Derrick Rose, Jose Calderon, and Isaiah Thomas are all point guards. All have been floor leaders before. What gives now for these three? Playing time on the Cleveland Cavaliers. Can Rose, Thomas, and Calderon balance each other out for point guard duties?
Also, you’ve got J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert back as well as Kyle Korver. They’ve got to make sizable contributions to the basketball squad in order for Cleveland to get back at Golden State. Dwyane Wade has joined them. You need Wade to be healthy to be at his best.
Then, you’ve got Lebron James, Jae Chrowder, Kevin Love, and Channing Frye. These four players have to compete at a high level to beat a team like the Golden State Warriors. Rebound, score, play defense, be dirty a bit and rough up the interior Warriors bigs.
At center, you got Tristan Thompson, Jeff Green, and Ante Zizic. Can’t nobody give up an interior body in the paint. Got to get those rebounds and play defense and be prepared to catch the basketball to put in the basket.
Overall, Cleveland can play with the best of the NBA. They just need to be competitive more.
The NBA pre-season is going on right now. Who will be fresher than most NBA teams going into the regular season? Does Nerlens Noel have what it takes to lead these Philadelphia Sixers? Will Brandon Ingram step up for the Los Angeles Lakers? Can Kevin Durant mesh with his new teammates? Will Dwyane Wade help Chicago into the NBA playoffs? There are lots of questions in the NBA that need to be answered.
Rajon Rondo signed a 2-year, $28 million deal to play with the Chicago Bulls. Will he be able to mesh with Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg and his teammates? Rondo will be playing with newly acquired Dwyane Wade and Jimmy Butler, who will be sliding to the small forward position. Everybody is moving around in the NBA, in search for an for NBA title. Will Kevin Durant help Golden State make back-to-back-to back NBA Finals appearances? Will Lebron James get Cleveland another NBA title? Time will tell.
We have two Game 7s between the Toronto Raptors and the Indiana Pacers and the Miami Heat and the Charlotte Hornets. What is it with Toronto not being able to finish Game 6 and move on? This will definitely haunt Toronto and they might be able to survive round 1 of the NBA playoffs. Miami wins Game 6 97-90 because they wouldn’t give up. They know too much about being defeated. It’s veterans like Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem that will let opponents wear down, after seeing them down. We know that Golden State will play a full game with a whole team without Stephen Curry against the Portland Trail Blazers. The Warriors probably won’t let an injury to them bother them, but it will sting playing against the San Antonio Spurs, who don’t have an injury. The Spurs will have their hands full handling Kevin Durant and his Oklahoma City Thunder.
The Eastern Conference reserve stars consists of Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade, Jimmy Butler, Al Horford, Kyrie Irving, Paul Millsap, and Jeff Teague. This is Butler’s first time being here and also Teague’s. Russell Westbrook, Klay Thompson, Chris Paul, James Harden, Kevin Durant, Tim Duncan, and LaMarcus Aldridge headline the Western Conference reserves. This is Klay Thompson’s and DeMarcus Cousin’s first All-Star game. I expect this all-star game to be full of dunks and thrills.
Lebron James scores 26 points, Dwyane Wade 23, and Ray Allen contributed with 16 points on 4-of-4 three pointers as the Heat overcame a 15-point first half deficit to win the ball game. This also means the Heat take a 2-1 series lead in Miami now set for Game 4.
The Miami Heat…are…on a roll late here in Game 2. They come back to win the game 87-83, because of Lebron James and Dwyane Wade. Credit Norris Cole and Chris Andersen for their help too. They did something to help Miami stay in the game. All in all, it was a fantastic game, one in which there was a scary moment in a collision between Paul George and Dwyane Wade. It wasn’t serious, although George admitted he blacked out, but he is okay. The Heat gain homecourt advantage for Games 3 and 4 in Miami, and we’ll see what happens there as the series shifts there.
