Last night was a thrilling game between the San Francisco 49ers and Green Bay Packers, highlighted by a clutch performance from Packers’ QB Aaron Rodgers. Packers handed the 49ers their 4th straight defeat, picking up a 33-30 win last night in Green Bay, Wisconsin.
The 49ers started out with 10-0 lead and each time they pushed ahead, Packers’ QB Aaron Rodgers made a play to bring the Packers back to either level the score or push them ahead. The play that stung the most though, was when Rodgers threw a 16-yard touchdown pass to Davante Adams to help tie the game at 30 with 1:55 remaining. Then he drove the Packers down the field for kicker, Mason Crosby’s game-winning 27-yard field goal as time expired.
Note that Rodgers’ movement was limited with an injured knee and there has been a constant cry for a better coach for the Packers. After all, Rodger’s can’t save them all the time.
Watch “49ers vs. Packers Week 6 Highlights | NFL 2018” with spectacular play by Packers’ QB Aaron Rodgers on YouTube here:
As usual, well done Rodgers. Looking forward to more this season!
In other news, it’s NBA Day! The NBA Season kicks off TONIGHT!
Kevin Durant of Golden State Warriors (L) and LeBron James of LA Lakers (R)(Photo: Bleacher Report)
Here’s the schedule for tonight’s return of the NBA Season:
Who will win this year?
The Lakers will always have a chance with their new teammate LeBron James. With a healthy Kyrie Irving, so do the Boston Celtics. But, barring any injuries and once DeMarcus Cousins returns from injury, KD (Kevin Durant) will be unstoppable and it should be Warriors all the way!
The Defending Champs, Golden State Warriors a.k.a Dubs return as NBA Title favourites (Photo: Bleacher Report)
By: Gabrielle Burgess
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Spurs vs. Celtics last night lived up to Suga’s expectations to be an exciting game. The Celtics were out front early in the game, leaving the Spurs to play catch up for most of the first half. The Spurs came back strong towards the end led by LaMarcus Aldridge with 27 points. But it was veteran, Manu Ginobili who hit the game-winning three with 5 seconds remaining.
Kyrie Irving’s attempt for a game-tying three at the buzzer rimmed out and the Spurs overcame his 36-point effort to beat him and the Celtics, 105-102.
Watch “Spurs’ Manu Ginóbili Hits Game-Winning 3 to Lift Spurs over Celtics” on YouTube here:
What else happened last night?!
The Cavs 13-game winning streak came to an end despite the efforts and stats of LeBron James. The Pacers beat them 106-102.
The Warriors fought on despite being without Steph Curry who is out with an ankle injury. Kevin Durant a.k.a KD put up 36 points for their 102-98 win versus the Pistons.
Don’t you just love this game?! Keep watching the lead up to the Playoffs.
By: Gabrielle Burgess
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CONGRATULATIONS to the GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS for winning the 2017 NBA Finals. They beat the Cavaliers 129-120 to seal the NBA Finals series 4-1, which was Suga’s original prediction before a sweep looked possible and the Refs intervened Game 4.
It is the first NBA Finals where 4 players averaged 25+ points, which was achieved by Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and LeBron James.
LeBron James was sensational, putting up 41 points and JR Smith was spectacular with 25 points including 7-8 from the 3-point line. His only miss from the 3-point line was late in the 4th when the Cavs started to crumble seeing the Championship slip away from them. He regrouped and put in another 3-point sinker that was just too late.
Kyrie Irving played well, scoring 26 points. But he was benched on and off as he suffered aches and pains that naturally come at this time of the post-season. He will have the entire summer to rest now.
Tristan Thompson finally stepped up and scored 15 points. He seemed to have switched places with Kevin Love. Love was scoreless for most of the game because he was benched after the first few minutes of the game when he committed 2 early fouls. He eventually ended up with just 6 points.
The Cavs just weren’t good enough.
Apart from an 18-point lead by the Warriors at one point, the game was quite close for the most part and extremely physical to say the least.
The turning point was Andre Iguodala’s (Iggy’s) dunk to change the momentum of the game and to wake up the Warriors who were playing well but not looking like they wanted to seize Game 5 and the Championship.
