"We're going to Disney World!" NBA to resume season July 31 at WDW

May 14, 2015
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@Sam Ray Not aren't both of these things easily explained? The Lakers have nothing to play for since they're locked into the 1 seed. I'd imagine that they, and LeBron, view this mostly as preseason and aren't necessarily putting in the same effort and energy that they will in the playoffs.

As far as his defense, he can still turn it on when he needs to. His numbers are more likely going to look better when he's surrounded by Anthony Davis, Danny Green, Dwight Howard, Avery Bradley, etc. than last year's sad sack Lakers team and the historically undertalented Cavs defenses that he was playing with.

I get what you're saying - he's obviously not Heatles era LeBron - but I think he still has gas in the tank for a playoff run.
 

azsoxpatsfan

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The Kings just put up 49 in the first quarter against the Pels. A pelicans loss drops them below San Antonio and into a tie w Phoenix in the race for the 8/9
 

chilidawg

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It's unbelievable professional athletes can't compel themselves to keep in shape, even during a pandemic. You have one job! Even if you sat and did nothing in March and April, which is pretty understandable considering the situation, by May it was clear the NBA was coming back.
Is there any real evidence, besides a few anecdotes of injury, that players aren't in shape, or are in worse shape than they would be at the beginning of the season?
 

Kliq

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New Orleans just can't play defense, which is kind of strange because a lot of their key players (Favors, Holiday, Ball, Hart) have the reputation of being good individual defensive players. There was a lot of hype around them heading into the bubble but they simply aren't that good and Zion isn't going to play 35 minutes a game (24 points on 8-10 shooting in 22 minutes today!) to bring them to that level people thought was possible.

The 8 seed is crazy but it has also been kind of a race to the bottom. I think it is pretty clear Portland is the best team, but only Portland and Phoenix have looked even half-way decent in the bubble, imo.
 

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The bubble's integrity remains intact. I think we're about a month in at this point from the time they arrived?

View: https://twitter.com/shamscharania/status/1291073457296420864?s=21

No NBA player has tested positive for coronavirus out of 343 tested at Orlando campus since last results were announced July 29.
What worries me about these stats is that they're always careful to specify "no player". Have we gotten stats about all the other coaches and staff and league people and refs who are there?

If they've truly eradicated the virus entirely from the bubble, and, like, food and toilet paper are getting delivered by robots, then that's awesome. But if it's just the players declared safe, I still have my nagging doubts.
 

azsoxpatsfan

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What worries me about these stats is that they're always careful to specify "no player". Have we gotten stats about all the other coaches and staff and league people and refs who are there?

If they've truly eradicated the virus entirely from the bubble, and, like, food and toilet paper are getting delivered by robots, then that's awesome. But if it's just the players declared safe, I still have my nagging doubts.
I feel like we would’ve heard if any refs or coaches or anything had tested positive bc that would obviously be a big deal wrt the integrity of the bubble
 

jmcc5400

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This Miami-Milwaukee game is fantastic. Would like to see Milwaukee take this to further cement the Celtics' seeding, but also because I'd like to see a 1-4 Milwaukee-Miami match-up in round 2. Miami matches up with the Bucks better than the C's do.
 

Kliq

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This Miami-Milwaukee game is fantastic. Would like to see Milwaukee take this to further cement the Celtics' seeding, but also because I'd like to see a 1-4 Milwaukee-Miami match-up in round 2. Miami matches up with the Bucks better than the C's do.
Milwaukee closes on a 20-0 run, really impressive stuff from Giannis and Middleton.

6:30 pm is usually a dead time for Sports during the week but I just watched the end of Miami vs Milwaukee and now get Clips/Mavs. Long live the bubble!
 

Euclis20

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This Miami-Milwaukee game is fantastic. Would like to see Milwaukee take this to further cement the Celtics' seeding, but also because I'd like to see a 1-4 Milwaukee-Miami match-up in round 2. Miami matches up with the Bucks better than the C's do.
This may be true and it's hard to draw any conclusions with Butler out, but the Bucks outscored the Heat by 31 in the second half. Giannis was basically unstoppable (he scored 33 points and didn't didn't miss a FG inside the arc) and Middleton also went off. I want to finish ahead of Miami because I don't want the Bucks until the conference finals and Miami did beat the Bucks twice during the regular season, but this was ugly at the end.
 

JCizzle

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Clippers are suffocating a very good Dallas offense. I really like them coming out of the West if they get a fair whistle vs LeBron and AD.

There's so much swearing in this game that it just goes silent for 10-20 seconds at a time haha
 

azsoxpatsfan

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Clippers are suffocating a very good Dallas offense. I really like them coming out of the West if they get a fair whistle vs LeBron and AD.

