The War Of The Roses ………….

The War Of The Roses

So at this point of the NBA season teams are now vying to position themselves for the second-half of the NBA schedule . The NBA All Star Game is not that far away and the news surrounding the league has been the dismissal of Jason Kidd as the Head Coach of the Milwaukee Bucks . It would appear that the organization now wants to go in a different direction. Much to the dismay of Bucks’ player Giannis Antetokounmpou , Kidd’s firing came right out of the blue. Over their last fifteen games the Bucks have managed to put together a 7-8 record over the period. Antetokounmpou tried to intervene on Kidd’s behalf, but it was all to no avail. With his firing , the Bucks will now have Joe Prunty inserted on an interim basis as the new Head Coach. .


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In their last contest the Milwaukee Bucks were on court to face the Phoenix Suns whom they defeated by the score of 109-105 at the BMO Harris Bradley Center , in Milwaukee Wisconsin. The team’s home record as well as being on the road has not been all that illuminating .

Moving forward, I am not so sure the Milwaukee Bucks are heading in the right direction without Jason Kidd. He brought some semblance of urgency to the team , but the real issue has been the fact they do not have a proven veteran leader on the roster with a track record of success. Throughout much of this season Giannis Antetokounmpou has been by far their best player . If the Bucks are to have any semblance of success this season then it will be incumbent on the play of their forward and fast-rising star. Up next for the Milwaukee Bucks will be a game against the Brooklyn Nets , as they host the Eastern Conference team at home.

The opportunities for Jason Kidd will not be bleak , as I believe he is quite capable of leading a team to success. However, what it all comes down to at the end of the day, is where will be a suitable fit for one of the league’s most astute Head Coaches

Say what you will, but even with the claims that he’s been a breath of fresh air within the game, LaVar Ball is proving to be more of an off-court attraction than he could be seen as an asset for the Los Angeles Lakers . If Ball Sr is not touting the Big Baller Brand , then a great deal of the time in recent weeks he has been overtly critical of the Lakers’ organization, most notably Luke Walton , Head Coach of the Lakers as well as senior executives within the front office. Suffice to say, while his son Lonzo Ball has barely contributed anything of note to the Lakers other than one or two flashes of brilliance . The guys in purple and gold have become an eyesore on the court, while there now appears to be some dissension of the court , as players are now being asked to take sides . Will it be Team Big Baller Brand and Lonzo Ball or Team Lakers ? I don’t think this was what either Magic Johnson or Rob Pelinka had in mind at the start of the season and I am sure that the Buss family must be besides themselves with the ugliness now being witnessed from this team .

Unable to compete within the Pacific Division and also struggling to hold their own within the Western Conference , it’s best to say that the Los Angeles Lakers should consider “ tanking” their season while senior executives Magic Johnson and Rob Pelinka decide what to do concerning the makeup of this team. There’s nothing to suggest that this Lakers’ team is playing with a great deal of confidence. In their last scheduled game the Los Angeles Lakers put up 127 points in a twenty point victory over the New York Knicks . It was a contest of missed opportunities by both teams the match-up . Following up that game , Lonzo Ball and his teammates would face the Boston Celtics where another home victory provided a timely boost for the team’s moral . With an upcoming contest against the Chicago Bulls , it will be interesting to see if the Lakers can put together a consistent winning streak .

He is a four-time League MVP and a three-time Finals’ MVP , but as LeBron James continues to rewrite the history books , the continued comparisons will be made to his idol Michael Jordan . James in a game played against the San Antonio Spurs which resulted in a loss for the Cleveland Cavaliers , he became the youngest player in NBA history to have amassed thirty thousand career points (30,000) during the regular season. The list of players to have passed that threshold now lists as seven . With the exception of Kobe Bryant and Dirk Nowitzki , all of the other members are enshrined in the Hall of Fame . James and Nowitzki are the only active players the list to achieved that feat.

As the season has progressed , it has become troubling to see the struggles of the Cleveland Cavaliers continue. The additions of Dwyane Wade , Derrick Rose and Isiah Thomas doesn’t seem to have made up for the loss of point guard Kyrie Irving . With the recent rumors of dissent within the locker room , after it was revealed that Kevin Love may well have feigned an on-court injury during a game and then not meeting for a morning practice with his teammates. One has to wonder whether or not Head Coach Tyronn Lue still commands the respect of this team , but more importantly , can the front office now do anything to appease LeBron James as it appears that things are spinning out of control ?

The Cleveland Cavaliers were seen as the prohibitive favorites to make a successful defense of their conference title and make it back the NBA Playoffs. That will likely be the case , but based on their current play, I am not so sure that they’re a guaranteed thing for a deep run in the NBA Playoffs , much less beat the best that the Western Conference has to offer. Game in and game out , LeBron James continues to give it his all , but I no longer believe this current Cleveland lineup is actually good enough win another NBA title . Over their next six games , the Cleveland Cavaliers will have a great deal to prove to themselves as well as their fans. Up next for LeBron James and his teammates will be a game against the Indiana Pacers at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio on the 26th January , 2018.

Head Coach Tyronn Lue is no longer sure what his best lineup should be concerning the roster. Other than LeBron James being automatically being penciled in as a starter, the coach and his staff might as well be drawings names out of a hat to see who will line up alongside the four-time League MVP

The one thing we can be sure of , money doesn’t always guarantee success, but it certainly helps. Last year’s winning team in the NBA Finals the Golden State Warriors was among the costliest lineup in the league’s history. In seeking to make successful defense this season, the Warriors are already back to their very best . With the best record in the league , it will be interesting to see what this team is capable of between now and the rest of the season, as they seek to win their third NBA title in the last four seasons . This season , it has been all about Kevin Durant and his erstwhile teammate Steph Curry as they lead the team in scoring . Over his last eight games Durant has been very impressive , during which time Golden State have continued to show their dominance. However, where I feel the Warriors have greatly improved , has been through the team’s defense. Head Coach Steve Kerr knows what to expect out of his players and holds them accountable for their actions .. Golden State will be looking to up the ante when they face the Minnesota Timberwolves on the 25th January in a game which will be played at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, California . This should be a very good match-up between two of the better teams within the Western Conference this season.

