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#101 Posted by DocHaus (2719 posts) -

Beal responding to an abysmal team performance in Utah by putting the team on his back and dropping a career-high 51 points to beat Portland. Only the third player this season to break 50 individually, along with LeBron and James Harden.

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#102 Posted by mems1224 (2439 posts) -

Wooooh boy, Harden popped off last night. He has been absolutely insane this year and Paul has been a wonderful addition. I hope they can keep this up for the rest of the season.

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#103 Posted by billmcneal (1162 posts) -

The Warriors, Celtics, and Rockets are looking really good. And I think LeBron's days in Cleveland are numbered.

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#104 Posted by Deathstriker (1027 posts) -

The Cavs are struggling again. I think it's pretty clear they need a new coach (Fizdale?). Ty Lue allows the guys (other than Lebron) to be inconsistent and not play defense. I couldn't see Pop, Kerr, Brad Stevens, etc allowing that to happen and they'd probably have a way better winning record during the regular season. Lue needs to go and so does JR and TT. If they played defense and had a real shooting guard and center they'd be far more dominant.

I'm fine with the Celtics making it to the finals if the Cavs besides Lebron, Wade, and a couple others aren't going to try, but the main thing I want to happen is for the Warriors to not win again - just like I don't really care who wins the superbowl (I have a preference) but I mainly don't want it to be the Pats again. I don't think the Celtics have a shot to beat the Warriors right now unless they pick up someone else, so it's really just the Rockets and Thunder who have a shot, since Kawhi is out so much this year for the Spurs.

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#105 Posted by KingBonesaw (1299 posts) -

@deathstriker: Fizdale is a LeBron guy dating back to Miami so I could see the Cavs hiring him around the draft (before free agency) to try and lure LeBron to staying in Cleveland.

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#106 Posted by DocHaus (2719 posts) -

The Wizards seem to be defined by their competition on any given night: if they play a sub-.500 team, they check out in the second half and forget how to play defense or make passes correctly. If they play a playoff-bound team, suddenly they put their heart into the game (with possible exception of the last 5 minutes of the game). Good thing the playoffs will only have winning teams in contention, assuming Wall/Beal survive that long.

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#107 Posted by mems1224 (2439 posts) -

Ladies and gentleman, James fucking Harden!


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#108 Posted by Deathstriker (1027 posts) -

@mems1224: Yeah, Harden is a beast. As far as I'm concerned he might be the best player right now after Lebron. KD is a better shooter and can get his shot off easier due to his height, but KD ran away from being a leader and being "the man", so he could be on a team that doesn't really need him and so he could throw temper tantrums like a little kid. Harden has a better all around offensive game and is better at passing than KD. If KD and Harden traded teams I doubt KD would have The Rockets so high in the western conference. Seems like a lot of people think Curry is third best, but he also ran from being a leader and Harden is better at passing, rebounding, and being a "floor general" than him. Harden's last test is playing this well in the playoffs.

Thunder leadership is idiotic since they could've had three MVPs playing together (Harden, Westbrook, and KD), plus Ibaka and Adams are very good at what they do, SMH. That team could've beat GSW and maybe been a dynasty.

Rumors that Lebron might go to The Warriors are pretty funny. It would be a genius move if Lebron does entertain the idea simply to show Klay, Iggy, Draymond, or whoever else that GSW was willing to get rid of them to get him, which could cause drama in the locker room. The Cavs shopping to trade Kyrie is one of the main reasons he demanded a trade. If Lebron did go to the Bay area I'd hate the team even more and dislike him too. I'd probably switch to rooting for Rockets, OKC, and Celtics way more.

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#109 Posted by JonRambo (39 posts) -

@deathstriker:

I don't think Lebron will go to the Warriors. Just what the Warriors would have to do to have cap space to be able to make Lebron an offer is too much. Plus the Warriors are good, they don't need Lebron.

With Blake the Pistons may be able to make a push in the East.

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#110 Posted by Qrowdyy (365 posts) -

What the actual fuck. My dude better not get snubbed for a third time come MVP voting or I'm gonna start talking conspiracy theories.

@jonrambo said:

@deathstriker:

I don't think Lebron will go to the Warriors. Just what the Warriors would have to do to have cap space to be able to make Lebron an offer is too much. Plus the Warriors are good, they don't need Lebron.

With Blake the Pistons may be able to make a push in the East.

