July 2017

Todays NBA is looking to go smaller and more skilled on offense, while also maintaining the size and athleticism to be quick, yet deterrent on defense.

That can be a tough needle to thread when finding role players, especially on the wing. Go too far in one direction, and you limit yourself on offense, a la Andre Roberson or Solomon Hill. Go too far in the other, and you get someone like Allen Crabbe. Those players are valuable and useful, but they can often be schemed against, especially over the course of a seven-game playoff series.

Even the shots the Warriors missed in those circumstances like the following 3-pointer from Curry were off wide open opportunities stemming from the gravity of either Durant or Curry.

There really isn’t anything teams can do to slow Curry and Durant pick-and-rolls down unless they have two wing defenders think James and someone like Paul George who can keep up with both Curry and Durant in isolation. The only time the Cavaliers had success defending those pick-and-rolls in the NBA Finals was when Curry and Durant were surrounded by non-shooters such as Livingston, Andre Iguodala and Zaza Pachulia because it allowed them to help off them and pack the paint. When they were surrounded with Thompson, Iguodala and Draymond Green, though, Curry and Durant had all the room they needed to pick the Cavaliers apart.

The Cavaliers certainly couldn’t stop it in the 2017 NBA Finals, and we’ll now have to wait another year to see if anyone else has an answer. Assuming there is one, of course.

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Stephen Curry has completed his fourth of 12 3-point attempts, giving him 28 points. But, more importantly, he now passes Kobe Bryant for most 3-pointers in the NBA playoffs.

It appears Manu Ginobili has left the court for the last time at least for this season. The AT&T Center is giving him a standing ovation. Coach Gregg Popovich asked whether Ginobili wanted to go out on the court one last time with less than two minutes remaning. He declined.

The Cavaliers made their point to get it back to 3-1 again. Only this isn’t 3-1. Cleveland was trailing 3-0. A comeback from that would be bigger than that time the Boston Red Sox came back from the same deficit to beat the New York Yankees in the 2004 ALCS. That started with a Kevin Millar walk, a Dave Roberts steal and a game-tying single by Bill Mueller in the ninth inning off Mariano Rivera. The rest is history.

We’re a long way until these NBA Finals get there. If the Cavs win the next one, then Irving will have about a billion memes to choose from.

The reality is Golden State can eliminate all of that by closing out the series Monday. The Warriors won the first two games there by an average of 20.5 points, and now has the motivation of responding to a blowout for the first time in a while. They did that after Game 3 in 2016 to take that last 3-1 lead.

Over the next three days, that comparison will continue to made. Overreactions to Green’s technical foul and postgame comments are coming. Midges, Kardashians, Wade’s getup. Locker-room chatter, before or after. It doesn’t matter.

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Having the potential to get drafted in the NBA lottery has its benefits. Former Duke guard Luke Kennard reaped those benefits draft night.

The 6-foot-6 guard was ESPN Chad Ford’s No. 15 rated player coming into the draft, but he was the No. 1 player in the heart of one Savannah Chrisley, star of the reality show “Chrisley Knows Best,” a show that you really probably don’t care that much about.

But what you probably do care about is the fact that Chrisley used to date Memphis Grizzlies forward Chandler Parsons. The operative phrase here is ‘used to.’

Now it’s Griffin’s turn to be on the receiving end of recruiting pitches. He opted out of his contract on Friday to become a free agent, according to The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Griffin had a player option worth more than $21 million with the Clippers next season, according to Hoops Hype, but he’ll be able to choose his next team as an unrestricted free agent.

He averaged 21.6 points, 8.1 rebounds and 4.9 assists per game last season after missing more than a month midseason because of a knee injury. His suffered a season-ending Cheap Infant Jerseys toe injury in the first round of the NBA playoffs, which, it turned out, marked the possible end of the Clippers’ core of Griffin, Chris Paul and DeAndre Jordan.

Dallas’ roster this season was full of players who went undrafted, from players with varying degrees of veteran status like Wesley Matthews, J.J. Barea and Seth Curry, to rookies like Ferrell, Finney-Smith and Iowa’s Jarrod Uthoff. The Mavericks also had undrafted players from previous draft classes who made their NBA debuts this season, including Nicolas Brussino (2015), Quinn Cook (’15) and Cheap Ireland Soccer Jerseys Jonathan Gibson (’10).

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Cody Bellinger is out there and he’s loving every minute of it!

The 21-year old left fielder for the Los Angeles Dodgers is batting .272 with 22 home runs this season for a team that leads the National League West and is slowly creeping up on the Astros for the best record in the majors.

But what will not show up on the scouting report is probably the most harrowing strike against him. He has no idea who Jerry Seinfeld is.

At least we know he’s not going to get caught eating garbage, or missing his window, or so we hope. And the good thing is he doesn’t get either of those references so they’re just fine to type here.

Watch some Seinfeld Cody, it will do you some good.

It has long been speculated whether LeBron James would ever play with his banana boat pals – Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul and Dwyane Wade – later in his career. Later could come sooner than expected, as Anthony and Wade are potential buyout candidates with the Knicks and Bulls, respectively, and the Cavaliers could be a leading contender to sign one or both of the players in free agency, according to ESPN.

Anthony’s contract is worth more than $26 million for next season and Wade is scheduled to make $23.8 million in the final year of his contract with the Bulls. As buyout candidates, both players could provide the Cavaliers with a relatively inexpensive way to sign complementary players to put alongside LeBron and Kyrie Irving.

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