The dismissal of David Fizdale led to a great deal of speculation that his firing had more to do with the front office no longer having any faith in their coach . Memphis’ players seemed to admire Fizdale and what he brought to the table and gave it their all . The team’s billionaire owner Robert Pera bought the franchise on the cheap , but the real issue became the fact that for all of the fandom, there was no real plan of action moving forward. JD Bickerstaff has now taken over the reins of the team as the Grizzlies push to place themselves into contention for a playoff berth. . Currently sitting in twelfth place within the Western Conference , the Memphis Grizzlies are 6 ½ games behind the eighth-placed Denver Nuggets . Bickerstaff will prepare the Memphis Grizzlies for their next game when they will meet the San Antonio Spurs at the FedEx Times Forum in Memphis , Tennessee on Wednesday evening.

Dwight Howard seems to be having one of the best years of his career , if you consider the past four years were anything to go by. There was a time when the former NBA Defensive Player of the Year was seen as a great catalyst. Instead , he’s become something of a journeyman toiling around the league , looking for the best contract available, while having shown very little leadership ability for any franchises he’s played for with the exception of the Orlando Magic . Howard now toils away with the Charlotte Hornets (19-27) , where team owner Michael Jordan is still looking for his club to make a deep playoff run during his tenure. Dwight Howard didn’t excel in the Playoffs while he was a member of the Los Angeles Lakers and I seriously doubt he still has the capacity to take this Hornets’ team to the next level. Howard might be the second best offensive weapon the Hornets have , but that in of-itself will not be enough if this team has any desires on making it to the NBA Playoffs for the first time since 2015.

The next twelve games on the Charlotte Hornets’ schedule should prove to be interesting for the organization and this team. Up next for the Hornets will be a game against the Atlanta Hawks , a former team that Dwight Howard played for.

With the All Star Game and all of its precursor festivities just around the corner, the remainder of the NBA schedule will be impactful . What match-ups are you most looking forward to and which team do you believe could provide the biggest surprise during the second-half of the season ?

Tophatal ………….


NBA news

NBA standings (division) and conference standings

Week’s schedule

NBA players’ stats

NBA Rookie stats

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Author: tophatal ...........

An avid sports' fans that's all !!!!!

50 thoughts on “The War Of The Roses ………….”

  1. At roughly this point last season , things were taking a turn for the better for several teams while others floundered.

    There will be several interesting games taking place today in the lead-up to the weekend schedule . A very interesting match-up will be taking place when the Miami Heat play host to the Sacramento Kings , in a contest where East meets West.

    If the rumors are to be believed, then the Cleveland Cavaliers will be looking to add their roster , with the addition of George Hill . Then it will be interesting to see what GM Kobe Altman might prepared to offer up in return to get Hill.

    Has there there been a Carmelo Anthony sighting this season , because I sure as hell haven’t seen him playing with any great energy for the Oklahoma City Thunder over the course of their schedule. Carmelo at this stage of his career is on a steady decline , lacking the real passion to produce and it is clearly obvious with his productivity this season . He has brought nothing at all the Thunder as they labor within their division and conference .

    Carmelo Anthony and Russell Westbrook will be asked to take the level of their play up a notch or two . In their next game the Oklahoma City Thunder will face the Detroit Pistons on the road at the Little Caesars Arena in Detroit , Michigan on Saturday 27th January , 2018 .

    NBA news

    Free agents and unrestricted free agents

    Tophatal ………….

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  2. The Cleveland Cavaliers are a product of making one of the best NBA players the “Chief Cook and Bottlewasher.” The imported parts that put LBJ in the comfort zone don’t necessarily transform into a cohesive unit.
    Do you still believe Tyronn Lue was an upgrade over David Blatt? NOT CLOSE.

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    1. Ronbets

      This is what happens when you have an owner such as Dan Gilbert simply cave every time LBJ scratches his testes (balls). They got rid of David Blatt and need we forget former GM David Griffin also ? You’re right , they’ve allowed LeBron to take charge and when he’s not happy, he cries off and then has his minions point the finger at the front office . Head coach Tyronn Lue is a LeBron James’ surrogate.

      Tophatal ……………….

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  3. Punishment doesn’t fit the crime. Barry Church knocks Gronkowski in la la land with a helmet to helmet blast. Basically a good percentage move by the offending Jags. Sending one of the best opponents to concussion protocol and just receiving a 15yd personal foul. The game was there for the Jag’s taking. But………..the only taking they took was a knee with 55seconds left in the half and a few time-outs. That’s playing not lose versus……….you know what I mean.

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  4. This season’s NBA All Star Weekend takes place between the 16th and 18th of February . The teams for the All Star Game will be captained by the respective top vote-getters from each conference. LeBron James topped that mark in East , while Steph Curry led in the West. The whole format has been changed for this season’s event with their being very little input from the fans. Personally , I totally agree with the change , but my only caveat being the very fact there’s bound to be a great deal of favoritism coming from the respective captains as they look to pick a team.

    In the lead-up to the event I think there’s a great to be played for with the teams positioning themselves for that final push during the second-half of the season . For the moment however , I think we can concentrate on the weekend schedule of games taking place , with the Friday night openers offering up several enticing match-ups. With the Cleveland Cavaliers faltering under the weight of expectation , head coach Tyronn Lue will likely make some changes to the team’s lineup when they face the Indiana Pacers at home tonight.

