Three years ago, the slogan was “Hello Brooklyn” when Deron Williams signed his five-year, $98 million maximum contract to be the face of the Nets. This summer, the slogan was “Goodbye Brooklyn” after Williams agreed to a buyout, prematurely ending the D-Will era. During his time with the Nets, Williams was derailed by ankle injuries that never allowed him to sustain his All-Star form. He teased fans with flashes, such as his franchise-record 57 points against the Charlotte Bobcats in 2012.
There is no way to sum up the 2014-15 season for the Toronto Raptors without including the word disappointment. You can debate the extent of it, of course – the team did win a franchise-record 49 games and saw point guard Kyle Lowry start in the All-Star Game – but the basic conclusion remains the same. Touted as a new power in the Eastern Conference, the Raptors exploded into last season borne on a wave of “We the North” expectation. This
While many GMs were working the phones this week, Knicks president Phil Jackson was using a different, more contemporary form of communication: Twitter. On Thursday, Donnie Nelson and Danny Ainge swung a five-player trade that sent Rajon Rondo to Dallas and draft picks to Boston. On Friday, Daryl Morey, Flip Saunders and Sam Hinkie worked a three-team deal that landed Corey Brewer and Alexey Shved in Houston and draft picks in Minnesota and Philadelphia. But not Jackson, and not the Knicks. Jackson doesn’t
In all their years in the NBA, the Boston Celtics had only put together six seasons worse than the one they muddled through in 2013-14. The shattered remains of their former glory were cobbled into a team built to lose games and win ping pong balls in a draft allegedly top-heavy with potential franchise players. But 25 wins and the sixth pick later, the Celtics are setting forth on the slow journey upward.Their coach, Brad Stevens, having suffered through the
Last season began with championship expectations for the Brooklyn Nets, thanks to the headline additions of three future Hall of Fame stars: Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce on the court, and Jason Kidd on the sidelines. However – less than a year later – Kidd has burned his Brooklyn bridge with the Nets, Pierce signed with the Wizards this summer and Garnett is coming off the worst statistical season of his career. Furthermore, key role players such as Shaun Livingston, Andray Blatche
When the final buzzer sounded on the Toronto Raptors last season, the team was left deflated on its home court after a crushing last-second Game 7 loss. It was an ending to a season that no one – not pundits, not fans, maybe not even management – could have predicted. After 18 games and a 6-12 record, it appeared as though the Raptors were destined for yet another forgettable season, lodged firmly in the bottom third of the NBA. Instead, after
Everything is bigger in Texas. Including losing streaks. And the Philadelphia 76ers are on the verge of the biggest losing streak in NBA history. After a couple of relatively narrow losses in which they were more competitive and provided a smidgen of hope for their suffering fans, the Sixers are back to normal and getting clobbered again. Philadelphia is up to 25 straight losses as it prepares for Thursday’s game at Houston. Another loss will tie the 76ers with the 2010-11 Cleveland Cavaliers for the
Phil Jackson won’t be awful as president of the New York Knicks. He certainly won’t be as bad as Isiah Thomas was in running the club. And he will almost certainly be better than David Kahn, Bryan Colangelo, Joe Dumars, Otis Smith and Geoff Petrie have been in recent years. But Phil Jackson isn’t Isiah Thomas, or David Kahn, or Bryan Colangelo. He’s Phil Jackson, with a reputation of all things basketball that he touches turning to gold. And that’s exactly what