Bernucca: For Some Teams, Playoffs Have Already Started

Stan Van Gundy with hands

On Saturday night, while most basketball fans were watching the Final Four, the NBA playoffs got under way. Not officially, of course. That doesn’t happen until April 16. But for the Detroit Pistons, Chicago Bulls and other teams fighting for the bottom of the brackets, the postseason already has started. Detroit’s 94-90 victory at Chicago on Saturday wasn’t quite a Game Seven. The Pistons aren’t quite home free just yet, and the Bulls aren’t quite dead. But it sure looked an awful

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Bernucca: Sorry Big O, But Today’s Game Is Much Better

Curry11

I hope Oscar Robertson was watching Saturday night. I hope he saw Stephen Curry answer his ridiculous, attention-starved musings as definitively as possible. I hope he wasn’t too jaded to see Curry handle the ball in a way Robertson only wished he could. I hope his eyesight still works well enough to see from where Curry was launching – and making – his shots. And I hope Robertson and a number of NBA stars from bygone eras will just shut up and

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DuBose: Why Deadline Deals Are Unlikely to Fix ‘Broken’ Rockets

Morey

The Houston Rockets are admittedly “broken,” but the fix may still be months away. After losing to Portland in their final game before the All-Star break, the Rockets have lost six of eight and now find themselves below .500 (27-28) as the West’s No. 9 seed. That means that a team that went to the Western Conference finals a year ago and opened 2015-16 training camp with championship aspirations could actually miss the playoffs entirely… depending on what goes down by next Thursday’s

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Three-Man Weave: Should Kobe Bryant Be An All-Star?

Kobe Smile

We are back with a long-overdue edition of the Three-Man Weave, taking a look at the NBA All-Star Game starters. What did the fans get right? What did they get wrong? Should Kobe Bryant be part of the All-Star Game? And what does John Malkovich have to do with all of this? Let’s get right to it. 1. Which Eastern Conference player should have been an All-Star starter? [Read more…]

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Hubbard: While excelling quietly, Spurs may be finding gems

Boban Marjanovic Spurs

Seldom has a team with a nine-game winning streak, 16 victories in its last 17 games and an overall record of 34-6 generated so little excitement. That’s outside of San Antonio, of course. Spurs fans are aware as any of the Ripleys-Believe-It-Or-Not 36-2 start of the Golden State Warriors, but they have every reason to be excited and optimistic about their chances to win a sixth NBA title. The Warriors are defending champions, but the Spurs are only a year removed from winning

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Bernucca: Doc Rivers the GM Keeps Doc Rivers the Coach Busy

doc-rivers

Over the last two weeks, Doc Rivers the coach has done a fantastic job of covering for Doc Rivers the GM. The Los Angeles Clippers have won nine straight games, the last eight without superstar forward Blake Griffin, who – in case you hadn’t noticed over the past couple of seasons – has overtaken Chris Paul as the team’s best player. When Griffin got hurt, the Clippers appeared to be in trouble. They had just lost three straight games to San Antonio,

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Bernucca: Tim Who? Duncan’s Donut Illustrates Spurs’ Transition

Spurs_2014_NBA_Championship_Ring_01

In case you didn’t notice, the transition into a new era for the San Antonio Spurs hit a milestone of sorts this past weekend. For the first time in 1,360 career games, Tim Duncan did not score. Coming off a three-game absence – one for rest and two due to knee soreness – the no-brainer Hall of Famer played just 13 minutes Saturday, missing all three of his shots and failing to get to the line. And it was no coincidence that in

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Hubbard: Warriors Done Chasing Records, Ready to Chase Championship

Luke Walton big

OAKLAND – During Golden State’s otherworldly 24-0 start, interim coach Luke Walton was asked how it felt to get no official credit for the victories. NBA policy is that only the permanent coach can accumulate wins and losses, so those victories went to Steve Kerr, who has yet to coach this season while recovering from back surgery. The winning streak, which set an all-time pro sports record for consecutive victories to open a season, ended Saturday with a 108-95 loss to

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