    One of the more interesting games taking place also will provide the fans to see how good Ben Simmons just happens to be when he and his Philadelphia 76ers’ teammates face the San Antonio Spurs in a game likely to highlight two teams with very good offensive weaponry.

    NBA news

    Tophatal …………….

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  5. I’ll says this and say it once only , Skip Bayless likes to blow smoke up everyone’s ass. The more nonsense he utters the more you know he has something in common with 45 , the so so ever respected President of the Free World or as I would like to say , the planet SHITHOLE . Bayless in his latest outing on his eponymous FS1 (FoxSports 1) show , made the statement that Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers is and has been the most dynamic player in the league over the course of this season.

    As impressive as the Sixers are , Embidd might be the sole reason for the success seen at this point of the season, but to describe him as the most dynamic player in the league is an affront to the likes of James Harden , LeBron James , Steph Curry , Kevin Durant , Russell Westbrook and even Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks . The less said by Skip Bayless on the air , the better off the genuine NBA and sports fan can remain at peace and excited about the world of sports. Bayless should realize one great game doesn’t make the Sixers’ center into a world beater let alone the best at his position in this league.

    Skip Bayless is seen here with Shannon Sharpe on their Fox (FS1) show Undisputed.

    At present the Philadelphia 76ers are 24-21 and they’re well-placed to quite possibly obtain an NBA Playoff berth . Up next for the Sixers will be a game against the Oklahoma City Thunder , from the Western Conference. It will be interesting to see how aggressive Joel Embidd will be in this contest .

    Tophatal

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  6. Tough break for the upstart NOrleans Pelicans losing Boogie Cousins. Tough dude that reminds me of another Cajun area hoopster named Dwayne Scales.

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    1. Ronbets

      I know ‘melo is the latest player to have crossed the 25,000 career-point threshold , but in all honesty when his career is said and done . Do you believe he makes for a credible Hall of Fame candidate ? Other than his time with the Denver Nuggets and momentary flashes of brilliance with the New York Knicks , I don’t think he’s been that great a player ! Even now , he has yet to show anything while playing alongside Russell Westbrook with the Oklahoma City Thunder . Throughout much of his career , Carmelo Anthony has been overpaid and completely overrated. Given the idiocy of the Basketball Writers , he’ll probably be voted into the Hall of Fame solely based on his accomplishments of having won Olympic gold medals (three) with Team USA .

      Carmelo   Anthony

      Tophatal …………

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  7. It is becoming increasingly likely that the Golden State Warriors will round out the month of January with the best win-percentage of all the teams in the NBA . Their dominance this season cannot be questioned and the fact that they’re the first team to forty victories this season should prove something to their continued doubters. Steve Kerr has the best of both worlds , with two of the top-five players in the league on the team’s roster . For the fools who believed Kevin Durant and Steph Curry could not play alongside each other and then who claimed it would be best to trade away Klay Thompson , I wonder what exactly do they have to say for themselves right about now ?

    Curry

    Kevin Durant and Step Curry (right)

    The pairing could very well split the voting with regard to this season’s League MVP . A strong case can also be made for Russell Westbrook as he seeks to become a two-time successive MVP . The Golden State Warriors for their part have been taking down opponents with almost effortless ease. The next couple of games for the Warriors I don’t believe will be that much of a test for the team. Up next the Warriors will face the Utah Jazz on the road a in clash of Western Conference foes .

    Golden State Warriors news

    Tophatal

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  8. Games on tap for tonight as the week’s schedule opens up in the NBA . Big game of the night will see the Boston Celtics (35-15) face the Denver Nuggets (26-23) in a clash of East versus West . When these two teams met in December , it was Boston who had the upper hand winning the game . I fully expect Kyrie Irving to be at the top of his game in this contest as the Celtics continue to play hard . Kyrie Irving has been the difference maker for the Boston Celtics this season and that is an undeniable fact.

    Kyrie

    Kyrie Irving

    While Kyrie Irving and the Boston Celtics ride high , within the Western Conference the team who continues to be the main surprise just happens to be the Minnesota Timberwolves (32-20) coached by Tom Thibodeau . If nothing else one has to be extremely pleased with the way that this team has played over course of the season .

    With six players in the Timberwolves’ lineup averaging double-digits in scoring , it’s easy to understand why they have been such a success this season. Karl-Anthony Towns , Jimmy Butler and Andrew Wiggins are the main reasons behind Minnesota’s success and it will be interesting to see if they can make the Playoffs for the first time since the 2003-04 season .

    Towns

    Andrew Wiggins (left), Karl-Anthony Towns and Jimmy Butler .

    The Minnesota Timberwolves would make it to the conference finals where they would fall to the Los Angeles Lakers .

    Monday’s NBA schedule

    Boston Celtics news

    Minnesota Timberwolves news

    Tophatal ……………

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  9. LaVar Ball and his 2 kids landed in Lithuania with his best PR machine working. He called GState honcho Kerr the “Milli Vanilli” of the NBA. He called Marc Jackson the architect of the Warriors. He might have a point. Too bad Marc was shitcanned for homophobic rhetoric………..especially in the Bay Area. Shame that Marc couldn’t express his heart felt religious beliefs. A devout Christian and St.John alumnus, unlike the late boxing icon that said, “I ain’t got nuthin against them Viet Cong.” One gets a Mulligan and other gets fired.

