Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Blake Griffin: Top 10 of 2010

This is a sweet edit of the many ways Blake scores the basketball:

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Cam & Bilbo Weekly Chat: THE State of THE Warriors

Cam & Bilbo. AKA: BoNote
Bilbo: The State of the Warriors - I feel like they are moving in the right direction but there are games that leave me scratching my head. The recent Laker game is a great example. They played well for three and a half quarters and just let it slip away. Granted, Kobe has a habit of killing teams in the 4th, but I felt like they still should have won. The Jan 1st match up was another game that showed their potential. They dropped 72 in the first half against The Heat but let it slip away in the second. I really believe that if they can string together a few solid wins they go on a roll. Their schedule is great through February with 14 of the next 17 at home. Do you think they could make a push and steal the 8th spot? I could see Portland slipping now that Roy is out forever. Phoenix, Houston and Memphis are in the hunt, but I could see the Dubs doing damage now that everyone is healthy.

Cam: Sweet! 41 games in is the perfect time to do some Warriors predictions. At least the head scratching losses were versus great teams. The early January halftime leads of 14 vs. the Heat and 8 vs. the Magic were awesome, but it wasn’t surprising that both games eventually were lost. The Dubs had injuries and were closing out a brutal road trip. The Warriors beat Charlotte on New Years Eve. Then on New Years Day they had to play the Heat. I personally think that The Miami Thrice were a little hung over on New Years Day which helped with that halftime Warrior lead. And then after their second half stinkbomb and eventual loss in Orlando, the Dubs closed out their 5 game road trip with a win in New Orleans (probable playoff team). The contest vs. The Lakers last week was awesome but Kobe and Odumb dominated the 4th Quarter. The Lakers are waaay better than the Warriors and if the Lakers play really well for even part of the game, it’s currently impossible for the Warriors to beat them. Hence the 10 game losing streak to the Lakers. But that being said, I’m fired up that the Warriors are performing on this long and relatively easy home stand. Beating the Blake Griffins on Friday, New Jersey in the Monday matinee, and the last second Monta Ellis money jumper win on Wednesday vs. the Pacers has produced a nice little 3 game win streak. At 18-23 and with only 4 road games in their next 17 against some beatable teams, this is the time for the Dubs to put up or shut up. If they’re back above .500 with Monta being a coaches choice All-Star at the end of February, they’ve got a good shot. Here’s to hoping the injuries don’t creep up again. Because March is essentially all on the road and they play some great playoff teams. But let’s back into this: What do you think the Warriors need to be at after beating Minnesota at home on February 27th in order to make the playoffs? I guess you need to start with what their record needs to be and the end of the season and then look at the remaining schedule and see who we can legitimately beat.

Bilbo: Please continue, fine sir. It sounds as if you have some more knowledge to drop.

Cam: Dude, in looking at the remaining schedule I honestly see the Warriors going between 17-24 to 22-19. I see 5 games that they probably will lose but could possibly win if they are playing well. The 22-19 mark puts the Dubs at 40-42 for the season. And a sub .500 record isn’t making the playoffs this year in the West. Honestly, do you see the Warriors winning any of these 5 games in a row: @Thunder, @Memphis, Dallas, @Portland, @Lakers. The only game they really have a shot of winning is @Memphis and this is one of the five “could go either way” games I mentioned above. This is one of two 5 game losing streaks I’m seeing in the remaining schedule. The Warriors play 17 games vs. likes of Magic/Mavericks/Spurs/Bulls/Nuggets/Jazz/Celtics/Hawks. Let’s call these teams the Bad Ass teams of the league. Not only are they playoff teams but they are super legit playoff teams. Many homers will then say “yeah, the Warriors could beat these teams for sure!” Well, they’d have to beat a lot of them to make the playoffs. In the first half of the season the Warriors played 15 games against the Bad Asses. Do you know how many they won? One game vs. The Jazz in early November. Unless the Warriors somehow take it to another level where they can win 5 or 6 games of the 17 against the Bad Asses, it’s looking to me like the terrible losses to crap teams earlier in the season have already caught up with them. And that is a good lesson for a playoff team in the NBA: beat the crap teams or plan on beating up on a lot of Bad Asses instead.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Blake Griffin Scores 47 on MLK Day vs. The Pacers 1/17/11