At that point, Davis West shook things up further after he went for a rebound and Kyrie Irving tried to wrestle the ball away from him. West got fired up and so did Tristan Thompson who also went for the rebound but lost out on it. He came and pushed West and so did JR Smith who ran in on the action from a mile away. West, Tristan Thompson and JR Smith were all given technical fouls.
LeBron James then gave an earful to a laughing Kevin Durant (KD) and Draymond Green and backed up all his talking by sinking a 3. Coach Steve Kerr smartly and immediately called a time out. Then the Warriors prevented an angry comeback from LeBron James.
The Warriors fully amped and on their way to victory after Curry scores a 2-point shot and gets fouled
Stephen Curry was explosive in the first half, but not so much in the second half. His 3-point mojo was missing. He assisted some crucial plays to the basket in the 2nd half though. He scored a total of 34 points.
Klay Thompson scored 11 points. It seems like a small amount, but he contributed throughout the game offensively and defensively and hit those 3s when they were needed or mattered the most.
It was KD and Iggy that really carried the team down the stretch. KD scored 39 points, the most he scored in the Finals, scoring over 30 each game. Iggy came up big from the bench with 20 points, highlighted by dunks and a few 3s.
KD did everything you can think of to secure his 1st NBA Championship ring, from assists to rebounds, dunks, layups, drives through the lane, jumpers and those 3s that broke the Cavs’ heart. K-Dagger.
Last night he was the real MVP.
Wanda, kudos to you too.
Kevin Durant and his mother, Wanda celebrate the Championship win
Congrats to KD for winning Finals MVP.
KD accepts Finals MVP Trophy from Bill Russell
LeBron’s fans will ask, ‘What more could he have done?’ LeBron stated, I left everything on the floor for all 5 games.’ I could almost agree. He played great baskbetball, but not when it counted. Game 4 to save face from a potential sweep and Game 5 at the Warrior’s homecourt is just too late to show up when necessary. Let’s not even talk about the Game 1 and 2 blowouts. But Game 3?! The game back on Cleveland’s homecourt? LeBron just wasn’t clutch. Here is a reminder of how LeBron could have been better and turned this Final around – LeBron missed a driving lay-up in the late 4th and had his 3-point shot attempt blocked by Andre Iguodala with 12s left. He made the offensive rebound then stepped out of bounds resulting in a turnover with 10s left. That’s just an example of a potential 5 points gone out the window. The end result of Game 3 was Warriors 118 – Cavs 113. To be the GOAT, you have to be clutch and that title still belongs to Michael Jordan with 6 rings.
“The premise that the Warriors’ victory was inevitable due to their stacking the deck ignores an indisputable fact: Only one of these teams features four top-five picks in the starting lineup — including a pair of No. 1 overall selections — and it isn’t the Warriors”. – Kevin Arnovitz (ESPN Staff Writer)
At the end of the day, the Warriors were hungrier and played much closer to their full potential compared to the Cavaliers.
Well done and well deserved Championship win for Coaches Steve Kerr, Mike Brown and the Warriors team.
Congrats to the internet too, that keeps winning.
Until next year!
By: Gabrielle Burgess
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Despite LeBron James putting up 39 points and Kyrie Irving, 38, it just was not enough to beat the Warriors team. The Warriors beat them at home 118-113 last night to go up 3-0 in the series.
It was a close game throughout and the 3rd Quarter belonged to Kyrie Irving. But the new addition to the Kardashians, Tristan Thompson contributed zero for the entire game and Kevin Love missed too many shots. J.R. Smith contributed a few crucial 3-point shots but it jus wasn’t enough to surpass the fast-paced Warriors team. The Cavs were worn out after the 3rd Quarter.
The Cavs led by as much as 7 points in the 4th Quarter and as much as 6 points in the late part of the 4th Quarter.
With a combined 77 points between LeBron and Kyrie, neither of them were clutch. Kyrie missed a crucial 3-pointer that was a lazy shot, while he should have passed it to J.R who had a hot hand and made himself free. LeBron missed a driving lay-up in the late 4th and had his 3-point shot attempt blocked by Andre Iguodala with 12s left. He made the offensive rebound then stepped out of bounds resulting in a turnover with 10s left.
So as much as LeBron James fans hate to admit it, he isn’t clutch and remains a ‘Stats King’.
