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#103

@MattadorD I think there’s always going to be a concern that Kawhi walks (unless he signs a new contract), but I can definitely see him exercising his 1-year option to stay if the Raps make it deep in the ECF or, dinosaur god willing, the Finals. I’m content to enjoy the ride for now and know that we have so many young stars in the making to compete in the future. Given our G-league development success, I can see the Raps being a perennial contender with or without Kawhi.

@aubreyk309 I think there’s still plenty of room for the Raps to improve, as well as to regress. No way Lowry keeps up this production through 82 games, but Kawhi should be able to shoulder the load when he gets up to speed. The bench unit is currently posting negative net ratings, but that should change when Delon Wright gets back. It’s definitely a two way fight between us and Boston for 1st seed, but the Raps are built for the regular season grind so I have to give them the edge in that regard.


#104

This start has been spectacular! I haven’t been this pumped about a team in awhile. It’s the first time in as long as I can remember that the team came into the season completely healthy. Plus it seems like both AD and Jrue have stepped up as leaders only helping the team grow more as it shows who the best and most dominant players on the team are. As for AD leaving, I’m not too worried about it. He would be the highest paid player if he stays with the Pels, and if they keep playing like this I doubt he would want to leave. Some fans are doom and gloom others are just enjoying the ride.


#105

You’re so right about Jrue he’s been awesome so far. Its also been incredible to see Mirotic take to the team so well. I’m sure there will be some regression with his game (cause currently he’s playing like a man possessed), but he seems to be just about the perfect fit for y’all’s scheme and I think he’ll be huge contributor all season behind AD and Jrue. Plenty of reasons to be (cautiously) optimistic


#106

I just want to say that I’m really happy that the Meme-Team did not fail to deliver in its first home game.

I started watching Basketball because of Dirk Nowitzki (I’m from Germany), but since he’s getting close to retirement, and also because I developed a strong dislike for Mark Cuban, I’m not sure if I can still be interested in Dallas Mavericks, after he’s done. At the same time, Luca Doncic seems to be really fun to watch.

So right now I mostly follow basketball because of the stories it creates and I’m kind of rooting for different players/interesting things happening.


#107

I was not expecting Mirotic to continue to play at this level. He was around this level at the end of last season/playoffs. Same is true about Jrue, but his offensive game has taken a step back a bit. Though that isn’t a big of a deal since everyone else on the team can’t seem to miss. Jrue’s defense is just as good if not better. There are moments where he turns it on, like this one, where the opposing player can barely move. It is something truly amazing to watch. Also if you didn’t notice in that clip check out Jrue’s headband. It’s a new style, and I absolutely love it! It has also launched the nickname Kung-fu Jrue or NaJrueto and anytime he locks up a player like that clip he is using Jruejistu. I’m not a huge Naruto fan, despite seeing a bunch of it, but I love silly things like this.


#108

Love the way the Raptors are playing, bringing in Green and Leonard has really turned them into a formidable team. If I had one thing I could change about them it would be Valanciunas who I just don’t think fits with their playstyle and while he is good for a few select match-ups I just feel like he’s such an obvious liability to them in todays game. What would really put them over the hump would be for them to be able snag up a big who is more dynamic offensively and who is less susceptible when having to switch on to smaller players. Now, obviously there aren’t a lot of players like that in the league, but it did start me thinking about that one guy in New Orleans…

I watched the first quarter of the Pels-Clippers game last night and aside from Davis continually emphasizing that the “best in the world” proclamation probably isn’t as far off as some may have thought, I was also struck by, like, how empty that arena was. It was actually really shocking to me, when you consider how explosive they’ve been so far this year and with how good Davis has been for so long. If, by some way or anoher, Toronto could manage to cobble together a trade for Davis that would immediately catapult them to GS status, IMO. They still wouldn’t have the firepower of Golden State, but their defense would be so singularly great that I would expect them to be able to win a 7 game series against any team.

