What timing....we can chat for an hour, then ESPN's Master's coverage begins at 4/1. Do you realize next week will bring both the final round of the Masters and the first round of the NBA playoffs? People say they love the week with the NCAA championship and the start of the Masters...next week's just as good. Plus Treme begins on HBO Sunday night...
J.A. - Let's get it going and talk playoffs - Do any of the teams contending for that 8th spot in the West have what it takes to knock off a coasting Laker team in the playoffs??
If San Antonio drops down there, watch out. The Spurs have momentum and they have experience and they have a PG that can destroy the Lakers D.
Is there any chance of a first round upset in the East?
Should Dwight Howard just get his 16th technical his next game? that way he can sit out one of the last regular season game, and not miss any time in playoffs?
The technical slate resets in the playoffs, where a 7th technical earns a suspension
what are your thoughts on shinn selling the hornets? what does than mean for the organization? good or bad?
the last question didn't post. It was in response to a question about whether Dwight HOward should get his 16th technical now and take the suspension so it wouldn't happen in the playoffs
Questions aren't posting. here's the next one:#
We give athletes a chance to write second chapters (Tiger Woods, anyone?) so we should do the same with owners. Shinn's legacy in New Orleans is much better than the memories he left behind in Charlotte, where he soured what had been a great NBA market. But in New Orleans Shinn made the Hornets the first pro team to play a home game after Katrina...that should count for something. And he spent the money on guys like Peja Stojakovic (I don't blame owners when the moves don't work out...at least they didn't let the finances stop them). Unfortunately some of those tough contracts prevented them from making other moves, sno now they're stuck. But he tried.
JA, I know this may be a ridiculous question, but do you think that the Portland trade for Marcus Camby may have been as effective as the Dallas trade for Caron Butler and Brendan Haywood?
Question: (45) Paul Sondhi (NJ): JA, I know this may be a ridiculous question, but do you think that the Portland trade for Marcus Camby may have been as effective as the Dallas trade for Caron Butler and Brendan Haywood?
Not ridiculous at all. The Camby trade was exactly what Portland needed right now, and they didn't have to sacrifice their long-term plan in the process. It got them into the playoffs, so mission accomplished.
Why is all of ESPN, but mostly you and Simmons, complaining about that foul call? Yeah, it was probably a foul. However, that foul is never called at the end of the game. Wasn't called on Melo last night when he did the same thing to Fisher. It will never be called. The idea that the refs are biased against the Thunder is ridiculous; Durant gets tons of phantom calls in his favor. The reffing in the Thunder game was consistent with how it's always been. Come on, guys.
(63) Doug (Utah): Why is all of ESPN, but mostly you and Simmons, complaining about that foul call? Yeah, it was probably a foul. However, that foul is never called at the end of the game. Wasn't called on Melo last night when he did the same thing to Fisher. It will never be called. The idea that the refs are biased against the Thunder is ridiculous; Durant gets tons of phantom calls in his favor. The reffing in the Thunder game was consistent with how it's always been. Come on, guys.
Um, it was so blatantly bad that the NBA came out and said so. That doesn't happen too often. If that were Kobe or LeBron, they would have been shooting free throws. No question.
What are your feelings about Mike Brown ? Going back on his word, he mentioned before the bulls game that he will play Lebron due to respect to raptors.When the game time comes Lebron is on street clothes. Do you think Lebron overruled Mike's decision and decided to sit.
Question: (83) John (Chicago): What are your feelings about Mike Brown ? Going back on his word, he mentioned before the bulls game that he will play Lebron due to respect to raptors.When the game time comes Lebron is on street clothes. Do you think Lebron overruled Mike's decision and decided to sit.
Mike Brown and the Cavs don't have any obligations to the Raptors. Or to Bulls fans. Cleveland earned the right to have LeBron play or not play by clinching the best record. Mike Wilbon and I were arguing about this yesterday. He said Jordan didn't take games off. I say LeBron takes more physical punishment than latter-years Jordan, and he's already played in hundreds more games than MJ did at this age. So I'm in favor of resting him for the playoffs
Dallas won 13 in a row but has struggled of late. Do you think they can flip the switch back on once the playoffs are underway ? Who do you believe is the best matchup for them in round 1 ?