Who was Clutch?!
KD! KD broke the Cavs heart with a 3-point hook, line and sinker over LeBron James who didn’t even contest the shot with 45.3s remaining. KD scored 31 points and Klay Thompson and Steph Curry came up big with a few clutch shots of their own with 30 and 26 points respectively.
Props to Steve Kerr for managing and switching up the line up several times as Draymond Green kept getting into foul trouble.
Will there be a Sweep?
Yes. The Cavs are far too demoralised. They can’t manage the firepower, pace and tenacity of the Warriors this year.
After the Warriors messed up 73 wins last year, they are going for a record 16 straight post-season wins with no mercy and a ringless, past MVP, Kevin Durant is at their helm.
Brooms for SALE.
By: Gabrielle Burgess
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Perhaps one of THE most anticipated NBA Finals starts Today! There is so much on the line. Here are Suga’s top 7 reasons:
1. LeBron James
LeBron James is chasing 4 rings and GOAT status. The debate continues. With 1 more Championship win, will he be on Kobe’s level, a little higher or will he finally pass MJ?
For Suga, he will level with Kobe with 1 more ring.
2. Kevin Durant (KD)
The legacy of KD is on the line and the question of if one of the most controversial trades in history will prove beneficial? Will KD finally get his 1st ring?
Suga thinks a little karma will follow him the first year in and it will be a gamble if he gets this great chance again.
Curry and LeBron could have been tied with two Championships. How? If Kyrie Irving missed that final game-winning 3-pointer in Game 7 last year and Curry made his 3-pointer.
‘Coulda Shoulda NEVER’
Curry will never have a debate going for his level being close to MJ but he still has a chance of being a defining player of his era, especially if he wins this Championship and 1 more to level the Championship wins of LeBron.
The Warriors are 22-3 in playoff games when Curry scores 30 or more. Will Curry show up in these Finals unlike last year? Last year he scored fewer than 20 points four times in the Finals. He can forget about the ring if that is the case this year.
4. David West
Was West’s jump from the San Antonio Spurs to the Warriors worth it? Should he have taken more money to be a star on a team that had no chance of being in the Finals?
West has said one of the reasons that makes it worth it is being in the locker room during halftime of a close game with Coach Gregg Popovich.
Suga thinks the overall experience he has gotten with both teams of excellent quality makes the ring chase worth it, even if his post season ends without one.
5. Klay Thompson
In these playoffs, Klay is 36% on 3s, far off from his career percentage.
Will the real Klay show up in these Finals when it counts? Will he even get a chance to get the ball enough to fall into his rhythm surrounded by so many all-star teammates?
6. Kevin Love
Kevin Love has been showing up in these Playoffs, averaging a career-best of 17.2 points and 10.4 rebounds.
With him out of the Playoff series with a shoulder injury in 2015, he can say he has never lost one and he may be LeBron’s lucky charm.
7. Mike Brown
If Coach Mike Brown guides the Warriors to another Championship without Steve Kerr, it is likely he will be a top candidate for Coaching jobs that open up next year with another good or great team, or even replace Steve Kerr full time.
The NBA Finals will kick off TONIGHT at 8pm!
Here is the Schedule for the next 3 games. You know there will be more after that, so stay tuned!
By: Gabrielle Burgess
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The Cleveland Cavaliers have done it! They are the 2016 NBA Champions with a 93-89 win over the Golden State Warriors. The Cavs have made history winning the 1st NBA Championship for Cleveland and a season full of history ends in misery for Golden State.
I won’t talk about the lead up to Game 7 and the momentum change in favour of the Cavs that were down 3-1 with the suspension of Draymond Green for Game 5 where there was a 41-a piece game by Kyrie Irving and LeBron James, but I will talk about Game 7, where it was ALL on the line.
The two teams went into the Game 7 NBA Final for the first time ever with the same aggregate score through the 7 game series. I haven’t watched such a great Finals game with everything on the line like that in a long time. The game had everyone on the edge of their seats and with that said, the better team that night won and earned it with great respect.
