The week of March 9th-16th should hence forth be known as Phil Jackson Week. In the world of basketball at least. Because as the Zen Master continues to dominate the daily headlines, well, that’s sure what it feels like.
It is time to ask the rhetorical question: Is the MVP race over? Has Kevin Durant wrapped this thing up already by guiding the Oklahoma City Thunder to the highest win total in the NBA (30 games over .500) despite the absence of Russell Westbrook? It was about this time a year ago that LeBron James started creating the separation that would ultimately make him the near-unanimous choice (Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe was the only voter who cast a ballot
Sometimes the best way to evaluate the Most Valuable Player is to watch him ride solo for a while. Yes, stats count. So does his performance in close games, his output against the better teams, his showdowns with fellow candidates and his overall leadership. However, a true indicator can be how the player performs when he has to go it alone. This season, we have all marveled at Kevin Durant. The perennial MVP candidate has been truly spectacular. But what has elevated
Finally. After much anticipation, and to some chagrin, the NBA’s coaches have submitted their list of reserves for the forthcoming 2014 NBA All-Star game in New Orleans, LA. Many of the All-Star reserve selections are expected, though there were a few selections (and snubs) that were unconventional, though deserving. In the Eastern Conference, Chris Bosh [Miami Heat], DeMar DeRozan [Toronto Raptors], Paul Millsap [Atlanta Hawks], John Wall [Washington Wizards], Joe Johnson [Brooklyn Nets], Roy Hibbert [Indiana Pacers] and Joakim Noah [Chicago Bulls] all join
NBA fans do an awful job of protecting the image of their favorite sport. This is not the NFL, which has been America’s pastime for a generation and can do no wrong in the eyes of its fans. The only time the NFL has an image problem is when a storm affects satellite reception. This is also not baseball, which has a considerable image problem with its collection of prima donnas on PEDS. But it also has more than a century of
To say it’s been an eventful 24 hours of basketball is a major understatement. NBA fans were treated to emotional tributes, heavyweight tilts and massive scoring outputs.In addition to all the fun, NBA Sunday Showcase also returned. For the remainder of the season (with the exception of Super Bowl Sunday) fans can watch top teams in the league go head-to-head during the daylight hours. Let’s go to Boston, where two highly anticipated returns brought many to tears. Kevin Garnett: six years, one
LAS VEGAS — Quite the scene at the Hard Rock Hotel last night, where it seemed a whole bunch of people had taken the Portland Trail Blazers and 6 1/2 points as they played the second night of a back-to-back at Oklahoma City. (Bernucca warned me against playing it, so I stayed away and didn’t gamble a nickel). The party never stops at the Hard Rock, but Kevin Durant managed to momentarily stifle it. And damn, it was something to see. So I
Martin Luther King Day is more than a day of celebration and reflection for the NBA, which probably has done more positive things for race relations than any other sport in the Civil Rights Era. It also has become the unofficial midway point of the season. By the completion of Monday’s action, more than half of the league’s 30 teams will have played half their games. With that in mind, we present our midseason awards with this reminder from the bookie of hopeless