Saturday, April 28, 2012

Derrick Rose's Season's Over: Wishful Thinking

Derrick Rose played a majority of game one against the Sixers before leaving with an injured left knee. After tests have been done, the Bulls went to Twitter to confirm that Derrick Rose has torn his ACL and he'll miss the rest of the season. Yes, it's unfortunate. Derrick Rose is awesome, the Bulls are excellent at full strength and the playoffs will now miss what would've been a defining star. While extenuating the negatives here is easy, why not talk about what positives can come out of this?

Derrick Rose can grow as a person. Time off, rehabilitation and the more he looks at his past will allow him time to work on other parts of himself. You may ask, why does that matter to me the basketball fan? It doesn't directly impact the Derrick Rose we know and love on the basketball court, but these professional athletes take away a lot from life and put that time into this game. Derrick Rose is a 23 year old who probably doesn't fully know himself. Let's hope Derrick Rose will use all this personal time wisely!

Derrick Rose's humility can increase. Derrick Rose lives an amazing life. He's a millionaire, a basketball star and someone who has things many people would covet. While Derrick Rose is a great kid and someone who isn't just taking what's being given to him for granted, there's no reason to say anyone couldn't be more thankful. Derrick Rose was banged up throughout this 2011-12 season, but this extended time off can help him embrace the journey. There are days when there's conflict, games where the team may get blown out and injuries that really hurt! The down moments are where a person is truly defined. Derrick Rose is a winner on the floor, but it's time for him to win the battle with his torn ACL (which will be a battle on and off the court).

Derrick Rose can become more knowledgeable on basketball. Derrick Rose loves this game. It's clear from the way he plays, responds to his own heroics and body language. For now, his role is changing. Rather than being a general on the court, he's got to be a masterful observer. Derrick Rose needs to sit there, watch his team and other teams play and take new information in from that. What nuances can Derrick Rose add to his game? What X's and O's can Derrick Rose use more to his advantage? These are the questions Derrick Rose can provide more answers to during his rehab.

Derrick Rose can comeback strong from this. Derrick Rose is a damn hard worker and that will take him somewhere. How will Derrick Rose respond from this? We'll have to wait a while for this rose to blossom, but I'm confident the conditions will allow for Derrick Rose to shine again.

Friday, April 27, 2012

J.J. Hickson Posterizes Jeremy Evans

J.J. Hickson isn't a half bad dunker. While you may not see a ton of dunk highlights from J.J. Hickson, he's a young, athletic dude who can jump. Take this, for example:

How's that for a J.J. Hickson slam? Love Jeremy Evans laughing reaction after the flush. At least Jeremy Evans understands he's human! Amazing finish there, J.J. Hickson!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Clippers Questions: Can They Succeed In the Playoffs?

The Clippers are heading into the playoffs amid tons of hype and anticipation. Blake Griffin, Chris Paul and a decent group of guys has got many wishfully thinking that this is the top team in LA. Whether those people are right or wrong about the Clippers, there's some questions surrounding this squad.

Can the Clippers keep up their intensity throughout the playoffs?

In watching the Clippers closely when they played the Hawks recently, it was clear the intensity the Clippers played with was awfully low at times. Standing around on defense, lazy jump shots on offense and an aloof attitude towards rebounding make the Clippers look awful at times. Then there were moments where Blake Griffin would make fluid offensive moves, a role player would make second and third efforts and the Clippers looked damn solid.

 For the record, this Clipper team hasn't had even a full condensed season to mesh and learn one another. That is a factor (or some might say excuse!) at play here. Despite their short time together, the way the Clippers turn their attentiveness on and off is a monumental problem. The only real solution is to keep the attentiveness on. Forget lapses. That's for teams that don't play in June. If the Clippers have any hope of shortening their summer vacations, attitudes must change.

Who is going to provide offense off of the Clipper bench?

When the Clippers take Blake Griffin and Chris Paul off the floor, the offense gets ugly. Eric Bledsoe and Mo Williams really struggle to get the Clippers into any fluid offensive sets and there's little scoring off the bench to begin with. Nick Young is the only potent offensive threat.

The problem with Nick Young is he's a lesser mans J.R. Smith at best! Nick Young can get crazy hot and look like Superman with the ball. On the contrary, Nick Young can take a ton of shots, miss a ton of shots and make everything look terrible. Nick Young hasn't done anything meaningful in the playoffs (he had a small playoff experience in 08 with the Wizards), so that doesn't bode well either.