Question: 96) Jay (Tampa(FL)): Dallas won 13 in a row but has struggled of late. Do you think they can flip the switch back on once the playoffs are underway ? Who do you believe is the best matchup for them in round 1 ?
I was really alarmed by the Mavs' back-to-back home losses last week. I do believe they'll have enough vet savvy to be fine in the playoffs. Phoenix or Oklahoma City (despite what happened last week) would be good for them in playoffs
Question: (164) Kantad (NYC): Just hear an old school classic "Fly Girls" by the Boogie Boys, remember that one? Do you think Nellie should have been in the Hall of Fame by now?
If Nellie had been to the NBA Finals as a coach I'd advocate he should have been in the HOF by now. But he hasn't, so.....
And I do remember "Fly Girls" Used to bump from the boxes at the Boys Club back in the day
(184) Georges (Ottawa, Canada): Going back to the Lebron resting issue. The cavs could have rested Lebron tonight against Indy. The point here is to play ur best players so as to respect the game and keep the integrity of the league. After the big scandal the NBA went through with their refs, wouldn't it be in the best interest of the league to manage situations like this to avoid conspiracy theorists that will be coming after them.
Hmm, why are there no conspiracy theories when NFL teams rest key players down the stretch? And why don't we hear about these things when baseball teams juggle their rotations down the stretch to set them up for the playoffs? The integrity of the league is maintained by putting teams in best position to go for a championship.
JA - How much of a factor is MDA in the Free Agency discussion? I.e., why would a free agent like D-Wade or 'Bron go play for VDN or Eric Spoelstra when they can play for one of the most-respected coaches in the world, AND generate record-setting calibre stats to boot? Remember those Laker teams that never won anything, despite being immensely talented, until they got the right coach? Surely players think about that, yes? Maybe???
Question: (183) mark (The Atl): JA - How much of a factor is MDA in the Free Agency discussion? I.e., why would a free agent like D-Wade or 'Bron go play for VDN or Eric Spoelstra when they can play for one of the most-respected coaches in the world, AND generate record-setting calibre stats to boot? Remember those Laker teams that never won anything, despite being immensely talented, until they got the right coach? Surely players think about that, yes? Maybe???
The Mike D'Antoni Olympic team experiences factor is big -- several people around the league think so as well -- but you have to wonder if players are putting familiarity over accomplishment. Stan Van Gundy, for example, has been to the Finals. D'Antoni hasn't. His Knicks squads the past two years didn't exactly light it up. So do they really know what they'd be getting into in NY?
Question: (198) Mike (Chicago): Question, if the NBA didnt change its rules (Hand Checking, etc) to favor offensive players, would lebron be as dominating as he is now? I think if players were allowed to be physical like they were in the 90s and put their body on lebron, he wouldn't be as dominating because lebron doesn't have much of a post game and relies on driving to the lane. Not to mention the refs seem to blow more whistle now, i mean this year alone, Jordan wouldn't crack the top five in FT attempts per game compared to what his average was.
Do you really think a hand check would keep LeBron from getting into the lane?
Question: (197) Rah (Newark, N.J.): Hey J.A. what do u think of this scenario? Nets sign Amare and decent shooter of bench and draft Turner. Where would u rank them at in the east for next season. Please give me a little speculation. Go Russian billionaire owner!!!!!
They could easily be a playoff team in the East, where it doesn't take much. FYI, someone asked Amare on Twitter yesterday what his favorite city to go to is and he said NY NY. Now does that mean Manhattan or Brooklyn? Hmmm
So going on that same logic as to why Nellie isn't in, Jerry Sloan is in because.......????
Because Sloan has been to the Finals. Twice
Hey J.A. How did you make out with that traffic violation ticket you got?...and by the way,can the Celts bottle what they did for 3/4 vs Cavs and carry it thru playoffs?
I applied to have that parking ticket court appearance postponed and I still haven't received a new court date....as for the Celtics, are you sure you want to bottle that fourth-quarter collapse?
Just to make sure, you're seeing the questions post now?
JA, which teams should Nellie have taken to the finals?
How about the Dallas Mavericks team that was essentially the same squad that Avery Johnson took to the Finals?
Assuming the worst and the Jazz get the 4 or 5 seed, I like their chances in the first round against Phoenix, but can they get over the mental block they seem to have and beat the Lakers?