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    1. Ronbets

      I still find LaVar Ball to be an irritant. He’s an opportunist and in terms of being a father he remains a poor excuse. Instead of admonishing his son LiAngelo Ball for his criminal activities in China , Ball Sr has sought to blame UCLA , make claims that the President wasn’t involved in his son’s release. Like with any other uneducated asshole LaVar Ball is just proving that he’s an ass and has no idea how his own government works altogether. It was the State Dept behind the scenes along with embassy officials in Beijing who aided in his son’s release and that of his teammates accused in the crimes of theft. Fuck LaVar Ball and all of his opinionated views as he continues to be un-knowledgeable asshole. All he is concerned with has been to make waves and give notice to the Big Baller Brand , a brand that will no doubt exploit his own race just like all of the other apparel companies out there. As for the two younger sons within the family , LaMelo and LiAngelo Ball , the patriarch is simply biding his time with a view of making a big splash in either this upcoming NBA Draft or the draft of 2019 .

      LaVar

      Lonzo (left) and LaVar Ball.

      LaVar Ball continues to be an @ss , because Steve Kerr has achieved far more than Ball will ever accomplish as a patriarch much less as businessman . There’s a reason why the likes of Peter Guber and Joe Lacob , billionaire entrepreneurs and co-owners of the Golden State Warriors have implicit faith in their head coach. Two NBA titles in three years and in all likelihood this Warriors’ franchise appear to be on its way to another title , while being among the most dominant teams seen within recent NBA history. If LaVar Ball wants to be seen as a productive individual then he should be addressing the fact that his Los Angeles Lakers’ overhyped son Lonzo Ball is nowhere near the best player on the Lakers’ roster much less the best rookie in the NBA this season . Momentary flashes of brilliance from Lonzo cannot make up for the fact his game is a long way off from where it needs to be and the idiotic comparisons being made to the likes of Jason Kidd , Magic Johnson and even Kobe Bryant shows how fucking clueless people are in general .

      The Los Angeles Lakers will struggle to gain a Playoff Berth much less compete against the best that the Pacific Division has to offer.

      LaVar Ball wishes his son was on the roster of the Golden State Warriors , rather than being on a Los Angeles Lakers’ roster which lacks leadership , commitment and one that knows how to play aggressively .

      Tophatal ……………..

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    1. Ronbets

      The entire Mayweather klan are a bunch of fucking ingrates . They’ve no respect of anything other than money. Floyd Jr , may well talk about the money he’s amassed from his career , an estimated $550 million fortune along with his promotional company , Mayweather Promotions Inc . Yet, at the end of the day , he is nothing more than a misogynistic cunt , who has no respect for women and doesn’t know how to carry himself with dignity , much less be a role model for his own kids, let alone kids in general . There is nothing to be admired about him other than his boxing ability inside the ring.

      Floyd

      Floyd Mayweather Jr .


      #FloydMayweatherIsACunt (vagina)

      Tophatal

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  10. So it has now come to this , with the Los Angeles Clippers deciding to bail on their season ,with their trading away All Star forward Blake Griffin to the Detroit Pistons . Team owner Steve Ballmer has thanked the star for his contributions to the franchise over the years , but at the end of the day , it appears that the franchise , most notably senior front office executives Lawrence Frank and Jerry West wanted to move in a completely new direction. If there was any consulting or input concerning this move with head coach Doc Rivers , there appears to be no news being offered from anyone within the organization.

    BG

    Blake Griffin whose Monday afternoon trade to the Detroit Pistons from the Los Angles Clippers was the shocking news which unfolded within the NBA during the day.


    Courtesy of ESPN

    Blake Griffin thanks Clippers fans after trade, ready for ‘next chapter’

    Blake Griffin is ready for the next chapter of his basketball career.

    On Tuesday, the All-Star forward tweeted out a statement to thank the Clippers’ fans and the city of Los Angeles after he was traded to the Detroit Pistons.

    The 28-year-old Griffin had been the face of the Clippers, and in July he agreed to a $171 million, five-year deal, ending a brief flirtation with free agency. The deal didn’t include a no-trade clause.

    While a free agent in the 2017 offseason, Griffin met with Clippers owner Steve Ballmer, coach Doc Rivers and several players at Staples Center in a celebration of his career. At the end of the two-hour fete, Griffin rose and spoke, telling teammates, his coach and the owner, “I want my legacy to be a Clipper.”

    In Detroit, where the Cavaliers will play the Pistons on Tuesday night, LeBron James said the Griffin trade is a part of the business, but players are blamed for being disloyal when choosing free agency when franchise don’t show loyalty in trades all the time:

    “When a player gets traded, it’s they was doing what’s best for the franchise. But when a player decides to leave, it’s, ‘He’s not loyal. He’s a snake. He’s not committed.’ It’s just, that’s the narrative of how it goes. So I’m definitely (aware). I know that firsthand,” he said.

    Griffin is averaging 22.6 points, 7.9 rebounds and 5.4 assists in 33 games this season, but the Clippers have been plagued by injuries and are ninth in the Western Conference standings.

    In the deal, the Clippers receive Tobias Harris, Avery Bradley, Boban Marjanovic and a first- and second-round draft pick. The Clippers are also sending Brice Johnson and Willie Reed to Detroit alongside Griffin.

    —-
    Click on link to read this article in full.
    —-

    If the Los Angeles Clippers are looking “to tank” their season while still playing well within their division as well as the league overall , then there has to be an explanation offered up to the fans why the decision to trade Blake Griffin was made. The fans are owed a great deal more than is now being offered up by the front office at this juncture. Steve Ballmer paid over $2 billion to purchase the franchise after the shameful actions of former owner Donald Sterling .

    I firmly believe the Detroit Pistons got the better part of this deal and it should bode well for the team over the remainder of their season. With Blake Griffin joining this Pistons’ roster , it will be interesting to see how he will now acclimatize himself with his new teammates. Griffin was still owed a considerable sum ($142 million) on the remainder of his existing contract with the Los Angeles Clippers . He will get the chance to pit himself against the Cleveland Cavaliers when these two Eastern Conference teams meet on Tuesday evening .

