Regular Season Wrap Up Part One: A to the K

The end of the regular season is near, and most of the playoff positions are set. Here’s an opportunity to publicly perform self-fellatio for all the things I correctly predicted, and shake off the few things I got wrong. Illustrations by Louis Eastman

 

fullsizerender-4 Amin Elhassan has put in some solid work this NBA season, appearing on a variety of shows for ESPN (often daily), and always providing a unique perspective with the occasional quip that cut to the bone. He especially shines as moderator on the TRUE HOOP, Black “Opinions Matter Monday” Pod with “Big Wos” and a rotating cast of guests.

They are like the John Wall and Bradley Beal of podcast backcourts, controlling the tempo with content you won’t get on any other basketball pod. Check out ESPN’s programming if you wanna catch him on television or peep the website. They don’t pay me so I’m not going waste my time listing all the shows he’s on, but he’s definitely one of the few reasons to upload any content from the WWL. Keep your eye out for the “Pitino Game” during the elimination games next month.

 fullsizerender-2    Been an interesting rookie season for ole Buddy Buckets. He started the year buried on the bench in New Orleans, as he struggled to find a role in Alvin Gentry’s offense, but his scoring has picked up since he was traded to the Kings for Boogie Cousins. During a 5 game stretch (2 weeks ago) he averaged 17.4 points and had a career high in scoring this (22 points)  in a loss to the Warriors. He just might be able to carve himself out an NBA career (in the right situation).

Despite not making any major off season moves outside of the Al Horford signing, and not making any moves at the trade deadline (much to my chagrin), the Celtics are in a virtual tie with the Cleveland Cavs for first place. Go figure. Outside of Isiah Thomas, they don’t have any reliable scorers. This may come back to bite them in the ass in the Eastern Conference Finals.

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Draymond Green’s season has been nothing short of controversial. His ever expanding legion of haters means he must be doing something right. I can’t ever vouch for anything he says or does off the court, but this season has only highlighted how valuable he is to the Warriors’ success on the court. If you make a list of top 20 players in the NBA, and Dray isn’t on there then you are playing yourself.

Everybody is Eating  The owners had to come out of their pockets this season. Memphis and Dallas got the best value for the Mike Conley and Harrison Barnes deals. Both players lived up to their inflated values. While everyone else………well, just ask Portland fans if they think Neil Oshey spent money correctly. The market value of each player got skewed because of the cap, but owners had to pay. I’m sure some GM’s wish they could have a mulligan on some of these contracts

Finals ReThreematch Kevin Durant got hurt, and the Spurs were hot on the trail of the Warriors. I thought San Antonio had a better lineup top to bottom, but as Wednesday’s game showed, the Warriors still are the Click to Pick coming out of the west.

image1 Giannis has been nothing short of spectacular, averaging 23.1 points a game and making the “Sportscenter Top 10” pretty much every night he touches the court. Milwaukee looks primed for a post season bid sitting on a 40-36 record and homie was a legitimate All-Star selection to boot. I Bucks wit Giannis pretty heavily. Dude is going to be a fantastic player.

 

Harrison Barnes has averaged 19 points this year and has hit big shots when the Mavs needed him. Is he worth 94 million? Maybe not, but someone was going to give him that money, it may as well have been the Mavs. Lastly (slurp, slurp), wasn’t I right about Harry B. being better than Eric Montross and Raef LaFrentz? Huh Craig?

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Iguodala looks really good. He hasn’t been hurt and has played well as the floor leader on the second unit. He, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green all chipped in on defense to hold Kawhi Leonard in check last Wednesday down in San Antonio. They will need him down the stretch for these next 2 months of playoff basketball. His back is the difference between beating Cleveland in 5 games, or losing to them again in 7.

(The J’s Reboot) Phil Jackson, Joakim Noah and Jeff  Hornacek

What a fucking mess.

 fullsizerender-3 Klay Thompson is going to do what Klay Thompson does. He has caught fire more than a little bit during various points of his all star regular season. He also happens to still be an elite defender. Even though he started off the season with a shooting slump, you knew he’d break out of it with one of those Klay Thompson games. Expect at least 3 of those kinds of games in April and May. 

BM

To be continued…….

 

Clicks to Picks for the Week:

 

Monday

North Carolina vs. Gonzaga (NCAA Championship Game)

I really want to see how this plays out. I’m impressed that Carolina rebounded from last year’s most heartbreaking buzzer beater of all time to make it back to the Championship.

