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NBA Season 2020 - RIP Mamba

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15 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Did Zion get hurt again? I was skimming the box score a bit ago and he only played 15 minutes. Can't find anything on the Googles.

No, they just restricted his minutes.

Rudy Gobert (patient zero) has had quite the year. He was the first player to test positive for covid, is the first player to score a bucket in the first game of the restart, and then hits the game winning free throws in said game.

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Yeah, Zion looked visibly out of shape, which is odd after seeing some shots of him weeks ago looking very trim. Holding him to the opening three or four minutes per quarter had bad optics, but he was -16 on the +/-. Usually a terrible stat on a per-game basis, but he was atrocious on defense. Not a good look, big guy. I really, really want him to succeed. Really like the guy's drive and character, it seems his body simply wants to be enormous.

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29 minutes ago, Argonath Diver said:

Yeah, Zion looked visibly out of shape, which is odd after seeing some shots of him weeks ago looking very trim. Holding him to the opening three or four minutes per quarter had bad optics, but he was -16 on the +/-. Usually a terrible stat on a per-game basis, but he was atrocious on defense. Not a good look, big guy. I really, really want him to succeed. Really like the guy's drive and character, it seems his body simply wants to be enormous.

I wonder if its more the organization and not the player. Just a few years ago they were given what was suppose to be a once in a generation player, and he was always hurt and he got them nowhere. Well somehow now they got an even more once in a generation player, and his injury risk is a lot higher because we have no clue how someone like him will even hold up. 

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I watched Jazz v Pels and enjoyed it.  But it did solidify my distaste for the current marketing of the NBA.

For the last three weeks, I have been bombarded with NBA restart commercials on ESPN radio. Every. Last. One. Of. Them. has been promoting Lebron vs Zion in the playoffs as if its the NBA finals.

THE PELICANS AREN’T EVEN THE EIGHTH SEED!!!!!! The NBA’s decision to start this bubble with more than 8 teams per conference and the top seven seeds already locked in was a blatant effort to beg and plead to get Zion into the playoffs. So naturally he plays less than a quarter of the game last night and the Pelicans lose. Admittedly he looked good when he was on the floor, but out of all the commercials I heard I never once heard anything promoting anyone other than Zion vs Lebron as a first round match up.

Ja Morant has something to say about all this.

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I saw a video breakdown of Zion's defense in the game...it was not pretty.

 

1 hour ago, Rhom said:

I watched Jazz v Pels and enjoyed it.  But it did solidify my distaste for the current marketing of the NBA.

For the last three weeks, I have been bombarded with NBA restart commercials on ESPN radio. Every. Last. One. Of. Them. has been promoting Lebron vs Zion in the playoffs as if its the NBA finals.

THE PELICANS AREN’T EVEN THE EIGHTH SEED!!!!!! The NBA’s decision to start this bubble with more than 8 teams per conference and the top seven seeds already locked in was a blatant effort to beg and plead to get Zion into the playoffs. So naturally he plays less than a quarter of the game last night and the Pelicans lose. Admittedly he looked good when he was on the floor, but out of all the commercials I heard I never once heard anything promoting anyone other than Zion vs Lebron as a first round match up.

Ja Morant has something to say about all this.

Reminds me of the Kobe vs LeBron puppets marketing campaign in 2009. I thought it was brilliant when Dwight Howard and the Magic crashed the party! Serves them right for presuming.

ST

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Caught the Clippers-Lakers game about halfway through the 3rd. Did not disappoint though and was a great start to the re-opener. I was not expecting Paul George to make a game winner as I can't recall him making many in the past though I haven't followed him very closes. LeBron seemed unfazed guarding him which is telling. Come playoffs I'm looking at Kawhi to make the clutch play even if the opposing defense is going to focus on him.

Will try to catch the Bucks-Celtics game but glad the NBA is back. 

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8 hours ago, KingintheNorth4 said:

James Harden in the bubble without a strip club is a cheat code.

After that knee to the unmentionables he took from Porzingis he may not need to go to them any more...

The Rockets-Mavs game was pretty ridiculous. I'm still not quite sure how Dallas managed to throw it away. Up 7 in the final minute! Very little defense played, although it did make me wonder if free from the distractions of a full stadium we'll see a higher percentage of makes from 3. Trey Burke in particular was unconscious, but it felt like quite a few players were hot.

To my eye Houston really struggled against Boban - they can hold their own against most bigs, but I think the size differential with him is just too far for Tucker and Green to handle. On the other end the Rockets weren't able to hunt him down defensively (I think because Westbrook isn't as good at that sort of thing as Harden is). Dallas went on a run in the 2 or 3 minutes he was in, but then Carlisle never went back to him, which kind of surprised me.

Rockets seemed to get worse at rebounding as the game went on - once they get tired they stop being able to overcome their height disadvantage with effort. Suspect that's going to cost them at some point...they just about got away with it last night. I'm looking forward to seeing what they can do against the Bucks on Sunday!