    Los Angeles Clippers news

    Tophatal …………..

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  11. The Blake Griffin trade notwithstanding , there will be several transactions taking place between now and the lead-up to the All Star Game festivities. If the maneuvers seen last season were any thing to go by , then expect the teams to make some cap-saving moves to position themselves for not only upcoming free agents , but also what they believe to be a good Draft Class for 2018 .

    Scheduled for today , Tuesday 30th January there will be nine games on tap. The best match-up of the night will feature a contest between the Minnestoa Timberwolves taking on the Toronto Raptors . The Orlando Magic will face a tough task when they take on the Houston Rockets , who in spite of the absence of James Harden they have been playing some very good basketball .

    NBA news and transactions

    NBA schedule 30th January

    Tophatal …………..

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  12. He’s yet to be given any credit, but this season might be the year when not only pundits and journalists take not of Brad Stevens but also the rest of the NBA in general. As the head coach of the Boston Celtics , Stevens has seen his team grow with confidence taking on all comers and simply getting the better of them with effortless ease. Stevens and GM Danny Ainge have grown in stature while remaining faithful to the organization’s philosophy of growth from within as well as delving into the free agency market . The Celtics are now in such a welcoming position by way of the cap , that they could be major players during this upcoming off-season . A great deal of credit for this all comes by way of the ingenuity shown by Danny Ainge and his front office staff . Stevens for his part has a young and astute coaching staff which also has experience.

    Bs

    Brad Stevens of the Celtics

    Now while Gordon Hayward has been sidelined this season due to injury , his Boston Celtics’ teammates have taken up the slack . Kyrie Irving continues to be the driving force alongside the veteran Al Horford . However, what is abundantly clear about this Celtics’ team is the very fact their rookies and sophomores are players who can contribute.

    Irving and  Tatum

    Pictured here are Kyrie Irving (right) and teammate, rookie Jayson Tatum .

    Over their next eight games it will be interesting to see how the Boston Celtics will fare. Up next for the Celtics will be game against the New York Knicks . For the Knicks there are appear to be some troubling rumors that the front office might be looking to pull off a major trade by sending Kristaps Porzingis to a team in need of a productive center

    Boston Celtics news

    Tophatal ………..

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  13. The Cav’s/Celtic trade? Danny Ainge once again proved that even Mormons can play a good bargain game…….no disrespect to the faith. Granted, Isiah Thomas wudda been a star in the old ABA.

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  14. Steve Ballmer is a perfect example of a nerd coming into $$. I’d like to replace Donald Sterling with myself(sans prejudice) in the female companion department. Better yet, I’d prefer to replace Steve Wynn in the extra curricular side activities.

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    1. Ronbets

      The writing was on the wall for the Los Angeles Clippers the moment they allowed Chris Paul to leave and join the Houston Rockets . It was downhill from there-on after. Blake Griffin doesn’t possess the maturity to lead and DeAndre Jordan has simply been the poster child for an overpaid middling talent on an overrated team. The front office of the Clippers has way too many Chiefs and not enough Indians. I am not so sure Jerry West will be able to pull a rabbit out of the hat as he has been able to do with the likes of the Los Angeles Lakers , Memphis Grizzlies and Golden State Warriors .

      When you pay over $2.2 billion for a professional sports franchise as Steve Ballmer , did , he’d better have all his ducks lined up in a row . Personally, I believe Doc Rivers was being given way too much latitude when it came to player-personnel decisions when he should have in fact just concentrated on coaching the team.

      Doc Rivers (left) and Steve Ballmer

      Tophatal ………….

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    1. It’s current market prices that were helped along with the owners/union CBA. Kinda along the lines of would I believe the Dow Jones Industrial average would hit 25k+.

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      1. Ronbets

        And I do love it , when we have people pointing the Dow Jones as point of interest and the so called health of the economy . Are these the same people who will ignore what’s happening with the closures now taking place within the retail sector and some of the big-box stores ? Need we be reminded about the claims made by the Imbecile In Chief of the countless jobs that’d be saved at the Caterpillar plant in Mike Pence’s home-state of Indiana ? They (Pence and Trump) applauded themselves about the fact that 1,000 jobs would be saved, knowing full-well that Caterpillar had also moved 5,000 jobs directly to Mexico. Say what you will , but Donald Trump will continue blow smoke up people’s ass and the majority of the rank and file will savor it with all of the glee, more appropriately , having an ejaculation in spite of the fact the sex wasn’t that good at all.

        Trump

        The biggest dick in the room isn’t always the smartest in that particular room, as can be seen here. Not that either of the duo are that smart to begin with. Mike Pence and Donald Trump.

        Tophatal ……………………….

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      2. Ronbets

        There was time in this country , when unions were actually about something , representing the interests of the workers. Instead, they’ve now become nothing more than self-righteous and greedy bastards .

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        1. Pardon the cliche, but unions are like women. “You can’t live with them and can’t live without them.” Exceptions………….Rosey O’Donell, KA Conway, Whoopie Goldberg and Maxine Waters. Joan Rivers was removed from the list due to passing.

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          1. Ronbets

            I’ve always believed if a woman knows her worth , knows how to please her man and isn’t afraid to bring fresh ideas to the table then I won’t have a problem with them. Unfortunately there are those who are outside the norm with some of the one you mentioned. I might add if you thrown in the likes of Hillary Clinton , Nancy Pelosi , Omarrosa Manigault-Stallworth (ex Trump adviser) and Barbara Walters , then you have a bunch of skanks that don’t really bring anything at all to the table .

