Calling It Like I See It …………
By tophatal …… 5/20/2012 ….. 01.35 AM (EST)
It ain’t easy being cheesy but there you have it two NBA franchise that make their home , the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers at the Staples Center , are pretty much done , cooked and have nothing to left offer their fans . Smoke that bitch ! The Los Angeles Lakers are now 3-1 down in their series against the Oklahoma City Thunder . Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant as the consummate professionals have pretty much man-handled the Lakers’ defense , not giving them anything by way of a chance to acquit themselves . For the sixth consecutive game during the playoffs both players have exceeded 25 points in a game . Call it what you will but the Lakers have no place being on the same court as the Oklahoma City Thunder ! And that’s in spite of Kobe Bryant , the fourteen time All Star being on this team and playing with so much heart and passion. Unfortunately , his teammates, simply possess none of the heart or passion so often seen from the renowned veteran . Put a ” gun to their head and smoke that bitch ” (Lakers) ! It’s time now to put the Lakers out of their misery once they’re eliminated and simply gut the playing staff . They are old complacent and simply not good enough to win an NBA title .
Slide show for your perusal .
The free agents on this Lakers roster , many of them are unlikely to be resigned , more likely than not those players are likely to be jettisoned , with the belief that Mitch Kupchak is likely to seek an opportunity elsewhere serving another franchise in a similar capacity as a general manager . It ain’t over ’til the fat lady sings but stage left she’s now giving us brief rendition of an aria , as she awaits to make an entrance . The 103-100 victory by Oklahoma City Thunder has pretty much emphasized who has been the better team throughout this series . Kobe Bryant and the Lakers’ fans have pretty much been delusional for the greater part of the season , if they felt that their team was simply good enough to win the NBA title , much less this series .
And-One-Basketball just doesn’t work in the NBA and it would simply help if Vinny Del Negro actually had the players of the Los Angeles Clippers actually playing an ounce of defense , instead of simply relying on high-flying dunks as the sole premise behind their game . . Need I say anymore on the matter ? God damn , this team is bad ! Chris Paul looks like an aging geriatric assisted by the use of a “walker” instead being one of the best point guards left in the postseason . If the truth be known , as good as Paul has been , there are three other points who are simply better ! Come on down Russell Westbrook , Tony Parker and Rajon Rondo .
There’s no other answer than this , but where else other than New York City can you find some of the most obnoxious fans and athletes other than within the city of Los Angeles ? Blake Griffin has got to be frigging mad if he feels that the Clippers are a better team than the San Antonio Spurs when during the regular season and postseason , as he and his teammates have been made to look , as if they simply do not belong on a basketball court . Griffin needs to grow up , show that he’s a leader , rather than merely being a human highlight reel . Dunks or no dunks , if that’s all there is to your game , just shut the fu#k up !
The Los Angeles Clippers down 3-0 to the Spurs , much like their Staples Center co-habitants , the Los Angles Lakers are on the brink , looking to stave off elimination from the postseason. This mess is very much one of their own making simply because the way that this team has been constructed to be so one-dimensional from an offensive standpoint and doing nothing from a defensive standpoint . There is no way that the Clippers can erase this deficit and the demeanor of the players and coaching staff has simply reflected that fact !
Game three , and the Los Angeles Clippers had this game within their grasp , only to succumb to Gregg Popovich’s ….. players as they erased a 24 point deficit on their way to a 96-86 victory that puts Popovich and the San Antonio Spurs one win away in their fifth Western Conference Finals appearance during his tenure . The renowned coach has own four NBA titles all with the franchise and now seeks a fifth , to add to his tally and most certainly place in the upper echelons as one of the greatest coaches in the modern era of the NBA . There’s no doubt in my mind that Gregg Popovich is bound for the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in Indiana , . Indianapolis ! Care to add to that statement ?