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I had turned the game off. The Rockets won? 

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3 hours ago, Tywin et al. said:

I had turned the game off. The Rockets won? 

Yeah. Mavs choked in the last minute and Rockets got a tip-in off a missed free throw to take it to OT, where they managed to pull it out. The commentators had been going on about how badly the Mavs do at the end of close games but even given that this was unexpected.

ST

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On 7/31/2020 at 10:41 AM, Rhom said:

The NBA’s decision to start this bubble with more than 8 teams per conference

Missed this. While the NBA would love to have Zion in (and I think they'd be fine with Ja too, but if both missed out, that sucks for them and us), I think the way they structured this, even if it doesn't make sense from a game play standpoint, is because in a given fiscal year they need to play a certain amount of games to achieve various payments. 

What will get really interesting in all major sports is if and how the leagues use the pandemic to void or force bad faith negotiations on deals they regret. The owners still run everything, and while on paper they're rich as fuck, many of them are bleeding like crazy. I just mentioned the Rockets. Imagine your empire being built on restaurants, casinos, hotels and a pro sports team right now. Fertitta may be more broke and even more in debt to shady governments than Trump in a year from now.

16 minutes ago, Sir Thursday said:

Yeah. Mavs choked in the last minute and Rockets got a tip-in off a missed free throw to take it to OT, where they managed to pull it out. The commentators had been going on about how badly the Mavs do at the end of close games but even given that this was unexpected.

ST

It's surprising how fast they closed the gap and then controlled the game. There's a lot to like about the Mavs going forward, but they still need some work. But unlike the aforementioned Thibs, they have a very good coach. 

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This weekend of basketball has been awesome.  The Blazers are definitely playing like it’s the playoffs already.  The game with the Celtics today was as hard fought a “regular season” game as I’ve seen in a long time.  Big play after big play.

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27 minutes ago, Rhom said:

This weekend of basketball has been awesome.  The Blazers are definitely playing like it’s the playoffs already.  The game with the Celtics today was as hard fought a “regular season” game as I’ve seen in a long time.  Big play after big play.

It has been awesome.  I really liked the Raps just locking down Davis and the Lakers.

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Posted (edited)

Hot take:

The Bucks could have some serious problems here. They have one of the three best players left standing. Their second best player is a lot better than people think. But they lost one of their best players from last year, and they had so many role players over preform. They could be really vulnerable, and I agree in the East the last team they want is the Heat.

Edited by Tywin et al.

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1 hour ago, Tywin et al. said:

Hot take:

The Bucks could have some serious problems here. They have one of the three best players left standing. Their second best player is a lot better than people think. But they lost one of their best players from last year, and they had so many role players over preform. They could be really vulnerable, and I agree in the East the last team they want is the Heat.

The Bucks' deficiencies are glaring when under crunch time situations.

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2 minutes ago, KingintheNorth4 said:

The Bucks' deficiencies are glaring when under crunch time situations.

Kept trying to force the ball to Korver for some reason.

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14 minutes ago, Rhom said:

Kept trying to force the ball to Korver for some reason.

Giannis can do so many special things, but despite being able to score at will a lot of times, he can't create his own in the traditional way. It's the same knock Curry gets. He's the cheat code, but the Warriors still needed KD because unlike the other two he could get a bucket anytime you needed from anywhere on the court.

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I think Bud outsmarted himself in this game, the Bucks stuck to their gameplan too rigidly which is really not well suited for the small ball Rockets. As usual they tried to prevent layups at all costs but the Rockets are completely fine with it, they will just kick the ball out and chuck 3s all night and never get discouraged even if they miss 10 in a row. The Bucks helped off Westbrook way too much. There were times they were triple-teaming Westbrook on his drives and leaving corner 3s completely open.

Still, it was a close game which could have easily been won by the Bucks, the Rockets had an unusually low number of turnovers too.

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1 hour ago, David Selig said:

I think Bud outsmarted himself in this game, the Bucks stuck to their gameplan too rigidly which is really not well suited for the small ball Rockets. As usual they tried to prevent layups at all costs but the Rockets are completely fine with it, they will just kick the ball out and chuck 3s all night and never get discouraged even if they miss 10 in a row. The Bucks helped off Westbrook way too much. There were times they were triple-teaming Westbrook on his drives and leaving corner 3s completely open.

Still, it was a close game which could have easily been won by the Bucks, the Rockets had an unusually low number of turnovers too.

I'm not sure where I'd rank the Rockets among the good teams, but I'd rank them really high on you have no idea how they're coming out. They have an overwhelming offense, that despite having a public plan, switches up all the time and can be both fun to watch and the worst thing ever to watch. And their defense is still.....yikes. They have the highest variance of any team that can actually win.

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