Mavs fan here. Don't expect them to win more than 1 game in this series. Durant is flat out clutch. Struggled all game, no fear when they had to have it. Gets it done. Props to him and OKC
I am pretty surprised orlando won... The pacers' lack of precision shooters helped the upset cause
Wow. Just devastating news for the Bulls and for Rose. This was a team that had a very legitimate shot at the title. They were finally getting healthy and had the depth, defensive chops, and toughness to beat the Heat. Rose and Watson could torch the Miami PG, and the Bulls bench could expose what is a very subpar Miami supporting cast. Without Rose, they're still one of the best teams in the league. But I don't think they can beat the Heat, and I'm not sure they can beat the Celtics either.
It stinks for Rose as a player, too. He's a guy who succeeded because he was so superior athletically. He's not the greatest passer in the world and not a great shooter. He's sort of like a Jay Williams minus the perimeter shot and some strength, but plus a bit more hops. It was always going to be interesting to see how he aged as a player and his athleticism faded. Now, there's a legitimate concern that he won't be the same explosive player he was pre-injury.
Uggh. Tough news for a Bulls fan. If they're going to win it, it's going to be up to Deng, Boozer, Noah, Watson, and the reserves to step it up a notch. But I think that injury signals the death knell of the Bulls as a title contender this year.
Personally, I don't think the Bulls would have beaten the Heat even with Rose. They won the most games in the league last year too, then lost in five games to Miami, and little has changed with these two teams (except that the Heat have Battier and Norris Cole).
But I would have liked to find out. The playoffs took a huge hit with the Rose injury.
The Bulls managed the best record in the East this year despite having Rose miss 1/3 of the regular season. If that had happened last year, the Bulls could have easily been a lower-half seed. They were far better this year than last. But losing Rose changes everything.
But again... I guess we'll never know for sure.
Bynum is so huge. He's just standing straight up with his hands in the air and absolutely dominating on both ends of the court.
As for the other guys, it doesn't show up in the count stats (because they play limited minutes), but Asik and Gibson made a big jump in effectiveness, to the point that Thibadeau doesn't mind playing those two for the 4th quarter in place of Noah and Boozer. They have become really terrific defensively. Deng has also continued to improve defensively and with his perimeter shot. Noah has improved his decisionmaking, delivering more assists, fewer turnovers, and fewer fouls. And the aforementioned Hamilton is a HUGE upgrade from Bogans. Hamilton is by no means a star, but he's so much better than Bogans it isn't funny. His ability to run relentlessly off screens and hit midrange shots means teams can't be quite as focused on Rose, which helps a lot. And it allows the offense to run similarly when Korver comes in.
As for the Heat. Battier is a nice role player. But the Heat are perhaps the team that benefits least from adding him. He just doesn't fit as well with what the Heat do. On a team like the Lakers or Spurs, he's a stud role player. And while Wade missed time, he missed 10 fewer games than Rose did. And while the Heat won in 5, most of those games were very tight with the Heat coming out on top. It wouldn't take a dramatic improvement for the Bulls to reverse the result. And I think the Bulls supporting cast has improved a LOT more than the Heat's supporting cast. Obviously we'll never know unless the Bulls somehow beat the Heat without Rose (which seems extremely unlikely). Such a disappointment.
The sad thing is that it may affect next year as well. We're talking about at least 6-9 months of recovery time for Rose, which means he won't be ready until around the all star break. And who knows if he'll ever be the same player, considering how much he relied on freakish athleticism.
Duke FB 2013 Coastal Division Football Champions
Bynum's supposedly a legit 7'3+ in shoes at this point, and his wingspan was already over 7'6 before he grew the last couple of inches. I hadn't quite realized how huge he'd become.
Supposedly he's doing some innovative procedure this summer in Europe for his knees, whatever Kobe did last summer. Doesn't necessarily seem like the most likable guy in the world, but always hate to see a career cut short by injuries.
My feeling actually is that Battier is exactly what the Heat needed: a veteran presence who can take some of the dirty work so that LeBron doesn't have to do it all the time. He was instrumental in Spoelstra's game plan to completely obliterate Carmelo Anthony yesterday. If they play the Thunder or Lakers in the Finals, Shane will be instrumental in messing with their stars, and they could have used him against Nowitzki last year. I think Miami was the perfect landing spot for Shane to seamlessly blend in with championship level players, and they were the perfect team to benefit from the subtle brilliance he offers. It's no coincidence that one of the best defensive teams last year, a slight notch below Chicago, got even better this season.
The biggest reason the Heat would have beaten the Bulls at full strength again, that we haven't touched on yet? LeBron James has somehow reached another level this season. He takes it in the post more than ever, shot by far the highest percentage of his career, he might be the best defensive player in the league. The Heat went 13-1 without Wade. He's hands-down the MVP of the league, a force to be reckoned with, and I'm eager to see whether he can finally quiet his skeptics by taking over down the stretch in the Finals. (He did that against Chicago, not against Dallas.) I wouldn't bet against him.
Last edited by Starter; 04-29-2012 at 11:07 PM.
I'm sure most of the east coast had turned off the game, but the amazing 28-3 finish by the Clippers to perform absolute highway robbery in Memphis was quite a sight to behold. Memphis was up 95-71 with 8 minutes to play. And lost. Scoring just 3 points the rest of the way. It was still a 12 point lead with under 3 minutes to play before Nick Young caught fire from deep, nailing three triples in 60 seconds, cutting the lead to 3, at which point Memphis just wilted. That was just about as crazy as our comeback at the dump on the hump this year - one of those games where you have no idea how it happened but then all of a sudden you've won. Impressive fight from the Clippers.
Just be you. You is enough. - K, 4/5/10, 0:13.8 to play, 60-59 Duke.
You're all jealous hypocrites. - Titus on Laettner
You see those guys? Animals. They're animals. - SIU Coach Chris Lowery, on Duke
Officiaing in the Knicks-Heat series is a joke. Heat are +34 in FT attempts mid 3rd Q of game 2 and it's not like the Knicks haven't tried to drive. For every foul called when Carmelo tries he's hacked multiple trips without a call. James, Wade, and Bosh get sent to the line anytime they get touched or flop.
Battier played great D on Melo last night. I did not know Shane could still move his feet like that. Battier was a +2 on the night while Melo was -11. Lebron played on Melo the rest of the time I was watching.
As I predicted, the Knicks now have nobody to guard Wade since Shump went down. I think he scored 19 of his 25 points in the paint last night.
stupid is as stupid does.....
"Either we're going down, or they are....... Kirk out!"
The Knicks lost the game on the other end of the floor. They couldn't defend Wade or Bosh, and Battier and Miller stepped up and hit some 3s off the bench. The Knicks shot 49% from the field, but you aren't likely to win if you allow the opponent to shoot 52% from the field.
Agreed on the Knicks' defense. Two things are killing them: Shumpert's knee injury took away their only credible defender on Wade, and Chandler hasn't been himself playing with the flu. The Knicks were actually a pretty good defensive team most of the season, even before D'Antoni left. Of course, I'm not making excuses -- the Heat can make a lot of teams look bad, and I thought the Knicks would win a game at most before the series began.