So what was the decisive play for the win with the game tied at 89-89 with a minute left to go in the game? NO, not the block by LeBron over Iguodala. No team scored for about 2 minutes. Balls were going in and out of that net and the ball may have been unlikely to go in for Iguodala anyway, whether he was blocked or not. It was Kyrie Irving’s huge clutch-winning 3-point shot over Steph Curry that did it and stayed there for the win AND the likely decision by Tyronn Lue in the time-out leading up to it to make Kyrie take the shot and not LeBron who went cold as usual in the 4th. Steve Kerr then failed by having Curry make repeated shot attempts with no buckets and no answers to the 3-pointer that Kyrie drilled. Curry had been cold for practically 3 quarters, 2-time back to back MVP or not, what made Kerr think that he was all of a sudden going to be the hero and close the deficit? They may have been better off with the visually competitive and lead scorer Draymond. Go break another clipboard Steve.
Kerr struggled to rotate his small line up without Bogut and did well, but should have given Barbosa more minutes. He has been stepping up and scoring consistently and someone from the bench needed to give that help and the Splash Brothers needed to help Draymond. At least Barnes was not a complete failure last night, but Livingston missed some of his ‘All Day, Everyday’ perimeter shots. He stayed in his lane though and did what he was supposed to do and could do for the night, including making his free throws. Festus Ezeli though, was in the starting lineup for the first time last night to aid in the ‘Go Big’ match up versus the Cavs but failed to drive crucial shots to the rim. He needed to be way more aggressive and has certainly been a disappointment as the 30th pick selected by Golden State in the draft over Draymond Green who we all know was the 35th pick.
So now, all LeBron James fans breathed a huge sigh of relief and probably cried with him for the Championship win. Firstly, Suga would like to congratulate LeBron on winning his well deserved MVP and for winning his 3rd ring, which probably carried as much weight as his first. It would have been a disaster for him to lose a 3rd straight final. He has cruised to the finals on the East side for 6 straight years. I said cruised, debatable or not, but in my opinion even though there are talented players on the East side, I can’t say any of them are a star player trade away from being a Championship team. The East side teams are losers and were hardly even worth watching until the semifinals of their Conference. ‘Dem need fi build’. Simple.
The pressure has been on LeBron since he graduated from High School and he has also suffered from the hype people and the media have put on him. He somehow got and accepted the name King James years before even his first ring (Kings wear rings) and said he didn’t have any worries because he is the best player in the world, then he lost his next final. So of course he is always up for criticism and had no choice but to save his name and totally take over this series. He scored a triple-double last night with 27 points, 11 assists and 11 rebounds and he was voted unanimous MVP. He is the 1st player in NBA history to lead all players in all 5 categories, that is, Points, Rebounds, Assists, Blocks and Steals for an ENTIRE Playoff series. He also joined the historic company of Michael Jordan, Bill Russell amd Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, being 1 of 4 players with 3 titles and 4 MVPs.
That’s great LeBron. Those were really great accomplishments, but I would just love for him to shut everyone up completely including myself and show up more in crucial 4th quarters. MJ didn’t go cold in final 4th quarters and have Pippin win the Championships for him. So the potential is there to be the greatest but it’s just always like he needs the NFL version of a Hail Mary such as a Ray Allen or Kyrie Irving to make that clutch 3-pointer winning shot for him. LeBron showed he wanted it more with that block, but it didn’t win the game. It always comes down to points and Kyrie scored them. Not 2 to even the score if Iguodala scored, but 3. Warriors also had the advantage in terms of possessions for the last few seconds of the game but kept missing.
According to Bleacher Report, LeBron scored the most points but Kyrie scored the critical 26 points of the game.
Let us not also forget that that Kyrie guarded Curry for the majority of the game and locked him down! Curry was forced to make passes, take hard shots and created turnovers.
Draymond Green carried the team last night. He scored 32 points with 15 rebounds and 9 assists but where were the Splash Brothers? Curry was not only locked down by Kyrie but when he got free he scored 17 points and was 6/19 from the field and 4/14 from the 3-point range, while Klay scored 14 points, was only 2/10 from 3-point range and 6/17 from the field. So it is clear they had opportunities but just weren’t scoring. It was the Warriors home court, they led the majority of the game, though by small margins and it was their game to lose.
