Cuban sizes up new NBA unis: ‘Hated them’

DALLAS – So far as Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is worried, the NBA committed a serious trend fake pas by having all 10 groups that played Christmas Day suited up in short-sleeved jerseys.

David Lee

Mavs proprietor Mark Cuban stated the brief-sleeved jerseys groups like the Warriors wore Christmas Day "made our guys look extra like a high school wrestling crew."

"Hated them," Cuban mentioned before the Mavs hosted the San Antonio Spurs on Thursday night. "I just thought it made our guys look extra like a highschool wrestling workforce or a school wrestling crew."

Cuban, whose Mavs had Christmas off, understands the NBA is trying to market the brief-sleeved jerseys to followers who may not need to wear tank tops. He just doesn't consider it's necessary for superstars akin to LeBron James and Kevin Durant to put on the T-shirt-model jerseys in video games to get them to promote.

"I could have considered higher methods to sell [the brief-sleeved jerseys] and a lot of alternative ways by having them in a casual-wear state of affairs," Cuban stated. "We would have been higher off, if we want folks to wear them casually, to get the trainers and everybody else to put on them to indicate them in a realistic setting. So I might have performed it a bit of in another way, however we'll see what happens."

Cuban I don't assume faculties are going to be completely satisfied if 16-12 months-outdated boys are available carrying skin-tight health club wrestling gear. My opinion, they'll promote, but we could have offered more.

- Mark Cuban

Cuban mentioned he thinks the quick-sleeved jerseys nonetheless will promote however that a lot of followers can be turned off by the tight fit. He anticipates that folks will purchase the jerseys just a few sizes bigger than normal so that they'll be baggy.

"I think the people that may buy them are more the jersey heads and the people who find themselves trying to be hip and funky versus the mainstream fan who just desires one thing to put on to work or something to put on to school," Cuban said. "I don't think schools are going to be glad if sixteen-year-previous boys come in wearing skin-tight gymnasium wrestling gear. My opinion, they will sell, but we might have bought more.

"You reside and also you learn. That's just my opinion. Possibly I will be fallacious. Possibly they will promote like gangbusters in China."

Of course, Cuban was the mastermind behind some of the ugliest jerseys in NBA history. The Mavs wore shiny silver jerseys that looked brown once they received moist with sweat through the 2003-04 season opener. They by no means wore these jerseys again.

"They appeared like wet garbage baggage," Cuban mentioned, "but I took them off the market after one game."

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NBA Playoffs: Who Survives the Loaded Western Conference? Predictions

western conference

NBA Prediction Western Conference 2013

On Wednesday, we set our sights on the playoffs by predicting which eight teams comprise the Eastern Conference playoff bracket. As a follow-up, we will now shift our focus to the Western Conference and project the eventual representatives.

 

 

The Western Conference is decidedly stronger than the East this year based on team records. As of Friday, the team in ninth overall place in the West, Golden State, boasts a record of 14-13. This record would be good enough for 4th in the East, but unfortunately places the Warriors in the lottery based on the loaded Western Conference.

 

Were the season to end tonight, the Western Conference playoff representatives would comprise, in order, of Oklahoma City, Portland, San Antonio, Los Angeles (Clippers), Houston, Dallas, Phoenix, and Denver. This current standing is a result of some unexpected early season performances.

 

Portland has been the most surprisingly upstart team of from the West so far. A balanced rotation and lethal offense has given way to a league-best 22 wins. An equally surprising playoff team, as of today, is Phoenix. Loaded with young talent and playing cohesively under first-year head coach Jeff Hornacek, the Suns appear well-suited to compete for a playoff berth.

 

It may be easier to predict the playoff representatives by eliminating the teams set on “tanking” this season. Sacramento and Utah, though they both play host to an abundance of young talent in players like DeMarcus Cousins, Ben McLemore, Derrick Favors, and Trey Burke, would be better suited to set their sights on the NBA Draft, when college phenoms Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker, and Julius Randle are expected to declare for the pro’s.

 

For four of the teams currently out of the playoff mix, injuries have been a source of collective misfortune. Golden State, at ninth, lost Andre Iguodala to a hamstring injury for 12 games, posting a record of 5-7. The Los Angeles Lakers, 11th with a record of 12-13, have been derailed by injuries to their entire point guard staff, and Kobe Bryant’s latest injury is sure to set them back even further.

