Bernucca: If Outspoken Butler Isn’t Leader of Bulls, Who Is?

Jimmy Butler

If you are like many Americans – middle-class, middle-aged males not unlike myself – and watched your first NBA games this season on Christmas, then you probably think the Chicago Bulls are just fine. If you have watched at any other time this season, then you know otherwise. On Christmas, the Bulls played perhaps their best game of the season. They went into Loud City without injured emotional leader Joakim Noah and never trailed against the Thunder, leaving with a convincing 105-96

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Sheridan: MVP Rankings, Edition III: On Kobe Bryant, Steve Harvey & Ish Smith

Harvey1

Pre-Christmas week brought a foreshadowing of what was coming, as an e-mail from columnist and NBA Encylopedia author Jan Hubbard (who lives in Dallas) included a notation that he was in Los Angeles, where the locals are still infatuated with Kobe Bryant to an extreme degree — or so it seemed to an outsider and objective observer, as Hubbard was. Christmas then brought the news that Bryant is running away with the lead in All-Star balloting, which is always a popularity

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Bernucca: If Anthony Davis Was a Top-Five Player, Wouldn’t the Pelicans Be Better?

Anthony Davis

Can we now stop pretending that Anthony Davis is the second coming of Wilt Chamberlain? Can we now stop with the hyperbolic declarations that Davis is going to own the NBA in two years or that Davis is going to make the New Orleans Pelicans a perennial title contender? Can we now stop calling Davis a top-five player? Top-five players elevate teams by themselves. Top-five players assure their teams of 50 wins and playoff berths, regardless of circumstances. Top-five players don’t say, “We

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Sheridan: MVP Rankings, Edition II: Who’s Vying for Runner-Up?

secretariat1

Ever heard of a racehorse named Twice a Prince? Ever heard of a young woman from Nevada named Nia Sanchez? Or how about the poker player Joshua Beckley, who had a whole bunch of TV time in November. Any of those names ring a bell? Probably not … and you know why? They all finished second. Twice a Prince finished a mere 31 lengths behind the legendary Secretariat in the 1973 Belmont Stakes. Sanchez, despite a controversy over whether she qualified for Nevada residency or

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Bernucca: Is NBA Experiencing Parity, or Mediocrity?

Warriors

Is the NBA inching toward parity? Or slowly sinking into mediocrity? Those may seem like strange questions during a season in which the Golden State Warriors have imposed their dominance over the rest of the league in unprecedented fashion. Yes, at 22-0 the Warriors have obliterated the best start in NBA history and have looked downright unbeatable while the clock was ticking during a vast majority of those 22 games. In that sense, they present a very strong argument against the notion

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