I just watched an ESPN highlight where they showed 3 of Blakes 19 Field Goal makes. The anchor talked all over himself saying such interesting things as "and he hustles after his own rebound and gets it and lays it in!" followed by Tim Legler saying something lame about Griffin being a future All Star. Such insight.

In the same amount of time you wasted with ESPN you could watch this video below which highlights all 19 of Griffin's Field Goal makes leading to 47 points (the most this season so far) on 24 shots. Yes, you read that correctly: 47 POINTS ON 24 SHOTS. We are in the midst of greatness, people.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Blake Griffin Lamar Odom Fight

Blake Griffin and his Clippers have been on quite a tear recently. The Clippers have won 5 of 6 including victories over the Nuggets, the mighty Heat (who were LeBron-less), and the Lakers.  They only struggled with the amazing Warriors on Friday 1/14 because the Warriors are just that damn good (winning 8 of the last 13, y'all).

Because Blake Griffin dunks with so much FANtastic Amazing Great Time Out-ness, teams apparently have started to try and get in the Rookie's head. Here's Lamar ODumb getting angry that Blake was playing too hard:

Was the 99 to 92 Clipper victory over the Lakers yesterday (1/16) a Los Angelian changing of the guard?  Is this a microcosim of the eventual Laker Dynasty downfall and the rising of a new powerhouse (in spite of Coach VDN and Owner Sterling) known as The Blake Griffins featuring Eric Gordon?  At least Baron Davis has pledged to protect Blake's back as evident in this story.

Blake went out today (1/17) and dropped 47 points with 14 boards on the Pacers for a 7 point victory.  It looks like Superhero Blake wasn't at all scared by the Laker bullcrap from the night before and actually used it as fuel for continued domination.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Cam & Bilbo Weekly Chat: Sleeper Teams

Bilbo rocks a PBR mesh in 2006
Cam rocks a vintage US Olympics mesh in 2005

Cam: the Laker defeat by the hands of the mighty Memphis Grizzlies at Staples by 19 points on Sunday 1/2/11 got me thinking: we have enough time under our belts and behind our backs and in our quivers to probably pick some sleeper teams. I’m going to enjoy these last days of the Celtics and Lakers but this is THE Nextians and we are always looking to the future (screw the past, yo). But let’s first define “sleeper”. This is a team that is either having or showing some signs of success that didn’t have success recently. This can be manifested by said team making the playoffs this year or being a team that in the Summer of 2011 (crossing my fingers that there is no lockout) will be picked as a playoff team by “experts” because of their play and improvement this season. The Thunder of last year are the best example of a sleeper that only about half the NBA nerds saw coming. This year I’d like to start with the Grizzlies. They were close to the playoffs last year and have a shot this year. They’re 15-19 right now and are 3 games out of the 8th spot. The Grizz have some great pieces and even someone from Iran (Hamed Haddadi who’s 7-2). What are your thoughts on their roster? Gimme some of your Bilbo wisdom and then we can move onto other squads while simultaneously getting all crazy with it.

Bilbo: Los Grizzlies are definitely a team on the rise. The beat down in LA was definitely a confidence boost for the group and will be a nice topic of conversation at the Gasol Family Picnic this summer in Pamplona. They are a good mix of young players (Conley, Arthur and Gasol) with a couple solid vets (Randolph, Allen) and one Gay Superstar. I could see them beating out Houston and Portland for the #8 seed this year. Of course, that would be dependant on to things. First is OJ Mayo. He’s gotta go while he still has some value. His minutes and pts are waaay down this year and he doesn’t seem to like coming off the bench. So much so that he got into a fistfight with his competition over a card game. Stay classy OJ. The second is you can never count out their GM Chris Wallace. He could pull of a ridiculous trade before the deadline that would ruin all the progress they’ve made the last couple of years. But overall, I like their chances.

