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Jaime L

NBA 2018 - Soup's on!

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Just noticed 538 has the Raptors and Rockets each with a 55% chance of making the finals. 

Raptors I could see because their point differential is off the charts and not sure Lebron has enough talent around him to just punch his usual ticket to the Finals...though if I had to bet on anyone, I'd still bet on the Cavs.

But, hell no on the Rockets being favorites.  I don't care how dominant the Rockets are with Harden, Paul and Capela, the Warriors are still, easily, the most talented team in basketball. I'd have them as conservatively  2:1 favorites over the Rockets if they meet in the WCF. But, hey, still hope we get it. 

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The Pistons are a under achieving wreck on the year. Low chances of making the post season unless they can pull off a couple strong winning streaks. Probably the best development on the year was Andre pulled his FT shooting out of the gutter finally, winning a mental battle he was capable of all along.

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9 minutes ago, DireWolfSpirit said:

The Pistons are a under achieving wreck on the year. Low chances of making the post season unless they can pull off a couple strong winning streaks. Probably the best development on the year was Andre pulled his FT shooting out of the gutter finally, winning a mental battle he was capable of all along.

I really don't like the way the Pistons have put together their team.  Their starting line-up features three abysmal three point shooters, which you just can't do in the modern NBA.  The Blake Griffin trade just really didn't make any sense to me.  He's an awful fit for that team.  Honestly, I think he's a bad fit for the league in general now.  He's complete dog shit defensively and he can't stretch the floor at all.  I think an ideal big in the modern NBA either has to be able to play solid defense at the center position or has to be able to stretch the floor.  Griffin can't do either, and so I think he's just a liability out there.

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I have resigned to accepting that the Wolves will probably miss the playoffs after maybe being the 5th best team in the league before Butler got hurt. 

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So I just watched LeBron make back to back step back one footed fadeaways jumpers to seal the game against Denver.

Crazy.

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, briantw said:

I really don't like the way the Pistons have put together their team.  Their starting line-up features three abysmal three point shooters, which you just can't do in the modern NBA.  The Blake Griffin trade just really didn't make any sense to me.  He's an awful fit for that team.  Honestly, I think he's a bad fit for the league in general now.  He's complete dog shit defensively and he can't stretch the floor at all.  I think an ideal big in the modern NBA either has to be able to play solid defense at the center position or has to be able to stretch the floor.  Griffin can't do either, and so I think he's just a liability out there.

Im getting nightmares of him becoming our latest Josh Smith, for those that remember, the team immediately improved as soon as he was waived. 

Im missing  Tobias Harris, who was a much more efficient Forward than "Captain Chuckit" Griffin.

Edited by DireWolfSpirit

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17 hours ago, Jaime L said:

Just noticed 538 has the Raptors and Rockets each with a 55% chance of making the finals. 

Raptors I could see because their point differential is off the charts and not sure Lebron has enough talent around him to just punch his usual ticket to the Finals...though if I had to bet on anyone, I'd still bet on the Cavs.

But, hell no on the Rockets being favorites.  I don't care how dominant the Rockets are with Harden, Paul and Capela, the Warriors are still, easily, the most talented team in basketball. I'd have them as conservatively  2:1 favorites over the Rockets if they meet in the WCF. But, hey, still hope we get it. 

The conference winners still look pretty cut and dried to me.

The Raptors are not going through, it'll be Boston or Cleveland, and if I'm betting, I still say Cleveland. Toronto out in the semi final.

In the West, I can see Houston in the conference finals but after that their time is up, no way they go beyond a fit Golden State.

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16 hours ago, Tywin et al. said:

I have resigned to accepting that the Wolves will probably miss the playoffs after maybe being the 5th best team in the league before Butler got hurt. 

Dude, I wouldn't worry. Help is on the way:

Man, they're now just a Joakim Noah signing away from reuniting the entire 2011 Bulls. I'm sure Thibs has been calling the Knicks, non-stop, every hour on the hour. 

5 hours ago, Calibandar said:

The conference winners still look pretty cut and dried to me.

The Raptors are not going through, it'll be Boston or Cleveland, and if I'm betting, I still say Cleveland. Toronto out in the semi final.

In the West, I can see Houston in the conference finals but after that their time is up, no way they go beyond a fit Golden State.

Boston's won a ton of games this year but not sure they'll make much noise in the playoffs. Just don't think the young guys are ready for prime time. If they had a healthy Gordon Heyward it would be different. 

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5 hours ago, Calibandar said:

The conference winners still look pretty cut and dried to me.

The Raptors are not going through, it'll be Boston or Cleveland, and if I'm betting, I still say Cleveland. Toronto out in the semi final.

