Category Archives: NBA Playoffs

Spurs Escape: Spurs 129 Warriors 127 — Game 1

I’m with Mark Jackson. Regardless of the result, I liked what I saw in this game. Really liked what I saw. I know Duncan was deathly ill, but the Spurs looked really old and slow. Tony Parker is at about 80% — he’s slower than normal, and his deep shot isn’t falling. Ginobili has been at about 70% all season, when he’s been playing at all — his shooting has all but deserted him (funny thing to say after he just daggered us), and his driving and finishing ability are hugely diminished.   Continue reading

The Bogut Miracle: Warriors 92 Nuggets 88 — Game 6

As I predicted, the Warriors shot up Andrew Bogut’s crippled, arthritic ankle with painkillers before last night’s Game 6 against the Nuggets. And the result was spectacular. We’ve all seen the stats: 14 points, 21 rbs., 4 blocks. This coming after two straight 5 rebound games. And a grand total of 2 points in his previous three halfs of basketball.        Continue reading

Closing Time: Nuggets 107 Warriors 100

As pointed out in my last post, the result of this Game 5 between the Warriors and the Nuggets was predictable. It was a give-up and rest-up road game for the Warriors, and the home Nuggets had their backs to the wall, and played like it.

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Stephen Curry Superstar: Warriors 115 Nuggets 101 — Game 4

It’s official now. Stephen Curry has been great for most of this series. But with that 22 point outburst in the 3rd quarter of this game, Curry officially joined the ranks of NBA superstars.          Continue reading

The Curry Adjustment: Warriors 110 Nuggets 108 — Game 3

Great playoff basketball between evenly matched basketball teams always involves a chess match between the head coaches. Each coach tries to find the adjustments and counter-adjustments that can give his team a winning edge. If you are lucky, you can catch a series where the adjustments are so major and brilliant, and their effect so profound, that your expectations for how the games will be played are constantly smashed, and your brain starts whirling trying to adjust to each new reality as it unfolds.               Continue reading

Nellieball Triumphant: Warriors 131 Nuggets 117 — Game 2 Recap

“Height is a blessing, but speed kills.” — Reggie Miller

“RunJCT.” — Shaq   

A defensive shotblocker in the middle. (Alton Lister, Shawn Bradley, Andris  Biedrins, Andrew Bogut, Festus Ezeli.)

A three-point shooting stretch four.

Four shooters on the floor at all times.

The two point guard backcourt.

Matching up smaller than your opponent, but with more talent.

Relentless fastbreak.

Outlets to half-court.

Walk-up threes.

Early offense pick and roll.

Running the opposing centers off the floor.

Playing for three points with the best shooters in the league, while your opponent is playing for two.

“Gimmick defense.” Packing the paint. Zone. Gang rebounding.

What’s it called? C’mon, I know you know the answer.

NELLIEBALL.                                   Continue reading

Game One Recap: Denver Nuggets 97 Golden State Warriors 95

Heartbreaker. An amazingly resilient performance by the Warriors on the Nuggets’ home floor, given the youth and playoff inexperience of their roster, and the loss of David Lee.  Continue reading

2013 NBA Playoffs Western Conference First Round Preview

Here’s my look at the first round of the Western Conference playoffs:  Continue reading

Golden State Warriors v. Denver Nuggets Playoff Preview

There are some difficulties in forecasting this Nuggets – Warriors series. For one, Andrew Bogut didn’t play against the Nuggets this season. And, in another indication of just how lucky the Warriors were in their schedule this year, they played the Nuggets three times in the first month, and then on Jan. 13th, and not once after that date. The Warriors managed to avoid the period when the Nuggets had their full roster and were clicking on all cylinders — and beating the Thunder on their home floor — towards the end of the season. So even if the Nuggets were at full strength, which they are not, it would be hard to apply the lessons of the regular season games to this playoff series. The Nuggets got better as the season progressed, while the Warriors, with the addition of Andrew Bogut, got objectively worse. Continue reading

Nellieball Supreme: 2012 NBA Finals — Miami Heat v. OKC Thunder

For the second straight season, Nellieball will rule the NBA finals. This season, it ruled even in the conference championships. Those series were played almost entirely without centers.  Joel Anthony, Greg Stiemsma, Tiago Splitter, Dejuan Blair — and even Kendrick Perkins at times — were all sent to the bench, revealed as regular season cannon fodder. The power forwards — Serge Ibaka, Chris Bosh, Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett – were shifted to the middle, and the small forwards – Durant, James and Battier, Pierce, Leonard and Jackson – became Nellieball power forwards.

The Nellieball four is now supreme in the NBA. Is it a coincidence that the last two NBA finals have featured the three greatest Nellieball fours to ever play the game? Dirk Nowitzki, Lebron James, Kevin Durant.

At a time when Joe Lacob is trying to turn back the clock, and turn the Warriors into a 1980′s style halfcourt team, the NBA is moving in a completely different direction. At a time when Joe Lacob is insisting on “changing the culture” of the Warriors back to the Ewing Knicks and Smits Pacers of coach Mark Jackson, the culture of the NBA is moving in the opposite direction, towards the vision of a crazy man with a penchant for Dewars and fish ties.

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