The Clippers bench must either really find their offensive games, or be bolstered by CP3 or Blake Griffin. These guys solidify the offense, can create for themselves or others and make offense look easy. Problem is, where are CP3 and Blake going to get rest? The lack of firepower from the Clipper bench might be their achilles heel.

How can the Clippers compensate for their slim frontline?

The Clipper frontline isn't deep. Blake Griffin, DeAndre Jordan and Kenyon Martin are the guys who regularly play the minutes at the four and five spots. Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan are young, but they've put a lot of minutes on their bodies already and whoever they play in the playoffs will bang them around a bunch. Kenyon Martin has not been much of a factor for the Clippers.

The Clippers need to bank on the playoffs revitalizing Kenyon Martin. Maybe the intensity of the playoffs can stir Martin into activating the positives he brings to the game (effort, defense and finishing at the rim). Without the depth and ability to give their top bigs plenty of rest, their vulnerability may show early on in this postseason.

The Clippers are an entertaining team. While their roster as a whole has tons missing, it's hard to say they're not intriguing. Just the sheer talent of Blake Griffin and Chris Paul make the Clippers a sure playoff threat. Can the Clippers fight through their weak spots? The Clippers only chance is an amazing showing as a unit.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Jazz Clinch 8th Spot Booting Nash and the Suns Out

Is Nash Heading Out of Phoenix and Al Jefferson Gets First Playoff Appearance

By: Quentin Shank

Even though the Phoenix Suns have won four straight in the EnergySolutions Arena the Utah Jazz have the 6th best attendance and are rolling on four wins in a row. Steve Nash said before the game that “…the last three or four games were must win so no need in changing plans for tonight..” In a fight for the eighth spot in the west the intensity started early with the Jazz going right to their big men (Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap) and the Suns doing what they know best, putting the ball in Nash’s hands. Run N’ Gun for the Suns meant some easy fast break points but also some silly turnovers reminiscent of the Mike D’Antoni era. Great passing and excellent finishing at the rim by the Jazz gave them a 25 to 19 lead after the first quarter.

There was entertaining, intense ball being played at the beginning of the second quarter. The Suns went with a 2-3 zone that seemed to occasionally slow down the young guns of the Jazz. The Suns also made it harder for them to feed the post which had destroyed them in the first quarter and all season. With nine turnovers (four coming from Nash) and eight blocks (five from Derrick Favors) the Suns couldn’t stop the twenty transition points or the crowd going wild with every play. Two of the five blocks that Favors had were on what should’ve been dunks by Marcin Gortat. Favors blocks simply electrified the crowd and led them to an eight to zero run. The half ended on a steal by Devin Harris that led to a transition point by Harris off of the assist by Gordon Hayward. With all the momentum going the Jazz’s way the Suns were still only trailing by seven, (forty-nine to forty-two) going into the third quarter.

The Jazz continued their hot streak and momentum rolling into the third quarter bumping the lead up to ten. With defensive rebounds and a couple of steals it seemed like the Jazz were going to run away with it early but the experience of the Suns proved that they could fight back. Hakim Warrick provided a spark off the bench getting the Suns within one. The teams battled back and forth again but still the Suns couldn’t quite get ahead due to the rookie Alec Burks’ (Colorado) match in energy for the Jazz. Favors picked up his fourth foul, which put a halt on the big lineup that Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin loves to put out on the floor.

Coming into the fourth coach Alvin Gentry went straight at Burks with the more experienced Michael Redd. It worked perfectly. Burks picked up all four fouls in the fourth quarter while Redd dropped five straight points that switched the flow the Suns way. The Suns grabbed the lead mid way through the fourth which was their first since the second quarter. After a couple of missed opportunities by the Suns and Al Jefferson hitting two big shots the lead went back to the Jazz (ninety-three – eighty) with two minutes left. Nash and Redd had some good looks at threes but they just were not falling for the Suns. Favors hit some clutch free throws and the Jazz won with a Final score of one hundred to eighty-eight.

Now I want to give credit first to the Suns and their coach, Alvin Gentry. They came out of the wood works this year to make a playoff run. They were sixteen and twenty at the all-star break with everyone but themselves counting them out of the west. Underneath Nash and hot shooting by Jared Dudley they fought themselves back into contention for that eighth spot. With all the talk that has been buzzing around Nash, I sincerely hope he gets a title somewhere. He has been consistently good for too long for him not to have a ring on his finger, as Beyoncé would say. Wherever Nash goes the thirty-eight year old will definitely make a positive impact.