In the West, I can see Houston in the conference finals but after that their time is up, no way they go beyond a fit Golden State.

The East looks pretty open to me.  It's easy to say "Lebron always turns it on", but aside from Lebron this team is really unproven.  Revamping the roster at the trade deadline might mean they have chemistry problems when the going gets tough in the playoffs.  Cleveland is the favorite, but it's easy to imagine them falling short. 

The West had better give us Houston-GSW, and hopefully both fully healthy.  If it doesn't happen, this whole season will be something of a disappointment.  To me that's the "real" finals, because these two teams are the class of the league.  Houston is definitely the underdog, but they create some matchup problems for GSW as well, so they've got a punchers chance.  I'm looking forward to it. 

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1 hour ago, Maithanet said:

The East looks pretty open to me.  It's easy to say "Lebron always turns it on", but aside from Lebron this team is really unproven.  Revamping the roster at the trade deadline might mean they have chemistry problems when the going gets tough in the playoffs.  Cleveland is the favorite, but it's easy to imagine them falling short. 

I mean, agreed. The Cavs have never looked more like a one man team. I liked the trades they made to get younger and more athletic but it's clear all these guys are the purest of pure role players. There's no-one who can fill what Kyrie did. It was supposed to be IT but we saw how that worked out. They definitely need Kevin Love back just to have another creator on the floor but it's still obviously different from what Kyrie brought especially with the way the Cavs use him. 

But the thing is Lebron says his game is at all time high and I can't disagree. Just watched him refuse to let the Cavs lose against the Nuggets last night playing 40 minutes, putting up a 39/8/10, manning up giant lumbering Jokic in the clutch when no-one else could handle him, and making insane shot after insane shot down the stretch. It was the same way against the T'Wolves a couple weeks ago. Anyone else would be wearing down by this point though as we've seen the guy isn't human. 

In the same way he singlehandedly took the Warriors to 6 games in 2015, I think he can singlehandedly beat anyone in the East if it comes to that. The man is a force of nature. 

 

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40 minutes ago, Jaime L said:

I mean, agreed. The Cavs have never looked more like a one man team. I liked the trades they made to get younger and more athletic but it's clear all these guys are the purest of pure role players. There's no-one who can fill what Kyrie did. It was supposed to be IT but we saw how that worked out. They definitely need Kevin Love back just to have another creator on the floor but it's still obviously different from what Kyrie brought especially with the way the Cavs use him. 

But the thing is Lebron says his game is at all time high and I can't disagree. Just watched him refuse to let the Cavs lose against the Nuggets last night playing 40 minutes, putting up a 39/8/10, manning up giant lumbering Jokic in the clutch when no-one else could handle him, and making insane shot after insane shot down the stretch. It was the same way against the T'Wolves a couple weeks ago. Anyone else would be wearing down by this point though as we've seen the guy isn't human. 

In the same way he singlehandedly took the Warriors to 6 games in 2015, I think he can singlehandedly beat anyone in the East if it comes to that. The man is a force of nature.

Lebron, has not been defeated by an Eastern Conference team since he achieved Destroyer of Worlds status in 2012 (he hasn't actually lost to an East Team since 2010).  I'm well aware of the danger in expecting any East team to defeat him.  He is so much better than the best players on the Celtics, Raptors, Wizards, etc, it is almost embarrassing.  But I'm concerned about how much effort Lebron is going to need to exert to win even in the first round.  Because if Lebron doesn't does it, it doesn't get done.  He's no doubt able to singlehandedly win a game, even against playoff teams, and I'm sure he can do it for an entire series.  But if he had to go through, say, Philly, then Boston, then Toronto, can he keep that up for 17,18,19 games?  Particularly when he knows that for all his exertions, it is only for the honor of getting trounced by GSW again? 

I don't expect him to go small like he did in the 2010 and 2011 playoff losses, that Lebron is gone.  But he might end up looking like he did in games 5 and 6 of the 2015 Finals.  Exhausted and out of answers. 

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2 hours ago, Jaime L said:

Dude, I wouldn't worry. Help is on the way:

Man, they're now just a Joakim Noah signing away from reuniting the entire 2011 Bulls. I'm sure Thibs has been calling the Knicks, non-stop, every hour on the hour. 

Great! Just what we need! Another ballhog who can’t shoot.....

I swear I could be a better GM than Thibs.

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1 hour ago, Tywin et al. said:

Great! Just what we need! Another ballhog who can’t shoot.....

I swear I could be a better GM than Thibs.