At the start of this NBA season those riding on the coat-tails of the Miami Heat must have felt that they were in heaven . Well its dependent on how one now defines heaven ? Fans have anointed LeBron James ………King James and lo and behold the player has done nothing yet to prove that he’s deserving of that mantel. The player has ran all the way to hog heaven , garnering an estimated $140 million fortune and the apparent adoration of a number of NBA analysts and fans alike . OK , so he’s won three regular season MVP awards and scoring titles but the NBA and a player’s legacy is adjudged by the titles won and how one leads a team . Care to add to this ? LeBron has yet to win a title and one for The Gipper , God bless him , he is still waiting . Not one , not two , not three , not four but fu_k it gives us something to hang our hats unto LeBron ______ rather than coming off looking like an asshole !
For the life of me , I simply don’t know what the mindset was behind Pat Riley as he underwent the construction of this team in its present guise ! As if last season’s losing Finals’ roster wasn’t bad enough but now this ? Who would have thought that the Indiana Pacers would be giving the Miami Heat all they can handle and a great deal more ? Erik Spoesltra is now being out-coached by Frank Vogel and the Miami Heat’s two best players and their supporting cast have simply been horrendous in this series .
With four games to play and what’s said to be a great deal of animosity between Dwyane Wade and his head coach during game three when there was an animated exchange between the two . One could allude to the fact that there’s a great deal of disarray and dismay within the Heat locker room and the organization as a whole . Much of this I believe has come down to the complacency of this franchise and the mere fact that they’re so self-absorbed into believing all that has been written about the team ! That stance is also supported with the prickly and thorny nature that Heart President Pat Riley now has for all forms of the media. Always amenable to the print and television journalists when they have something favorable to say about his team but he becomes verbose and downright infantile the moment justifiable criticism is leveled at the players and his coaching staff alike . Riley , is not one to take any form of criticism , justifiable or otherwise and has been known to hold a grudge against those he believe have done him wrong , and it certainly has been no different as it relates to the Miami Heat organization . It begs the question is no one to be held accountable within the Heat organization when things go awry ? Clearly , Riley doesn’t believe so and neither do the more high profiled players on this team, namely LeBron James , Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh . When one considers that Micky Arison and Pat Riley went for broke by breaking the bank in order acquire Bosh and James , that maneuver has yet to really pay off dividends from a competitive standpoint . From an economic viewpoint and in terms of a business template the Heat are now one of the biggest draws in the NBA , though not the valuable franchise within the league . That distinction still belongs to the New York Knicks , with the Los Angeles Lakers not so far behind . It seems remarkable that the Golden State Warriors whose recent purchase by Joe Lacob and Peter Guber for a reputed $ 565 million has many wondering how inflated are the reputed values of the NBA franchises ?
Market size notwithstanding with ad revenues on the decline steadily on the decline and profit margins now under a great deal of pressure . One has to ask , are the NBA team owners and the league hierarchy necessarily on the same page ? In light of the recent collective bargaining agreement worked out between the NBA and the NBPA (union) , I would certainly like to think so but if the allegations are to believed , not all of the franchise owners were completely satisfied with this deal . There had to have been a reason why Mark Cuban , Michael Jordan and Mikhail Prokhorov were said to be indifferent to David Stern’s handling of these negotiations .
Game four for the Miami Heat will be a make-or-break situation and could very well determine their season . A loss , and we can pretty much assume that they will have certainly played themselves out of contention . The Bankers Life/ Conseco Fieldhouse Stadium will be packed to the rafters as the Indian Pacers’ fans look to cheer on their team . GM Larry Bird recently named Executive of the Year now adds another accolade to his already impressive resume`. In winning this particular award , Bird becomes the first former player in NBA history to have won each of the NBA’s most distinguished individual awards , namely Rookie Of The Year , MVP , Finals’ MVP and Coach of the Year . Already a Hall of Fame inductee , an NBA title would certainly further cement the former Celtic great’s already impressive legacy .
