Most Improved Player Rankings: The Oscars Edition

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The Oscars are over, and since I didn’t watch them or see any of the nominated movies, let’s get this Oscar-themed edition of the Most Improved Player Rankings under way!

Because nothing says “balanced sportswriter” like a column full of misinformed pop culture references!

The envelopes, please …

Best Actor: Anthony Davis. This award goes to the best player in our group, and Davis is the clear choice there. He’s already one of the league’s best big men, and Pelicans fans have already started counting down the days until he ditches them for a bigger market, so they can spend the following season winning 15 games and praying for a franchise-saving draft pick! Laissez-les bons temps rouller!

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Best Picture: This award goes to the guy on the best team, and that would be Lance Stephenson of Indiana. Like 12 Years A Slave, the Pacers haven’t been easy to watch. But they just may end up being the most important basketball team of the season – if they win the NBA championship. Imagine the social impact that a small-market team that plays defense and didn’t import all of its stars like Ocean’s Eleven would have if it actually won the title. Now that’s a dream worth dreamin’.

Also, Isaiah Thomas. That’s a nice picture there. His grandma has it hanging on her fridge, I’m sure.

Best Supporting Actor: Lance Stephenson. He’s playing Beta Dog to Paul George’s Alpha Dog, and he’s played it as well as that Somalian guy alongside Tom Hanks in Captain Phillips. At least, what I’ve seen from the trailer. That was a powerful 30 seconds.

Best Foreign Language Film: Goran Dragic. He was the only nominee. He wins because his name sounds like a Game of Thrones character.

Best Breakthrough Performance: Goran Dragic. Does anyone realize he put up 40 on the Pelicans on Friday night? Forty! This is Goran Dragic we’re talking about, people! My lord!

Best Visual Effects: DeAndre Jordan. For making this look real.

Best Hair and Makeup: Anthony Davis’ barber. Imagine the incredible will power that this man has not to take a Norelco to Davis’ temple and rid the world of that jointed caterpillar he calls his eyebrow. What an inspired performance.

Standout Performance in a Crappy Movie: Andre Drummond. The 2013-14 Pistons are as bad as Transformers would have been without Shia LaBeouf. Unfortunately, in the Pistons’ season, no one ever blows up.

Best Column Written at 3 a.m.: Oh, come on, guys. You didn’t have to do that. I’m not a hero. I mean, I am my own hero - 10 years from now. 37-year old Kels is going to be one hell of a person. I can’t wait to see what I have in store for myself. Will I be an astronaut? An award-winning physicist? A Wal-Mart greeter? I guess I just have to keep living and we’ll find out.

Best Line of this Introduction: On to the rankings.

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Bernucca: NBA Buyout Season’s Winners and Losers

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I’m kinda high on what the Charlotte Bobcats did with Ben Gordon.220px-Gordon7_20091204

The Bobcats waived Gordon on Sunday, preventing him from appearing in the postseason should he sign with another team. While they may have alienated his agent – not a trifle thing in the business world of the NBA – two things should be pointed out.

1. When teams waive or buy out players at this time of the season, they are essentially establishing a price they are willing to pay to that player to not play for them.

2. In this case, the Bobcats made it impossible for Gordon to come back to haunt them in the playoffs.

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Kamenetzky Bros. Power Rankings: Thunder, Clippers Buff Up in February Free Agency

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grangerclippersOnce and forever, the rich get richer, whether you’re talking the United States wealth gap or the disparity between NBA conferences.

The March 1 deadline for players to be bought out and remain playoff-eligible for a new squad has passed. Per usual, the superior conference emerged even stronger. To wit, the Chicago Bulls just added Jimmer Fredette, released by the Sacramento Kings after failing to justify his lottery pick status.

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SH Blog: Thunder and Clippers Acquire New Pieces; Bulls Closing in on Jimmer; Gasol vents on blog

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grangerFor those who were surprised at teams on the cusp of a who did not make a deadline move to bolster their chances, it is because they had their eyes keenly on the waiver wire.

On Friday afternoon both the Los Angeles Clippers — looking like a real threat in the West — and the Oklahoma City Thunder — the team to beat in the West — picked up veteran wings to strengthen their rotations, locker rooms and title chances. 

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February Free Agency Update: Clippers, Spurs in mix on Granger; Butler, Fredette eyed by playoff teams

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granger

February’s buyout season is becoming more interesting than the trade deadline itself.

There’s a case to be made that the goings-on surrounding Danny Granger, Caron Butler, Jimmer Fredette and others could make a bigger impact than all those moves made one week ago.

With Granger, Butler and now Jimmer Fredette (as the Kings announced) officially bought out and ancillary players like Beno Udrih, Earl Clark and Shannon Brown finding new teams, it’s time to really ramp up the races for players who could make their marks on the playoff chase.

This is the last week for contenders to shore up their playoff  rosters with NBA players for a run they hope will last into June. It is becoming known as February Free Agency.

The official NBA rule is that teams have until 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on Saturday, March 1 to waive a player so he can be used on a postseason roster this season. So over the next few days, there will be a barrage of rumors, buyouts and transactions, and we will keep you abreast of all the latest information here at SheridanHoops.