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2020 NBA Playoffs Thread - Haters arguing that it took Lebron 10 Finals to win 4 titles

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14 hours ago, Buffaloes said:

someone laughed at this notion earlier in the thread, but i have been way more excited for the basketball games this week than opening weekend of foosball. pretty hyped for another game 7 tonight

I laughed at the idea that the NBA or NHL playoffs would take viewers away from the nfl.  I think you are in the minority.

BUT, I will say as someone who has much to dislike about the NBA and was to the point of hardly watching for a long time, the bubble has been the most entertaining NBA basketball I've seen in years.

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8 hours ago, whoknew said:

He was All NBA last year and is going to be again this year. 

He gets plenty of respect.

I hope you are correct regarding Jokic.  The All-NBA teams end with 3 centers, so he made it last year and this.  Not sure enough fans believe he's really one of those guys, not simply the offensive center to Gobert's defensive slot on those lists.

3 minutes ago, facook said:

the bubble has been the most entertaining NBA basketball I've seen in years.

Amazing how well these teams can play when everyone is focused on basketball, not all the other stuff that goes along with professional sports.  The talent and effort on display is so high night after night.

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Saw this on Twitter...

The Thunder acquired 7 first-round picks, 4 first-round pick swaps, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and Danilo Gallinari by trading Westbrook to the Rockets and Paul George to the Clippers.

Year one results for Rockets and Clippers were not good.

Of course, the Thunder also have Chris Paul's contract but if they are rebuilding, they can handle that.  

 

Edited by Juxtatarot
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14 hours ago, Buffaloes said:

someone laughed at this notion earlier in the thread, but i have been way more excited for the basketball games this week than opening weekend of foosball. pretty hyped for another game 7 tonight

:thumbup:

Best basketball playoffs I can remember in a long time. 

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4 minutes ago, Juxtatarot said:

Of course, the Thunder also have Chris Paul's contract but if they are rebuilding, they can handle that.  

 

I actually think they'd be able to move Paul to NY based off his past season. Might not get much but think could get moved there if wanted to move. New York didn't invest long term with contracts last offseason.

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25 minutes ago, SWC said:

i respect the hell out of pat riley and i like seeing a bunch of marquette guys on the floor for miami so i am going for them now that the bangos crapped the bed take that to the bank bromigos 

plus Herro :thumbup: who went to Whitnall

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1 hour ago, Anarchy99 said:

He said the C’s called plays to take advantage of match ups and they were so tired they settled for iso possessions at the end of the game. That’s where getting Hayward back would help. Can’t just all stand around and let the shot clock run out. Will be interesting to see how they adjust. 

I don't think it had anything to do with being tired. C's have been doing this all playoffs. If they have even a small lead late they go into prevent offense. Milk the shot clock down to 1 and then throw up a terrible shot instead of running your offense and getting a good look with 10 secs left. 

Billy Donovan does the same thing. I hate it.

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16 minutes ago, trader jake said:

Amazing how well these teams can play when everyone is focused on basketball

the travel alone has to be just brutal for NBA players. forget about anything else that goes in to a season.  

4 games in 5 nights. traveling from city to city constantly, sleeping in hotels, not seeing the family for long stretches.  that has to add up and just wear dudes out. 

in the bubble maybe they don't see family... but they also aren't worn out by the constant travel. 

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2 minutes ago, FreeBaGeL said:

I don't think it had anything to do with being tired. C's have been doing this all playoffs. If they have even a small lead late they go into prevent offense. Milk the shot clock down to 1 and then throw up a terrible shot instead of running your offense and getting a good look with 10 secs left. 

 

This is kinda true of every team. The defensive intensity gets turned up to 11 when a team is down 3 or so with a minute to go. And yes, there is some tentativeness, but it is more the defense that forces that than the offense conceding

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57 minutes ago, dawgtrails said:

This is kinda true of every team. The defensive intensity gets turned up to 11 when a team is down 3 or so with a minute to go. And yes, there is some tentativeness, but it is more the defense that forces that than the offense conceding

Yea but I am not talking about just up 3 with a minute to go. Not great there but still not ideal. 