Tuesday

Memphis at San Antonio

Milwaukee at Oklahoma City (Good Ass Game of the Week)

Wednesday

Cleveland at Boston

Thursday

No Good Ass Games on the Schedule

Friday

Miami at Toronto (Good Ass Game of the Weak)

Saturday

Utah at Portland

Sunday

No Good Ass Games Scheduled

 

 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. 

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First Round Thoughts

A few thoughts this first week of the playoffs:

  • The Oklahoma City Thunder have gone from a borderline busterish collection of individuals into full on busters. Their antics seem hackneyed and trite, in their attempts to be (fake) tough guys. I’m not saying the Mavericks are choir boys, but all the extra stuff with Westbrook is #divariffic. By the time their series is over against the Spurs next round, I’ll be a full-blown Thunder hater. I can just tell.
  • Speaking of the end first rounds, I’m looking forward to jumping on Amin Elhassan’s twitter feed, immediately following tonight’s game (assuming Dallas loses), and playing the Pitino Game. The basic gist of the game is that team that gets beaten succumbed to the victors because they were lacking in some way. The name is based on this infamous press conference by former Boston Celtics coach and alleged dirtbag , Rick Pitino. The onject of the game is for people to tweet the most random, obscure name that ever played for that particular franchise. I’ve got a decen list of names from the early 80’s that I can’t wait to throw out. This is the perfect night for my podcast partner, Craig Stein to jump on the twittersphere.
  • Let’s give a round of applause for the Memphis Grizzlebies, Detroit Pistons, and the soon to be eliminated Mavericks, for showing up and making their opponents work. Neither series were exactly “byes”, even though two of them were sweeps, and the Mavericks might extend this series for one more game. There is a huge difference between being out matched and being out worked. Fans of Memphis, Dallas, and Detroit have nothing to hang their heads about.
  • Too bad I cannot say the same for the Rockets’ fans. I’m not even sure if James Harden even likes basketball. While teams like the Warriors and Spurs reaffirm my love for basketball and all that is holy about the game of roundball, the Rockets suck the everliving joy out of the ball. And why is that major superstars get routinely injured in games against Houston? This should be investigated when ESPN does a 30 for 30 on RUN OKC (they can bring Billy Simmons on to pontificate the what ifs and rehash old columns).
  • I’m still rooting for Boston to come out of this first round and give the Cavs some run, but the constant cut aways to New England Patriots personnel and management makes me have second thoughts.

 

Good Ass Games of the Week:

 

Monday

If the Heat don’t get this win tonight against the Charlotte “Me So Hornets”, they will be in for a dogfight. They better handle up. (NBATV 7:00 ET)

OKC-Dal (TNT 8:00 ET)Two words: Pitino Game

If the Clippers know what is good for them, they will be looking to put the hammer down on Portland tonight and Wednesday. With Steph Curry out for a minimum of 2 weeks(Grade 1 sprained MCL), it would behoove the Clippers (and the rest of the league for that matter) to start the next round as soon as possible.(TNT 9:30ET)

TUESDAY

Indiana vs. Toronto (TNT 6:00 ET)

Another best of 3 series. This no normal 2 vs. 7 seed series. This may have been the worst matchup for the Raptors to have in the 1st round.

Boston-Atlanta (TNT 8:30 ET) Suddenly it is a best of three series. Celts bringing the heat even without Avery Bradley. Who would have thought this would be the best series of the first round (Celtics fans that’s who)?

 

Wednesday

Hornets vs Miami (TNT 8:00 ET)

Portland vs. Los Angeles (NBATV 10:00 ET)

Golden State vs. Houston (TNT 10:30 ET)

 

Thursday

 

Atlanta vs. Boston (TNT TBD) 

Game 6 eh? You know the Garden will be rocking that night.

 

Friday

Indiana vs. Toronto

HMMMMMM Game 6 in Naptown then Purple Rain on the big screen afterwards? Sounds like the perfect Friday night to me–date or no date.

 

Enjoy the games this week. As Steph Curry’s freak injury illustrates, things can get weird in a hurry. Warriors fans were oh so confident 24 hours ago, but I’m sure they realize just how fragile things are between the lines. It is easy to get caught up in the hype of blowouts and crazy highlight plays, but even something as minute as a Rockets employee missing a wet spot on the floor can derail a championship season. There are hundreds of clichés we could throw out at this point, but eff that, life is too short.

 

Peace,

BM

thisagoodassgame@gmail.com

@clickpicka79

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