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Who Will Win the Big NBA Awards this Season?

Check out our expert staff’s predictions for the major NBA awards and get ready for the upcoming season.

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Do you smell that? It’s the chilly air of winter, which brings along one of my favorite things… the NBA season. The guys have been practicing and the pre-season is in full swing, which means its obviously way top early to predict the award winners… but we will try anyway. Check out our expert staff’s predictions for the major NBA awards and get ready for the upcoming season.

Will Russell Westbrook repeat his triple-double heavy season for another MVP? What about the player with the most hype in years, Laker point guard, Lonzo Ball. Will he ball out or will another fresh-faced star steal his spotlight?

Rookie of the Year: Ben Simmons
Most people think Lonzo Ball will take this award but we think it will go to another… 76ers rookie Ben Simmons. Ben Simmons was actually drafted last year but since he didn’t play in the regular season, he is eligible. I expect big things from him this year and he is primed for some big numbers.
Simmons will have some nice weapons around him so his assists should be close to Ball’s numbers. We believe Simmons is a better scorer than Ball, so this may be the deciding factor. Both teams will be lucky to make the playoffs, so that shouldn’t matter much.

Sixth Man of the Year: Lou Williams
The Clippers lost all-world point guard Chris Paul in the offseason so their backcourt will need an influx of scoring, and enter Lou Wiliams. He is the most prolific scorer off the bench in recent years and his ability to score in a variety of ways makes him very dangerous.

Most Improved Player: Jusuf Nurkic
Nurkic was drowning in Denver while playing with Nikola Jokic, so he got shipped to the Trailblazers mid-season and he flourished. Before breaking his leg, he was really clicking with his new team, while scoring 15 and pulling in 10 boards a game. Now that he is the starting center for Portland, expect bigger numbers this season.
He was playing with some extra pep in his step once he got traded, so I think the change of scenery really helped. We think he will average 17 and 12… big number for a big guy.

Defensive Player of the Year: Jae Crowder
I know this is a stretch, but we are not going with the two favorites… Draymond Green or Rudy Gobert. Both of those players are excellent and put up dominating numbers, but something tells me that Jae Crowder is about to have a huge year. Nw that he is playing on the Cavaliers, he won’t have to guard LeBron anymore. He will, however, guard the best wing players in the game, so he will have a dogfight each night. Some will call me crazy, but who cares, it’s all guesswork now.

Coach of the Year: Gregg Popovich
The SPurs coach continues to get delicious wine out of old raisins, so he must be doing something right. Expect him to continue to give his aging stars games off and it will show once they get deep into the playoffs like every year.

Executive of the Year: Sam Presti
Once Kevin Durant left, things looked bleak in Oklahoma City, but not according to Sam Presti. He pulled off some remarkable moves to acquire the kind of talent he did and automatically made his team a serious contender for a title. Expect big things from Westbrook, Paul George, and Carmelo Anthony.

MVP: LeBron James
Finally, the GOAT is recognized for his value. I’m sorry to all the Steph Curry and Kevin Durant fans out there but hands down, LeBron is the most valuable player on the court, every time. he deserved this award last year, so he will definitely get it this year, that’s how it all goes down.

 

 

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Dwyane Wade Turns Back The Clock Against 76ers

Dwayne Wade scores 28 points in just 26 minutes in the game two matchup against the 76ers.

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Dwayne Wade looked like the Dwayne Wade of ten years ago when he took the court in Philadelphia for their game two matchup against the 76ers. He came off the bench, as he has most of the season, but it still didn’t matter as he put up 28 points in just 26 minutes. to tie the series at 1-1. It was a sight for sore eyes for Heat fans, who have been wondering if their glory days were over after Wade left Miami in 2016. But he pulled out some classic Wade heroics to at least keep their chances alive for this season.

It seemed to be a clear effort by coach Eric Spoelstra to make Wade more of a focal point in game two. Wade only played 19 minutes in game 1 and had very little impact in the game. But for whatever reason, Spoelstra took the chance and rolled the dice on Wade and his rapidly deteriorating knees in an effort to swing the series in their favor. And swing the series they did.

Oh, and did we mention the victory ended a 17-game win streak by the 76ers? Because it did.

Who knows where the series, and postseason as a whole, will go from here, but his performance Monday night has many fantasizing about one last championship run by Wade. There are already rumors that this could be his last season. And he’s made a career out of being one of the toughest guys in the league and doing whatever he needs to do to help his team win. So maybe, at this point, “whatever he needs to do” might just mean giving literally everything he has left. Because after all he’s given over the years, he honestly might not have much left.

“A lot of people think that if you do decide to go out it’s because you weren’t supposed to be able to play no more. It’s not always supposed to be that,” Wade commented after the game. “Just taking time to think, that’s all I’m doing [in the off-season]. Taking time to think and looking at every angle and what’s the best situation for me to be in. That’s all. It’s a lot of different things that come into play.”

Maybe he will go on a tear and take the Heat past the first round and beyond. Maybe he does have enough left to get them all the way to the Eastern Conference Finals. Or maybe this was just one last great game from one the greatest players of his generation. Either way, it was a beautiful thing to see and it has been an absolute pleasure to watch this man’s Hall of Fame career. Even if the Heat lose the series to the 76ers and Wade retires after the season, he will not soon be forgotten.

 

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Duke Loses All Five Starters To The Draft

Freshman Wendell Carter Jr. announced today that he will declare for the NBA Draft, making him the fifth of five starters last season for Duke that will not be returning next season. 