A win for the Warriors would have made them debatably the greatest team, but the win for Cavs with the MVP performance of James didn’t make LeBron the greatest ever but definitely killed the controversy of him being one of the greatest ever. He elevated his teammates such as JR Smith and Tristan Thompson. I can’t say the same for Kevin Love who was a complete disaster. He was a huge disappointment for the Cavs but also placed in the wrong position on the court many times. Kyrie didn’t need to be elevated. He was already elevated after getting the opportunity to return and help his team reach the Finals after being put out last year’s finals after Game 1 with a knee injury.
Steph struggled to play both ends of the floor and whenever he had to play the role of a scoring point guard.
After the LeBron-Draymond incident and the fact that Klay said players talk trash all the time and it’s a Man’s League, that’s also what he needs to tell his teammate, Curry. Man up. His body language needs to improve as well. LeBron and the Cavs made him look like a rookie this series. Curry will have to go back to the drawing board to be considered as great and I think he has the determination to return after witnessing a tough 2nd round 4-2 loss to the San Antonia Spurs in 2013, a 4-3 1st round loss to the Clippers in 2014 and then his return in 2015 to become an NBA Champion.
LeBron may just be there again for his 7th straight final though. It’s very possible given the state of the East side at the moment. I think he still needs to win another ring and actually score the Championship winning shots, as his NBA Finals record is still a lopsided 3-4. 2 rings would be ideal in order to back up his stats and hype. Many great players with great stats have ended their careers without a ring because of other great teams and or players in their way but none of them called themself King.
With all that has been said and done, it was a well earned Championship for Cleveland and it was a team effort. Congrats Cavs!
Whether Basketball fans like to admit it or not, the decision to give Draymond Green a Flagrant Foul 1 for his words used to trash talk LeBron James (not for grabbing his balls as memes would suggest) leading to a suspension from the fouls he piled up before, was unnecessary. But all worked in favour of prolonging the series to a likely Game 7.
How could you have the great, LeBron James reach his 6th straight finals and have him face the strong possibility of losing his 3rd straight finals, 4-1? That would be disastrous in NBA history. It would look horrible on paper for LeBron and would smear his legacy, be a huge distraction from and basically override all the great stats he racked up over the years.
Who really thought the Warriors would win without Draymond and with LeBron and Irving fighting to stay in the Finals? What was he going to do, pop Champagne in his suite without the team after he helped get them there? Draymond is the leader of the Warriors team and they all know it. The team feeds off of his energy.
With such a bad temper it was inevitable that Draymond would be suspended at some point in the Finals series. But why did the player who calls himself the ‘Best Player in the World’ have to force the issue for him to take the bait? He shouldn’t feel threatened. Doesn’t he say he ‘ain’t got no worries?’ Has he never been called names in his life because he is a big guy? He said Draymond took it too far. Smart, but Poor Baby.
So with Game 5 in California and the Cavs down 3-1, there would be an opportunity for the Warriors to close out but even though their fans came with their best faces and cheers out, they knew they wouldn’t win that game without Draymond. LeBron James was booed from shoot around practice to everytime he had possession of the ball during the game.
Iguodala started for Draymond and had a spectacular 1st quarter. It was a tight 1st and 2nd quarter that had both teams playing well. The teams went to Halftime at 61-61.
Klay Thompson came up big with 26 points. But it was the real LeBron James who finally showed up with 25 points and 0 assists in the entire 1st half. Klay the leading scorer at that point, had no assists either. Irving’s jump shots were on point too.
But let’s get back to LeBron. He was mentally prepared, serious and focused on what he had to do, blocking out all the boos, baby bottles and ‘Cry Baby LeBron’ signs. He is the type of player that listens to what people and the media have to say and he hardly ever uses it to fuel him to victory. This wasn’t so Monday night. He was in full attack mode, making consistent jump shots and 3-pointers! He was shooting! He was mixing it up, getting into the paint area and finishing it up. He scored the most points he has ever scored in any 1st half in any finals game of his career. There is no denying he may have been unstoppable in the 1st half but without Draymond out there, he was left to do whatever he wanted to do. Draymond has the ability to see plays before they are in motion and stop them. Not every player has that gift and that major part of defense was missing for the Warriors.
