“Harden definitely should get most improved player” – Mike D’Antoni
Harden have a case for Most Improved Player?
“No” – Elhassan
“No. That was a nice point that he made that would have been helpful a couple of weeks ago when people were voting on that” – Shelburne
Who do you trust more in Game 7: Spurs or Nuggets?
Popovich: 3-3 record in Game 7s
“Nuggets are going to win Game 7, but I trust the Spurs more. If there was one sort of scenario where the upset could happen, it’s a team like the Spurs, coached by the greatest coach of all time Gregg Popovich. He’s a guy who’s seen it all and still has stuff in his bag that he could pull out that they haven’t done all year or all series long. They could throw the Nuggets for a loop and I don’t know how they would adjust to something like that” – Elhassan
“Here’s the thing with young teams in this league, especially in the Western conference: you have to go through San Antonio. It’s like your write of passage. So whatever young good team has come up through the Western conference, they have to beat the Spurs at some point. And this is Denver’s challenge. Nuggets win” – Shelburne
Warriors music level disagreement cause for concern?
“Absolutely not. This is what they do. They’re like an old married couple at this point. The whole team is. This is Steve and Draymond. This is their dynamic ” – Shelburne
Bonus: Impact for the Warriors in Game 6 vs the Clippers
“They’ll win because they don’t want to play another game. They’ll be motivated to just finish this” – Shelburne
“They have to find a way to neutralize the Lou Williams/Montrezl Harrell pick-and-roll action. That’s been killing them every game in this series. And then Danilo Gallinari, if the Clippers want to have any sort of hope, he’s got to come up big like he did last game” – Elhassan
Paying respects to NBA legend, John Havlicek
“This is the very first sixth man” – Elhassan
April 15, 1965 – HAVLICEK STOLE THE BALL! IT’S ALL OVER! IT’S ALL OVER!
Answers; Ever seen someone drop 43 without jumping?
Opportunities; Like DeMar’s dedication to getting a 3-pt play?
This was initially a bucket, plus the foul and then it was overruled:
Moments later, this happened:
Sincerity; Kerr: “I worry Beverley’s going to get whiplash on some of these flops”
Moments; More than 6,000 pairs of Dame 5s were purchased after Lillard’s shot (Chris Haynes/Yahoo! Sports)
Lillard on PG’s “Bad shot” comment: “That’s just kind of being a poor sport” (Via “Pull Up Pod with CJ McCollum and Jordan Schultz)
Lillard right to call PG-13 a “poor sport”?
“Kind of. He kind of had two moments of poor sportsmanship in this series: Dunked at the end of the game [in Game 3] and not liking a question from a reporter and said ‘Next question'” – Shelburne
“I’m going to disagree with Damian. I’m not saying it was bad defense, I would just say it could have been better defense. This was a case of great offense beating pretty good defense” – Elhassan
“Everyone is allowed to have a bad moment here and there” – Sedano
More pressure in East semifinals: Raptors or 76ers?
“76ers. This is the year they fast-forwarded the process. They made the trades for Jimmy and Tobias. Both of them could leave in the offseason, probably maybe just one leaves. There’s also the matter of what happens with Brett Brown. They should win with that kind of talent” – Shelburne
“If Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris leave [this summer] and Brett Brown gets fired, we still think the Sixers are going to be one of the best teams in the East next year with Embiid and Simmons” – Elhassan to Shelburne
Will Celtics expose Giannis’ lack of outside shooting?
“The lack of shooting is an issue but everyone knows Giannis can’t shoot and the guy still bullies his way to 28-30 a game. I don’t think the Celtics will expose it because the Bucks system is designed around that” – Elhassan
“If you’re going to stop Giannis, you’re basically going to pack the paint. That means you’re leaving the other shooters open” – Elhassan
“They’ve known this was their likely match up for quite some time and they have been game planning and talking to the Celtics all year. It doesn’t necessarily come down to stopping Giannis, you can’t really and they haven’t in the games they’ve played against him this year. It’s about stopping the rest of the team” – Shelburne
Bonus: Who wins the series?
“Bucks in 6” – Elhassan
“Celtics” – Shelburne
“Bucks in 7” – Sedano
Lakers brass taking shape in post-Magic era?
“No. It’s Rob Pelinka running this. He has a much more prominent role now” – Shelburne
“The younger Buss kids being in those interviews was interesting to me because the G-League team did well. Jesse and Joey Buss have not been as involved in the general decision-making which suggests either they are going to be more involved going forward or whatever decision is made on the coaching, Rob and Jeanie want them involved as well so that everybody shares in this success or failure of it” – Shelburne
Sedano and Elhassan:
“Some agents and GMs around the league have dubbed Linda Rambis [Kurt’s wife] the ‘shadow owner of the Lakers.’ That everything goes through her” – Elhassan
Why haven’t Lakers hired a coach yet?
“I’m trying to figure out is if they’re just stalling until Monty Williams can give them an answer. There is this sense that he could be in line for other jobs (Phoenix or Philly)” – Shelburne
“They’re not searching for a head of basketball operations” – Shelburne
Hope springs eternal for Knicks by Ian Begley
Westbrook saying he’s not a “ball hog”
“I don’t think he’s a ball hog anymore. He gets his teammates involved more, but he is still a scorer first destroyer out there. That’s his mentality” – Shelburne
“There was a time this season where he allowed Paul George to flourish the first half of the season before the shoulder injury. He was an MVP candidate because Russell Westbrook did take a little bit of a step back” – Sedano
“I don’t get the feeling he’s a ball hog, I get the feeling he’s a poor decision maker” – Elhassan
Donovan Mitchell: “You don’t succeed without failure”
He had the lowest playoff rated PER since at least 1973 by a player with a 30% usage rate (Via Basketball Reference)
“The reason he had such a high usage rate is because he had to. He just didn’t deliver” – Shelburne
“Everyone goes through this. You got to fail before you become a champion” – Elhassan
Sean Marks on Nets culture: “It’s going to attract free agents”
“They’ll attract free agents. I don’t know if they’re going to attract the marquee of marquee free agents. They do have a nice thing going there” – Sedano
“They went from being a place that you really only wanted to go to because they had so much cap space and can overpay you to a place where it’s like safety school” – Shelburne
“The culture is going to get it done, and the coaching, style of play and the overall positivity” – Elhassan
Bonus: Will D’Angelo Russell come back to the Nets?
“Yes. I don’t think they’ll let him leave for nothing. But it depends if they get one of those other free agents” – Shelburne
April 26, 2001 – Rick Fox going up high with the ferocious dunk vs the Blazers!
Malcolm Brogdon (foot) won’t return for Game 1 or 2 vs Celtics
“I don’t like this from Milwaukee at all. I feel like their best advantage here is home court advantage in this series and if you drop one of those first two games and give the Celtics some life, that could spell trouble. I feel like in this series though it does come down to depth and he’s just so critical to them to be able to play different ways and when adjustments are made” – Shelburne
“If Boston doesn’t jump out and get one of these first two games, then you know it’s going to be a very uphill battle for them because Brogdon is such a huge part of Milwaukee’s success this year” – Elhassan
LeBron passing Curry as top jersey seller more about name on front or back?
“Traditional, whenever you have a star player who switches teams, that jersey usually is number one. Him going to the Lakers of all places is just like gas on the fire” – Elhassan
Clippers push Warriors to Game 7 if _____?
“Harrell/Williams pick-and-roll action is near unstoppable until the wheels fall off and if Danilo Gallinari has a big night” – Elhassan
“Getting Steph into foul trouble early” – Shelburne