Lebron for Klay/Dray is a definite upgrade and there's no such thing as good enough. But, no way Lebron goes easy mode with the Warriors. He cares too much about his legacy and he knows the optics are bad af.

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#111 Posted by hippie_genocide (2390 posts) -

Harden is a very good offensive player, but my lasting impression of him is completely phoning it in against the Spurs in last years playoffs in an elimination game. Or a couple years before that, stumbling around on the floor against the Warriors. Until he leads a team to a championship, I won't consider him among the best players in the league. Probably will win the MVP though, whatever that's worth.

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#112 Edited by Qrowdyy (365 posts) -

Harden is a very good offensive player, but my lasting impression of him is completely phoning it in against the Spurs in last years playoffs in an elimination game. Or a couple years before that, stumbling around on the floor against the Warriors. Until he leads a team to a championship, I won't consider him among the best players in the league. Probably will win the MVP though, whatever that's worth.

Throwing shade much? I guess it's too much to ask to be happy for someone not wearing blue and gold.

Also...You gotta lead a team to a championship to be considered one of the best? So what you're saying is that you were sleeping on KD before last year? Plenty of all-time greats habitually flamed out in the playoffs. Charles Barkley or Karl Malone ring a bell? Opinions like that will get you laughed out of a lot of rooms.

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#113 Posted by mems1224 (2439 posts) -

@hippie_genocide: so do you not consider Russ among the best in the league? Or Giannis? Or Chris Paul? There are a lot of great players that haven't won a title. Hell, Durant couldn't lead a team to a championship either.

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#114 Posted by JonRambo (39 posts) -

@qrowdyy:

Lebron would be an upgrade there and pretty much any team would make that trade. Problem is the Warriors would have to move them and maybe more just to create the cap space to be able to make the offer that would get Lebron in the room with them. If it was a straight-up trade then yea, but it would be breaking up that team for a chance to get him. But more than anything Lebron knows that would completely kill his legacy.

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#115 Edited by Deathstriker (1027 posts) -

@jonrambo: I don't think he'll go to GSW either. I was saying if I were Lebron I'd let the Warriors think I might go there since it could easily cause drama, since they'd have to get rid of at least two players.

I don't see the Pistons beating Celtics, Cavs, or Raptors in a playoff series. Relying on a PF and center seems so old school nowadays, but it should work good enough in the east to get them to the playoffs and lose in the first or second round. Griffin, Dwight Howard, and a few others were born too late, since their styles are now old and not what a winning team needs in its best player.

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#116 Posted by hippie_genocide (2390 posts) -

@qrowdyy said:
@hippie_genocide said:

Harden is a very good offensive player, but my lasting impression of him is completely phoning it in against the Spurs in last years playoffs in an elimination game. Or a couple years before that, stumbling around on the floor against the Warriors. Until he leads a team to a championship, I won't consider him among the best players in the league. Probably will win the MVP though, whatever that's worth.

Throwing shade much? I guess it's too much to ask to be happy for someone not wearing blue and gold.

Also...You gotta lead a team to a championship to be considered one of the best? So what you're saying is that you were sleeping on KD before last year? Plenty of all-time greats habitually flamed out in the playoffs. Charles Barkley or Karl Malone ring a bell? Opinions like that will get you laughed out of a lot of rooms.

I was talking about Harden specifically, because he's come up so, so small when his team has needed him the most. I'm not throwing shade at him, that's just the truth. So for HIM, he's got to prove it in the playoffs or I'll just consider him a guy that racks up numbers in the regular season but flames out when it matters. BTW, there are plenty of players in the league I like and respect that aren't playing for the Warriors.

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#117 Posted by Qrowdyy (365 posts) -

I was talking about Harden specifically, because he's come up so, so small when his team has needed him the most. I'm not throwing shade at him, that's just the truth. So for HIM, he's got to prove it in the playoffs or I'll just consider him a guy that racks up numbers in the regular season but flames out when it matters. BTW, there are plenty of players in the league I like and respect that aren't playing for the Warriors.

Except you could have said the same thing about KD before he went to the Warriors. He came up so, so small when he blew a 3-1 lead due to playing hero ball. But, nobody in their right mind was saying that pre-GSW KD wasn't a top 5 player in the league.

You can legitimately knock a player for lack of playoff success, but lack of playoff success does not invalidate their other achievements.