Congratulations to the Jazz for also being over .500% and officially making the playoffs. Congratulations to Jefferson for making the playoffs for the first time. Go ahead and show us something against the top seeded Spurs! Who knows, the Jazz could be this years Memphis Grizzlies and pull the Cinderella story. This is why I love the NBA, this is the game right here with some of the best talent in the world putting on a great show and it's only going to get better in the playoffs.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Lakers Prove To Still Be A Threat In The West

Kobe Has Déjà vu of His Younger Days & The Lakers Made a 4th Quarter Comeback without Bynum or WorldPeace

By: Quentin Shank

The first quarter of the highly anticipated match up of the Lakers and the Thunder, a possible western conference finals match, was to say the least not up to par. It was the Thunder pretty much running all over the Lakers. The only reason the score was relatively close was the rare low percentage shooting by the big 3 in the game (Bryant, Westbrook and Durant.) Ramon Sessions was definitely aggressive towards the end of the quarter, which opened up easy inside work for Gasol and Bynum.

The second quarter was going similar to the first, the Thunder started to pull away with James Harden’s scoring and ability to open the floor up. Then World Peace elbowed Harden after World Peace had made a great defensive play and finished the fast break perfectly. I saw the old Artest in his eyes as he viciously elbowed Harden in the backside of his head, in which Harden would not return, and squared up with Ibaka after the Thunder bench cleared in response to the elbow. I expect a big fine and a couple game suspension for the temper flare of the multiple offender. This did two things for the Lakers; hurt their momentum as they were starting to fight their way back and losing World Peace due to a likely suspension so close to the playoffs might hurt their chances of getting out of the first round. It also fueled the Thunder on top of two huge blocks by Ibaka that increased the lead to 13 right before halftime.

The third quarter was enticingly one sided because the Lakers looked horrible with Bryant on the floor. Bryant seemed frustrated with the no calls and poor passing that lead into easy transition buckets for the Thunder. After the lead jumped to eighteen Coach Mike Brown smartly took a timeout instead of letting the team try to fight through the drought.

Then towards the end of the third quarter and most of the fourth quarter the bench for the Lakers were starting which included a big game from Arizona forward Jordan Hill. As Bryant and Bynum sat, Bynum would not return to the game, the Laker bench battled with the starters of the Thunder. Then it really got exciting when the big lead was demolished by simple turnovers and shots just not falling for the Thunder. After two big three’s by Steve Blake the fans woke up and so did Bryant. I literally saw the Lakers morale go from zero to sixty in a matter of two shots. Then Bryant decided he was going to play today and took over in the fourth quarter with a barrage of shot clock beating one-footed threes and the famous Bryant one foot fade aways. It was back and forth in the last two minutes, smart plays by the Lakers and four clutch free throws by Westbrook. It came down to a last second three by Durant, which he missed but got a decent look at.

The first overtime was very physical and was like déjà vu from the end of the fourth. Gasol and Hill were very active during the first overtime as were Westbrook and Durant. It came down to another missed winning shot but this time by the Lakers.

As the second overtime started it looked like it was going to come down to the wire again. The Thunder would cause a turnover and get a fast break basket but then Bryant would answer with either a smart pass down low or one upping Sefalosha. Then as Durant would call for the ball Westbrook shook him away as the power struggle was too evident. Westbrook took it himself which had worked earlier but this time it turned into two or three bad shots that just gave momentum to the Lakers when they didn’t need anymore. Blake hit a ridiculous three and that was the dagger to the Thunder. They had good looks at the basket but Durant and Westbrook couldn’t buy one and the result was letting the game slip out of their hands. So the Lakers won a very important game against my pick as the best in the west. The Lakers did it without Bynum in the clutch moments. Does that mean something for the youngster, I don’t know. Anytime you can grab a win against the Thunder you’ll take it by any means possible.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Metta World Peace's Elbow: Will He Ever Grow Up?

Metta World Peace got everyone talking about him again yesterday afternoon. Not for his heroics on the court, crazy personality off the court, or his name change. Metta World Peace violently elbowed James Harden and was rightfully ejected thereafter. James Harden didn't return to the game and he's got a concussion (more on his health here). Metta World Peace, you've brought back the image you thought you'd gotten rid of.

