Tag Archives: Basketball

Dwyane Wade Plays His Last Game In Atlanta, Solidifies Legacy

(Atlanta, GA) – Sunday afternoon the Atlanta Hawks took on the Miami Heat at State Farm Arena. This was the last time Dewyane Wade would be playing in Atlanta, so there were definitely more D Wade fans in attendance than there were actual Hawks fans. Wade showed up and gave the crowd a couple highlights and scored 11 points. The energy in the Arena was amazing. It felt like a playoff game whenever Wade made one of his amazing plays.

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Dwyane Wade at State Farm Arena, January 6th, 2019. Photo Credit/ Christopher London

Despite all the excitement the Hawks were able to go out and take care of business at home to get a dominating 106-82 point victory. The Hawks led the entire first period and through most of the 2nd, but the heat finally took their first lead around the 7 minute mark in 2nd. That lead was very short lived and the Hawks were able to take a 38-37 point lead into halftime. The Hawks picked back up on the the momentum they started the game with in the 3rd, and proceeded to take full control of the game by outscoring the Heat 41-21 in the 3rd quarter. Miami never recovered from that dominant 3rd period from Atlanta. The Hawks cruised their way through the 4th period on their way to a 24 point victory.

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Photo Credit: Christopher London

Trae Young had a great night leading the Hawks to a victory vs one of his Idols. Young finished with 19 points and swapped jerseys after the game with Dwade. DeAndre Bembry continues to show and prove. Bembry ended his night with 17 points and has really been coming into his own this season. Hawks head coach Lloyd Pierce stated that Bembry will be starting these next 4 games so he has a chance to see Exactly what works for him as a starter. John Collins had a quiet night, but even his quiet night always make a huge impact.

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John Collins campaigns for an All-Star seat. Photo Credit/Christopher London

Collins contributed 13 points and 13 rebounds in this victory.In addition to this being Wade’s final game in Atlanta, the future Hall of Famer also reached another milestone. With less than a minute to go in the 3rd Wade landed the 500th 3 pointer of his career. With this shot Wade joined an elite club with only Michael Jordan and LeBron James as the only players to have at least 20,000 points, 5000 assists, 4,000 rebounds, 1,500 steals, 800 blocks, and 500 3s. This was another great motivating victory for the Hawks who had just lost really badly to the Bucks on Friday night.

The Hawks are going on a 3 game road trip starting in Toronto so that should be another interesting game. Can’t wait to see what this young team is able to do vs the best team in the league Tuesday night!

By Kennan Johnson

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NBA G-League Player Dies After Collapsing On Court

(Grand Rapids, MI) – The NBA community is mourning the loss of player Zeke Upshaw, who is dead at the age of 26. Upshaw died Monday, two days after collapsing during an NBA G-League game for the Grand Rapids Drive. Upshaw suddenly collapsed in the game’s final minute and had to be stretchered off the court Saturday night.

The Drive are the minor-league affiliate of the Detroit Pistons, and they clinched a playoff spot with a win in the game Saturday. The NBA G-League is postponing the conference quarterfinals until March 30th and 31st due to Upshaw’s death.

The Chicago native played three seasons at Illinois State before transferring to Hofstra for the 2013-2014 season. He joined the Grand Rapids Drive in 2016 and averaged 7.6 points per game in 75 appearances over the past two seasons.

UMBC Killed Everybody’s Bracket With Shock Win Over No. 1 Seed Virginia

(Charlotte, NC) – The University of Maryland-Baltimore County has pulled off one of the biggest upsets in NCAA history. UMBC routed top overall seed Virginia 74-54 in Charlotte to become the first 16 seed to beat a No. 1. The 25-10 Retrievers blew things open against the 31-3 Cavaliers in the second half after the game was tied after 20 minutes.
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Jairus Lyles had a game-high 28 points for UMBC, which takes on ninth-seeded Kansas State on Sunday. The Wildcats posted a 69-59 wire-to-wire win over No. 8 Creighton despite playing without leading scorer Dean Wade. Wade had been expected to play after suffering a stress fracture in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 Tournament, but never got on the floor.
Kyle Guy and Ty Jerome netted 15 points apiece for the Cavaliers, who finish the year 31-and-3. Entering this game, number-one seeds were 135-and-0 all-time since the field expanded to 64 teams in 1985.