Cam: I think the Gasol brothers are from Barcelona (pronounced with a lisp) but it is still hilarious imagining the two of them speaking Cantalunian Spanish to one another about their head to head matchups over the season. I think the reason why Lionel Hollins (Grizz Coach) plays OJ with the 2nd team is because their bench lacks scoring punch. So they need some pop from the bench. But it does really suck owning Mayo this year on one’s fantasy team with his reduced use. I do question Lionel actually starting Tony Allen instead of OJ once Xavier Henry went down with injury. That guy misses wide open layups and was a joke to hardcore Celtics fans. Even though their team numbers are right in the middle of the Association for Offensive and Defensive rank, I do like the Gay/Randolph/Gasol core. Conley is improving this year but he probably has too much Greg Oden stink on him (they both went to Ohio State) to be a leader of a playoff team. Darrell Arthur is a defensive stopper and its fun to watch him shut down other Shooting Guard stars. If only “We’ve Got” Thabeet and Haddadi could be a crazy 7 foot force off the bench the Grizz might win their first playoff game in franchise history. So does anyone else get you excited………as a sleeper team? Chicago and their MVP candidate and awesome moves in the offseason? Does Blake Griffin mask the stench of Donald Sterling from the franchise and motivate Eric Gordon, King Aminu, DeAndre Jordan, Chris Kaman and even Baron Davis to new heights? Or do you have a huge Knickerbocker boner and want to talk about how their team will look at the end of this season with a possible trade? Shoot, Billy. You’re wide open from the top of the key.

Bilbo: The Gasols have a summer home in Pamplona to enjoy the running of the bulls. Didn’t you know that? I’d pick the Clips as a sleeper for next season. Eric Gordon is a beast and can lead this talented team. DeAndre Jordan can be what Marcus Camby should have been if he wasn’t injured all the time. This kid is raw but is leaking potential out of his butt. They need to get Bledsoe playing the point more and slowly phase out Baron Davis, who as we know all too well, isn’t exactly a team player. I’ve been impressed with how seamlessly Blake Griffin has adjusted to playing in the Association. He really looks like a man among boys out there. But he needs to expand his game. Flashy dunks alone won’t win. Learning to pass out of double teams, refining his post moves and taking advantage of mismatches will elevate his game. Of course we can never discount the aura of losing the Clippers have enjoyed for the past 30 years. But assuming Sterling doesn’t f things up, I could see them making the playoffs next year.

Cam: Blake Griffin seems like a super hero to me. Someone with skillz so incredible that he alone can erase the Stank of Sterling from the Clippers. It could only take someone other worldly to change the direction of a franchise and there are signs that Griffin is the man to do this. A potential perennial All-Star, an amazing scoring and rebounding force, someone who can make those Los Angeles “fans” more excited to see a Clippers game than a Lakers game. He’s a player who has the ability and personality to freak our minds and change our preconceptions of not only the Clipper franchise but of the NBA. It could be true that his year off sitting in a suit obeying Czar Stern’s dress code was good for him. He got a chance to drink everything in regarding the NBA and the Clippers organization. He had time to formulate a plan and unleashed it with full force from the get-go in October 2010. At the start of the season, Blake was no “rookie”. He busted out of the gate with amazing dunks, enough for the NBA to put together a “Top 10 Blake Griffin Dunks in November” video. People smile when they see him in video clip form. Sportsdouche is scared that his wreckless abandon will get him hurt. Fans watch entire Clippers games just to suddenly be amazed at something he’ll inevitably do to the poor rim or Tim Mozgov’s head (when they play the Knicks). Blake is motivating lazy ass Baron Davis to try because the highlight reel assists are easier to rack up than ever. DeAndre Jordan is playing to his Cambian potential and looks like a legitimate quasi-star in the making. Jordan says it’s because he’s getting more run, but when he’s 50 years old and looks back at his career he’ll realize it was the Tao of Blake that pushed him to new heights. Gordon is putting up numbers with a maturity that he could only attain by using his Team USA learnings and enjoying the crap out of playing with Blake. Bledsoe the rookie is probably 1000 times more motivated from having Blake Griffin on his team than he is learning from Vinny Del Negro. Despite VDN and Sterling, the Blake Griffin Clippers are figuring it out. Despite two good veteran Clipper players in Baron Davis and Chris Kaman having loser blood coursing through their veins, this team is improving. I can’t wait to see how it all plays out. Are you getting excited yet?