            Tophatal …………

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        2. Ronbets

          Your thoughts on the fallout after the verdict came in on former US Gymnastics Team Doctor Larry Nassar ? If the rumors are to be believed , then senior officials within Michigan State’s Athletics Department knew all along of Nassar’s actions on and off campus concerning the molestation of female gymnasts on the national team as well as the program’s own hrefgymnastics’ team. What might be even more troubling was the fact the US Olympic Committee , USA Gymnastics and famed national coaches knew of the allegations and did absolutely nothing initially because they were scared that once commercial sponsors found out they would begin to withdraw their funding which amounted to tens of millions of dollars.

            Larry Nassar

          has been found guilty of the crimes (over one hundred and forty counts of sexual molestation and battery) and will be sentenced to in excess of one hundred years in total . Also implicated in this all , Tom Izzo , head basketball coach of the Spartans Mens’ team. It’s said that Izzo wanted the Athletics Department to keep the whole thing quiet for as long as possible, in order to not hurt the program. If that’s true then as such , Tom Izzo should reprimanded in some way (possible suspension ).

          Courtesy of the Salt Lake Tribune and Associated Press

          As Michigan State is engulfed in scandal, mums the word for Tom Izzo

          By The Associated Press
          ·
          1 day ago
          East Lansing, Mich. • Until recently, Michigan State’s Tom Izzo had been regarded as one of the most frank and accessible coaches in sports.

          A lot has changed.

          The campus the coach has called home for three-plus decades is dealing with a crisis over how the school handled allegations against disgraced former sports doctor Larry Nassar. And an ESPN report has stirred the Spartans’ powerhouse basketball and football programs by questioning how Izzo and Mark Dantonio have dealt with allegations against their players.

          Dantonio came out strong last week, insisting he has always cooperated with authorities when dealing with cases of sexual assault. Izzo’s responses have been mild, a word that hasn’t been used much if at all to describe the fiery coach.

          Izzo insisted he has not being advised by anyone to stick with his scripted response, saying he always has and always will cooperate with investigations and repeating those same words when pressed by reporters.

          “I’m going to do what I think is right,” Izzo said Wednesday night after the fifth-ranked Spartans beat Penn State for their fifth straight win. “I’m sorry. I really am. I watch a lot of TV and I see on shows that everybody thinks everybody has the right to ask a question. And, I’ve always believed that. I’ve always been a fan of the media. But I’ve got to have my rights, too.

          “When the time comes, I’ll be able to speak out.”

          There’s a good chance that will not be Saturday night after Michigan State visits Indiana.

          As painful as his press conferences may look and sound, Izzo could choose to wait until after the season to answer questions about how he handled allegations against former players and a student assistant coach years ago to avoid the situation becoming even more of a distraction for his program.

          Publicly and privately, Izzo has vowed to weather the storm and help “the healing process,” that includes supporting survivors of Nassar’s sexual abuse. Nassar, who worked at Michigan State and also was a doctor for the U.S. women’s Olympic gymnastics team, is facing the rest of his life in prison for molesting girls and young women under the guise of treatment.

          —————————————-
          Click on link to read article in full.
          —————————————-

          If it has come to this , then these are sad times for the entire Michigan State program as well Tom Izzo. This scandal to my mind is just venal and to the
          incidents which took place at Penn State while Joe Paterno and others chose to turn a blind eye to the behavior of Jerry Sandusky .

          Tophatal

          Like

          1. For mulitple things to enable this pedophile to operate his sickness for over 2 decades is surreal. This is far worse than the PSU scandal. Nasser will prefer solitude in the joint.

            Like

            1. The level of depravity indifference along with the cover up is even harder to swallow. On so many levels be the victims were failed by those entrusted to protect them. Michigan State , the US Olympic Committee as well as USA Gymnastics shouldn’t feel proud of themselves by any stretch of imagination . Each in their own way played their part in a massive cover up.

              Like

  15. Teams , players and their play within the NBA over their last fifteen games . They have been very impressive and it is a testament to the coaching we are seeing from a number of coaches around the league.

    With the NBA All Star Festivities coming up, it will be interesting to see what will take place between now and then Undoubtedly after the All Star Game , teams will then look to make some trades as they look to position themselves for a push to make the NBA Playoffs. There are several games on the schedule for Wednesday 31st January as the month of January is closed out .

    The Los Angeles Lakers will pit their grouping against the Orlando Magic , with the Magic quite possibly being one of the teams likely to be major sellers as they look to revamp their roster . An indifferent season , lacking in direction and the with the coaching staff seemingly out of their depth it remains to be seen how much of an upheaval Alex Martins is now prepared to initiate. Another of the games likely to bring out the fans will see LeBron James and Dwyane Wade revisit an old stomping ground as the Cleveland Cavaliers (29-20) and Miami Heat (29-21) meet at the Quicken Loans Arena , in Cleveland , Ohio. Kristaps Porzingis and the New York Knicks will try and see if they can up their record against the Boston Celtics when they meet for the third time this season .

    NBA news

    NBA schedule 31st January

    Tophatal ……..

    Like

  16. On a record-setting night James Harden proved why he’s the most explosive offense weapon in the NBA . Harden notched a triple-double (60pts, 11 assists and 11 rebounds) as the Houston Rockets blew past the Orlando Magic in a game , where the Magic’s defense had no answer for Harden . James Harden is having an outstanding season . Up next for Harden and his teammates will be a game against the San Antonio Spurs at the AT&T Center l> on February 1st , 2018

    Courtesy of USA Today

    One former NBA showman predicted the great James Harden show to come

    By Sam Amick, USA Today Sports

    Gilbert Arenas was a soothsayer.

    It was mid-February 2012, some nine months before the Oklahoma City Thunder would shock the basketball world by trading a 23-year-old James Harden to the Houston Rockets as a way of avoiding the league’s luxury tax. And Arenas, the fallen Washington Wizards star whose cautionary tale career would end just a few months later in Memphis, shared his expert opinion on what might lie ahead.

