Wednesday afternoon, or evening depending on which northern hemisphere you were in, saw the defending NBA Champion San Antonio Spurs in their first preseason exhibition. Their opponent, Alba Berlin (otherwise known as the Berlin Albatrosse). It was, for many, expected to be a blowout in the champs favor, much in the same way that the Cleveland Cavaliers so easily dispatched Maccabi Tel Aviv. Unfortunately, fortune favors the bold. Alba Berlin, though seemingly outmatched in talent, kept the game within striking distance the
The departure of LeBron James as a free agent earlier this summer left a void for the Miami Heat to fill. With the leagues best player taking his talents back to Cleveland, there isn’t really a viable way to replace such a loss. Determined to remain competitive the Heat retooled by adding new free agents, but they’ll also be relying on their returning stars to contribute in a major way.
If you’re wondering where Derrick Rose ranks among the NBA’s top 10 point guards, he doesn’t. Neither does Deron Williams. Or Kemba Walker. Or Kyle Lowry. Point guard is the most demanding position in the NBA. And in ranking the top floor generals, we have demanding criteria. Is your favorite point guard an All-Star? How long has he been at that level? Is his current career track pointing upward or downward? Where does he rank among scorers at the position? Assists? Does he
It might sound ridiculous to try to compare Aron Baynes, an undrafted reserve with four career starts, to Bill Laimbeer, a four-time All Star and NBA champion. However, the two have more in common than you would expect. Before Laimbeer became the ringleader for the Pistons’ Bad Boys and a namesake for a Super Nintendo videogame, he was an afterthought. Sandwiched in the draft between two players who never appeared in the NBA, Laimbeer – the 65th overall pick in 1979 – was forced to
The growth of analytics in the NBA has been nothing short of phenomenal. It started with a deeper look at numbers that already were available and produced new and useful statistics such as true shooting percentage, defensive rebound percentage, offensive rating and win shares. With the use of a grid or a matrix, we now have the ability to determine a player’s offensive tendencies and hot spots. For some players, it is quite revealing. For others, such as DeAndre Jordan, it pretty
The San Antonio Spurs and the organization’s two stalwarts, Tim Duncan and Gregg Popovich, are coming off a fifth championship and are poised for another title run next season – provided Duncan doesn’t retire. With five championships in a 15-year period, the Spurs have made a claim to be considered a dynasty. However, some people – most notably Phil Jackson – would disagree because the Spurs haven’t won consecutive titles. Jackson won three consecutive championships on three separate occasions (1991-93, 96-98, 2000-2002).
There is no time to waste after the NBA Finals. Despite the brilliance of the San Antonio Spurs, just minutes after the NBA Finals concluded Sunday night began the talk of the Decision II. To credit the NBA, the league has always done a marvelous job of trimming the fat. The NBA draft is just eight days away, with free agency beginning just a week after that. There’s no time to waste, and thus never a shortage of headlines. Well, until
One of the obvious takeaways from the 2014 NBA Finals was that the San Antonio Spurs clearly have more good players than the Miami Heat. When the series began, it appeared to be a showdown of each team’s “Big Three” – Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker for the Spurs and LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh for the Heat. But as the Finals progressed, the talent gap separating the teams became evident. Spurs coach Gregg Popovich trusted his bench,