 

New Orleans was without budding star Anthony Davis for seven days after the sophomore power forward broke his hand, and the Pelicans went 3-4 in his absence. Memphis has likely been the most unlucky team out of all of them, as they have had to play without Defensive Player of the Year Marc Gasol, starters Mike Conley and Tayshaun Prince, and rotational swingman Quincy Pondexter who has been lost for the season.

 

Of the teams currently outside of the playoff mix, the ones most likely to play their way out of the lottery would have to be Golden State and Minnesota. The Warriors possess possibly the most dangerous offenses led by “Splash Brothers” Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson. Iguodala’s return to the lineup shores up the team’s defense and allows second-year wing Harrison Barnes to return to the bench.

 

The Timberwolves have lighting it up of the offensive end, coming into Friday scoring the 3rd most PPG at 105.7. Their most apparent struggles have been on the road (5-9) and against other teams in the Western Conference (6-8).

 

As for the teams most likely to fall out of the playoff picture, Phoenix is definitely the most prime suspect. With the eighth toughest Strength of Schedule in the league, the Suns can be expected to succumb to their lack of veteran leadership, and they would also be better suited to try their luck in the upcoming draft.

 

We can say with reasonable certainty that there are five locks in the West for the playoffs: Oklahoma City, Portland, San Antonio, Los Angeles, and Houston. Assuming the Suns eventual regression, that leaves three spot for four real contenders in Dallas, Denver, Golden State, and Minnesota. Denver can probably be counted on to stumble a bit without projected starters Danilo Gallinari and Javale McGee, both of whom are without timetables for their returns. They should be able to hang on to one of the last two playoff spots, as fellow competitor Minnesota has the second toughest schedule in the NBA.

 

We’re counting on the eventual Western Conference playoff bracket consisting of, in no particular order, Oklahoma City, Portland, San Antonio, Los Angeles, Houston, Dallas, Denver, and Golden State. Look for us to revisit these projections as the season winds on. 

 

By Austin Murphy – WonderPunter

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NBA Playoffs: Who Emerges from the (L)east?

NBA playoffs 2013

Anyone who has been watching the NBA this year understands the ridiculous disparity regarding team success between the Eastern and Western conferences. Despite being the resident conference for powerhouses in Indiana and Miami, the Eastern conference is only 37-84 against the West thus far in the season. Only six teams out West boast records under .500, whereas the East has a pitiful twelve teams under .500. To put the situation into even greater perspective, every team in the West outside of Sacramento (7-16) and Utah (6-21) would make the playoffs if they switched conferences. Outside of the obvious picks with the Pacers and Heat, who can be expected to make the playoffs out of the cellar of the East?

 

As of Wednesday night, the six teams joining the Pacers and Heat in the playoffs, in order of seed, would be Atlanta, Boston, Detroit, Charlotte, Washington, and Toronto. This is hardly a definite playoff scenario, as a mere six games separate the projected fourth seed Celtics and the bottom-feeder Milwaukee Bucks.

 

In comparison to ESPN’s Training Camp Power Rankings, three teams previously expected to make the playoffs (Brooklyn, Chicago, and New York) are floundering in the East due to three completely separate situations. Brooklyn has suffered injuries and a lack of team chemistry (improving of late having won four of their last five, including a big win over the contending Clippers). Chicago has struggled in the wake of Derrick Rose’s season-ending meniscus tear as their lack of depth has been exposed. Mike Woodson, head coach of New York, is likely one more late-game faux-pas from being canned.

bulls derrick rose

One alteration to the current playoff projections that we can likely expect to be fulfilled would be replacing Toronto with Brooklyn. The Nets are only two games back in the loss column, and their collective resurgence and team health combined with Toronto’s determination to tank (Kyle Lowry is allegedly still being shopped) should result in the Nets overtaking the Raptors.

 

We can be reasonably optimistic that two other current playoff teams will hold onto their spots. Atlanta, the current three-seed, holds the last of three plus-.500 records in the East. Paul Millsap appears to have built a strong connection with fellow big-man Al Horford, and their perimeter is exciting to watch with Jeff Teague’s aggressiveness and Kyle Korver’s marksmanship from deep.

 

 

The other likely solid playoff fixture is Detroit. As a new home for Josh Smith, the nine-year veteran Combo Forward has bolstered an already lethal frontcourt with Greg Monroe and second-year man Andre Drummond. Point Guard by way of Milwaukee, Brandon Jennings is averaging a career high 7.8 Assists Per Game with excellent passing options in Smith, Monroe, and Drummond.

