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Season Recap: Why Predictions are Stupid, and Other Stories Part Two

To recap my last recap, I discussed the highs and lows of the Miami Heat season, and why you shouldn’t count your eggs before they hatch, regarding the MVP debate. That leaves me with the Lakers, the Spurs, and the Carmelo Anthony trade saga.

Do you remember your preseason picks? I’m sure plenty of people had the Lakers to, once again, come out of the West with the best record. Most commentators and bloggers had the Lakers to have the top seed in the Western Conference. They were just the safe pick. The Lakers roster arguably got better, with the additions of Matt Barnes, Steve Blake, and Theo Ratliff for extra depth. They didn’t lose any significant pieces, so they were early favorites to do what they have done so many times; win the West. Continue Reading

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West is Best: Lack of Superstars Means Nothing

With all the superstars in the league defecting to the East, we seem to have forgotten that the Western Conference is still home to the leagues best teams. Everyone is busy debating which team will come out of the East, well look at the West! It’s arguably more competitive, and holds the best teams in the league.

Now, I know the Celtics, Heat and Bulls are good teams, and I guess you can throw the Magic in there too, but look at the West. The Spurs are quietly the best team in the league. So much so, that people can’t refer to the Spurs without saying they are quietly the best team in the league. The Mavericks are pretty good as well. If Dirk Nowitzki wasn’t injured early in the year, they might have a better record than the Spurs. Even with their poor play when Dirk was out, they still have more wins than any team in the East. The Spurs and Mavericks may be the two top teams in the West, but the Lakers are still favored to reach the NBA Finals. Continue Reading

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Trades, Playoffs and MVPs: What to look for after the All-Star Break

After the NBA All-Star Weekend, we usually see the NBA rise in popularity. This is the glorious time between the Super Bowl and MLB Opening Day, where basketball is the only sport worth watching (sorry hockey fans). Of course people still enjoy watching NCAA basketball, but with March Madness a few weeks away, we can all focus our attention to the NBA. With so many intriguing stories this year in particular, it’s easy to see why so many people love the NBA. Today, I’ll discuss trades, playoffs, and the potential MVPs, and anything that is destined to steal our attention as the regular season winds down.

Image from hothothoops.com

  • Trades

Trades are what will ignite the most discussion in the next week. The trade deadline (at the time of writing) is 3 days 2 hours and 45 minutes away (thank you NBA.com!) and some big names are likely to be moved. Rumor has it, Carmelo Anthony isn’t exactly happy to be a Denver Nugget. Whether he joins the New York Knicks is yet to be seen, as the New Jersey Nets are still clinging to life in talks, but he will likely be playing for an Eastern Conference team next Friday.  The Knicks have reportedly offered a package of Danilo Gallinari, Raymond Felton, and Wilson Chandler. Timofey Mozgov and Eddy Curry would also be included for salary concerns. The Knicks would receive Carmelo Anthony, Chauncey Billups, Shelden Williams and either Anthony Carter or Renaldo Balkman. Continue Reading

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Game Preview: Spurs versus Lakers

Tonight, the San Antonio Spurs head into Los Angeles for a big game against the Lakers. If the Lakers vs Celtics game on Sunday was a preview of a potential NBA Finals, this game could be a preview of the Western Conference Finals. The Spurs head into this game following a tough loss to Portland Trailblazers, while the Lakers narrowly avoided defeat in a game against the Houston Rockets. So what does this game mean?

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Quick Hits: Random Thoughts on the NBA and Other Stuff

Today, I thought I’d try something new. Instead of an article about the NBA, I thought I would list off a bunch of random thoughts about the NBA, mixed in with thoughts about life in general. Of course you can look to Saving the Skyhook for a new article soon, but today I thought you, the reader, might enjoy something different.

Image from Hoops Collective

1. Ron Artest is complaining about the criticism he’s received playing for the Lakers. Should we expect anything less from a guy who thanked his psychiatrist after winning the Larry O’Brien trophy last June?

2. Sticking with Ron Artest, what team would want any part of that contract? I honestly think he’s almost impossible to move at this point.

3. From one Western Conference team to another, when will the Nuggets trade Carmelo Anthony? I think they may have lost all of their leverage at this point. How many times can you almost trade a guy?

4. Speaking of the Nuggets, wouldn’t JR Smith look good in a Bulls uniform? I know I’ve discussed this already, but with news that the Bulls may be adding Anthony Parker, I think Smith deserves a look. I think his impact would be much greater than Parker’s.

5. Who would do more damage in the playoffs, the Bulls or Magic? I’m still not sold on the moves the Magic made; outside of adding Hedo Turkoglu have they really improved? Continue Reading

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Lakers Look to Shake Things Up

Attention NBA: The Lakers may be looking to shake up their roster. Can they strike lightning twice, and pull off a steal like they did when they acquired Pau Gasol? Perhaps. Or maybe they are just looking for a slight adjustment to their roster. Or maybe they won’t do anything at all, and just stand pat. I mean, sure the Lakers have the second best record in the Western Conference, but they are 6-4 in their last ten and sit seven and a half games back of the San Antonio Spurs, headed into tonight’s game with Houston. So it’s not like they are fighting for a playoff spot, but this is a team everyone expected to run away with the West and make a fourth consecutive NBA Finals appearance.

So, who’s available? I think of the main players available, Andrew Bynum, Shannon Brown and Lamar Odom would be most attractive. What positions do the Lakers need to improve? I think the small forward position needs an upgrade, and possibly the center position. So let’s rundown a few possible trade scenarios. Continue Reading

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Update on Toddler Who Passed Away After Fall at Staples Center

A really sad story came out earlier in the day about a toddler who fell 50 feet at Staples Center last night following the Lakers-Warriors game, and later passed away at USC Medical Center. The toddler has been identified as two-year-old Lucas Anthony Tang, who managed to crawl over the glass partition from a luxury box which led to his fall. The family was looking at some pictures that they had just took of the young boy, and he somehow went over the glass during this time. Continue Reading

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Game of the Day: March 21

San Antonio Spurs at Atlanta Hawks — 8 PM eastern, telecast on ESPN

I recommend for today an interconference matchup between the Spurs and Hawks. The Spurs have been playing well of late, winning eight of their last ten games, but face a very dangerous Hawks team featuring premiere scorer Joe Johnson, two promising bigs in Josh Smith and Al Horford, and sixth man of the year candidate Jamal Crawford. San Antonio counters with perennial all-star and future hall-of-famer Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobili.

Atlanta currently holds fourth place in the east, tied with Boston in the loss column and only percentage points behind for third place. San Antonio, given its strong play of late, appears to have a solid grip on a playoff spot, five-and-a-half games ahead of ninth-place Memphis in the West.

The Spurs won the only other game these two played earlier in the season on January 27, 105-90. Duncan had a mammoth of a game, amassing 21 points, 27 boards, and 7 assists. Johnson lead the Hawks with 31 points.

In a game like this in which the talent level is fairly equal, I look for the team who needs it more to come out on top down the stretch like this. Expect a win from Atlanta with another strong showing from Johnson and a solid effort up front from Smith