    “You’ve still got James Harden (who was eligible for an extension after that season), who is, to me, the second-most-important player on the team (behind Kevin Durant and ahead of Russell Westbrook),” Arenas told me at the time. “James Harden, he has the basketball mind already. He can get his shot off any time he wants. He doesn’t force many shots. And if he plays 40 minutes, he’ll be one of the top scorers in the league and an All-Star. If he comes off the bench, it makes it hard to make that case. So his value is higher in my mind than they can afford.”

    When news of the Harden deal would break that October, Durant’s reaction said it all.

    “Wow,” he tweeted.

    Five years later, with the Rockets reaping the benefits of that controversial Thunder move more than ever and Harden having turned in a 60-point, 11-assist, 10-rebound outing on Tuesday night that was the first of its kind in NBA history, Durant’s reaction was on point yet again.

    ————————————–
    Click on link to read in full.
    ————————————–

    Harden

    James Harden of the Houston Rockets

    NBA news

    Tophatal

    Like

  17. One or two interesting games from last night’s schedule within the NBA . Are the Los Angeles Lakers seeking an all-time low when it comes to mediocrity ? Their loss to the Orlando Magic shows that this is a team that is so far off where they need to be that not even the additions of Paul George or LeBron James could make a blind bit of difference to the team . Both the Lakers and Magic will be in action over the next few days .

    The Los Angeles Lakers will be in action against the Brooklyn Nets while the Orlando Magic will take on the Washington Wizards .

    NBA results 31st January and schedule for 1st February

    NBA news

    This month in NBA history

    Tophatal ……………

    Like

  18. So the Chicago Bulls are not just intent on abandoning being competitive , but they will abandon their fans altogether. In the latest turn of events ront office executives John Paxson and GM Gar Forman have decided to start throwing out the kitchen sink , baby and the bath water , beginning their own fire sale of the playing staff. Three of their biggest names of the last five years are no longer part of the franchise with the departures of Joakim Noah , Derrick Rose and Jimmy Butler . The coaching staff of Fred Hoiberg clearly haven’t got a clue at this stage of the season and there’s no reason to believe that moving forward Hoiberg will be able to steer this team in the right direction .

    With the Chicago Bulls sending forward Nikola Mirotic to the New Orleans Pelicans , you have to wonder what will be next for the Eastern Conference franchise. In the months of December and January the Bulls have been a disaster on all fronts . With the All Star Game just around the corner this Bulls’ team will find itself in an impenetrable situation. They have upcoming games against the Los Angeles Clippers , Sacramento Kings , Minnesota Timberwolves and Washington Wizards all by the 10th February .

    Chicago Bulls news

    Tophatal ………

    Like

  19. Another stellar night for the Boston Celtics as short-handed , they got the better of the Atlanta Hawks . If was the Celtics’ player Aaron Baynes who led the way for the team , with some vital scoring during pivotal points of the game against the Hawks . Up next for the Boston Celtics will be a game against the Portland Trailblazers who will be led by Damian Lillard .

    NBA news

    Schedule 3rd February

    Results 2nd February

    4th February schedule

    Tophatal ……………..

    Like

  20. The Cleveland Cavaliers suffered one of their worst losses of the season in almost forty-five point blowout loss to the Houston Rockets . Four time League MVP LeBron James and his teammates defensively they had no answer for the explosive offense seen from the Rockets on the night. The home-crowd fans were actually booing the team before they left the court at the end of the game played at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland , Ohio.

    Next up for the Cleveland Cavaliers will be a game played against the Orlando Magic conference rivals within the East .

    Since his insertion into the lineup , San Antonio Spurs’ young point guard Dejounte Murray has guided the team to playing with some equilibrium . The demotion of veteran point guard Tony Parker hasn’t sent shock waves around the league , but it has shown that team head coach Gregg Popovich feels there’s a need for a change and quite possibly a passing of the baton at the position . Among the rookie guards in the league is slowly trying to find his way . Murray’s career-high nineteen points against the Cleveland Cavaliers might well have been a turning point in the player’s season.

    Murray-Parker

    Tony Parker (left) and Dejounte Murray.

    Up next for Dejounte Murray and the San Antonio Spurs will be a game against the Phoenix Suns on the road between two conference rivals .
    .

    NBA news

    NBA results 4th February and the upcoming NBA week’s schedule

    Like

  21. Rumors of dissent and internal strife have hit the locker room of the Cleveland Cavaliers . Team owner Dan Gilbert and GM Kobe Altman cannot be entirely happy with what they’ve witnessed from the team over the past twenty-five days as things have gone from bad to worse. In a recent blowout loss to the Houston Rockets at home the Cavaliers players were booed off the court by their fans including LeBron James . Am not about to suggest this might be the tool that drives another wedge between the player and fans, but if his last departure from the franchise was anything to go by , then this might be the the last season James will be seen in a Cleveland Cavaliers’ uniform.

    Altman-Gilbert

    Cavaliers’ GM Kobe Altman, right and team owner Dan Gilbert

    LeBron James has said he’s committed to the franchise and the organization , but I can’t help but wonder if he’s becoming impatient with the lack of progress and competitiveness shown by his teammates. He remains close with Dwyane Wade , but as we all know , LeBron marches to the beat of his very own drum , while forsaking others , because he remains intent on his own personal achievements , rather than that of team achievement. The Cleveland Cavaliers are in need of a productive forward as well as someone with a defensive presence to make this team considerably better than they have been ,

    James-Wade

    LeBron James (23) is seen here with teammate Dwyane Wade.