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#118 Edited by Qrowdyy (365 posts) -

@deathstriker: @jonrambo: Here's Lebron discrediting the rumor

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ESPN got us again. They've officially become the tabloid journalism of the sports world. To be fair they probably got a ton of clicks though. Gotta get that sweet internet money.

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#119 Posted by hippie_genocide (2390 posts) -

@qrowdyy: I'm sure the whole city of Houston would have gladly settled for James Harden playing hero ball in a closeout game instead going 2-11 for 10 points and basically quitting on his team once they got down.

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#120 Edited by Qrowdyy (365 posts) -

@hippie_genocide: Whatever dude, you're welcome to have your salty minority opinion while the rest of us celebrate a great player having a stellar season.

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#121 Posted by KingBonesaw (1299 posts) -

The Rockets are in their second year of this system and as long as everybody is healthy they should be considered championship contenders. They should get to the Western Conference Finals since the Spurs without Kawhi are not winning a championship. I do have to put a warning out there to all Rockets fans which is beware of PJ Tucker. I've watched him play enough to know that there are going to be games where he will miss wide open threes for the entire game but keep shooting because why wouldn't you?

This season has been decent and as long as the Raptors get swept early in the playoffs I'm fine with whatever else happens. I just don't want the Toronto media invading my basketball anymore than it already does so hopefully they choke. I'm excited for Jabari Parker coming back tonight even though I'm not expecting much, but who knows maybe now that he doesn't have a coach who hates him he'll be better?

LeBron should probably go to LA since I don't know why you would own multiple houses in a city you don't live in.

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#122 Posted by Qrowdyy (365 posts) -

@kingbonesaw: PJ Tucker went into a mini-slump early last month, so consider me warned and aware. Also, they haven't definitively said Kawhi is out for the season, have they? I've seen articles speculating he could be back by the end of the month.

Jabari Parker...ideally it pushes the Bucks over the top into becoming actual contenders, but ACL tears are no joke. Two ACL tears in as many years? There's a good chance he never gets back to 100%.

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#123 Posted by KingBonesaw (1299 posts) -

@qrowdyy: I doubt he’s going to be the player we expected him to be coming out of Duke but if they bring him off the bench and he can dominate against second units I would be happy.

I’ve just assumed that Kawhi would sit out the season since that would be the most Popovich move possible but they are the Spurs so he could end up playing tomorrow for all I know.

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#124 Posted by DocHaus (2719 posts) -

The Wizards are 3-0 in the Tomas Satoransky Era. Counting down the days until some idiot columnist at the Washington Post or ESPN starts theorycrafting a trade involving John Wall for a Stretch-4.

Seriously though, really glad to see Sato stepping up.

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#125 Posted by KingBonesaw (1299 posts) -

The Cavaliers coming off of one of the best games of the season decide to trade everybody. The NBA is the best.

The Suns are an embarrassment to the league this season but on the bright side they got Elfrid Payton which means that they now have the best hair in the league alongside Josh Jackson.

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#126 Posted by mems1224 (2439 posts) -

Man, IT really should have just shut his season down after getting hurt. Playing through an injury for Boston just cost him a ton of money

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#127 Posted by Oobir (116 posts) -

@kingbonesaw: Elfrid Payton's hair is a travesty. I don't care if that makes me old, it's the dang truth!

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#128 Posted by mems1224 (2439 posts) -

@oobir: every shot he takes is a contested shot because of his hair

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#129 Posted by Deathstriker (1027 posts) -

I like the trades that the Cavs made, but I would've kept Wade & Frye and gotten rid of Jr and Thompson. I feel a little bad for IT, really the Cavs management look like idiots. They got rid of a future HOF in Kyrie and all they have now is the Nets pick while made their biggest eastern rival WAY better. They should've tried to get Bledsoe and Booker from the Suns for Kyrie and other Cav players. With someone as good as Kyrie I would've sent him to a crappy eastern team or almost anywhere west. That's like if the Bulls traded Pippen to the Knicks or Pacers for nothing in return. Excluding injury and on paper, the Cavs should pretty easily make it to the finals now.

Hopefully the Rockets, Spurs, or Thunder can knockoff the Warriors this year. They act even more like little kids this year when something doesn't go their way.

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#130 Posted by andythemeZ (392 posts) -

What a weird experiment the Cavs have been before and after these trades. Still can’t get rid of the also-ran players you forget are even on the team until they smack talk something during the championship parade.