They have plus defenders at every position, with almost all of them capable of being able to switch on to bigger/smaller players, their versatility is staggering as it is, and already have all NBA level defenders at the perimeter in Green and Leonard. What few weaknesses they have would disappear with a guy like AD. Unlike Val he thrives against smaller players, protects the rim at an elite level, his offensive game opens up the floor so much more than any other Big they have available, not just from a floor spacing perspective but in terms of passing out of the post, running in transition, playing with pace… Like, it’s probably not happening but man… Anthony Davis on that Raptors team is a stone cold championship team, even against the Dubs.

okay, pipedream over, I still see The Raptors having the best regular season record once the playoffs come knocking, they’ve already proven they can beat a stacked Boston team. Nothing would make me happier than seeing that Raptors team burst the hype bubbles of both Boston and Philly now that 'Bron is out west, and have them procede to the finals.


#109

Oh man, maybe I’ll have to stop by Raising Cane’s when I visit my mom in December!


#110

Did anyone catch The Pistons and Sixers game last night?

It was incredible to watch Griffin and Embiid ball out like that. I’m a Raptors fan and tuned into the game to see how Casey is handling The Pistons and was happy with what I saw. The coaching change in Toronto was necessary but Casey has chops and The Pistons are a good fit for him.

The game has left me mulling over where the Piston’s fit in the Eastern Conference. Will they muscle they’re way into a play off spot? Is Griffin goes to have a season that is all somehow this good? What happens to them if they add, say Jimmy Butler or a player of his caliber?


#111

I only saw the highlights but I did see Joel Embiid with possibly the most nakedly sinister flop of the season so far and it was so fucking funny to me for some reason.


#112

I caught the highlights, and I’m really liking what Casey’s doing with the Pistons. Griffin looks primed for a bounce back year and I can definitely see them making some noise as a lower seed come the post-season. Hopefully Casey can finally figure out playoff rotations, but at least in Detroit the pressure is off him for now.


#113

I just want to address the attendance. It was a pretty well attended game for a Tuesday night. I think they said around 14,000 or so. The capacity for the Smoothie King Center is 17,000-18,000. We had this issue during our home opener even though it was a sold out crowd. The upper level fills out really well since they’re cheaper seats, but also the area that get shown on the telecast don’t seem to fill out. The Pels should really look into trying and getting people from the upper level into the seats that get shown on the telecast. It also doesn’t help that New Orleans is absolutely a football town. So with both the Saints and LSU doing really well this year it will take a while for the people/casual fans of New Orleans to come out. I’m still pretty impressed by the attendance so far though.

@quartermoose You will need a ticket to take advantage of the promotion. I’d definitely recommend going to see a game though. The Pels have been a ton of fun to watch!


#114

Fox is really easy to root for and is nice to have a positive player after Boogie, as much as I loved Boogie and never missed a game he played as nothing matched watching him take over live. It was emotionally taxing even as a fan of his teams.

I think Buddy is best as a 6th man role whom finishes games when he is going hot. Gives him some time to have lead ball handling role and not going up against top wings. Gary Harris could get any shot he wanted last night on Buddy. Will see if Bogdan goes back to starting when healthy, He was the best player for Kings last year.

AD looks like he has taken that next step into top 5 player in league realm. Building a roster that makes him play the 5 more than not is likely a huge factor in that next step.


#115

When Boogie was with the Kings and when he first got to the Pels I rolled my eyes at all the critiques that was talked about him. I attributed it to a bunch of old men complaining about the new generation and “not playing like you supposed to”. I started to notice it some when he was with the Pels though. Him doing things like not getting back on defense, and just lazy passes/turnovers. It was frustrating, but it wasn’t like he was completely destroying the team so I just wished he would cut down on some of that stuff and that was that. When he went down with the Achilles tear, I, like most Pels fans, said he could come back and it wouldn’t completely ruin his game. All in all I was feeling good about free agency, and figured the Pels would keep him and would slowly bring him back. I was actually out on a boat away from the internet for a few days when it all went down. It was a huge shock to say the least when I finally got back to shore and saw that he had signed with the Warriors. He lied about pretty much every aspect of his free agency talks with the Pels. The Pels had given him multiple offers through the year and then a final one at free agency that he never took. The Pels wanted to keep him. It was just so childish as well as false. Plus he cost himself a bunch of money in future contracts by signing with the Warriors so it was a really weird decision all around. I’m over it, and overall it looks like it worked out for the best that Boogie didn’t re-sign. The childish behavior and stories about the team/staff once he left the team with his injury just soured me on him. Again I wish him luck, but I’m glad that he is no longer with the team.

