The Basketblog

Celebrating the love of the Game.

Chicago/Detroit Series

Well, for what its worth, let us all remember that I told Mark and Zack, “If Chicago sweeps Miami, they will beat Detroit.” I was in all likelihood going to pick them anyway, but would have had to think about it if the series had been dragged to 6 or 7 games. Since it was complete pwnanation by Chicago, this makes the series even easier.

Ok, so this is Chicago’s first trip out of the second round in this millennium, and yes, Detroit has won World Championships this millennium. Guess what, so has Miami. And Chicago just made them look bad. Chicago took the reigning World Champions and smacked them around in Chicago and in Miami. My apologies for almost posting a false stat. Chicago actually beat Miami worse than Detroit beat Orlando.

Here are some stats to prove it. They are very close, but I have to give Chicago the slight edge. Plus, they did it agaisnt a much better team! Granted, Miami did not have a healthy D-Wade, but they completely shut him down! They are playing really well, to understate it. Their guard play has been excellent, and they are executing their offense to perfection! Plus Ben Wallace is hitting freethrows! What is that?! He is going to be the difference maker in this series. Against Miami, he had 9.3 ppg, 9.8 rpg, 1.8 ast, and only 2.75 fouls. The key for him is to just stay out of foul trouble in Detroit. He’s been playing 40 minutes a game, and those are great numbers for a big man! and he’s shooting 62% from the charity stripe. Ya, good luck Detroit.

The only thing that Detroit has going for them now is just their experience. They still have four starters from the championship teams, but where is their fifth starter? Oh, ya, he’s playing against them. I would say that experience is going to play a factor here, but Miami had some championship experience, and they still got swept. If Chicago can beat a team…nay, sweep a team with Shaq on it– and Ben Wallace average 50% more points/game then he did in the regular season!!– then who in the East is going to stop them? Wallace can easily alter the shots of every player that Detroit has–even crappy, washed-up, no good, blah blah blah Chris Webber– and Chicago should be able to wrap this one up in 6. I’ve said for several months now that Chicago has a legit chance to go to the finals, and unless Cleveland (i.e. Lebron) really shows me something in the second round, that will be my prediction.

by the way, I’m not nearly as good as Tony Kornheisser about coming up with funky names.

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April 30, 2007 Posted by | Chicago Bulls, Detroit Pistons, Miami Heat, NBA | , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

NBA Playoffs: April 29

Here’s a few of my thoughts after today:

Mike Tirico summarized Antoine Walker’s entire career in one call: “Walker…tippy-toe triple…is off.” Really though, if he played the way he does now at the beginning of his career, he never would have lasted more than three years. When he was younger, he was a huge match-up problem because he was equally good from three-point range and the block. He actually averaged over 10 rebounds per game his second season in the league.

I giggled like a little girl when Ben Wallace was running away from the foul at the end of the fourth quarter. That was one of the goofiest things I’ve ever seen in an NBA game, and it made me wonder why I’d never seen it before. Teams pass the ball around at the end of games to kill extra time before a foul can be committed, so why doesn’t the bad free throw shooter just run around to avoid the foul? Then I realized that Shaq is the player usually “hacked,” and he can’t outrun anyone.

Baron Davis Celebrates
Me when Baron Davis hit the buzzer beater at halftime. “I think it’s over now.” As it turns out, I was wrong but it didn’t look that way for the first few minutes of the third quarter. I said it again when he got the dunk at the end of the third quarter…and was wrong again. I really thought he’d do it again at the end of regulation, but of course I was wrong again.

Reason X why Northern California is better than Southern California: the basketball fans. Golden State and Sacramento have arguably the two best crowds in the league, and LA fans are notorious for leaving games early. Jack Nicholson and Billy Crystal can be seen courtside at LA games, Jessica Alba can be seen at Golden State games. There’s no competition. I think the crowd influenced the refs in some way because it did seem like the calls were going more in Golden State’s favor most of the two games. Golden State deserved to win both games, but I’m saying they had a little help.

