Golden State

San Antonio

Memphis

Los Angeles Clippers

Dallas

New Orleans

 

East standings (in no particular)

Cleveland

Indiana

Heat

Atlanta

Boston

Chicago

Milwaukee

Detroit

 

Eastern Conference Finals

Cleveland vs. Milwaukee (Cleveland wins 4-2)

 

Western Conference Finals

Golden State vs. Oklahoma City (if healthy)

NBA FINALS

Oklahoma City (if healthy) vs. Cleveland (Cleveland wins 4-3)

#THISAGOODASSGAME

@CLICKPICKA79

bobbymickey@gmail.com

Finallly!!!!!!

For all intents and purposes, the playoffs started on Wednesday when Oklahoma City needed a win over the Teen Wolves, and a loss by New Orleans to sneak into the playoffs. For as much hype (and deservedly so) as the Russell Westbrook show was generating, the Thunder were still losing–despite Westbrook’s Herculean numbers during this past month (He was named the Western Conference Player of the month for his efforts). He was getting 54 points and the team was still putting up L’s.

I’m actually happy that the Pellies got in this year(thanks to this shot of course). I just couldn’t bear the thought of watching OKC in the playoffs without my boy KD.

For all those people who are sad about not getting to watch Russ in the playoffs, imagine an NBA where all of the playoff teams get to borrow one player from each lottery bound team for the first round in exchange for their first round pick. It’d be like the waiver wire in order of worst team seeding. How crazy would that be? just a drunken thought I had late one night.

Speaking of playoff seeding, what about that crock of shit brewing out in the Eastern Conference? Cleveland’s Bitch asses would be a 7th seed in the West. With Thabo Sefelosha’s leg injury affecting what will be Atlanta’s perimeter defense, the Cavs have a relatively easier path to the NBA Finals. It’s crap. This is like the winner of the NIT tournament getting to play the winner of the Final Four for the National championship. It’s bollocks.

With the playoff series being a best of 7, this column becomes almost obsolete this time of year. I’ll cut it short and give you the clicks to pick for the first round.

This Round’s Good Ass Series of Good ASS Games:

Houston vs. Dallas

The I-45 beatdown. Houston has Harden (probably the Leagues’ MVP–though I agree with J.R. Smith that Lebron should probably win every year) and they finally got D-12 healthy, but Dallas has the 2nd best coach in the NBA. I’m going to say the Mavericks take this in 7 games.

Portland vs. Memphis

Both teams are pretty banged up right now. I think this will be a series of close games–albeit ulgy ones. I’ll probably watch every game this series, but only in the 4th quarter, unless I get some kind of Good Ass Game alert telling me to tune in for an early edition of “Illard Time.”

Grizzlebees in 6 games.

New Orleans vs. Golden State

This might be the quickest ending of the series, but I firmly believe that every game will be hotly contested, except for that last home game in Oakland, that will just get out of hand. It will be the most entertaining series north of Clippers-Spurs–but we’ll get to that later.

Golden State in five games.

Los Angeles vs. San Antonio [Good Ass Games of the week]

People are talking about the mine field that the Spurs have ahead of them just because they did not get the 2nd seed. It is as if they haven’t seen the pitfalls that await every team in the second round. the only team San Antonio should have been worried about facing in the first round was Memphis–who will beat teams up even if they don’t beat them. Otherwise its evenly matched. No one has an easy path to finals, no matter where they are seeded.

Besides, I think the Clippers are vastly ovverated. J.J. Redick is having the best season of his career, and the big three for LAC is formidable, but who is going to come off the bench for them besides Jamal Crawford?

I’ve got the Spurs in 6, and it may not even that close. I think every game will be competitive though. This kind of reminds me of that series back in the day when Spurs played against Chris Paul when he was a Hornet. I don’t know why. It just does.

“Tap that Vein” Series

Bucks vs. Bulls

I know my boy Mikey will be watching his C’s play, but if I’m going to spend any of my free time watching an Eastern Conference game, it will probably be this Bulls-Bucks series. It’s kind of like when you are walking down the street and you see two homeless people arguing in an alley. You should probably be doing something better with your life, but curiosity got the best of you for a moment. Then the reality of the ugliness becomes too much to bear, and you remember that list of unfulfilled goals you still have remaining. Fuck the Eastern Conference Playoffs.

Buster of the Week Award goes to:

Aaron Hernandez. Mr. Husky himself got life in prison with no chance of parole for the murder of Odin Lloyd.
He was accused of some other filthy shit, but wasn’t on trial for those other grizzly acts. The dude pissed away millions of dollars on some bullshit. If you ask me, all they had to do was pull out the tape of his touchdown celebrations to convince me that he did it.

Look at it. It is almost as if he is snitching on himself. And they say Richard Sherman is a thug. For the record, Ray Lewis was convicted of obstruction of justice, not MURDER. There is a difference, as Aaron Hernandez can attest to.

Big Ups of the Week goes to:

Anthony Davis and the New Orleans Pelicans for giving the nation of taste of what is in store for the next few years. Someday this may be Lil Brow Wow’s league.

Enjoy the first round. See you in a week or two.

Peace.

BM
@clickpicka79
#thisagoodassgame