Category Archives: NBA

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Kobe Bryant on ESPN Ranking: “I’ve Known For a Long Time That They’re a Bunch of Idiots”

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Kobe Bryant is unhappy with ESPN, but then again who isn’t these days. From the East coast bias tag, to over saturating the media with players like Tim Tebow, Tom Brady,  and Johnny Manziel, to loving the Red Sox and Yankees, and coming up with stupid rankings, the “World Wide Leader in Sports” can get under your skin from time to time. And now they’ve pissed of one of the greatest Lakers of all time.

As part of its NBA preview, ESPN is ranking the Top 100 players in the NBA. LeBron is first, Kevin Durant is second, and on and on. But where’s Kobe?

The 5-time NBA champ who is undoubtedly one of the best players of all-time, was ranked as just the 40th best player in the NBA in 2014 by ESPN. I don’t want to get into the metrics they used to come to such a ranking, but suffice to say, nobody believes there are 40 people “better” than Kobe in the NBA right now.

Some media member with nothing better to ask, posed the question to Kobe: What do you think about the ranking?

Even the Kobe haters (the logical ones) can agree with that.

 

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Kevin Durant Due to Miss 6-8 Weeks With a Foot Fracture

Kevin Durant is set to miss significant time due to a Jones fracture in his right foot. A Jones fracture deals with the fifth metatarsal of the foot. Oklahoma City GM Sam Presti issued a quick statement about the injury on Sunday morning:

Details of how Durant injured the foot are unclear in the immediacy of the injury, but Presti’s statement says the treatment typically involves surgery and a 6-8 recovery period. ESPN’s Bottomline is running with the “indefinitely” tag.

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You aren’t going to find many players in the NBA more irreplaceable than Durant. This injury is potentially calamitous for the Thunder, who are always a legitimate contender in the Western Conference as long as he’s in the lineup.

Durant averaged an NBA-best 32 points per game last season to go with 7.4 rebounds, 1.3 steals, 0.7 blocks and a career-high 5.5 assists per contest. He finished with a 63.5 true shooting percentage—ridiculous efficiency considering his usage—and led the league in PER (29.8), win shares (19.2) and win shares per 48 minutes (.295), surpassing LeBron James in MVP voting.

Durant is the second NBA star to go down to injury this weekend, following Bradley Beal on Saturday who will miss 6-8 weeks with a wrist injury.

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Bradley Beal Broken Wrist Will Sideline Wizards Star for 6-8 Weeks

Bradley Beal, one of the best young shooting guards in the NBA, broke his left wrist and will be out for 6-8 weeks, TNT’s David Aldridge reports. It’s a devastating loss for the Wizards, who are a sleeper to reach the Eastern Conference Finals this year.

They advanced to the second round last year on the strength of the young backcourt of Beal and John Wall. But now with Beal lost for probably two months, it’s safe to assume the Wizards will lose some ground on the Cavs and Bulls early.

Beal, who just turned 21 in June, averaged 17.1 ppg in his second season, and shot 40 percent on 3-pointers. He was even better in the playoffs, averaging 19.8 ppg in a 5-game upset of the Bulls, and then 18.7 ppg in a 6-game loss to the Pacers.

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NBA Reportedly Reaches 9-Year/$24 Billion TV Contract Agreement With ESPN and TNT

The NBA is slated to announce a nine-year, $24 billion television contract with ESPN and TNT on Monday, according to Richard Sandomir of the New York Times. The league had previously received a total of about $930 million per year from the two networks, and the new annual figure nearly triples that. The new deal will begin after the 2015-2016 season.

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NBA Over/Unders: Great Expectations for Cavs, Negative Outlook for Lakers

In the midst of the NFL and College Football season, the MLB Playoffs, NASCAR Sprint Cup, and EPL soccer, you might have forgotten that the 2014-15 NBA season is right around the corner. 

Well, Media Day was earlier this week and Las Vegas Superbook oddsmaker Jeff Sherman has released the first set of NBA over/under totals.

  • Atlanta Hawks 40.5
  • Boston Celtics 26.5
  • New Jersey Nets 41.5
  • Charlotte Hornets 45.5
  • Chicago Bulls 55.5
  • Cleveland Cavaliers 58.5
  • Dallas Mavericks 49.5
  • Denver Nuggets 40.5
  • Detroit Pistons 36.5
  • Golden State Warriors 50.5
  • Houston Rockets 49.5
  • Indiana Pacers 32.5
  • Los Angeles Clippers 55.5
  • Los Angeles Lakers 31.5
  • Memphis Grizzlies 48.5
  • Miami Heat 43.5
  • Milwaukee Bucks 24.5
  • Minnesota Timberwolves 25.5
  • New Orleans Pelicans 41.5
  • New York Knicks 40.5
  • Oklahoma City Thunder 57.5
  • Orlando Magic 28.5
  • Philadelphia 76ers 15.5
  • Phoenix Suns 42.5
  • Portland Trail Blazers 48.5
  • Sacramento Kings 30.5
  • San Antonio Spurs 56.5
  • Toronto Raptors 49.5
  • Utah Jazz 25.5
  • Washington Wizards 49.5

Some of the most notable team win totals are the Chicago Bulls (48-34 last season), as the number seems a little high, even though they added Pau Gasol, their is still uncertainty of what they are going to get out of Derrick Rose. Does Gasol and a questionable Rose mean 8 more wins?

As for the Cavs (33-49 last season), now with hometown hero Lebron James and recently acquired Kevin Love are obviously huge improvements, and we know the East is top heavy, so is winning 26 more games that much of a stretch? Remember the Heat struggled early in Lebron’s first year, but ended up finishing 58-24.  After winning 66 games in 2012-2013, the Heat won “just” 54 games last year, a result of stepping off the gas pedal a little bit and resting Dwyane Wade a lot. It’ll be interesting to see how quickly the Cavs gel, and whether they go all out to get the best seed they can this year.

The Lakers (27-55 last season) win total seems a bit low with the return of Kobe Bryant. As this number does not reflect a high degree of confidence in Bryant to come back from his Achilles injury and regain superstar stature, nor do they say good things about his supporting cast.

Other interesting totals include the Boston Celtics (25-57 last season), how long will Rajon Rondo be out? Will they have him for the whole season? Does Houston (54-28 last season) regress by six games in a much tougher Western Conference? How much of a championship hangover will the Spurs (62-20 last season) go through?

As Bovada sportsbook director Kevin Bradley says the Spurs and Thunder would be favored over the Cavs in a hypothetical NBA Finals matchup if they had home field advantage.

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Rajon Rondo Broke His Hand Falling at His Home, Celtics Season Over Before it Starts

Rajon Rondo broke his hand in a fall at his home. The injury should keep Rondo out for the next 6-8 weeks which would make him miss the entirety of Celtics training camp which opens in a few days and at least a few games to start the season.

While this will not sink the Celtics season – the rest of their roster will take care of that – is it officially time to call Rondo “injury prone?” After missing just 12 total games in his first four seasons, Rondo has played in 68, 53, 38 and 30 games in seasons 5, 6, 7 and 8 respectively.

First-round pick Marcus Smart and Phil Pressey, who started 11 games as a rookie last season, are the top backup ball handlers currently on Boston’s roster.

Rondo is set to become an unrestricted free agent after the 2014-15 season.

[USA Today]

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