There's so much swearing in this game that it just goes silent for 10-20 seconds at a time haha
Hahaha I was wondering what the silences were I thought something was wrong with my tv

also you’re assuming either of those teams can get past Phoenix
 

azsoxpatsfan

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True! They are looking really nice!
I used to be a big suns fan when I would go to games w my dad back in the Nash stoudamire Marion days but became fully C’s since maybe like 2014. The last few days have pulled me back in for sure hahaha
 

JCizzle

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I used to be a big suns fan when I would go to games w my dad back in the Nash stoudamire Marion days but became fully C’s since maybe like 2014. The last few days have pulled me back in for sure hahaha
I love this bubble, it feels like the Suns are making a magic March Madness run.
 

JCizzle

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I really want this Blazers team to advance if the Suns don't make it. Hoping they can close out the Nugs in the second half here. Dame doing Dame things in the first half with 20 pts.
 

azsoxpatsfan

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I really want this Blazers team to advance if the Suns don't make it. Hoping they can close out the Nugs in the second half here. Dame doing Dame things in the first half with 20 pts.
I love dame. Barkley was saying he guarantees the blazers knock off the lakers in the first round if they make it. I’m not sure id agree w that and I think he was just needling shaq but a full strength blazers team is absolutely a tough out
 

JCizzle

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I love dame. Barkley was saying he guarantees the blazers knock off the lakers in the first round if they make it. I’m not sure id agree w that and I think he was just needling shaq but a full strength blazers team is absolutely a tough out
Especially with a healthy Nurkic, definitely a different team than we saw in the first half. I agree that they're probably not beating the Lakers, but it's a 6-7 game series instead of a 4 game if the Grizz sneak in
 

128

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Gary Trent Jr., who shots light out against the C's the other nite, was 7 for 10 from long range in Portland's win over Denver tonite. Where the hell did he come from?
 

JCizzle

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Gary Trent Jr., who shots light out against the C's the other nite, was 7 for 10 from long range in Portland's win over Denver tonite. Where the hell did he come from?
Bubble is giving guys like him and TJ Warren life. Blazers are doing this thing. If they get the 8 seed, this Lakers team needs to be way better than they have been in the bubble.
 

Kliq

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The problem for Portland vs LA is that they really have no one to guard LeBron, like at all. Carmelo? Gary Trent Jr? Hezonja? Rodney Hood? Ariza not playing in the bubble really hurts them.

On the flip side, LA has NOBODY to guard Dame. Bradley not being there kills them.

Dame is at 29-8-4 and shooting 45/39/88, taking 10 threes a game. That is about 90% or so of MVP Curry.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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The Blazers will likely use Trent Jr., Melo and maybe Ant Simons in small stretches. 2020 Ariza wasn't going to be effective against James for any significant stretches but who is?

Its a fascinating potential series precisely because of the mismatches.

Nobody on Portland is going to shut down Davis or LeBron however they have enough size and athleticism to slow them a bit. Nurkic can defend a lot of territory and his rebounding has improved so the Laker bigs are going to be tested on both ends. As you note, Dame is playing at a peak level but the Lakers have Caruso as well other veteran savvy types who can strategically slow him with physicality.

Again, I expect the Lakers to win but this Blazers team is really good at full strength.
 

Sam Ray Not

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I could see Zach Collins getting a few turns on LeBron, too. He’s been averaging over 30 mpg since returning, and playing great. I wouldn’t love that matchup if I were the King.
 

ElUno20

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I wish i could see what others are seeing in the lakers to give me hope. But i still see Lebron and Anthony Davis so all the smoke going around NBA online community about concerns seem overblown to me.
 

Sam Ray Not

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Give me Kawhi + George over 35.7 year old LeBron + Davis. And give me the Clippers’ supporting cast over the Lakers’. The Clips have a better net rating than the Lakers, and imho are better constructed to turn it up a notch on the playoffs. It’s a pretty easy choice for me, actually.

But don’t take my word for it: old friend KD, who has gone mano a mano against all four superstars on the biggest playoff stage, also picked the Clips.
 

ElUno20

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Give me Kawhi + George over 35.7 year old LeBron + Davis. And give me the Clippers’ supporting cast over the Lakers’. The Clips have a better net rating than the Lakers, and imho are better constructed to turn it up a notch on the playoffs. It’s a pretty easy choice for me, actually.

But don’t take my word for it: old friend KD, who has gone mano a mano against all four superstars on the biggest playoff stage, also picked the Clips.
I get it on paper. But all year long and even now they have rarely been together in full (practice, games). I put value in cohesion.

Also, and this may be wrong, watching them all season, they dont really exert their will or have any defined style they put on the game/vs teams. They seem to be great at adapting to whatever the situation needs. And while that's great, i think late in this pretend playoffs you're going to need to have an identity.
 

Kliq

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I get it on paper. But all year long and even now they have rarely been together in full (practice, games). I put value in cohesion.

