The hottest team in the Eastern Conference doesn’t have a three-headed monster like the Cleveland Cavaliers. It doesn’t have a scrutinized superstar returning from injury like the Chicago Bulls or a rapper sitting courtside at every home game like the Toronto Raptors. Heck, it doesn’t even have a national TV appearance, even though it plays in TNT’s backyard. But the Atlanta Hawks have won nine of their last 10 games, flying well under the radar toward the top of the conference. The Hawks
The Atlanta Hawks, expected by some experts to finish out of the playoffs coming into the 2014-15 NBA regular season, are doing well … very well. At present, nearly a quarter of the way through the season, Atlanta sits in second place in the Eastern Conference with a 13-6 record — just a game-and-a-half back of the first place Toronto Raptors, who were also expected to be lower in the standings. This may be due, in large part, to the slow start
We all know what the Philadelphia 76ers are doing. Call it whatever you want – tanking, rebuilding, deconstructing, hoarding – the 76ers are openly, unabashedly and intentionally sinking to the bottom of the NBA, because GM Sam Hinkie has convinced ownership that is the fastest way to get back to the top. Hinkie has constructed a roster that is inherently non-competitive. The Sixers have the fewest first-round picks and the most undrafted free agents of any team. Their highest-paid player makes $6.6
Leave it to Jeff Van Gundy to use the holiday season as another outlet for his vastly underrated sense of humor. During Wednesday’s ESPN telecast of New York-Dallas, the analyst said he was thankful that there were not two Eastern Conferences. But as Thanksgiving quickly morphed into the Christmas shopping season, perhaps Van Gundy could ask Santa Claus for another Western Conference. Because that would allow us to throw out the Eastern Conference with all the torn wrapping paper, ugly sweaters and
Over the weekend, LeBron James called his slumping, underachieving Cleveland Cavaliers “a fragile team.” James is partially right. As a group, the Cavaliers aren’t dealing very well with the lofty expectations put upon them by pundits like me. Right now, they look like a typical front-running team that lacks mental toughness and gives in at the first sign of trouble. That was evident Saturday, when the Cavaliers sprinted to a 26-8 lead in the first eight minutes – and were overwhelmed thereafter
We are less than four weeks into the NBA season. And while it is a small sample size, it is large enough to determine whether teams are off to good starts or bad starts. The bigger question is how long can these teams sustain their starts? For that, we have brought back the Three-Man Weave, where three Sheridan Hoops staff members answer three questions. Making his Weave debut is columnist Ben DuBose, who also handles our Tuesday blog. He was able to
The only thing better than kicking back and watching sports is gambling on the outcome of said sports and then watching them. Growing up in Australia, I have the gambling bug and that very philosophy deeply instilled into me. Sports betting Down Under is not how it’s perceived in the United States, where it’s associated with dark alleys, slicked-back hair and oversized coats. In Australia, there is a wealth of online corporate bookmakers offering hundreds of betting markets in a 100% licensed and
Week 2 of the 2014-15 NBA season came to a close this past weekend, and with it come two new names as the Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week. Brooklyn Nets point guard Deron Williams was selected player of the week in the East and he expressed his gratitude for the honor on Twitter.