If they're up 6-8 with 3-4 minutes left they basically turtle up and stop running their offense, settling for standing around for 23 seconds and then heaving a hail marry every possession. 

They did the same thing against Toronto in game 7 and it almost cost them there as well. 

Edited by FreeBaGeL
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15 hours ago, Ghost Rider said:

Remember when some tried to say that Kahwi was as good or better than LeBron? :lmao:

Full disclosure--I think both Kawhi and Lebron  are great players and I'm not trying to hate on either of them.  With that said--I do think that even though its only been one day since the Clippers lost--Kawhi seems to be getting a giant pass for something that Lebron would get crucified for.  

Let's not forget that people still hold Lebrons move to Miami and creating a "super team" against him in regards to his legacy.  I personally don't--but I understand how people can be critical of it.  With that said--the facts are facts--and Lebron did end up delivering Miami very positive results--he won chips with that super team. 

Let's look at Kawhi--dude was about to join the Lakers until he basically told the Clippers to trade away Shai, Gallo, and a grip of valuable draft picks away to OKC for Paul George.  Shai and Gallo both ball out and a team that was considered to be trash ends up having a wonderful season and also had a very strong playoff.  George on the other hand had a down season based on expectations and had a pretty horrid playoffs.  Let's be real here-- if the Clippers had Shai and Gallo in place of George on their playoff roster--most likely they would be moving on to play the Lakers right now.  Effectively--the trade that Kawhi forced could easily be argued to have costed the Clippers a shot at a title.   

Secondly---Kawhi's team was up 3-1 against a lower seed.  I love and respect the Nuggets--but the reality is that even with George--the Clippers roster is certainly superior to that of the Nuggets.   Let's also not forget that Kawhi had a 3-1 lead, with a superior roster--and managed to choke the series away with double digit leads in each of the final three elimination games for the Nuggets.    

Let me ask you this--if Lebron James did these exact things---how do you think the world would be criticizing him?  He would absolutely be getting crucified under these same circumstances.  I love Kawhi--but lets not forget that none of his championships were done in amazing fashion.   He joined an already dominant Spurs team when he won his first one.  He certainly had a majorly valuable part in putting them over the top--but it wasn't like he took a dead franchise to the promise land. The Spurs were really good before he got there.  Secondly--his Raptors title is a bit questionable as well.  That team made it to the second round of the playoffs before he got there--and lost to the Lebron led Cavs.  Lebron left the East the year Kawhi arrived there--which by default would have made the Raptors a bigger favorite in the East regardless of whether or not they got Kawhi.   They certainly had a solid year--but lets not forget that they were a very fortunate bounce away from possibly losing to the Sixers--and ended up beating a Warriors team that was soo ravaged with injuries that it was laughable.  Let's also not forget that even after Kawhi left--Toronto was still REALLY good.  

Don't get me wrong--I still think Kawhi is one of the best-but for those of whom who claim that he's better than Lebron--why is he not getting held to the same standards as Lebron?  I consider Kawhi one of the best--and for me--I will personally hold this year against his legacy big time.  For one of the best to choke away three consecutive games (while having the luxury of a superior roster) with double digit leads in each of them--is hugely tarnishable to his his legacy.  He effectively forced the creation of a super team and didn't deliver--which is kinda the opposite of what Lebron did. 

Edited by jvdesigns2002
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27 minutes ago, jvdesigns2002 said:

He effectively forced the creation of a super team and didn't deliver--which is kinda the opposite of what Lebron did. 

To be fair to both sides of that argument, LeBron and the Heatles didn't win in year 1 either.  They lost to the Dirk Mavs, then Miami won back-to-back titles.  Even that second title took that Bosh rebound and Ray Allen three.

If the Clippers come back and win a title next year this loss will be viewed much differently (first year together, bubble ball, etc), but that's the key - the Clippers have to deliver in 2021.  The pressure is definitely on them now, especially with Kawhi and Paul George being able to opt out after next season.

Edited by trader jake

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4 hours ago, FreeBaGeL said:

I don't think it had anything to do with being tired. C's have been doing this all playoffs. If they have even a small lead late they go into prevent offense. Milk the shot clock down to 1 and then throw up a terrible shot instead of running your offense and getting a good look with 10 secs left. 