Remember when his name was Ron Artest and the reputation he had after the brawl? Yeah, that is halfway happening again, Metta World Peace. People will think back and remember this and other times when he was destructive. Metta World Peace, how long will it take you to grow up?

It may never happen, but Metta World Peace can at least TRY to learn from his mistakes. After the brawl in 2004, Metta World Peace did learn from that disaster. Metta World Peace began to be active in the community and see the beauty in being kind to others. Pessimists can easily say he's learned nothing after this new incident and they're not completely wrong. There's no doubt that elbowing James Harden was uncalled for. Metta World Peace (or anybody) can frame it anyway they want, but it doesn't make it right.

Using the elbow incident as proof for saying Metta World Peace is still a bad guy is wrong. Metta World Peace has a questionable reputation, but it's not his intention. Players and plays that happen within games make some guys more emotional than others and no, that doesn't justify Metta World Peace's actions, but it begins to explain them. Metta World Peace is brought to life by things he or others do to him. This is simple and understood, but the amount of reaction you see from Metta World Peace is on a whole different level from most people. Clearly, as shown from Metta World Peace's track record.

While many people will continue to shine dark lights on Metta World Peace, I can tell he grows from these experiences (they shouldn't be happening, but he's not oblivious to his actions!). Metta World Peace may not even fully act like an adult until he leaves the NBA. It may take a long while for Metta World Peace to be OK with himself and the reality he lives in. That's ok. Great things take time to fine tune.

Metta World Peace, you messed up with the James Harden elbow. No one is cheering about it, everyone is concerned about Harden's health (pushing aside the Thunder's playoffs aspirations) and more maturing is necessary. Here's the bright side Metta World Peace: you can mature, you can learn from this! Metta World Peace, start with a belief in yourself and the confidence to know you are better than this. Most people may believe Metta World Peace will be a horrible guy for life, but I have faith that Metta World Peace can embody his name.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Shortened NBA Season: So Much Basketball, So Little Recovery Time

This NBA season has gone by quicker than a marathon runner paired against a turtle. Games come swiftly, there's little time to even think about a game you just watched, let alone gear up for five more. Could it be more difficult? Surely, life away from basketball can take your focus off ALL of the basketball! It's been a season where life has gotten in the way at times, which makes me yearn for a decelerated season. What's the plus side and down sides to the accelerated season?

The plus side is simple: if you've got absolute focus on NBA basketball, you will rarely be left wanting more. There's consistent (nearly constant) action, stories and news. Games all week, with little down time. It makes for a ton of information to absorb and retain. While it's not difficult for the NBA fan to get the information, it takes TIME to really amass it. For fans who have all the time, this NBA season could be one of the best ever.

Another positive is the amount of games. While 82 is a ton, 66 seems right. Only problem is the pace at which those 66 games come at. That is what the down sides get into:

The down sides are where it gets intriguing. Teams don't have as much time to rest and prepare for opponents. Teams, players and any additions to the roster have less time to mesh. Everything is rushed. The start of the season saw the presumed sloppiness that's subsided since. As mentioned in the first paragraph, depending on the time and how hardcore of a fan you are, it's more difficult to stay on top of a quicker moving NBA.

While it's easy to complain about how hard the league can be a challenge to stay on top of, the quality is the biggest issue. Without the time, rehabilitation and preparation that's put into a normally paced NBA season, it's unquestionable to say the level of play could be even close to better. It's far from what's always expected of the best ball players on the planet.

What's the solution to these problems? An 82 game season is too long, but a 66 game condensed season is too quick, where's the middle-ground? The solution is a 66 game (or around that number) season that's scheduled at the 82 game pace. This takes 16 games off the table, BUT gives guys the same rest and burn they're used to.

The downsides are only economic. This would shorten each and every season which means less tickets to sell, games to put on national TV and focus (money) centered around the NBA. That's the only real reason for any NBA big wigs to oppose this idea.

Whether future NBA seasons follow the pattern of less games or not, it's clear that an accelerated season is brutal. Hopefully the NBA and it's players can stay on good terms so that another year like this can be avoided! Even hardcore fans should agree, less games during the season, increase the quality of the game!