Also, and this may be wrong, watching them all season, they dont really exert their will or have any defined style they put on the game/vs teams. They seem to be great at adapting to whatever the situation needs. And while that's great, i think late in this pretend playoffs you're going to need to have an identity.
On paper the Clippers are clearly the best team in the NBA, but we have rarely seen them firing on all cylinders. The regular season doesn't tell us a whole lot, but the Clippers should really have a record similar to the Lakers or Milwaukee, but they have been a clear cut below. Obviously a huge part of that is a lack of playing time among all the key players, but that is a pretty big problem considering this is Year 1 of an entirely new team.

I think it is really hard to evaluate the Clippers because last year Kawhi was on cruise control the entire season, and then in postseason just morphed into the best player in the world and won the title. Once he did that it is really hard to figure out what his team is going to look like in the postseason.
 

Swedgin

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Gary Trent Jr., who shots light out against the C's the other nite, was 7 for 10 from long range in Portland's win over Denver tonite. Where the hell did he come from?
He had really come on prior to Covid earning real rotation minutes. He was up to 30 minutes and 14 points a game post-All star, but obviously he's been really hot in the bubble.

Maybe its just confirmation bias but it seems like players who rely on elite shooting as a primary skill take longer to stick in the league. Off the top of my head Duncan Robinson, Seth Curry, Joe Harris. Kris Middleton and Trent Jr. were all second round picks or undrafted who did not crack a rotation until their second or third team. Curious whether teams invest more draft resources and patience in shooters.
 

chilidawg

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Maybe its just confirmation bias but it seems like players who rely on elite shooting as a primary skill take longer to stick in the league. Off the top of my head Duncan Robinson, Seth Curry, Joe Harris. Kris Middleton and Trent Jr. were all second round picks or undrafted who did not crack a rotation until their second or third team. Curious whether teams invest more draft resources and patience in shooters.
Still hope for Arson Edwards?
 

Royal Reader

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SA with a pretty solid win over the Jazz to keep the pressure on in that 8/9 race.

Honestly, it's quite incredible how the NBA contrives a setup to keep Zion relevant, then the Pels are bad but they still produce an incredible playoff race. Silver is a good commish but also seems to have a horseshoe up his ass.
 

nighthob

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On paper the Clippers are clearly the best team in the NBA, but we have rarely seen them firing on all cylinders. The regular season doesn't tell us a whole lot, but the Clippers should really have a record similar to the Lakers or Milwaukee, but they have been a clear cut below. Obviously a huge part of that is a lack of playing time among all the key players, but that is a pretty big problem considering this is Year 1 of an entirely new team.

I think it is really hard to evaluate the Clippers because last year Kawhi was on cruise control the entire season, and then in postseason just morphed into the best player in the world and won the title. Once he did that it is really hard to figure out what his team is going to look like in the postseason.
This is complicated by the fact that Doc Rivers always lets his vets cruise during the regular season because it's the playoffs that count. Until the games matter we're just not going to see the best of the Clippers.
 

Euclis20

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SA with a pretty solid win over the Jazz to keep the pressure on in that 8/9 race.

Honestly, it's quite incredible how the NBA contrives a setup to keep Zion relevant, then the Pels are bad but they still produce an incredible playoff race. Silver is a good commish but also seems to have a horseshoe up his ass.
It would have been an embarrassment if they lost. The Jazz started Ingles and 4 guys with 1 combined start all season.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Two things - there have been a bunch of rumors (yes online and otherwise so discount accordingly) that Leonard and George didn't even practice with the rest of the Clippers team (prior to the shut down) which is consistent with the Doc-lets-vets-coast reputation nighthob references. Again, who knows if its even remotely true but it would explain the Clips effectively underperforming this year.

On Trent Jr. I think RR is on to something about elite shooting letting players stick around but its Trent's defense that earned him minutes initially coupled with the Blazers depleted roster that allowed him to break into the rotation. He and Anfernee Simons were both effectively given equal amounts of time and while Trent has been the better shooter to date, Simons is considered the better athlete with more upside. However, Trent showed he could not only play adequate defense which was huge for Portland given their issues but he also showed considerable improvement YoY whereas Simons would get lost pretty regularly during his run.

I admit I am a shadow Portland fan for a variety of reasons but it all starts and ends with Damian Lillard. He is well regarded and yet still criminally underrated in sports circles. And unlike Harden, you don't have to contort yourself to appreciate his style of play. The guy is also catnip for anyone who believes in the value of leadership and commitment. Were he to play in Boston, NY or Philly, he would be way more popular imo.
 
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Jed Zeppelin

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I admit I am a shadow Portland fan for a variety of reasons but it all starts and ends with Damian Lillard. He is well regarded and yet still criminally underrated in sports circles. And unlike Harden, you don't have to contort yourself to appreciate his style of play. The guy is also catnip for anyone who believes in the value of leadership and commitment. Were he to play in Boston, NY or Philly, he would be way more popular imo.
Basically Kyrie without the considerable baggage, and a little less razzle dazzle with the ball in his hands. I'd bet he is near the top of most fans' list of "Favorite Players Not On My Team."