No they can't. Just can't play in L.A. They scored 22 points over 2 quarters there this season (4th quarter in Decemember, first quarter this month)
AJ: Can you compare David Lee to Bosh, Amare and Boozer? Everyone seems to discuss Lee as a consolation prize (for the Knicks or others) if the other three cannot be gotten. Their stats are substantially similar.
Booz and Amare can get their own shots easier. Lee's obviously a much better rebounder than Amare. I wonder if Lee's strong play will have his agent repeat his high salary demands from last year, or if someone will end up with a bargain at a slightly discounted rate after the big bucks go to some of the bigger names.
Hey JA, what are your thoughts on Andre Blatche desperately going for that triple double? Were you as amused watching it as I was? I couldn't help but feel a little bad for him when the rookie stole his rebound haha.
I wasn't amused, I was sickened. Putting that much stock in a statistical yardstick when you're team is going nowhere...that virtually assures that your team will continue to go nowhere as long as you're the key player. Notice that Blache's big numbers in the second half of the season didn't coincide with a big winning streak. It was the opposite.
Which team would give the Nuggets the most difficulty in the 1st round? The least?
It depends on Kenyon Martin. With Martin playing at his usual level, the Nuggets are too physical for Phoenix. If he isn't as effective, I could see Nash and Co. having their way with Denver, after the way the Laker supporting cast took them to the edge last night.
The NBA rather have big market Chicago play Lebron in the playoffs, especially after the epic series they played last year. Brown was probably instructed by the league to rest Lebron to give the Bulls a better chance to win.
Just like the NFL wanted the big market NY Jets in the playoffs so it instructed the Colts to sit Peyton Manning?
Are you not reading the questions right? The guy said could the Celtics bottle what they did for 3/4 of the game. Which was the first 3 quarters....where they were winning. Read it all Adande.
I did NOT read that correctly. Although I think a lot of what Boston did right was have LeBron miss all of his three-pointers. So I don't think that's in their bottling plant.
Adande- What do you think of the Pacers grabbing Greg Monroe, who could be a decent frontline addition to Murphy, Hansbrough, and Hibbert?
Somehow it's easier for me to imagine them getting Gordon Hayward
Why do experts and analysts preach so much about defense, but the a player like Dwight Howard, who leads the league in rebounding, blocked shots, field goal percentage and double doubles does not even get second consideration for MVP. When do you think the league will finally view defense as important as offense.
Great scorers are still at a higher premium than great defenders. The other day a scout was telling me about the importance of players who can get their own shot off in the NBA. They're so hard to come by. And if you have a couple of guys who can do that you have a chance to be an elite team. Dikembe was a much better defender than Shaq, but wouldn't you rather have Shaq? Dwight Howard has more offensive skills than Dikembe...I still would rather have the ball in LeBron or Kobe or Carmelo's hands in the fourth quarter than in Dwight's.
Treme! I am also very excited about this show. david Simon is a genuis. The Wire is the best show in television history! Next year, the Knicks will turn things around when Lebron and Bosh come to town.
That's true...the Wire is the best show in TV history
did anyone just see tigers shot on 17
No, i had the 15-16 holes live stream on. What'd I miss?
J.A., say you are Dwyane Wade and Joe Johnson leaves the Hawks to go to NY or Chicago. Wouldn't you seriously consider the move to the ATL? Would there be a better starting five in the East next year than the Hawks if he did?
If I were Wade I wouldn't do it for the midlevel exception, which is probably what he'd be making in Atlanta.
If the Clippers draft Wesley Johnson to fill in the hole at 3 and resign Camby, can the Clippers contend for a playoff?
If they stay healthy. Big if.
I feel like the hand checking rule has helped Kobe more than LeBron, one of the many reasons I don't think Kobe/MJ comparisons are very accurate. (That and Kobe was the 2nd best player on 3 of his 4 championship teams)
I agree with the first part. But I don't penalize Kobe for having Shaq. it's as easy to say Shaq doesn't have those first three championship without Kobe as the other way around.
Regarding Tony's question about Dwight/MVP, isn't that what the DPOY award is for? Isn't he about to win it a second time? They don't call the MVP the Offensive Player of the Year award but that's kind of what has been historically.
I think the best comparison is baseball. Everyone says pitching is the key to winning championships, but you rarely see pitchers win MVP.
Okay folks, Masters time. Thanks for your questions. See you next weekend for a playoff edition of the chat.