Friday, April 20, 2012

David West Throws Touchdown to Paul George

David West, Paul George and the Pacers are a team that gets along. They like each other so much that the title of this post resembles football more than it does basketball! This is basketball though and last night David West threw a touchdown pass to Paul George for the finish:

Tremendous pass, catch and finish from these two Pacers! More of that will be necessary from the Pacers if they want to make noise in the playoffs.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

George Hill Slams Down a Rebound

George Hill is hard to hate. George Hill is a glue guy. He's solid in every respect and he's pretty consistent. The way George Hill plays algins with how the Pacers team is built. George Hill can throw down with the best of them too. Here's an example:

George Hill, that's how it's done! Let's see more highlights like that, George Hill!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Hornets Changing Hands, Finally!

The Hornets are being sold to Tom Benson for $338 million, according to This is great news for Hornets fans, NBA fans and the NBA itself. No longer will the NBA own one of its franchises. No more intervention into Hornets roster moves. The NBA can function normally.

When the NBA owned the Hornets, questionable things happened. Aside from the Chris Paul saga, just having the leagues hand in everything gave off the wrong feel. Not even a huge Hornets fan could see it was wrong. Tom Benson will be the guy to stop that foolishness.

He owns the New Orleans Saints already, so he should already know how to run the Hornets well. This team has a long way to go. They're young and lacking experience, but the Hornets have some pieces. Tom Benson's job is to let the basketball decision makers do their job. Surely Tom Benson will want to ensure that the Hornets franchise is putting money in his pocket.

That's his right, heck, I'd want to make sure a company I owned was profiting! Tom Benson needs to understand that contending and winning mean more money. Don't be one of those owners who wants to do everything to stay under the cap. Not only is that a highly limiting mindset, it almost guarantees your team won't contend. The Hornets need to be built up from the bottom of the mountain.

Whether Tom Benson manages his team with grace or thoughtlessness, at least the NBA isn't ruling over one of the 30 teams! This means the balance of power is tipped the way it should be, people can't point to the NBA owning the team as an excuse for anything and the Hornets can get a plan together to get back to prominence.

While it's no easy task to make a mediocre NBA team great, it's better to start then sit and pout. Congrats to Tom Benson on your new team and take a deep breath, NBA fans. The NBA doesn't own any of its teams and this game only gets better everyday!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Andre Iguodala Throws it Down

Andre Iguodala is an awesome dunker. Andre Iguodala is great in game dunker and dunk contest winner, he's got the whole package as far as dunking's concerned. Not to anyone's surprise, he throws it down with ferocity against the Nets:

That's the type of power people love, Andre Iguodala! Is Andre Iguodala the best dunker in his prime in the NBA right now? Upgrade your restroom and find several discount bathroom vanities all at an affordable price!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Blazers Offense: Love it or Hate it?

The Blazers offense is a nightmare. Last night against the Rockets, the offense was stagnant, lacked a steady mix of inside and outside players and strong Rocket defense made it look like an episode of The Addams Family. While that's unfortunate, the saddest part is, remember a few years back when the Blazers where the young, up and coming team everyone loved?

Those Blazers had talent, hunger and flexibility to keep improving the team. It seems that the Blazers have gone from a soon to be contender, down to a mediocre squad. The Blazers are trying to do their best, but it's sure sad to see what their best is right now.

The offense is a huge problem. It's reminiscent of the Hawks old, isolation style offense (funny fact: Jamal Crawford is on this Blazers team AND was on the Hawks iso-team). Throw the ball to one guy, let him dribble a bunch and waste a large amount of the shot clock and then rush to get something up at the basket before the clock expires.

While getting the ball on the rim to avoid a shot clock violation is smart basketball, it makes no sense to use the whole shot clock each time the Blazers halfcourt offense sets up. Not only does this lessen the amount of shot attempts the Blazers are able to get, it slows the game down more than this team needs a slow pace.

Coach Kaleb Canales and his staff should rethink the pace and system the Blazers run now. Are the Blazers maximizing their offensive abilities? Is the speed the team plays at reflective of the teams personnel? Is there tanking going on and does that make sense? How can the Blazers get Lamarcus Aldridge and Jamal Crawford more opportunities to score?

These are some questions and considerations for this team. While turning this team into something better wouldn't be that difficult, the team has to be critical of what the present problems are. If tanking is apart of the strategy, hopefully it's clear between the coaches, organization and players. I'm not a huge advocate of tanking, but if it's being done, the lines of communication between all parties who make it happen better be clear.

Are the Blazers tanking? Probably not, but considering there's a huge talent pool in this next draft and the Blazers poor record, it could make some sense to. Even if the Blazers played better earlier in the year and had a legitimate shot at making the playoffs, they weren't going to do much there anyway. This team is not built to go deep into the playoffs. While the Blazers may not be tanking, it would be hard to bash them for doing so at this point.