 

The final three spots back East are sure to be the hardest to predict. We can expect Brooklyn to overtake Toronto’s spot, but that still leaves Boston in the hunt in the Atlantic Division. First-year coach Brad Stevens has led the Celtics to a surprising 12-14 start with an excellent selection of young talent. Jordan Crawford is finally learning to play within a system, Avery Bradley is showing a drastically improved touch from the perimeter (45% from the field and 38% from three), and Jeff Green, Jared Sullinger, and Kelly Olynyk are excellent pieces to build around. Rajon Rondo’s return is unlikely to hinder the young Celtics success, as he is an excellent distributing Point Guard and defensive presence.

 

nba playoffs

After the Celtics, that leaves us with Charlotte and Washington as the only projected playoff teams as of tonight. Both of these teams will be battling with Chicago and Cleveland to claim the last two playoff sp

 ots. Due to the loss of Rose and off-season departure Nate Robinson, Chicago is going to have to rely even more on Luol Deng to perform on offense. A depleted benchand over-usage of players like Deng, Jimmy Butler, and Joakim Noah will prevent the Bulls from making a playoff appearance.

With the Bulls eliminated, that leaves us with Charlotte, Washington, and Cleveland all competing for two playoff spots. The odd team out will likely be Charlotte, as they lack the offensive focal point that can generate buckets late in games. Kemba Walker, though a budding star, is clearly a notch below John Wall and Kyrie Irving in terms of Point Guard talent.

 

As the season continues, we can likely expect the overall records of Eastern teams to improve. Despite any possible improvements, there don’t seem to be any other teams in the Eastern Conference capable of beating either the Pacers or Heat in the playoffs.

By Austin Murphy – WonderPunter

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Watch the most amazing missed dunk of the NBA season

Andre Iguodala played his first sport for the Golden State Warriors since struggling a hamstring damage on November 22, and he got here again in type. He nearly had the dunk of the year against the New Orleans Pelicans:

iguodala

These were some insane handles. Only a bit brief on the finish, though.

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NBA Prediction Week 7 Game Preview/Pick- Portland vs. Cleveland

 nba free picks and predictions

Portland Trail Blazers (21-4) @ Cleveland Cavaliers (9-14) 12/17- 7:00PM EST

Tonights NBA Free picks and prediction with lines and Odds

Line: POR -4.5

Over/Under: 205

 

Tuesday night’s matchup will feature two young point guards at the top of their game as the Trail Blazers travel into Cleveland.

 

The Cavaliers’ Kyrie Irving was named the Eastern Conference Player of the Week on Monday for the three games he played last week when he averaged 29.0 points and 6.3 assists while shooting 50.8 percent. Irving also averaged 2.3 steals, shot 40.0 percent from behind the arc and made 14 of 15 from the charity stripe.

 

He deserves it, he put up some big numbers for us, and he was aggressive especially at the right times for us,” coach Mike Brown said. He can get a lot of accolades because he has the chance to be that good. He has special talents.”

 

Matching up against the talented Irving will be Damien Lillard of Portland, who hit the game winner at the buzzer to give the Blazers a 111-109 overtime victory at Detroit Sunday.

 

It felt good,” said Lillard. I had a lot of shots that I let go that felt good that didn’t fall. When that one went in, I was like ‘thank you.’ I’m happy the shot went in.”

 

Lillard had 23 points to go along with seven assists as Portland (19-4) won its fourth straight game and have the best record in the Western Conference, thanks in part to an offense that averages 107.9 points a game, while shooting 45.9 percent… both which rank near the top of the NBA.

 

To compliment Lillard is power forward LaMarcus Aldridge, who is averaging 23.5 and 10.9 rebounds per game as he is getting it done in the paint.

 

Throw in a team that is shooting 41.2 percent from 3-point land and we can see why they are one of the best in the NBA this year so far.

 

But, if there is any area they can improve in, it would be defensively where they are allowing 100.6 points per game.

 

Cleveland was riding a three-game win streak before the Miami Heat handed them a 114-107 loss on Saturday and know they will have a great challenge against the Trail Blazers on Tuesday.

 

The Cavs only average 94.4 points per contest and with the amount of points the Blazers put up, the oddsmakers have made Portland a (minus 4.5) point favorite on the road. Get the latest lines on the game up until tip off right here at Wonder Punter.

 

Unfortunately for the Cavaliers, no other player outside of Irving scores more then 14.5 points per game and with a hot Blazers team that can light up the scoreboard, I predict the Trail Blazers taking care of business on the road and stay undefeated against the Eastern Conference (10-0) this season.