Drafted with the pick that was traded for Gerald Wallace (and almost traded for Paul Pierce). Billy King, woof.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Basically Kyrie without the considerable baggage, and a little less razzle dazzle with the ball in his hands. I'd bet he is near the top of most fans' list of "Favorite Players Not On My Team."

Drafted with the pick that was traded for Gerald Wallace (and almost traded for Paul Pierce). Billy King, woof.
This is a great description. He isn't as pure a shooter as Irving either but Lillard is a much better distributor and playmaker. The part that is most pronounced is the "without the considerable baggage" aspect - Lillard is essentially the polar opposite of Kyrie in that Damian is committed to leading Portland to a championship - not just winning one for himself. Unlike Irving, most of his former teammates have good things to say about him as well.
 

JCizzle

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Looks like the Grizz are going to pull this one out. Up 15 near the end of the 3rd
 

TripleOT

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Portland was obviously a lot tougher team last season. Aminu and Harkless aren't flashy, but are tough and had a lot of length, which is helpful when you have a midget backcourt. Ariza bailing on them in the bubble really created roster problems
 

benhogan

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Give me Kawhi + George over 35.7 year old LeBron + Davis. And give me the Clippers’ supporting cast over the Lakers’. The Clips have a better net rating than the Lakers, and imho are better constructed to turn it up a notch on the playoffs. It’s a pretty easy choice for me, actually.

But don’t take my word for it: old friend KD, who has gone mano a mano against all four superstars on the biggest playoff stage, also picked the Clips.
I'd also take the coaching, strategy, playoff exp of Doc/Lue/Cassell over Vogel/Kidd
 

Sam Ray Not

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Blazers drop a close one to the Clippers. Dame looked exhausted in the 4th.
Exhausted is one thing, but geez, catch your breath at the stripe, Dame. Badly front-rimming two FTs with the game on the line was very un-Lillard-like.

Clippers sat George, Morris, Jackson, Zubac, and LouWill for the closing stretch — with Kawhi, Trez, Beverley on the shelf. Pulled out the W with a closing unit of Shamet, McGruder, Mann, Patterson, Green.
 
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Euclis20

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Exhausted is one thing, but geez, catch your breath at the stripe, Dame. Badly front-rimming two FTs with the game on the line was very un-Lillard-like.

Clippers sat George, Morris, Jackson, Zubac, and LouWill for the closing stretch — with Kawhi, Trez, Beverley on the shelf. Pulled out the W with a closing unit of Shamet, McGruder, Mann, Patterson, Green.
Yeah this was a game the Blazers needed. They had already blown the late lead (up 5 with 1:36 left), but they still had a chance. Down 1 with < 20 seconds left and your best player (and 90% from the line) short arms both free throws? This could cost them the playoffs, currently in 9th a half game up on the Spurs and a game up on the Pelicans and Suns with 3 to play. The Blazers made just one shot in the last 4 minutes. Brutal.
 

Euclis20

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Yeah the Lakers are real scared of these Blazers. Sure.
The Lakers shouldn't be scared of anyone outside of the Clippers and Bucks, and I give the Blazers at best a 10% shot at knocking them off (and that's if things go right - Lillard/McCollum perform like the splash brothers and Nurkic is big enough to dominate the glass), but anyone else is just 1%. Everyone else is either too old (Spurs) or too young (everyone else) and the Lakers would roll through them. The Pelicans are what everyone seems to want, not just because of Zion vs Lebron but also Davis against his old team (and Ingram/Ball against their old team), but they look like trash. They can score alright but calling them awful on D would be a complement.
 

DannyDarwinism

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The Lakers shouldn't be scared of anyone outside of the Clippers and Bucks, and I give the Blazers at best a 10% shot at knocking them off (and that's if things go right - Lillard/McCollum perform like the splash brothers and Nurkic is big enough to dominate the glass), but anyone else is just 1%. Everyone else is either too old (Spurs) or too young (everyone else) and the Lakers would roll through them. The Pelicans are what everyone seems to want, not just because of Zion vs Lebron but also Davis against his old team (and Ingram/Ball against their old team), but they look like trash. They can score alright but calling them awful on D would be a complement.

Yeah, I agree that Dame and CJ going nuclear was the only (admittedly long) shot of the Laker facing some trouble in the first round.

Also would've been nice to see the Blazers win for the Grizz pick.

And now Dame is going at it with PatBev and Paul George on IG.

View: https://twitter.com/TomerAzarly/status/1292205316822556673?s=20


Dude is such a competitor, must be tough to keep on getting cut down by deeper, more talented teams.