Bilbo: I’m so excited I won’t be able to stand up at work for a while. Wouldn’t it be incredible if in five years the Kobe’s knee has given out and he is retired while Pau is playing for Minnesota with Ricky Rubio, Odom is a full time Reality Star and the Lakers are a perennial lottery team? Meanwhile the “other” LA team is rolling out top three finishes in the West each year on the shoulders of Gordon, Griffin and Jordan. I’d love to see how Laker fans would deal with a losing team. Oops, my work boner’s back. I better settle down.

Cam:  Road trip to Staples next month.  You down?

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Warriors Talking Points; 1/5/11 Warriors @ Hornets

Warriors (14-21) @ Hornets 1/5/11, last game of the 5 game road trip.

gumbyorpokey is back with his highlights! Gotta love the Barnett gator eating and Udoh rewind

Talking Points (with gumbyorpokey back on the recap and these notes, you don't need to read anything unless I link to it)
  • Warriors were down 11 at half looking like they were limping home on the last game of a 5 game road trip.
  • Remember when the Hornets started off 11-1?  They're still 21-15 so this was a big road win.
  • Biedrins was back after missing 9 games with an ankle. He played sparingly, 13 minutes total leading to a -14 plus/minus.
  • This was the first game that all Warriors were healthy in the last 202 games. Amazing stat.....and time to fire the training staff.
  • Warriors won the turnover battle commiting a season low 8 of them.
  • Warriors were down by 10 starting the 4th quarter and tied the game in just 3 minutes.
  • Warriors built a 10 point 4th quarter lead only to choke it away until Udoh's shake n' bake, Lee's cold blooded jumper, and free throw shooting got them the win.
  • Warriors got to the line 32 times!  But they still lost the FT battle 32-33.
  • Curry & Ellis scored a combined 50 points this game.
  • They are saying this was Epke Udoh's coming out party.  He's a quick leaper and was +17.  He scored 6 points on a follow up tip in, his first dunk of the season after a great Monta dish, and the Scola-esq shake n' bake of David West.
  • Amundson pulled down 12 boards but is shooting a pathetic 30.8% from Free Throw.
  • Next game:  @ rOracle Friday 1/7 vs. Cavs.  Finally home where they play 14 of the next 16 in Oakland.

These Guys Are Young: Tyreke Evans

The NBA is the most up close and personal professional sports league around.  No helmets and pads covering the players.  No hats.  Just shorts, uniforms, shoes and, in Stephen Jackson's case, a tremendous amount of McDavid or Nike body armour.  These guys look so smart out on the court doing things we can only dream of doing on a Nerf hoop.  But then there are stories you read which make you realize that a lot of these guys are still very, very young.

This recent story (thanks to TrueHoop) in the Sac Bee about 21 year old Tyreke Evans is proof.  Here's last years Rookie of the Year (Steph Curry was a close 2nd) just eating a crap load of fast food.  Then his mom Bonita and grandma Alice come stay with him over the Holiday Season making him home cooked soul food meals and he procedes to lose weight and get faster on the court, as confirmed by Coach Westphal.