No doubt, the end of regulation heave by Jason Tatum had that Kobe Bryant hero ball vibe to it.  Same with the late 3's by Fred Van Vleet and Norman Powell that the Celtics benefited from to advance to the ECF.  There are many more examples, but that end of regulation James Harden offensive set play is kind of miserable.

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23 minutes ago, trader jake said:

To be fair to both sides of that argument, LeBron and the Heatles didn't win in year 1 either.  They lost to the Dirk Mavs, then Miami won back-to-back titles.  Even that second title took that Bosh rebound and Ray Allen three.

If the Clippers come back and win a title next year this loss will be viewed much differently (first year together, bubble ball, etc), but that's the key - the Clippers have to deliver in 2021.  The pressure is definitely on them now, especially with Kawhi and Paul George being able to opt out after next season.

And that Lebron loss has absolutely been weaponized to tarnish his legacy.  You are proving my point--people make excuses for why Lebron wins--but they make excuses for not blaming Kawhi. 

Also-you just said that Kawhi gets a pass for "first year together"--but in the first paragraph you mentioned that Miami lost in the finals in their first year together?   I want to make clear that I think both guys are great players--but if people are considering putting Kawhi on the Mt. Rushmore of basketball--they need to look at him the very same way they look at Lebron--but he's clearly being held to a far lower level of scrutiny. Thats my only point.  

Edited by jvdesigns2002
Added the second part
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The big takeaway from last night is that winning a title in today's NBA is HARD.  Even when players team up, the league is still full of other great players.  Players are more talented than ever, and offensive/defensive schemes as complex as ever.  Look at the recent dynasties:

Celtics Big 3 needed 5 years to get 1 championship

Spurs needed 16 years to get 5 championships

Warriors needed 5 years to get 3 championships

Since going to Miami, Lebron has needed 9 years to get 3 championships

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5 hours ago, The Kansas Comet said:

You could argue that he already did his best in this series.  Windhorst had some brutal stats about Doc's coaching - tied for most losses in clinching games in playoff history (14-27 in those games; Pat Riley was 40-27), 8 losses in Game 7 (most all time by 3), only coach to have multiple teams blow 3-1 series leads (3 times).  That's just rough.

I LOVED Doc Rivers as a player - I wouldn't go so far as to say he was my idol but he played for my favorite team and I played PG like he did.

He is the most overrated coach I think I've ever seen.  If he didn't win that one with Boston I'm not sure it would even be debatable.  I realize winning one probably excludes him in some people's mind from the list but for me he's done less with more than anybody else.

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5 hours ago, Juxtatarot said:

Saw this on Twitter...

The Thunder acquired 7 first-round picks, 4 first-round pick swaps, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and Danilo Gallinari by trading Westbrook to the Rockets and Paul George to the Clippers.

Year one results for Rockets and Clippers were not good.

Of course, the Thunder also have Chris Paul's contract but if they are rebuilding, they can handle that.  

 

and arguably the Paul contract is better than the Westbrook contract.

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2019-20 All-NBA teams:

First:

LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Luka Doncic, Anthony Davis, James Harden

Second:

Damian Lillard, Kawhi Leonard, Nikola Jokic, Chris Paul, Pascal Siakam

Third:

Ben Simmons, Jayson Tatum, Jimmy Butler, Rudy Gobert, Russell Westbrook

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2 hours ago, flranger said:

2019-20 All-NBA teams:

First:

LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Luka Doncic, Anthony Davis, James Harden

Second:

Damian Lillard, Kawhi Leonard, Nikola Jokic, Chris Paul, Pascal Siakam

Third:

Ben Simmons, Jayson Tatum, Jimmy Butler, Rudy Gobert, Russell Westbrook

Regular season Siakam and playoff Siakam were two different players this year.

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4 hours ago, Synthesizer said:

The big takeaway from last night is that winning a title in today's NBA is HARD.  Even when players team up, the league is still full of other great players.  Players are more talented than ever, and offensive/defensive schemes as complex as ever.  Look at the recent dynasties:

Celtics Big 3 needed 5 years to get 1 championship

Spurs needed 16 years to get 5 championships

Warriors needed 5 years to get 3 championships

Since going to Miami, Lebron has needed 9 years to get 3 championships

This is like the old "one of these things is not like the others..." except three of them don't belong. 

I don't think I've ever heard anyone say a team "needed" X years to get 3+ championships. It's a pretty rare feat. 

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who votes for all-NBA?

Westbrook 3rd team means it can't be the media, right?

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8 hours ago, jvdesigns2002 said:

Full disclosure--I think both Kawhi and Lebron  are great players and I'm not trying to hate on either of them.  With that said--I do think that even though its only been one day since the Clippers lost--Kawhi seems to be getting a giant pass for something that Lebron would get crucified for.  

Let's not forget that people still hold Lebrons move to Miami and creating a "super team" against him in regards to his legacy.  I personally don't--but I understand how people can be critical of it.  With that said--the facts are facts--and Lebron did end up delivering Miami very positive results--he won chips with that super team. 

Let's look at Kawhi--dude was about to join the Lakers until he basically told the Clippers to trade away Shai, Gallo, and a grip of valuable draft picks away to OKC for Paul George.  Shai and Gallo both ball out and a team that was considered to be trash ends up having a wonderful season and also had a very strong playoff.  George on the other hand had a down season based on expectations and had a pretty horrid playoffs.  Let's be real here-- if the Clippers had Shai and Gallo in place of George on their playoff roster--most likely they would be moving on to play the Lakers right now.  Effectively--the trade that Kawhi forced could easily be argued to have costed the Clippers a shot at a title.   

Secondly---Kawhi's team was up 3-1 against a lower seed.  I love and respect the Nuggets--but the reality is that even with George--the Clippers roster is certainly superior to that of the Nuggets.   Let's also not forget that Kawhi had a 3-1 lead, with a superior roster--and managed to choke the series away with double digit leads in each of the final three elimination games for the Nuggets.    

Let me ask you this--if Lebron James did these exact things---how do you think the world would be criticizing him?  He would absolutely be getting crucified under these same circumstances.  I love Kawhi--but lets not forget that none of his championships were done in amazing fashion.   He joined an already dominant Spurs team when he won his first one.  He certainly had a majorly valuable part in putting them over the top--but it wasn't like he took a dead franchise to the promise land. The Spurs were really good before he got there.  Secondly--his Raptors title is a bit questionable as well.  That team made it to the second round of the playoffs before he got there--and lost to the Lebron led Cavs.  Lebron left the East the year Kawhi arrived there--which by default would have made the Raptors a bigger favorite in the East regardless of whether or not they got Kawhi.   They certainly had a solid year--but lets not forget that they were a very fortunate bounce away from possibly losing to the Sixers--and ended up beating a Warriors team that was soo ravaged with injuries that it was laughable.  Let's also not forget that even after Kawhi left--Toronto was still REALLY good.  

Don't get me wrong--I still think Kawhi is one of the best-but for those of whom who claim that he's better than Lebron--why is he not getting held to the same standards as Lebron?  I consider Kawhi one of the best--and for me--I will personally hold this year against his legacy big time.  For one of the best to choke away three consecutive games (while having the luxury of a superior roster) with double digit leads in each of them--is hugely tarnishable to his his legacy.  He effectively forced the creation of a super team and didn't deliver--which is kinda the opposite of what Lebron did. 

I agree that James would be getting crucified today like you wouldn't believe, but Leonard got it pretty bad today from what I saw, so I don't think he is getting a pass.  Nor should be.  This postseason was the first time he was the unquestioned leader of a team considered the favorite to win it all, and he crumbled big time.  Having Paul George, a paper superstar, as his number 2 sure didn't help, but Leonard joined a Clippers team that had made the playoffs last year and didn't make it any further than the Raptors did without Leonard this postseason. 

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12 hours ago, RUSF18 said:

This is like the old "one of these things is not like the others..." except three of them don't belong. 

I don't think I've ever heard anyone say a team "needed" X years to get 3+ championships. It's a pretty rare feat. 

These aren't the days of the 80s, 90s, and early 2000s where the best team can rack up 3 titles in a row.  There are just a lot of factors that make it more difficult than ever to get a bunch of championships like the teams did back then.

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13 hours ago, mr. furley said:

who votes for all-NBA?

