Blazers-Rockets Playoff Preview: Five Key Factors

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CarlesimoI was listening to P.J. Carlesimo on the radio yesterday morning (how many of y’all remember that he guided the Brooklyn Nets last season?), and he made a good point. Almost never is there an upset in a 4 vs. 5 series. The teams are usually too evenly matched.

In this case,  we have two teams that finished with identical 54-28 records.

Houston gets the home court by virtue of winning the season series 3-1. And if they get past the Blazers, they move into the second round against the San Antonio Spurs (baring a major upset by Dallas) knowing they had the Spurs’ number this season, sweeping them 4-0.

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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Tweet of the Day: Portland Rookie CJ McCollom Wants A Handout

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Adidas announced a contract extension with Portland Trail Blazers All-Star point guard Damian Lillard Monday. The deal, as reported by many news outlets, could be worth up to $100 million plus incentives.

ESPN’s Brian Windhorst and Darren Rovell reported the $100 million potential of the deal.

The deal, which can extend to 10 years, could be worth up to $100 million including incentives and options … It’s believed to be the largest shoe deal since Derrick Rose signed a 13-year deal in 2012 that could be worth more than $185 million.

Chris Haynes of Comcast SportsNet had more details on the length of the deal.

The deal, according to another source, is an eight-year contract that has the potential to stretch out to 10 years if he reaches certain incentive clauses.

Due to Lillard reaching certain performance incentive clauses in his adidas rookie shoe deal, he was able to opt out at the end of the season to pursue a long-term, prosperous contract with adidas, Nike or other major competitors. Instead of waiting, Lillard’s representatives gave adidas an exclusive 30-day window to renegotiate before checking out other offers. That 30 days was up on April. 1.

Clearly, the negotiations with Adidas went well, as the two sides have now come to terms on a very lucrative deal.

Tweet of the Day: Damian Lillard Hits Hard On Final #4BarFriday Of Regular Season

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recording-microphone-2

Portland Trail Blazers superstar point guard/ @ Dame Lill-ard/ continues to drop rhymes hard.

It’s #4BarFriday, and this time around/ as the NBA regular season winds down—

He’s illin’ on some W-W-E stuff/ wreckin’ the beat like he’s wreckin’ the Heat/ his lyrics are tough!

#4BarFriday, sure not to bore ya’/ Rest In Peace Ultimate Warrior!

My apologies. In honor of #4BarFriday, I thought it’d be fun to start with a rhyme. I leave you with Damian Lillard, he’s much better than I.

Tweet of the Night: Damian Lillard Among Many To Remember The Ultimate Warrior

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James Hellwig, known as the Ultimate Warrior, seen at the WWE Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony.

James Hellwig, known as the Ultimate Warrior, seen at the WWE Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony.

This past weekend was a momentous one for any who would call themselves professional wrestling fans.

WrestleMania XXX, a week-long extravaganza often considered the Super Bowl of World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), occurred Sunday evening, opposite the premiere of Game of Thrones fourth season and a slew of NBA basketball games.

Among the highlights of the weekend, Saturday night featured the 2014 WWE Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. The star of the night, 1980s superstar, the Ultimate Warrior.

Warrior, whose real name was James Brian Hellwig at birth, was introduced by Linda McMahon, wife of WWE CEO Vince McMahon. He gave a rousing, uninterrupted 40-minute induction speech Saturday night after having been absent from the company for over 18 years.

Three nights later, the news that no one would want to hear came across the internet screen:  ”Ultimate Warrior passes away.

Warrior was only 54 years old. He is survived by his wife Dana and their two daughters.

Among NBA circles, the news hit Portland Trail Blazers star point guard Damian Lillard as well as Phoenix Suns Digital VP and huge WWE fan Jeramie McPeek.

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