The Pacers take Game 2 from the Atlanta Hawks 101-85. They rumbled from the start, and didn’t let up. The Wizards win Game 2 and they have the Chicago Bulls reeling. This is Washington coach Randy Wittman’s first 2-0 series lead and these inexperienced Wizards have gotten Chicago’s number by playing better basketball. Toronto wins Game 2 against Brooklyn and the series is tied 1-1. The Miami Heat turned up the works against the Bobcats to win Game 2 in Miami 101-97 and a reason to add to Miami’s success, they won’t win the NBA Finals. San Antonio or Oklahoma City will win it. I see San Antonio or Oklahoma City winning it, because they don’t lack scoring options and also because the Heat rely on Lebron James and Dwyane Wade bailing them out. The Trail Blazers win Game 2 against Houston and that’s no fact: the Trail Blazers are more talented with Damien Lilliard and LaMarcus Aldridge on paper than with James Harden and Dwight Howard. Blazers head coach Terry Stotts manages a very good ball club, because he knows what to expect out of them. Rockets coach Kevin McHale doesn’t really know what to get out of his two good players in Harden and Howard, because both are young about leading a team. Harden was a role player when he was with the Oklahoma City Thunder and Howard developed slowly about being a team captain with the Orlando Magic and Los Angeles Lakers. Dallas wins Game 2 against San Antonio because they played harder than the Spurs did. It was a surprise, considering they limited Tim Duncan and contested the San Antonio sharpshooters.
No surprise for the San Antonio Spurs who did have a game plan, but managed to ride the coattails of Tim Duncan down the stretch as they win their Game 1 of their series against the Dallas Mavericks, 90-85. The Mavericks shut down the Spurs’ perimeter shooters, but did not contain Duncan. That was a crucial point. The Golden State Warriors stole Game 1 from the L.A. Clippers, but the Clips took back Game 2 in dramatic fashion. Chris Paul and Blake Griffin were factors in the Clippers’ win over Golden State. The defending NBA champions Miami Heat win Game 1 of their first round series against the Charlotte Bobcats, 99-88. Or at least that’s what the score is. Dwyane Wade came back from his injury to contribute in the Heat win. The Washington Wizards won the first game of their playoff series against the Chicago Bulls 102-93 and boy, did Nene, the power forward for the Wizards come up big. Knowing Joakim Noah was going to have a huge game for the Bulls, Nene prepared to defend him with all he has got. Brooklyn won Game 1 against the Toronto Raptors, because Paul Pierce showed up to play. This is the primary reason why the Nets signed Pierce and Kevin Garnett. So they could hit their big shots and their veteran leadership was shown in light of that. Oklahoma City won Game 1 against the Memphis Grizzlies, but Tony Allen’s perimeter d on Kevin Durant keyed the Grizzlies’ Game 2 victory. The Atlanta Hawks stole Game 1 from Indiana in Indianapolis, which was a big shock. Portland wins in overtime against the Houston Rockets 122-120 which was an exciting game. LaMarcus Aldridge scored a playoff career high 46 points on 17-for-31 shooting in that game. I am surprised by the Bulls’ loss, because I expected Joakim Noah to have a big game and I also expected Indiana to bring their ‘A’ game as well. I expect both Chicago and Indiana to bounce back. Expect the scoring champ Kevin Durant to bring his ‘A’ game in Game 3 in Memphis.
The Spurs are one win away from winning the NBA title again. The Miami Heat are one loss away. What’s missing from these NBA Finals? The capacity to play spectacular defense by either team. We haven’t seen a close game since Game 1 of the 2013 NBA Finals in which the Spurs won 92-88. The Heat will need to play catch-up and have to play angry for Game 6 in order that they survive their elimination game. Lebron James will have to play the game of his life, although that will be 50% unlikely, because the Spurs defense has nothing to do with Lebron James, it’s on Lebron James. Give the San Antonio defense credit for hounding Dwyane Wade and Lebron James, but don’t give Wade and James credit for trying to score points, because it’s their offense that is stalling, not the Spurs defense causing them to miss shots. What’s left to do? James and Wade must ignite their two-man fast break and when they do that, Miami perimeter shooters like Ray Allen, Mario Chalmers, and Chris Bosh make their shots. Any way to win Game 6 for Miami? They must play like there is no tomorrow. They made mince meat out of the Milwaukee Bucks and the Chicago Bulls for the first round and second round and had to survive seven games with the Indiana Pacers in order to move on. The Heat have to impose to play their brand of basketball in which James and Wade run their two-man fast break in which they did so well against Milwaukee and Chicago in the first and second round. What do the Spurs need to do in order to win Game 6? Play exactly like the way you did to win Game 5. Danny Green must continue to make three-pointers, Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobli must continue to step up like always and make the Miami Heat bleed with their continued consistency of points and steady defense. I’d say that the Miami Heat aren’t closing out the Spurs perimeter players on defense in Games 2 and 4, in which they won, because they aren’t running Danny Green or Gary Neal or any one who is threatening to shoot the long ball out of the arena.