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Freshman Wendell Carter Jr. announced today that he will declare for the NBA Draft, making him the fifth of five starters last season for Duke that will not be returning next season. He joins three other freshmen, Trevon Duval, Gary Trent Jr., and Marvin Bagley III. Along with the troublemaking senior, Grayson Allen. It’s just one example of the wild turnaround many college coaches have to deal with these days thanks to one year wait period required after graduating high school before a player can declare for the draft.

Carter released a statement that read as follows, “I want to thank Duke University, my coaches, and teammates for helping me so much, not only on the court but off it as well. We’re all brothers, we all have each other’s backs. I’m really going to miss being around my friends, but I’m really going to cherish the moments we had together. I’m very excited and very happy to say I was part of something special here at Duke.”

During his one and only season at Duke, Carter averaged 13.5 points and 9/1 rebounds. He is considered by many scouts and executives to be a lottery pick, which makes the decision likely a smart one for Carter. Not to mention, all signs point to his Duke teammate, Marvin Bagley III, being taken in the lottery as well. Bagley entered his Duke career as one of the top prospects in the country and didn’t disappoint during his freshman campaign.

Trevon Duval averaged 10.3 points, 2 rebounds, and 5.6 assists a game. His decision to turn pro was slightly more surprising than Bagley and Carter, but he is likely hoping to ride his intangibles onto an NBA roster. While Trent Jr. averaged 14.5 points and 4.2 rebounds per game. Much stronger numbers that should help him make a roster. Not to mention he’s 6’6” and 209 pounds. Giving him the ideal size and skill level to play multiple positions at the next level.

Then there’s the ever-controversial Grayson Allen. His four-year career at Duke was well documented for both his successes and his odd behavior. While his skill level, overall production, willingness to leave it all on the court would be desired but just about any NBA franchise, his dirty play, and occasional bad attitude has to be a red flag for many GMs and owners. It could definitely hurt his draft stock, but I’d be surprised if he didn’t get drafted at all. And I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited to see how he will be welcomed into the NBA by veterans who may not be too crazy about his behavior. He might be in for a rude awakening.

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The NBA Playoffs Are Finally Here

Another fantastic and exciting NBA season is in the books, and now it’s time for what really matters: the playoffs.

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Another fantastic and exciting NBA season is in the books, and now it’s time for what really matters: the playoffs. Sure, players can make a great career out of regular season success. Maybe they’ll even be considered a “star” for some of those seasons. But heroes? Heroes are born in the playoffs. If you want to go down as one of the greats, you sure as heck better hit some game winning shots and give absolutely everything you’ve got to try and get your team a championship. And I for one have got a feeling we’re about to see quite a few heroics in the coming weeks.

This excitement of this season went right down to the wire this year. Specifically, The Minnesota Timberwolves and Denver Nuggets met in their final games of the regular season, with the 8th seed in the West and a trip to the playoffs on the line. It was an incredible game that went into overtime, but by the end, the Timberwolves had prevailed. They’re in for quite a shock now, though, as they’ll face the all mighty Houston Rockets in the first round.

In Portland, the Utah Jazz came to town with the 3rd seed in the west on the line. It was a very interesting game because if Portland would have lost, everything would have basically stayed the same. Utah would have stayed the 3 seed and Portland the 4, giving them both home-court advantage in the first round. But because Portland won, they jumped into the number 3 spot and Utah dropped all the way to the 5 spot. They will now face the Oklahoma City Thunder in the first round, with OKC benefiting from home court advantage. Portland, meanwhile, will face off with Anthony Davis and the New Orleans Pelicans, while the 2nd-seeded Golden State Warriors will face the 7th-seeded San Antonio Spurs.

In the East, the Washington Wizards snuck in as the 8th seed and will face the top-seeded Toronto Raptors in the first round. It could be a tough series for the Raptors though, as it’s likely the Wizards are only the 8th seed because they were without their star point guard, John Wall, for much of the season. But many believe, especially those in Toronto, that the Raptors are finally due for playoff success and a trip to the NBA Finals.

The rest of the Eastern Conference match-ups look like this: (2) Boston Celtics vs. (7) Milwaukee Bucks, (3) Philadelphia 76ers vs. (6) Miami Heat, and (4) Cleveland Cavaliers vs. (5) Indiana Pacers. And make no mistake, despite all the attention I gave the Western Conference at the beginning of this article, there are definitely some intriguing match-ups in the East.

You can never count out the Brad Stevens-led Boston Celtics, but due to the recent announcement that Kyrie Irving is out for the rest of the season, the 7th-seeded Milwaukee Bucks might be in the perfect position to reach the second round for the first time since the ’00/’01 season. While the 3rd-seeded 76ers are riding a 16 game winning streak into the playoffs, which could spell disaster for the Miami Heat. But, then again, can you ever truly count out Dwyane Wade?

And last but not least, you have the 4th-seeded Cleveland Cavaliers against the 5th-seeded Indiana Pacers. In any other season, this would seem like a relatively easy first-round match-up for a Lebron James-led team. But this has been, in his words, one of the most difficult seasons of his career. So there’s no telling what kind of mindset the Cavaliers are in. While the young, underdog Pacers have played loud and fast all season, thanks to a stellar season by their star, Victor Oladipo. For me, this is one of the trickiest match-ups in the first round. Because, on one hand, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Cavs yet again make it to the NBA Finals. But, on the other hand, I can’t say I’d be surprised if the Pacers steal this one from Cleveland and knock them out in the first round.

Either way, I am very excited for whatever is about to happen.

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