 

Prediction/Pick: Portland

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter

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NBA Prediction Week 7 Game Preview/Pick- Thunder vs. Nuggets

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Oklahoma City Thunder (19-4) @ Denver Nuggets (14-9) 12/17- 9:00PM EST

 

Line: OKC -2.5

Over/Under: 207

 

The Oklahoma City Thunder roll into Denver on Tuesday night as the NBA’s hottest team as they look to extend their win streak to seven games and it’s been easy to this point as they are crushing their opponents.

 

The Thunder (19-4) have won 14 of their last 15 games by simply utilizing their speed and athleticism on both ends of the court.

 

The magnificent duo of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook are leading the way for the Thunder with an average of 17.8 fast break points per contest.

 

Durant with his 28.5 points per game is first in the league in scoring and is getting it done attacking the basket, with 95 of his 206 field goals coming from around or at the net.

 

Westbrook is averaging 21.0 points and with team-leading 40 steals is creating opportunities and opening the floor for his teammates.

 

It just gets us easy baskets,” Durant said. “Once you start to hit layups and get dunks, it opens the flood gates a little bit.”

 

The Thunder won on Sunday night 101-98 against the Orlando Magic as they were finally challenged, but only because they blew a 16-point lead.

 

We were able to get started there, but you have to be able to play 48 minutes,” said Durant.

 

Revenge will be on the minds of the Nuggets (14-9) after a poor defensive performance led to a 115-113 loss at Oklahoma City back on November 18, when Durant went for 38 points and Westbrook added 30.

 

Denver has played well at home winning seven of their last eight, but coach Brian Shaw admits it will take a different level of play to beat the Thunder.

 

I told them that if we want any chance of winning against Okalahoma City, we’re going to have to do a lot better in every area to even have a chance to win that game,” Shaw said.

 

At just 5-foot-9, guard Nate Robinson has been a spark off the bench for the Nuggets accounting for 14.7 points per game and his getting it done on the defensive side of the ball as well.

 

Despite the Nuggets strong play at home, the oddsmakers have made the visiting Thunder a slim (minus -2.5) point favorite in the Mile High City, but get the latest odds for the game here at Wonder Punter up until game time.

 

I too, agree and predict the Thunder leaving Denver with a big road win as they are just playing on a different level right now.

 

Prediction/Pick: Oklahoma City

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter

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NBA Prediction Week 7 Game Preview/Pick- Lakers vs. Hawks

Lakers-vs-Atlanta

NBA Free Picks Lines & Odds Lakers vs. Hawks

Los Angeles Lakers (11-12) @ Atlanta Hawks (12-12) 12/16- 7:30PM EST

 

Line: ATL -5.0

Over/Under: 206

 

Kobe Bryant will once again will take on the ball handling duties for the Los Angeles Lakers when he leads him team into Atlanta, as they continue their four-game road trip.

 

With point guards Steve Nash, Steve Blake and Jordan Farmar still all out with injuries, Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni will put the ball handling duties into the hands of Bryant once again, which may be a benefit as he tries to work his way into playing shape.

 

We have to somehow find some wins and gut it out. It’s not pretty right now,” D’Antoni said. “We don’t have a playmaker and we’ve got to get the guys healthy and get Kobe well.”

 

Since his return last Sunday, Kobe has scored 20 or more points twice in four games and had 13 assists in the loss to Oklahoma City on Friday night, but he’s also had 25 turnovers since returning as he is trying to adjust to his new duties.

 

There is no secret formula that you can sprinkle out there,” D’Antoni said. “He’ll get more comfortable, then the guys will get more comfortable around him and then he’ll do a better job.”

 

Bryant had a more balanced night as he led the Lakers (11-12) to their first win since his return, with 21 points, eight assists and seven rebounds in a 88-85 win over Charlotte on Saturday night.

 

I don’t know what I can and can’t do, Bryant said. “I’m just trying to measure it.”

 

A lot of focus of late has been of the tension between Pau Gasol and D’Antoni, as Gasol has expressed his frustration playing within the D”Antoni up-tempo offense. The 13-year veteran as averaged 18.3 points throughout his career, but this season is averaging only 14.4 points with a career-low 41.8 shooting percentage. I’ve always been a fan of Gasol and believe he just needs to play ball and when given the opportunity to shoot… produce!