Continue reading

April 29, 2007 Posted by | Chicago Bulls, Detroit Pistons, Golden State Warriors, Miami Heat, NBA, Orlando Magic, Sacramento Kings | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NBA Playoffs: April 27

Oh man, I love David Stern. He’s getting interviewed and being asked a dozen questions about conspiracies and controversies and basically says “shut up and let the viewers watch the game.” I also love the Golden State crowd. Anyone could win in front of that crowd. Local teams always do well at the IHSA state tournament, and I believe it’s because they have the biggest crowds. Rarely are they good enough to finish as high as they do; it’s just built-in home-court advantage.

“My grandma said she was gonna whoop me if I got kicked out again.” Bang. Too bad Ron Artest doesn’t have a grandma like that. By the way, have you ever seen a game when so many incredible shots went in for one team? The Warriors weren’t just beating up on the Mavericks, they were doing it in style!

Hey, quick poll: When’s the last time you saw a stat line as good as Jason Kidd’s 16/16/19? You can’t count the Kirilenko stat lines I posted the other day. I can’t ever remember seeing a triple-double that pretty. The only other two players to get a 15/15/15 in the playoffs were Wilt Chamberlain and a guy nicknamed “Fat.” That’s great company if I’ve ever seen it.

I didn’t think Wade would be good enough to take Miami to a series win, but I didn’t realize he’d be this ineffective. It’s almost sad. I can’t help but feel that this was the last year the Heat would be great. In hindsight, Wade should have just gotten surgery.

I’ve got to give a shout out to my boy Marcus Camby. Apparently the voters for Defensive Player of the Year read my blog. In that case, MVP ought to be either Nash or Kobe.

April 27, 2007 Posted by | Dallas Mavericks, Denver Nuggets, Golden State Warriors, IHSA, Miami Heat, NBA, New Jersey Nets, Sacramento Kings | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NBA Playoffs: April 24

I’d like to start off by saying that only one team I picked to win a series has lost a game so far, and I said it would take Dallas 7 games to beat Golden State. In fact, only one series hasn’t gone the way I’ve expected it to so far, but I’ll get to that later.

There haven’t been any real close games so far, but there have been enough good ones that I expect this year to be almost as good as last year. Continue reading

April 24, 2007 Posted by | Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks, Denver Nuggets, Detroit Pistons, Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, LA Lakers, Miami Heat, NBA, New Jersey Nets, Orlando Magic, Phoenix Suns, San Antonio Spurs, Toronto Raptors, Utah Jazz, Washington Wizards | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NBA Playoffs Preview: Eastern Conference

This is the one, truly fearless prediction blog on the Internet. All the others are pretenders. All the others actually have readers. That’s right, I said it…to myself. Um, to the predictions! Continue reading

April 21, 2007 Posted by | Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Detroit Pistons, Miami Heat, NBA, New Jersey Nets, Orlando Magic, Toronto Raptors, Washington Wizards | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Kobe’s 65

Kobe scoring two of his 65

I know it’s chic to say that LeBron James or Dwyane Wade is going to be the best player of all-time, but how about waiting until they’re the best players of their time to start saying that? Kobe’s still more talented than LeBron and more clutch than Wade. On any given night, he can go for 50 without relying on the refs to give him 25 free throws. I’d like to see anyone else in the league go for 60 while shooting only 12 free throws.

LeBron and Wade are both great players, but they get the benefit of the calls from the refs more often than Kobe does, and neither has shown the ability to step down from the spotlight and make their teams better. LeBron occasionally steps down, but only when he’s quits caring enough to put forth the effort–and his team gets terrible when he does it.

Trade Kobe for LeBron or Wade, and I guarantee that Cleveland or Miami would at least make the finals.

March 17, 2007 Posted by | Cleveland Cavaliers, LA Lakers, Miami Heat, NBA | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment