SH Blog: Reggie Miller says Lee and Griffin can’t stand each other, Smush Parker punches a kid

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Reggie_MillerMost people are counting the Golden State Warriors out in the first round against the Los Angeles Clippers.

In fact, no one in the ESPN staff picked them to come out of the first round, and same goes for our staff (predictions will be out soon).

There is at least one guy that is publicly saying anything goes when it comes to these two teams, though, and his name is Reggie Miller. Rusty Simmons of San Francisco Chronicle has details:

“I give the Warriors a chance, because it’s a rivalry between these two teams,” TNT analyst Reggie Miller said. “They hate one another. Any time you hate a team, you can throw out who’s hurt and who’s not playing, because it becomes personal. ”David Lee and Blake Griffin can’t stand one another, and I love it. Good. You’re not supposed to like them. Go out and kick his behind.”

It’s certainly understandable. Even with Andrew Bogut (fractured rib), the Clippers were likely favored to win the series. Without him, most believe there is virtually no chance. That doesn’t mean the Warriors feel the same way, and Andre Iguodala expressed as much:

“Warriors swingman Andre Iguodala said: “All of those guys have that L.A. about them, where they want to live in the spotlight. They want to go out there and show what they can do on the court. … ”They have a chippiness about them. They try to get you out of your game. We’ve got a group of guys who aren’t going to back down, but we won’t let it affect our psyche.”

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NBA Playoff Schedule: First Round

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Here is the playoff schedule for the eight first-round series of the 2014 NBA playoffs:

SH Blog: Klay Thompson calls out Blake Griffin’s style of play, Gary Payton says Curry and Westbrook are shooting guards

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KlayThompsonSH1It’s no secret that the Los Angeles Clippers and Golden State Warriors have a strong dislike for each other. It has been that way since last season when the Warriors became a relevant team in the Western Conference, and it continued into this season when Blake Griffin called the Warriors cowards. The two teams won’t even share a chapel together.

That’s true hate.

What no one could have seen coming, though, is Klay Thompson joining in on the fun, so to speak. During a radio interview, the sharp-shooter called out Griffin for his “out of control” style of play, transcribed by Arash Markazi of ESPN LA:

On Wednesday, Warriors guard Klay Thompson called Clippers forward Blake Griffin out for flopping and playing “kind of out of control sometimes.”

“He is a good guy off the court but he probably just … I mean … plays pretty physical and flops a little bit,” Thompson told The Wheelhouse on 95.7 The Game radio in San Francisco.

“He flairs his arm around so you know you might catch a random elbow or something that doesn’t you know rub off too well on guys,” Thompson said. “He’s kind of like a bull in a china shop, kind of out of control sometimes. And then you do just see him flop sometimes like how can a guy that big and strong flop that much.

“I can see how that gets under people’s skin and be frustrating to play against.”

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SH Blog: Bogut has fractured rib and is out indefinitely, Irving very disappointed with how season is ending for Cavs

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BogutWith only one game left to go on the season, the Golden State Warriors beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 130-120 on Monday to win 50 games for the first time since the 1993-94 season, when they finished with a 50-32 record. With the victory, the Warriors assured themselves of a first-round matchup against the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round of the playoffs.

It’s an amazing accomplishment for a franchise that has struggled for so long, and it shows a clear sign of progress since new ownership took over the team a few seasons ago. Unfortunately, the feeling of satisfaction and hope heading into the postseason came with a big asterisk: they had learned just earlier in the day that center Andrew Bogut – the team’s most important player on defense – may be out for the remainder of the season with a fractured rib, from Tim Kawakami of Mercury News

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Grizzlies are In; Suns are Out; Six Playoff Matchups TBD

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sunset in phoenixWell, the Phoenix Suns gave us an interesting season. And for that, we thank them as we bid them adieu and wish them good luck in the draft lottery. Their chances of winning are slim: They get five ping-pong balls out of 1,000. Good luck with that.

Not much of a consolation prize, eh?

The Western Conference playoff race came to a close of sorts Monday night when the Memphis Grizzlies defeated the Suns 97-91 in a thrilling game that featured 15 lead changes in the fourth quarter. It was the fourth straight victory for the Grizzlies, who were my preseason pick to make it to the NBA Finals, along with the Indiana Pacers. Good luck with that, too, eh?




The Grizzlies, however, are NOT locked into the eighth spot. They can avoid the San Antonio Spurs, who swept them in the regular season, if they defeat the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night in one of several games that will have playoff seeding implications.

As of now, the only first-round matchups that are set in stone are Indiana-Atlanta in the East, and Houston-Portland in the West.