    While I believe the Cleveland Cavaliers good enough to make the NBA Playoffs , at this present moment in time , I am not so sure they are good enough to even make it to the conference finals , let alone beat out the very best that the Western Conference now has to offer. Over the remainder of this month the Cavaliers will have a very tough schedule to get through. With a little over a week to go before the All Star Game , it is imperative that Cleveland will be back to winning ways. Up next for LeBron James and his teammates will be a game against the Orlando Magic on Tuesday evening at the Amway Arena in Orlando , Florida .

    Cleveland Cavaliers news


    Tophatal
    …………..

    Like

  22. So here we come and it’s closing in on what’s usually deemed the first half of the NBA schedule . Excellent play from the rookie and veterans also . There will be several games on tap for today . Wednesday 7th February , 2018 . Best game of the day will see the Minnesota Timberwolves facing the Cleveland Cavaliers who are still looking to make sense of their season.

    Heading into last season we were still finding out a great deal about the teams.

    NBA news

    Tophatal ……………….

    Like

  23. Ronbets & SportsChump (Chris Humpherys)

    In the space of one month point guard Isiah Thomas has managed to become persona-non-grata in Cleveland and was traded from the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Los Angeles Lakers in exchange for Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance , as the Lakers gain cap space with the hope of luring both LeBron James and Paul George during this upcoming off-season . Thomas may or may not have been critical of several of his former teammates , most notably Kevin Love . Whatever the dissension within the locker room it was clear beyond the lack of results over their last fifteen games , it was clear there were other issues which had to be addressed. Head coach Tyronn Lue and his coaching staff may well have acquiesced to the judgment of Kobe Altman , general manager of the Cavaliers.

    Isiah-Thomas

    Isiah Thomas now with the Los Angeles Lakers

    Courtesy of ESPN

    Cavaliers trade Isaiah Thomas for Jordan Clarkson, Larry Nance

    By Adrian Wojnarowski

    The Isaiah Thomas experiment is over in Cleveland, and the Los Angeles Lakers have freed up cap space to go after LeBron James and Paul George.

    Hours before Thursday’s 3 p.m. ET trade deadline, the Cavaliers traded their starting point guard and forward Channing Frye to the Lakers for guard Jordan Clarkson and forward Larry Nance Jr.

    The Lakers also get the Cavaliers’ protected first-round pick in 2018.

    The Lakers have been trying for months to clear future salaries to go after James, if he opts out of his contract, and George in free agency this summer. Getting the first-round pick gives the Lakers another asset to use to clear additional salary in the future.

    Both Thomas ($6.3 million) and Frye ($7.4 million) are on expiring contracts. The Lakers now project to have $46.9 million in cap room this summer. The cap space will increase to $69 million if they do not bring back Julius Randle and stretch the $37 million owed to Luol Deng over five years.

    Clarkson is under contract through 2019-20, and Nance’s deal runs through 2018-19. But Cleveland picks up luxury tax relief with this trade this season.

    Lakers coach Luke Walton said Thursday he plans to play Thomas and rookie Lonzo Ball in the backcourt together, even though they are both point guards.

    ——————————-
    Click on link to read article in full.
    ——————————–

    From my own perspective this could also be leading up to the second departure from the Cleveland Cavaliers by LeBron James . Another move which was also deemed necessary was Dwyane Wade rejoining the Miami Heat . The Cavaliers are now a team and franchise in a complete state of disarray and much of the blame comes from the fact that this team is not
    the one seen last season which was extremely competitive in various facets of the game.

    Also on the move from the Cleveland Cavaliers was veteran point guard Derrick Rose who joined the Utah Jazz .

    NBA news

    Cleveland Cavaliers’ news

    Weekend schedule

    NBA transactions (February)

    Tophatal ……….

    Like

  24. Perhaps it’s me , just because of a singular victory , am I suppose to believe that the Cleveland Cavaliers have now solved all of their problems . This now a team still in transition and even though their defeat of the Boston Celtics was impressive . The sum of the parts doesn’t necessarily complement the whole. Over their next ten games , the Cavaliers will have to prove their worth against some pretty stiff competition.

    The departures of Dwyane Wade , Isiah Thomas and Derrick Rose seemed to have the blessing of LeBron James , yet I can’t help but get the feeling this might not be enough to persuade James to remain with the franchise for the remainder of his career. Clearly , there remains a great deal of frustration with the player and the lack of competitiveness shown over the course of this season . Up next for the Cavaliers will be a game against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday 13th February , 2018.

    Isiah Thomas having joined the Los Angeles Lakers . proceeded to lead the team to an impressive performance even though they lost to the Dallas Mavericks . For the Lakers in the lead-up to the All Star Game , it will be interesting to see how the team fares .

    Isiah Thomas will be looking to improve his

    NBA news

    Tophatal

    Like

  25. With Blake Griffin having joined the Detroit Pistons the Eastern Conference just added a bonafide star within their midst. Since his arrival to the Pistons , Griffin has been averaging just over 22 points a game in the seven games played for the franchise. The team itself could be one of the surprises within the Eastern Conference this season . With the All Star Game within our midst the Pistons will be looking to close out the month on a positive run . Up next for the team will be a game against the Atlanta Hawks on Valentine’s Day , February, 14th 2018.

    Detroit Pistons news

    Tophatal ……….

    Like

  26. So as we head into the last few games before the All Star Game scheduled for Monday , 18th February , 2018, this upcoming Sunday . With a new format the event , this game should prove to be very interesting compared to last season’s high-scoring free for-all. There will be several games on tap for today with twelve being the actual number . The most intriguing match-up might be the game between the Los Angeles Clippers and the Boston Celtics which will be played at the TD Bankhouse Gardens , Boston Massachusetts. Another contest taking place will see Washington Wizards taking on the New York Knicks .

    The always exhilarating Golden State Warriors will face the Portland Trailblazers , where Portland’s Damian Lillard will be looking to make a name for himself against a conference rival .

    NBA news and results from the 14th February

    Tophatal …..

    Like

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