Thanks for taking one for the team on this one. I was pretty worried Ernie Grunfeld would sign him. 

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1 hour ago, Maithanet said:

Lebron, has not been defeated by an Eastern Conference team since he achieved Destroyer of Worlds status in 2012 (he hasn't actually lost to an East Team since 2010).  I'm well aware of the danger in expecting any East team to defeat him.  He is so much better than the best players on the Celtics, Raptors, Wizards, etc, it is almost embarrassing.  But I'm concerned about how much effort Lebron is going to need to exert to win even in the first round.  Because if Lebron doesn't does it, it doesn't get done.  He's no doubt able to singlehandedly win a game, even against playoff teams, and I'm sure he can do it for an entire series.  But if he had to go through, say, Philly, then Boston, then Toronto, can he keep that up for 17,18,19 games?  Particularly when he knows that for all his exertions, it is only for the honor of getting trounced by GSW again? 

I don't expect him to go small like he did in the 2010 and 2011 playoff losses, that Lebron is gone.  But he might end up looking like he did in games 5 and 6 of the 2015 Finals.  Exhausted and out of answers. 

Gotta remember that they'll have Love back in a week or two, so he will have another star next to him for the playoffs.  Love also absolutely abuses Al Horford (as does Tristan Thompson), so if they run into Boston in the playoffs that will be a big deal.

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2 hours ago, Jaime L said:

Thanks for taking one for the team on this one. I was pretty worried Ernie Grunfeld would sign him. 

The worst part about this is Tyus Jones is going to get even fewer minutes, when, ya know, he's in our most effective lineup.

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On 3/8/2018 at 4:45 PM, Jaime L said:

Dude, I wouldn't worry. Help is on the way:

Man, they're now just a Joakim Noah signing away from reuniting the entire 2011 Bulls. I'm sure Thibs has been calling the Knicks, non-stop, every hour on the hour. 

Boston's won a ton of games this year but not sure they'll make much noise in the playoffs. Just don't think the young guys are ready for prime time. If they had a healthy Gordon Heyward it would be different. 

I still believe they are trying to suss us all to sleep with those "Hayward's not coming back " stories.

It would be so much more interesting if he could return.

That said, even without him I think Boston is a very serious challenger in the playoffs to win the East.

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22 minutes ago, Calibandar said:

That said, even without him I think Boston is a very serious challenger in the playoffs to win the East.

Their defense remains great but not sure they can score enough to go deep into the playoffs. They're below average offensively. They basically have one elite offensive weapon - Kyrie. They really need early season Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown to pick up the slack but think it's clear at this point neither one can be counted on to carry the secondary scorer load and Horford's ideally a #3 guy offensively. 

I'd say whoever they get in round 1 - Philly, Miami, Milwaukee...they're likely in for a dogfight. Though the Brad Stevens factor will probably magic them over the top. 

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Boston isn’t deep enough to come out of the East, but they’ll be the favorites next year assuming James goes to the West. The only two teams competing to get their heads caved in by either GS or Houston are the Cavs and the Raptors.

18 minutes ago, Jaime L said:

I'd say whoever they get in round 1 - Philly, Miami, Milwaukee...they're likely in for a dogfight. Though the Brad Stevens factor will probably magic them over the top. 

Negative my friend. His magic applies to the regular season, not the postseason.  

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4 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Negative my friend. His magic applies to the regular season, not the postseason.  

Sure as hell applied to the postseason when he was a college coach. 

And his record in the NBA postseason is fine, with a very small sample.  He's won every series his team was favored in, and lost every series it wasn't.  I guess if you're being harsh you could say the #5 celtics should have beaten the #4 Hawks, but that's really it.  The 2015 and 2017 Celtics teams were completely overmatched. 

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Posted (edited)
17 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Negative my friend. His magic applies to the regular season, not the postseason.  

 

8 minutes ago, Maithanet said:

And his record in the NBA postseason is fine, with a very small sample.  He's won every series his team was favored in, and lost every series it wasn't.  I guess if you're being harsh you could say the #5 celtics should have beaten the #4 Hawks, but that's really it.  The 2015 and 2017 Celtics teams were completely overmatched. 

I would argue the Wizards were flat more talented than last year's Celtics team, regardless of records. The only reason they pulled out that series was Stevens > Brooks as a gameday coach and making adjustments. 

I think the main reason he gets a negative rep as a postseason coach is because his teams so outperform their talent in the regular season every year. 

ETA: The fact the Wizards played Kelly Oubre 2 minutes in game 7 and couldn't figure out how to use Otto Porter to destroy Isaiah Thomas every possession will haunt me for years. 

Edited by Jaime L

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