Big Trade Leaves Cavs Shorthanded, But The 3-Point King Kyle Korver Was Alive So Nobody Noticed

(Atlanta, Ga) – At the trade deadline, the Cleveland Cavaliers shocked the sports’ world with some blockbuster moved that frankly had some people asking WTF? Isaiah Thomas was sent to the Lakers while D. Wade found himself back in Miami and Derrick Rose…well, he went to Utah, but was quickly released. Channing Frye, Iman Shumpert and Jae Crowder were also released.F27B19D6-0202-45C0-8CE6-261CF53EAE73For the Cavs they picked up Rodney Hood from the Utah Jazz and George Hill from the Sacramento Kings to go with the acquisitions of Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. from the Lakers. Post game I asked LeBron about the changes between the new lineup and the old lineup.

Granted none of them hit the court tonight which left even more suspense hanging over Cleveland’s head but it played out as expected.6C8CF6F0-4603-43B8-A9CE-E518B9949AE2Malcolm Delaney and Dennis Schroder got started out of the gate and by halftime Schroder led all scorers with 19 pts, but it ended pretty much there with him only scoring 6 pts in the the second half.

The Cavs on 53% percent of shooting would end the 2nd qtr ahead by 5 (61-56). Jeff Green, who the Cavs acquired during the trade proved he fits right in with the offense playing 32 minutes and putting 24 on the board.

But it was Kyle Korver who took matters into his own hands living up to his reputation of being the 3-point king. He was 7-11 from downtown and had the game high all across the board with 30.
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LeBron James’ King status was intact as well with a triple double ( 22 points, 17 assists and 12 rebounds). One strategy that stood out was the eight man rotation the Cavs played with. LeBron says, “We played together offensively and defensively.  The communication was very high.  The ball was moving around.  the was popping.  Everybody felt like we were in a good rhythm. This team has played us tough every single season, no matter their record.  Tonight we finally played them tough.  We played Cavaliers basketball. “
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What was missing from the Hawks? For one, Taurean Prince needs to learn when to back away from the 3-point line. He was 0-9 from long range. He put up 15 but that came with a +/- of -21. Not good.  Late in the 3rd was when the quality of ball the Hawks were playing dropped tremendously. When Lebron says they played them tough, they did just that. Atlanta never really rebounded from the 18-2 run Cleveland went on to which Kent Bazemore says, “We definitely lost focus.”
Final score 123-107. Hopefully, the Hawks can get back on track Sunday when they host Detroit. The Cavs will continue their 3 game road trip playing the Celtics Sunday and OKC on Tuesday.

 

LiAngelo And LaMelo Ball Headed Overseas To Play Bal

(SL) – LaVar Ball has told ESPN that his sons LiAngelo and LaMelo Ball have signed with an agent with the plan to play on the same team overseas.

LaMelo initially was targeted to play at UCLA in two years by his father, but that plan has now changed. Agent Harrison Gaines represents all three of Ball’s sons, including Lakers rookie Lonzo.

LaVar pulled LiAngelo from UCLA on Monday, telling ESPN that he was frustrated that the school hadn’t made a determination on the length of his son’s suspension following an arrest for shoplifting while in China last month.

Federal Bribery Charges Brought Against Top NCAA Coaches

(SL) – An acting U.S. Attorney in New York is shedding some light on what he calls the dark underbelly of college basketball. Joon H. Kim announced Tuesday at a press conference that federal criminal charges have been brought against ten people, including four top-tier college basketball assistant coaches, managers, financial advisers and representatives of a major international sportswear company, widely reported to be Adidas.