AD took this step last year, or at least took the beginning baby steps of this leap. When Boogie went down with injury AD said he needed to play like Westbrook. I’d say that he did, and then rocketed past “playing like Westbrook”. The really spooky thing is that AD hasn’t played up to his full potential at times especially at the defensive end. Watch out for AD this season. I really hope he can win DPOY and MVP this year. That would be absolutely amazing!


#116

It would be really cool for AD to win DPOY and MVP, but that would mean our Lord and Savior, Greek Freak, would not be MVP, and that simply will not do.


#117

Boogie is without a doubt one of the most frustrating players I have ever seen in the NBA. He is so incredibly, unfathomably skilled on offense, like there are literally no holes in his skillset. That old cliche “Big man with the skills of a guard”? That’s Boogie, full stop, and you throw in a hell of a post up game.

But for every jawdropping feat of brilliance on offense there’s an equally mind melting display catharsis on offense, where he will literally just stand still and let his man waltz by him, lazily going under screens, bungling switches. It is infuriating to watch, because he is absolutely a guy who could be a stone cold top 10 player but he is just so erratic to watch, shifting from brilliant to bad from possession to possession. It’s exhausting, almost.


#118

I would also argue that AD has been in top 5 territory since, like, 2015? This year I’m honestly having a hard time saying anyone else is better than him other than 'Bron, and he’s honestly playing better than 'Bron as well right now.


#119

Joining this basketball thread late, but glad there’s another Jazz fan on Waypoint! We’ve been pretty awful through the first three games, so here’s hoping we turn it around tonight against Houston.

Really, I just love the NBA. It is absolutely the most unnecessarily dramatic and “extra” of the main American sports. (See also: Rondo vs. CP3, Embiid vs. Drummond, Butler vs. his own team, etc.) I live for the drama.


#120

The NBA is a beautiful stupid machine driven by pettiness and I love it.


#121

Speaking of pettiness I’d like to present ex-commissioner David Stern in reference to the vetoed Chris Paul trade to the Lakers and subsequent trade to the Clippers

But Dell Demps is a lousy general manager and none of those players are currently with the team anymore, and he may lose Anthony Davis."

I mean what the fuck Stern!?! Demps has made some mistakes as GM. But you know who else has made mistakes as a GM? Every other GM in the league. Get out of here with the lousy general manager nonsense. Also the none of those players are currently on the the team anymore, a bunch of teams this can be factored to. The trade happened 7 years ago. Even the most stable team like the Spurs has a completely different roster now as it did then. Also AD isn’t going anywhere any time soon as long as we play like this.

I’d also like to present the official Pelicans response to the Stern interview,

We are very disappointed to read the inappropriate and inaccurate comments from the former NBA Commissioner regarding the New Orleans Pelicans. Our organization has the utmost confidence in our General Manager, Dell Demps. He is part of our family, the NBA family. We are excited about the direction of our team, the 3-0 start of this season, building on the success of the 2017/18 playoffs. Finally, our organization is excited and proud to be part of the NBA with the progressive and innovate leadership of NBA Commissioner Adam Silver.

I absolutely love the shade and pettiness that the Pels throw at Stern with that final line. NBA were pettiness happens!


#122

Love it. Stern was just such a garbage commissioner too. The NBA pettiness dumpster fire is alive and well, and I’m here for it.