Westbrook 3rd team means it can't be the media, right?

Westbrook and Simmons over Murray?  Definitely the wrong call since bubble play.  

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3 minutes ago, wilked said:

Disaster of a quarter. 

I just turned it on when we were up ten and had that jump ball.

Freaking every play since then has been awful.

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Orlando Magic fan, grew up Celtics fan and always enjoyed them if not the Magic and of course hated the Lakers.  Probably next team I've always disliked was the Heat due to cross state rivalry, their success, Bron, Shaq going down there, etc etc.

Damn, I love this current Heat team.  So hard not to root for them.  Pretty amazing the talent they have developed and finding players who represent that work ethic. 

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Heat had 90 shots

Celts had 72

 

not sure how you win doing that...  you turn the ball over 20 times you lose every time

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18 minutes ago, The Kansas Comet said:

Looked like a charge on Dragic there.

C’s deserved what they got, but this was pivotal.

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:wait for Heat to get down by 15 live bet Heat ML profit:

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3 hours ago, The Kansas Comet said:

Looked like a charge on Dragic there.

It was.  Terrible call.  But it shouldn’t have mattered - the Celts played horrible ball the 2nd half and Miami flat out won the game.

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Looking forward to denver-la.

If la and Miami advance, I think Brons gonna have one helluva time in the finals. Heat has a wave of guys to throw at him.

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The Heat are not only playing well--but they are a really talented, well coached, and complete team.   The Celtics are really talented, are also well coached--but they aren't complete--and that's the big difference so far.  Coach Stevens likes "positionless" basketball.  Hayward is hurt--but if you look at their team--Hayward, Tatum and Jaylen are all very similar to one another in terms of their game.  Same as Smart, and kemba. They all bring the ball down the court--so it's like they dont have a "true" point guard--literally--they have 5-6 players that can be truly interchangeable. 

The problem with this is that they don't have a true big on the team.  You basically have these 5-6 interchangeable players that are good at attacking the rim and are good shooters--but none of them are super "great" at any of those things.  If a dude like Lebron or Harden is having a game where his shot isn't dropping--they can just attack the rim at will and make something happen.   The Celtics players aren't like that--and thats why this team is prone to these dry spells where they give up big leads. If their shot is not falling--they don't have a legit post up guy, or a legit guy that can attack the basketball at will and stop the momentum of the opposing team going on a run.  This means that they are effectively playing with a much smaller margin of error than a complete team like the Heat.  The Celtics could literally shoot really well and play solid for 32-35 minutes of a game--and they could still easily lose because of those 13 minutes where they are  having a dry spell. I've noticed that for the Celtics--when they do start to have a dry spell shooting--their ball movement also seems to deteriorate.   They go from getting rhythm shots off of passes to trying to hang with a really good defensive Miami team playing half court isolation basketball.   They won't win that way.  

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1 hour ago, Bears_Man2 said:

Looking forward to denver-la.

If la and Miami advance, I think Brons gonna have one helluva time in the finals. Heat has a wave of guys to throw at him.

I am too. But I fear the Lakers roll. 

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9 hours ago, Alex P Keaton said:

It was.  Terrible call.  But it shouldn’t have mattered - the Celts played horrible ball the 2nd half and Miami flat out won the game.

I think sometimes we need to refrain from saying Team X played terrible and instead say Team Y played incredible.

That is the case here I think. That MIA zone is ####### ridiculous. So much length and they cover their zones and recover so incredibly well. 

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One thing I find odd about some of the sports talk and analysts discussing this season, next season, and the league moving forward is that not much has been mentioned about the bubble and the crazy end of the 2020 season. Who knows how things would have played out in a normal end to the season. Lots could have been (and possibly likely would have been) different. For example, in the last 11 Celtics games, the team designated as the "road team" has won each game. There is absolutely NO WAY that would happened under normal playoff playing conditions. The outcomes of each series might have ended the same, but not in the order the games played out.

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37 minutes ago, dawgtrails said:

I think sometimes we need to refrain from saying Team X played terrible and instead say Team Y played incredible.

That is the case here I think. That MIA zone is ####### ridiculous. So much length and they cover their zones and recover so incredibly well. 