Kim says coaches at some of the nation’s top programs took cash bribes to deliver star athletes to an adviser or agent. He also said employees of the sportswear company funneled cash to the families of college recruits to have them play at schools sponsored by the company.

Court documents show the assistant coaches charged in the corruption scheme are Arizona’s Emanuel Richardson, Auburn’s Chuck Person, Oklahoma State’s Lamont Evans, and USC’s Tony Bland. Kim said the bribes and payouts ranged from 13-thousand-dollars up to 100-thousand. The FBI and U.S. Attorney’s Office have been investigating the criminal influence of money on coaches and NCAA student-athletes since 2015.

Robbing The Culture, Basic Baller Brand Wants To Charge Kids Big Baller Bucks For Knockoff Sneakers

(SL) – Let’s be clear, what LaVar Ball is trying to do is plausible and he should believe that his kids are the best. There’s a way to go about it though and he seems to be lacking tact and common sense. The fact that he has turned off every major retailer who wanted to sign his oldest son should be a big enough hint that he’s doing too much. However, the signs are wafting over him. If the father of 3 is going for shock value, it’s not working.

2017-05-0510-38-30Nike passed, Adidas passed, Under Armour passed and everyone else. A Billion dollar merchandising deal for all 3 of his sons, two of which are still in high school? Is he high? And then he comes back, releases a line of shoes for Lonzo called the ZO2 and places a $495 price tag on it. $995 if you want them autographed. We see what you did there LaVar, but we’re not impressed.

Now before we really ask what’s he smoking, let’s see the shoe and see if it’s worth it. Oh, I forgot to mention that you can get the sliders for $220. But the biggest catch is, reportedly if you order the shoe, you can’t even get them until November. Maybe LaVar should secure a deal with a manufacturer and distributor before he starts selling shoes. Not to mention, his son hasn’t even gotten drafted yet and recent comments have probably turned off quite a few teams.

031417-cbk-lavarlonzoball-pi.vresize.1200.630.high.0Once believed to be a top 3 draft pick, after Lonzo’s pops insulted Lebron James’ kids, and claimed his son was better than Stephen Curry, many believe his stock has decreased. Let’s be blunt. Nobody likes a loud mouth jerk. He claims that he himself beat Michael Jordan. Really? Okay.  Can you imagine LaVar brokering his son’s NBA contract. 1 year deal for $195 million because of course he likes 3 different digits.

On Friday, LaVar was asked on “The Dan Le Batard Show” why he decided to charge $495 for the shoes. His response, “I figured that’s what the shoe was worth,” Ball told Le Batard. “I liked the way it sounds. You see, when you are your own owner, you can come up with any price you want.”

la-sp-lonzo-ball-shoes-20170504Ball said he wasn’t in competition with Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour and that they were battling below Big Baller Brand. “Let Nike and Adidas and Under Armour — they battling below me,” Ball said. “They’ll go ahead and put all their stuff in Foot Locker. I’m better than them. I’m a step above.”

As for why the shoe was specifically priced at $495 and not, say, $500, Ball again acted like the question was a bit absurd. “Five hundred dollars?! Four-ninety-five sounds better,” Ball said. “I like three different digits.”

Ball further defended the shoe’s price by saying it was “symbolic” — Lonzo is the first basketball player to have a brand before entering the NBA. He also said there was some value in knowing that his son “designed all of it” and that other shoe companies don’t allow rookies to do that.

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There’s only one problem with that. The shoe is being criticized for looking a lot like the Kobe 11s and the logo appears to be ripped from another source. See below.

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A whole lot of talk, not enough originality or profit margin sensibility. Maybe LaVar never took Economics, but supply and demand is a real thing. And right now…your son isn’t there yet. Even the greats that have highly priced shoes are deemed collectors’ items. For example, the Kobe 11s cost $500 because it’s the last shoe Kobe wore in the NBA. Lebron James’ first shoe he wore in his first NBA game will cost you a pretty penny too.