Things then started to fall apart for the Warriors when center, Andrew Bogut landed awkwardly on a play, hyper-extending his left leg. He will undergo an MRI to determine the severity of a left knee injury he suffered to see if he can play in Game 6.
The Warriors then had no choice but to go small with their line-up and well, if you don’t go big you go home.
Photo: Bleacher Report
The Cavs stretched to an 8 point lead, their biggest of the night. It was cut to 6 when Kyrie was accused of going out of bounds but actually didn’t and lost possession. Klay (37 points) did some work to cut the lead to 3 when fouled on a 3-point play with about 6:44mins left in the 3rd.
Curry showed up, but not enough. He scored 25 points for the night and with Irving not missing, the lead stretched to 8 and even 10.
James went cold in 4th, missing a lot of shots and was not passing the ball. So the Warriors had at least 2 or 3 possessions to cut down the lead, but failed to take advantage. Racking up the stats is one thing LeBron but finishing is another.
Kyrie got a handle of the ball again and remained consistent and with the score at Cavs 100 – 96 Warriors, thus Cavs having a 13 point lead with about 5 mins left, he scored another 3-pointer and buried them.
Good thing Kyrie was on point because James was still missing with up to 3 minutes left. He was still cold. Would not have made a difference anyway because the game Harrison Barnes had for the Warriors was embarrassing. You would think someone paid him to play so badly after the 2 previous big games he had. This is exactly what upsets Draymond Green about being the 35th pick and even his own teammates being drafted before him, such as Barnes. He says he has nothing against his teammates but Suga is showing you Exhibit A.
Anyhow, before the Finals, Suga knew if it was a long series for Cavs to be competitive, they would have a blow out game at home where LeBron, JR Smith and possibly Tristan Thompson would come up big and a game where Kyrie and/or James came up really big. It has happened. And no, State Farm Kevin Love was never a factor. Kyrie has a lot of fight and could have another big game in him. LeBron James cannot do it by himself.
So there you have it, with Kyrie and LeBron 41 a piece, for the first time, teammates have scored 40 plus in a Finals game. The game ended 112-97.
Now we have a Game 6 back in Cleveland. The Warriors were able to win it in 6 in Cleveland last year but I think this year will be different.
So much is on the line for both teams. What a dilemma! Did the NBA mess with the Warriors fate of possibly closing out in 5 at home? We won’t know but just have to wait and see how it plays out from here.
It would be heartbreaking for LeBron to lose his 3rd straight Final and 4 Finals overall. It would be Kyrie’s first ring and the Cavs 1st Championship! Now the Warriors are Defending Champs, looking to be a dynasty and after the long road of 73 wins, they only see winning it all as the acceptable outcome.
The media is going wild with reports and interviews and fans are shaking with anticipation for the rematch between the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers but more so, Stephen Curry versus LeBron James.
I have seen 5 reasons why Curry is the MVP versus 5 reasons why LeBron is the MVP flood my social media and sports app timeline. The majority of the statisticians and experts give the Defending Champs, the Warriors, the edge to win it all.
Cleveland has not won a title in 52 years and LeBron James left Miami to bring a title to them. If they win, it is the thought that even though LeBron may not win 4,5 or 6 rings, his career will be complete. Last year he stated that he is The Best Player in the World.
Recently, he has voiced that the Warriors now face the full and real Cavaliers team since Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love were injured last year in the Finals versus the Warriors.
The Warriors have been like a thorn in their side since, beating them on Christmas Day and following that up with a demoralising 34-point win in January, where their Coach, David Blatt was fired 4 days after. The Warriors have certainly forced change on the Cavs in the past year. Kyrie Irving even said he planned to play with a rage this season because of what the Warriors did to the Cavs last year.
One thing for sure is, LeBron will lose his ‘King James’ title if he loses and will no longer be considered the Best Player in the World.
What does Steph Curry have to say about all of this? He is annoyed and tired of hearing about the comparisons and what LeBron James has to say. At the end of the day he is not concerned about who is the face of the NBA or taking a throne, he is chasing rings and the conversation stops for him there.
That is something LeBron should have been concerned about all along. After all, you can’t have a King without Jewellery. Only a Prince has 2 rings.