Which brings up this obvious question: Shouldn't these teams invest more in nutrition?  A smart Owner/GM would probably hire a nutritionist and a cook onto their training staff to make sure that these huge investments are being taken care of.  Many of them wouldn't listen (unless it's Steve Nash telling Jared Dudley what to eat) but if you get 5 good meals a week into your guys when the alternative is them going out after practice and hitting up Arby's I think it's probably worth it.  Maybe over time their diets and attitudes towards their fuel change and the team performs better.  You're talking about at least +1 win a year.  I'm not about to search the internets for how much each win is worth to an organization but it's got to be more than what you pay to have a nutrionist or cook on payroll.  And if I were to guess/google, I bet that Mark Cuban has a whole friging craft services company at the becon call of any Maverick player.

Of course, I eat like crap so who am I to say anything.

Oh yeah, here's Tyreke's car chase last Memorial Day during his rookie season.  It sure is fun having little immature kids as the focal point of your organization (contrast to: Steph Curry).

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Warriors Talking Points; 1/3/11 Warriors @ Magic

1/3/11 Warriors (13-21) @ Magic: where 2nd Half Collapse Happens (again)

It looks like gumbyorpokey isn't doing awesome video recaps anymore so we are left with the Comcast Sports Network junk where they talk over everything:

Talking Points (so you don't have to get home early from work to watch this game):
  • The Warriors were up 53-44 at halftime.
  • The Warriors lost 18 to 35 in the 3rd Quarter and lost 19 to 31 in the 4th.
  • Hubie Brown always says that good teams win the 3rd Quarter.
  • This is the second game in a row that the Warriors rapidly gave away a halftime lead.
  • David Lee DNP because of a bruised tailbone.
  • Lin is back from the D-League.  Lin and Law will get guaranteed contracts for this season but Carney will not.  Carney is rumored to be cut soon.
  • Ellis was -24 this game in 38.8 minutes.  Radmanovic was best on the team at -1 in 23 minutes.
  • Some have said that the Warriors need to scrimmage at halftime so that they don't have a chance to rest.
  • Next game:  1/5/11 at 5:00 PT @ Hornets.  There's a rumor that Larry Ellison is going to buy the Hornets and move them to San Jose.  That would be awesome.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Little Heros

This kid is my little hero even though he wears Nike shoes and Adidas socks:

Monday, January 3, 2011

Pete Carril

This is a cool interview with Pete Carril, former Princeton head coach and current NBA team advisor. I enjoyed his comments on the "old fashioned" hook shot and his creation of the Princeton Offense when he was a high school coach. Great stuff:

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Warriors Talking Points; 12/31/10 Warriors @ Bobcats

12/31/10 Game: Warriors @ Bobcats (thanks to gumbyorpokey for the recap video)

Talkings Points (now there's no need to read Rusty Simmon on
  • Warriors hand the Bobcats their first loss....under new coach Paul Silas who is now 2-1.
  • This game was noon PT.  They wanted to give the Warriors time to party on New Years Eve.
  • They also wanted to Warriors to play hung-over scheduling a game on New Years Day vs. The Heat.
  • The Warriors also played on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.  This is only the 4th time in NBA History that a team has played on Christmas Eve/Christmas Day AND New Years Eve/New Years Day.
  • The Warriors started off hot with a double digit lead in the 1st quarter.
  • Stephen Jackson misses a shot at the buzzer which would have won the game. He no longer makes love to pressure.
  • Stephen Curry is from Charlotte, NC and went to Davidson which is in Charlotte.  He had a lot to do in his short time home and many Davidson fans came out to the game to support Steph.
  • Monta was clutch in the last few minutes making a tough leaner after a Warrior shooting drought and a sweet spin move. But then he fouled his defender off the ball with 8.5 seconds left giving Stack Jack a shot at the win.
  • Curry's shot looked great tonight hitting 4 of 5 from three.
  • Udoh got more burn with 17:32 played than Amundson with 14:10.  Curiously, Radmanovic played 32:16.  Possibly because he once played for Charlotte?
  • Warriors got to the line 16 times making 10.  Bobcats got the the line 28 times making 20.  -12 on the Free Throw comparison.