Damian Lillard is very good. Okay, maybe we knew that already. But watching him carry the Blazers to an incredible win against a Cavs team that was very much on top of their game tonight, and then cap it with a game-winning three… that was something else. LaMarcus Aldridge is also very good, and so are Wesley Matthews and Nic Batum. But it’s Lillard who makes the whole thing work.
A little more than a month has passed in the NBA season, but it seems like we’ve already had a full year of distractions, both good and bad. Portland great; Indiana even better. The Knicks and Nets taking turns who’s bad and who’s worse. Kobe close to returning; Rose out for the year. Dwayne Wade hurting; the Atlantic Division hurting even more. Meanwhile, the last team other than the Miami Heat to win a championship is quietly turning into a solid
We are all familiar with the Spurs and their uncanny efficiency. Are you familiar with AAU basketball? I have coached it at the high school level for the last three years. And one thing I have learned is that with just four hours of weekly practice time followed by four games every weekend, if you don’t have definitive, well-drilled schemes on both offense and defense, you have no chance to compete. However, if you have a group that is committed to a
The standings are always a little wonky at this point. Some contenders get off to slow starts, some pretenders look like world-beaters.
In the past few weeks I have written columns on the NBA futures market (to win the championship) and over/unders on regular season win totals, which is always something that intrigues not only bettors, but fans, too, because it gives them a barometer for how their team may perform in the upcoming season. The last item on the menu before the regular season starts next week is some of the more exotic proposition bets on the NBA betting menu which get
Remember when ESPN ranked Kobe Bryant as the 25th best player in the league? It sounds ridiculous, but what people didn’t realize was that the ranks had nothing to do with what the players did last season or in previous years. Rather, it was a projection of what the players may do in the upcoming season, with all things considered. In Bryant’s case, it was easy for analysts to bring down the expectations due to the unpredictability of his recovery from
In a teleconference last week, we asked NBA analysts Chris Webber and Greg Anthony to pick a Western Conference team which missed the playoffs last season but will make the playoffs this season. “Dallas, mainly because of Dirk Nowitzki,” Webber said. “He’ll be back healthy. What he does, with spacing, getting guys involved … We take his game for granted.” “I would go with the Pelicans,” Anthony said. “I think that’s a team that could make sizeable leaps and surprise a lot