The shoe Blake Griffin wore when he was jumping over cars in the NBA All-star contest will hit your pockets even harder. But again, if you’re a collector..collect. Lonzo Ball may be an outstanding athlete, depending on who you ask, but he hasn’t touched the big leagues yet.

The most disturbing piece in this ridiculous tale of a father thinking his balls are bigger than they are, is the insult levied at kids that can’t afford the shoe. Good thing a real baller like Shaq stepped in to acknowledge the foul verbal spew.

Wale didn’t appreciate it either.

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Ball’s youngest son attempted to support his dad. But kid this is way more than a father believing in his sons.

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And as for LaMelo or LiAngelo wearing the BBB shoes when they hit UCLA’s court, forget about it. It’s not happening. UCLA has an almost $300 million dollar sponsorship deal with Under Armour.  Group consensus…LaVar Ball should humble himself. Above everything, there are reports that Balls’s wife is suffering from a recent stroke.

tina-ball-basketballSpeculation alleges he refuses to let his sons see her in that condition out of fear that they might get distracted. I personally, don’t think the man is that out of touch, but who knows. Blessings to his wife for sure, if that is the case.

Hawks vs Wizards Game 3 Post Game Presser With Paul Millsap And Dennis Schroder

(SL) – The great comeback indeed! The Hawks were phenomenal against the Wizards during game 3 of the playoffs. After falling 0-2 and determined to get their MMA skills up, it looks like Atlanta came ready to battle. John Wall didn’t have much help making it an easier win than anticipated. Post Game with Atlanta’s ball master and the golden kid as they talk about resetting the series and leaving their mark on Washington.

Discipline Curtails Effort With Hawks During Warriors Game

(Atlanta, GA) – The Atlanta Hawks were hoping to get a win against the Warriors and build some momentum with what could’ve have been a solid defeat over the number 1 team in the West. Poised to make it happen, the Hawks led by Dennis Schroder with 19 1st quarter points kept an impressive lead over Golden State until the second half when things took a turn for the worse.
Third quarter starts and what could’ve ended up being a high point game for Dennis switched directions to another trip to the bench and Coach kept him there for the rest of the game after scoring 23 points in the first half. So what happened? Looking at a replay it appears Dwight Howard and Dennis Schroder were exchanging words over D. Howard turning the ball over again. Howard who was smashing the boards (19) may have had a problem with Schroder’s pass but unless you were on the court or have bionic ears we’ll never know.
In a great PR display, all Coach Mike Budenholzer would say about the situation is that they need to pay attention and play together as a team the entire 48 minutes.  During that on-court discussion Steph Curry was able to slide right to the perimeter and bank a 3 and Coach told Dennis to take his jersey off.
He spent the rest of the game on the wood and Golden State would turn the game around in the 2nd half and talk the W ending their road trip over .500 with the 119-111 win. Didn’t hurt that Vet ANdre Iguodala put up 24 points. Matching Stephen Curry’s effort, Post Game Andre’s says he’s still got it while Steph didn’t care about Dennis being benched one way or the other.
Post Game Wrap-Up

Coach’s Corner: Coach Bud On Taking Advantage Of Carmelo Anthony’s Ejection In 102-98 Win Over Knicks

(SL) –  The Atlanta Hawks took advantage of a Flagrant 2 penalty placed on Carmelo Anthony after he elbowed/chopped Thabo Sefolosha in the neck. The Hawks were able to contain the efforts of Derrick Rose and Kristaps Porzingis in a game that went into OT. Final score Atlanta over New York 102-98. Dennis Schroder was in beast mode leading the Hawks with 27 points. Dwight Howard had a double double crashing the boards with 22 and scoring 16 buckets.