With Tuesday night’s win over the Lakers, the Warriors are 33-2, 1 game ahead of NBA’s previous best, the Chicago Bulls at this point in their 1995-1996 season. Their next game is tonight at Portland. MVP Steph Curry has been playing through the pain with a shin injury that he should rest for 4 weeks but if he doesn’t rest it he is not in any great danger. According to ESPN Scorecenter, he attended full practice yesterday and will be playing tonight.
Even when a key player like Curry or Klay Thompson are out of the game, their line-up is big and they have other key players like Draymond Green who will step up big time and they still win. Green just won player of the week for the Week of December 28th. An average team will have to play GREAT to beat them says former basketball player and ESPN analyst Tim Legler, and the majority of their remaining games are versus average teams. They seem relaxed but hungry at the same time. Only a serious injury to one of their main players can stop them. Will Matthew Dellavedova kick Curry in the shin and just end his season? If the Warriors break the Bulls 72-10 record, it would only be right that they go for and win the NBA Championship title based on pure logic and historical statistics.
So which other teams are in the mix and who actually poses a serious threat?
To date, considering both the Eastern and Western Conference, the League standings for the Top 10 teams are as follows:
So for the West, if Warriors meet the San Antonio Spurs it will not be easy. At the looks of it now, only the Spurs pose a threat to the Warriors in the West and vice versa. The Spurs probably still have the deepest bench in the league. Their bench alone scored 70 points in the 123-98 blowout win over the Jazz on Wednesday.
They also finally have some young, fresh players that Coach Pop is giving time on the Court. There is Past Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard, LaMarcus Aldridge, Patty Mills and more. Then the Big Old 3 are still present. Old Man River Walk, Tim Duncan is still looking good, not to mention Manu Ginobili who looks like he got his act together. Tony Parker is forever talented but hardly ever consistent. Perhaps he has his young baby on his mind.
Even though Suga gives the Spurs and Warriors the edge in the West, OKC is not to be forgotten. Past MVP Kevin Durant is back! He is on form after a broken bone in his right foot that needed 3 surgeries and after spraining his big toe last week. Hopefully he doesn’t continue to break a leg. No pun intended. He returned Tuesday night to beat the Grizzlies 112-94 and note that OKC went 12-3 in December. Westbrook is great, Ibaka and Adams are good, but without Durant, OKC will lose.
Now where all my LeBron James haters at? Sorry folks, he won’t go away. He has won player of the month 29 times now and his stats keep buzzing, equalling and breaking record after record. He scored 9 points in 1 minute Wednesday night versus the Wizards at Washington. It’s a pity he isn’t pretty to watch though. Suga predicts the Cavs will go straight to the NBA Finals again this year. All eyes are on the Warriors, so no immense pressure on LeBron, which is good because we all see how he buckles under pressure. There is also no serious threat on the East side. The Bulls are doing well but the Cavs will still destroy them. The Cavs are the kind of team that elevate their game based on their opponent. They are confident, arrogant, hungry and some bitter.
I would say LeBron’s partner in crime is back, but LeBron is a lone, selfish soldier on the court. Kyrie Irving is back yall! Now HE is pretty and exciting to watch, just 23 years old and full of energy. He is back on form, scoring well, up to 32 points Wednesday night versus the Wizards compared to LeBron’s 34 points and these are under restrictions in minutes he is allowed to play, which the Cavs will soon remove. The Warriors beat them on Christmas Day 89-83, but with a healthy Kyrie Irving and no minutes restrictions, it will be a whole new ball game. The Cavs also have a good starting line up and bench with dangerous players like Matthew Dellavedova and J.R. Smith. When teams feel excited about catching up with the Cavs or lessening a point deficit, J.R. will just burst their bubble with a 3-pointer. Then they also have Tristan Thompson, Kevin Love, Timofey Mozgov and Sasha Kaun.
Sad to say but Suga believes if the Cavs meet the Warriors in the Finals again with a now healthy Kyrie Irving, they will get the formula right this time and get revenge. But if somehow the Spurs, a team with a totally different dynamic and ball movement make it to the Finals, they may actually make a more exciting match up versus the Cavs and LeBron could have a Finals nightmare all over again. But we just have to wait and see. It is just January and there is still time for players to grow and teams to make adjustments. Don’t you just love this game?!