The Blazer offense needs work. It's hard to watch right now, but there are some pieces to it that aren't terrible (Lamarcus Aldridge, for one). Who knows, a great draft this summer and a healthy team could prove better next year. Nevertheless, as a Blazer fan or observer, times are cloudy right now.

Monday, April 09, 2012

Tayshaun Prince Dunks on Marvin Williams

Tayshaun Prince isn't all about pleasing the crowd usually. Tayshaun Prince just does his thing and doesn't care about what anyone thinks. Well, Tayshaun Prince decided to please the crowd by slamming on Marvin Williams.

Tayshaun Prince throws the hammer down! Nice one and keep them coming, Tayshaun Prince!

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Headed to the Jordan Classic Next Week!

I'm off to Charlotte next to cover the Jordan Classic. This means exclusive coverage of the events will come your way right here on NBAtipoff. Sound like a plan??

YES! Get revved up cause this will be fun. This will be my first Jordan Classic, but hopefully not my last. The games will be held on April 14th at the Time Warner Cable Arena (International 2:30 pm, Regional 4:30 pm, National 7:00 pm, all times are eastern). Tickets are still available for the games on Ticketmaster. Not sure what the Jordan Classic is exactly? Take a gander at the Jordan Classic website.

If anybody has a couch or place to stay in the downtown Charlotte area, checkout my contact page and holler at me! Additionally, any companies looking for sponsorship/representation at this event, contact me and maybe we can work something out.

Want to stay up on NBAtipoff's Jordan Classic coverage? Follow our Twitter feed, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our RSS feed! Jordan Classic, here I come!

Brandan Wright's Creative Alley Oop

Brandan Wright is beginning to shine this season with the Dallas Mavericks. Brandan Wright fits in perfectly to the team and it looks like he's found a home. Aside from that being awesome, switching hands in mid-air for an alley oop is too:

Take that, Brandan Wright says! Lovely creativity from Brandan Wright there.

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Blake Griffin Dunked, But Who Cares?

Blake Griffin had two dunks everyone's going crazy about from last night. Here's the first one and here's the second one, in case you haven't seen them 200 times already! The Clippers didn't win last nights game against the Lakers. The Lakers won the battle of LA, 113-108. Can someone explain why Blake Griffin should be lauded so much in a loss?

Certainly these two dunks were tremendous displays of athleticism, hangtime and sheer strength. There's no doubt about that. What is wrong with our ESPN, YouTube crazy modern society is what matters the most is shoved aside more and more. Blake Griffin is a tremendous dunker and talent, for sure. Still, what Blake Griffin, fans of the Clippers and Blake Griffin should really want is a win!

Question for Clipper/Blake Griffin fans: what would you rather have, those two dunks that will live on the internet from here on out, and be fun memories, or getting closer to the Lakers in the standings (by winning)? If the answer is the dunks, then your priorities aren't skewed towards winning.

One thing the NBA and people who follow the game have right is that they reward winning. Guys like Karl Malone, John Stockton and Reggie Miller were Hall of Fame talents, BUT they never won titles to fully legitimize their legacies. This Clippers game was a regular season game and not a playoff game, BUT to say that it didn't have huge playoff implications is false!

This game the Clippers lost by a close call strongly affects the chances of the Clippers catching the Lakers and moving up in the Western conference standings. Why should the Clippers want a great place in the standings? The Clippers are 20-9 at home and 12-13 on the road. That says it all. It's imperative for the Clippers to have more games at home in the playoffs because LAC wins most home games.

The Clippers road record is atrocious. It will be to their benefit to get as many home games as possible. Not only will they be able to sleep in their own beds, but statistically speaking, they're a lot more likely to win a series with home court advantage. Contact your local Terminix to get prices and schedule an appointment today!

Blake Griffin, don't get me wrong, your dunks are incredible. What's unfortunate is people see those two plays and forget the important factor, winning or losing. Winning MAKES stars and legends. Losing, while dunking emphatically two times only gives you more search results on Google. Losing DOESN'T legitimize anything. Forget your stats, highlights, or anything. Prove you're legit Blake Griffin, and win ball games!

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Andre Iguodala Throws It Down

Andre Iguodala is a tremendous dunker. He's quick, slams with authority and doesn't discriminate if someone's in his way! Here's another great dunk for Andre Iguodala's collection:

Great one from Andre Iguodala!

