The Houston Rockets and Golden State Warriors will be meeting in the Western Conference Finals this year while the Cleveland Cavaliers will either be facing the Philadelphia 76ers or the Boston Celtics. This year is the first year since 2014 that the Warriors will not have home court advantage in a series for the playoffs. The Celtics are winning in the Eastern Conference Semi-final series versus the 76ers with a 3-1 lead. My pick for the Western Conference champion are the Warriors because they have too many stars that the Rockets won’t be able to guard. Also, I believe that the Warriors play together better than the Rockets do.
Now that the Eastern Conference Finals and Western Conference Finals are on their way we know that the Cavaliers will be playing the Celtics. Their first matchup was Sunday night and the Celtics surprisingly came out with a huge win. Beating the Cavaliers by around 20 points. Marcus Morris played great defense against Lebron and held him under 20 points. As I expected, the Warriors beat the Rockets in their first matchup. My predictions for these match ups are Cavaliers in 7 games and Warriors in 6 games.
This year’s NBA playoffs have been pretty surprising. The OKC Thunder are down 3-1 to the Jazz and the Cavs are tied with the Pacers 2-2. Those two series are the most surprising to me because it seems like the Thunder and Cavs should be powerhouses in the NBA playoffs. Lebron James is almost averaging a triple double and his team is still tied with the Pacers. For the Pacers Lance Stephenson and Victor Oladipo are playing pretty well. For the Jazz, Donovan Mitchell is playing very well. Russell Westbrook should be going off in this series, but he isn’t doing as well as predicted. Anthony Davis and the New Orleans Pelicans swept the Trailblazers, mainly due to Anthony Davis playing like the superstar that he is. The Washington Wizards are tied in the series with the Toronto Raptors. For the Wizards, John Wall, Bradley Beal, and Markieff Morris are playing very well. For the Raptors, Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan are playing very well. I am excited for this years Finals because I feel that there could potentially be two different teams in the Finals this year and take the place of the Warriors and the Cavaliers.
March, the month where magic happens. This year is a huge year for the March Madness tournament. A lot of the lower seeded teams seem to be better than normal this year. I made a lot of brackets this year, but the one I believe in the most has Arizona vs UNC and Villanova vs Duke in the final four. Then I have Villanova beating Arizona in the championship. The games start today, March 15, and the championship is April 2. Every year when I make my brackets I feel as if I picked the perfect upsets to win and picked the most obvious wins as well. Sadly, every year the upsets I pick don’t happen and the upsets that I didn’t pick do happen. Hopefully, this year goes differently for me and I become a billionaire.
Michael Porter Jr. has been out all season for Missouri due to back surgery. Coming out of high school he was the #1 ranked recruit in the nation. No one has ever seen a player miss the entire season then come back just for the NCAA tournament. Michael Porter Jr. was projected to be a #1 overall draft pick in the NBA before he even played a minute in college. He will definitely make a huge difference for Missouri in this tournament. He is a 6’10” foward who can defend anyone and can score from anywhere. This tournament may be the only time Missouri fans will be able to see him play for them. He is likely to declare for the NBA draft after this college season unless he does very poorly in the games he plays in.
In the last couple weeks, reports have came out about college basketball players being paid to go to colleges. A big story is about Deandre Ayton allegedly being paid $100k to play basketball at Arizona. The FBI found out about this and did an investigation. The NCAA has suspended the Arizona coach indefinitely. I think the FBI getting involved into this situation is completely absurd. First off they should be paying more attention to different matters involving students, but I won’t get into that argument right now. Secondly, I think college athletes should be able to get paid. They work extremely hard for the school to raise money. Athletics brings in billions of dollars for the NCAA and millions for colleges. If they have the money to pay students then the students should be able to get paid.
Recently there has been rumors going around the NBA about Lebron James possibly signing with the Golden State Warriors in free-agency after the season. Most people have said that they would have no respect for Lebron and they wouldn’t support him anymore if went to Golden State. Suprisingly, former NBA player Shaquille O’Neal stated that he thinks Lebron should go to Golden State, get three more rings and be known as the greatest player of all time. In an interview Lebron says that anything said about him that doesn’t come from his mouth is not true. Then he told the reporters to start focusing on the present Cavaliers team. I was angry when Kevin Durant joined the winningest team in the history of the NBA, I can’t imagine how I would feel if the arguably greatest player of all time joined a team with 4 other all stars.
Even though the Cavaliers have a record of 31-22 , they were losing games by huge amounts they have never lost by before. Every player on the team was angry over the situation and Lebron was by far the most angry. There have been many rumors about how Lebron James has a huge impact for the front office of the Cavaliers. This helps support the rumors because 6 players were traded away from the Cavaliers today. Cleveland sent Isaiah Thomas and Channing Frye to the Lakers for Jordan Clarkson, the Cavs’ 2018 first round pick and Larry Nance Jr. Then right after that, the Cavaliers trade away Jae Crowder, Derrick Rose and Iman Shumpert and receive Rodney Hood and George Hill. Also they traded Dwayne Wade to the heat for a 2018 second round pick. The Cavaliers have a good record, but have been losing by insane amounts recently. We will see how the Cavaliers play with all of their new players.
If you did not already know, once Liangelo Ball got caught stealing from a store in China UCLA decided that he wouldn’t be able to play for a couple weeks. So Lavar Ball pulled him out of UClA and took Liangelo and Lamelo Ball to play basketball in Lithuania. So far, the two brothers have played 3 games for the Lithuania team. The first game they combined for 29pts, the second game they combined for 0pts, and the third game they combined for 60pts. They’ve been very inconsistent but, I believe that once they’ve been playing on that level for a little longer they will settle down and start being consistently good. In interviews they have both said that they like life in Lithuania and I think it is a very good fit for them. Hopefully in the future we will see Liangelo and Lamelo join their older brother Lonzo in the NBA.
Most NBA players prime around their mid to older twenties and aren’t having much of an effect when they get into their 30s, but Lebron James is playing his best basketball as he turns 32. Let’s start off with defense, when a player ages it seems natural that their defense would get a little worse because they’ve become slower, but Lebron is averaging his most defensive points saved and tying his most blocks per game. He has also stayed consistent scoring the ball with 28.1 ppg this year and 26.4 ppg last year. His shooting percentage this year is the best it has ever been and last year’s shooting percentage was his 4th best. While he is scoring around the same amount his assists are going up. Last year he averaged 8.7 apg which is the most he has average in his entire career and this year he is averaging 9.1. Along with his assists going up, his rebounds have also gone up. Last year he averaged 8.6 rpg and this year he is averaging 8.3 rpg. As Lebron has aged not only has he stayed consistent, but virtually all of his stats have gotten better.
Ever since I was in elementary school I’ve known that my passion was everything that had to do with sports. I loved to read about, play, and watch sports. On this blog I will be talking about college and professional sports. Most of the blogs will be about the NBA, NFL, and NCAA Men’s basketball and football.