The Indiana Pacers’ ; Danny Granger may well have been unto something when he stated that the players on the Miami Heat were ” soft ” and have no stomach for a fight . God knows , this Heat team has been an embarrassment and all the conceitedness on display has simply indicated that when push come to shove this is a team , that simply has no guts to get down in the trenches , much less get into a ring for a real fight . Gutless , simply gutless and for those who simply affix greatness to LeBron James , calm down and smell the coffee . Greatness when bestowed upon , usually comes when that individual has achieved something of real merit and can be seen as tangible . James has yet to aspire to achieve anything tangible and the clock is still ticking . One more fall and we might as well use the word ” choke” and affix that to LeBron James ! Doubt my word ? Consider the player’s career thus far and his idiotic preseason rants as it pertained to his joining the Miami Heat ? Ask yourself , showmanship or simply the player making an ass of himself ? You can either back that shit up or you can’t ! James and his compatriots , Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh have yet to do either .
If the Heat should indeed win this game then the best-of-three games now becomes the reason upon which their season will now hinge. And that if anything should give us a clear indication as to the persona of this team . Anything short of a series’ victory and the NBA title itself , and this off-season there could very well a number of questions being asked of this organization and its personnel. And therein lies the dilemma now encompassing the Miami Heat and its players as they have been constantly throughout much of this season and the playoffs. Playing the “role” of a contender when in large they’ve been exhibiting the play of a “pretender ” . Now it all comes down to this , the final three games of this series and a do-or-die-situation . Now what awaits the Miami Heat ?
Picture gallery for your perusal .
The NBA postseason and the travails of the Clippers , Heat and Lakers , in your honest opinion have their woes been ones which you believe to self-induced ? Simply chime in with a comment as you see fit .
Picture and slide show details below .
(1) LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 19: Kendrick Perkins (5) of the Oklahoma City Thunder puts in a shot in the fourth quarter against the Los Angeles Lakers in Game Four of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2012 NBA Playoffs at Staples Center on May 19, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images @ copyrighted material all rights reserved ….
(2) Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook , right, puts up a shot as Los Angeles Lakers center Jordan Hill defends during the second half in Game 4 of an NBA basketball playoffs Western Conference semifinal, Saturday, May 19, 2012, in Los Angeles. The Thunder won 103-100 . AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill ….
(3) ) Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant , center, puts up a shot as Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant , left, defends along with forward Serge Ibaka of Congo during the second half in Game 4 of an NBA basketball playoffs Western Conference semifinal, Saturday, May 19, 2012, in Los Angeles. The Thunder won 103-100 . AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill ….
(4) LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 20: The San Antonio Spurs celebrate in the fourth quarter while playing against the Los Angeles Clippers in Game Four of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2012 NBA Playoffs at Staples Center on May 20, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images ….
(5) LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 20 : Blake Griffin(32 ) f the Los Angeles Clippers reacts in the fourth quarter while taking on the San Antonio Spurs in Game Four of the Western Conference Semifinals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs on May 20, 2011 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. Photo by Harry How/Getty Images ….
(6) Tiago Splitter (22) of the San Antonio Spurs goes up for a shot against Kenyon Martin (2) of the Los Angeles Clippers in the second half in Game Four of the Western Conference Semifinals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs on May 20, 2011 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. Photo by Harry How/Getty Images …
(7) INDIANAPOLIS, IN – MAY 20: Dwyane Wade (3) and LeBron James (6) of the Miami Heat celebrate after defeating the Indiana Pacers in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals during the 2012 NBA Playoffs on May 20, 2012 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana. Photo by Ron Hoskins/NBAE via Getty Images ….
(8) INDIANAPOLIS, IN – MAY 20 : Dwyane Wade (3) and Udonis Haslem (40) of the Miami Heat rebound against David West (21) of the Indiana Pacers in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Semifinals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on May 20, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. The Heat defeated the Pacers 101-93 . Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images …. ……
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