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

NCAA Championship Game Observations

                 Last night, the NCAA mens basketball finals took place between Kentucky and Kansas. A fun game it was! This is when we get stuck into college ball here at NBAtipoff. Here are some observations from last nights battle:

  1. 1st Half pace is awesome! Blistering to say the least.
  2.  Marcus Teague is a better shooter than his brother, looks like he'll be a super dynamic NBA guard.
  3. Jeff Withey is a great shot blocker, but needs to work on trying to keep the ball inbounds when blocking (he kept the ball in bounds on one of his four blocks last night).
  4. MKG’s (Michael Kidd-Gilchrist) early hard foul wasn’t a problem for him and he kept playing and found rhythm.
  5. Physicality of the game is tremendous. Not too much, not too little.
  6. College ball should feature jump balls like the NBA!
  7. The game really slowed down in the latter half of the first half. Less frenetic pace to the game.
  8. Kansas needs to get their offense going (about the 7 minute 14 mark of the first half). Kentucky is able to get in semi-transition and Kansas has to rush to setup.
  9. Kansas going into halftime look demoralized. They need to hold themselves differently.
  10. Kansas showing some signs of life early in the 2nd half
  11. Kansas defense is much better to start the 2nd half. That fueled their offensive improvements.
  12. Kansas keeps making little runs, but if they claw back to tie or lead, can they push through and win?
  13. Kansas is close (down 10), but their conditioning will really be tested if they try and take control of this game.
  14. Defense intensifying for both teams as crunch time approaches.
  15. Kansas still needs a huge amount of energy just to squeak out a win. Looks tough.
  16. Marcus Teague hit a big three. Kansas comes right back and does the same thing though!
  17. Kansas had a turnover at a time when they really couldn’t! Under a minute to go, that’s tough.
  18. Kentucky had too much of a lead. Kansas didn’t have enough energy to get back into the game, let alone take the lead!

f        How'd you like the championship game last night?

Monday, April 02, 2012

Miami Heat's Poor Attitude Shines In Loss

The demeanor of the Miami Heat during their 91-72 loss to the Boston Celtics was dreadful. It seemed as if no one cared about the score, the game was just getting closer to ending so the Heat could get out of the Garden. While the Heat weren't at all out of this game in the first half, everything went downhill from the third quarter on. The Miami Heat settling for bad shots and winning has been documented here before. Certainly those same shots didn't go down yesterday, but the way the Miami Heat responded to their mediocre play is what's scary.

Totally nonchalant, "we can turn it on," kind of attitude stuck out. Erik Spoelstra, Heat coach, has to see this and work tirelessly to change it. The talent of the Miami Heat is undeniable. That's not the problem. The problem IS the mindset and lack of fight within this team.

When the Miami Heat get down, when Spoelstra calls a timeout or two and rallies the troops, the Heat players themselves have to apply a different energy to the game. What happened yesterday was not anything different. When the Miami Heat began to let this game get away, they just hung their heads more and seemed to fold for the most part (Shane Battier being the exception).

The Miami Heat must stay positive despite challenges and always fight. Even when it looks near impossible, despite anything, who's playing or who's missing, whatever it may be, the Miami Heat must try! While that sounds obvious, at any level of basketball, the Miami Heat don't appear to have that mentality.

The talent level of the Miami Heat is a blessing and weak point. While the talent being so high means they can do a lot quickly, almost turn the switch on, that's not the way to win. If the Miami Heat won every game this way in the regular season, it'd be easy to see them crumble come playoff time. It's easy for the Miami Heat to use their talent as an excuse for arrogance and lack of winning attitude. That's something that needs to be thrown further out the window if the Miami Heat ever want to win an NBA championship.

The Miami Heat are a tremendous group of players. Nevertheless, basketball is as much of a physical game as it is mental. If the Miami Heat want to succeed, their mental approach to the game needs work. A Miami Heat team with the right attitude is a team that becomes that much harder to beat. It's possible for them, but the Miami Heat need consistent hunger and inspiration to win it all.

Sunday, April 01, 2012

Russell Westbrook Dunks on Omer Asik

Russell Westbrook is a bundle of energy and he can throw down on anyone if you're not careful. Unfortunately, someone forgot to tell Omer Asik about Russell Westbrook's power. Here's the result:

Nasty stuff, Russell Westbrook!