Nah.  Miami played awesome and Boston actually played terribly the 2nd half.  

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4 minutes ago, Anarchy99 said:

One thing I find odd about some of the sports talk and analysts discussing this season, next season, and the league moving forward is that not much has been mentioned about the bubble and the crazy end of the 2020 season. Who knows how things would have played out in a normal end to the season. Lots could have been (and possibly likely would have been) different. For example, in the last 11 Celtics games, the team designated as the "road team" has won each game. There is absolutely NO WAY that would happened under normal playoff playing conditions. The outcomes of each series might have ended the same, but not in the order the games played out.

As a fan, I like the neutrality of the games.  

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1 minute ago, Juxtatarot said:

As a fan, I like the neutrality of the games.  

The product on the court is better than I expected, but it's not really the same without screaming fans. The bubble makes the games closer and the setting is more like a tournament. I like it better, but in many ways couldn't be sustainable in the future. There really is nowhere near the advantage of trying to earn an extra home game from a higher seed in the regular season when there are no home games come playoff time. And the lack of travel factors into things as well.

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Quote

Adrian Wojnarowski

@wojespn

Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo has won his second consecutive MVP award, sources tell ESPN.

 

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1 hour ago, CletiusMaximus said:

 

LeBron gonna drop 50 tonight over the disrespect.

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6 hours ago, AndrewClark said:

I am too. But I fear the Lakers roll. 

Me too. :(

LA has too much size inside. If Joker takes AD, I  am guessing Grant has to guard LBJ--unless Porter can play out of his mind and try.

Denver has to shoot lights out and they have to hope the refs let them play and not call every little thing for Denver to have a shot.

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I haven't had a chance to really fully analyze the Nuggets vs Lakers series--but my initial thoughts are that Denver seems to roll the best when their team defense is on point.   So far--when their backs are against the wall--it seems as though they find a way to create a spark through stepping up their team defense, and then their offense kinda gains momentum from that energy.   I don't think they can really contain AD or Lebron defending individually--they need to collectively make life difficult for them by being on point with their defensive rotations. They do have different guys they can throw at AD and Bron--Harris is undersized--but I think we'll see him on Bron a bit, you also have Jerami Grant, Torrey Craig, Milsap, Plumlee all taking turns between Bron and Davis.   Bron and AD should get theirs--but the key is to limit their efficiency and to force the other Lakers to be the deciding factors.   If Murray and Jokic can basically match or do close to  what Lebron and AD do (assuming all of their efficiencies are similar)--you gotta like Denver's chances because they have a better supporting cast. 

On paper--it looks as though the Lakers have the size to match up well against Jokic--but I do think there is a certain level of fool's gold there.  Jokic is not a typical big man who has to dominate the inside to be effective.  He literally brings the ball up the court and forces bigs to play him outside.  His craftiness, range, and court vision is not something that typical defensive big men are super successful defending against.   For example--against Rudy Gobert in the first round (and Gobert is a better defending big than howard, McGee)--Jokic averaged more than 26pts per game.   If they dare put Anthony Davis on him--the Lakers risk getting him in foul trouble.   Davis is probably the best guy the Lakers have to defend against him but using him for that purpose for long periods is very risky.   

Honestly----its a hard series to analyze.  If Murray stays hot--I think we'll have some competive games.   I think Jokic will be consistently good.   My gut instinct is Lakers in 6---but I would not be shocked at all to see Denver pull this thing off.  Much like Miami--they are playing hungry, and they have undoubtedly have sneaky good talent.   The porter jr vs kuzma aspect could also be something to watch.   Both of those guys could be potential sparks for their teams.  

Edited by jvdesigns2002

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1 hour ago, Courtjester said:

Me too. :(

LA has too much size inside. If Joker takes AD, I  am guessing Grant has to guard LBJ--unless Porter can play out of his mind and try.

Denver has to shoot lights out and they have to hope the refs let them play and not call every little thing for Denver to have a shot.

I really felt the refs constant whistles were what allowed the Nuggets to stop the clock and shoot free throws against the Clippers to help them come back in several games. If you want this series to be physical, LBJ, AD, and Howard are going mow Denver down. Denver needs lots of touch fouls to be called in their favor.

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