 

The Lakers defense is also suffering as they are allowing 103.5 points per game which is second-worst in the NBA, though Atlanta (12-12) is averaging just 99.6 points per game.

 

The Hawks are led by big-man Al Horford with 17.7 and Paul Milsap 16.5 points per game and point guard Jeff Teague is doing a nice job with a 15.9 scoring average and 17.7 assists per game. Teague has also done a nice job handling the ball with a 2.33 assist-to-turnover ratio.

 

The Lakers have won 10 of the last 14 meetings against the Hawks, but the oddsmakers have confidence in Atlanta getting it done on Monday night as they have made the home team a (minus -5.0) point favorite over the visiting Lakers. Get the latest spread on the game up until tip off right here at Wonder Punter.

 

Despite the Lakers being injury-plagued at the point guard position, I predict L.A. doing just enough to get out of Atlanta with an upset win as they continue their road trip.

 

Prediction/Pick- Los Angeles Lakers

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter

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NBA Prediction Week 7 Game Preview/Pick- Lakers vs. Hawks

NBA-sports-betting1

Los Angeles Lakers (11-12) @ Atlanta Hawks (12-12) 12/16- 7:30PM EST

 

Line: ATL -5.0

Over/Under: 206

 

Kobe Bryant will once again will take on the ball handling duties for the Los Angeles Lakers when he leads him team into Atlanta, as they continue their four-game road trip.

 

With point guards Steve Nash, Steve Blake and Jordan Farmar still all out with injuries, Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni will put the ball handling duties into the hands of Bryant once again, which may be a benefit as he tries to work his way into playing shape.

 

We have to somehow find some wins and gut it out. It’s not pretty right now,” D’Antoni said. “We don’t have a playmaker and we’ve got to get the guys healthy and get Kobe well.”

 

Since his return last Sunday, Kobe has scored 20 or more points twice in four games and had 13 assists in the loss to Oklahoma City on Friday night, but he’s also had 25 turnovers since returning as he is trying to adjust to his new duties.

 

There is no secret formula that you can sprinkle out there,” D’Antoni said. “He’ll get more comfortable, then the guys will get more comfortable around him and then he’ll do a better job.”

 

Bryant had a more balanced night as he led the Lakers (11-12) to their first win since his return, with 21 points, eight assists and seven rebounds in a 88-85 win over Charlotte on Saturday night.

 

I don’t know what I can and can’t do, Bryant said. “I’m just trying to measure it.”

 

A lot of focus of late has been of the tension between Pau Gasol and D’Antoni, as Gasol has expressed his frustration playing within the D”Antoni up-tempo offense. The 13-year veteran as averaged 18.3 points throughout his career, but this season is averaging only 14.4 points with a career-low 41.8 shooting percentage. I’ve always been a fan of Gasol and believe he just needs to play ball and when given the opportunity to shoot… produce!

 

The Lakers defense is also suffering as they are allowing 103.5 points per game which is second-worst in the NBA, though Atlanta (12-12) is averaging just 99.6 points per game.

 

The Hawks are led by big-man Al Horford with 17.7 and Paul Milsap 16.5 points per game and point guard Jeff Teague is doing a nice job with a 15.9 scoring average and 17.7 assists per game. Teague has also done a nice job handling the ball with a 2.33 assist-to-turnover ratio.

 

The Lakers have won 10 of the last 14 meetings against the Hawks, but the oddsmakers have confidence in Atlanta getting it done on Monday night as they have made the home team a (minus -5.0) point favorite over the visiting Lakers. Get the latest spread on the game up until tip off right here at Wonder Punter.

 

Despite the Lakers being injury-plagued at the point guard position, I predict L.A. doing just enough to get out of Atlanta with an upset win as they continue their road trip.

 

Prediction/Pick- Los Angeles Lakers

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter

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NBA prediction – Clippers vs. Celtics Week 6 Wednesday Night Game Preview & Pick

clippers vs celtics prediction

NBA Free Pick and prediction Clippers vs Celtics

 

Los Angeles Clippers (14-8) @ Boston Celtics (10-13) 12/11- 7:30PM EST

Odds and Lines for this game:

Line: LAC -6.0

Over/Under: 195

 

In his first visit since May 3rd, now Los Angels Clippers coach Doc Rivers will be at TD Garden in Boston to take on what’s left of his Boston Celtics, in what should be an emotional return.

 

It will be very nice for me, Rivers said. “I put nine years in there, nine wonderful years. So that’ll be very cool.”

 

Rivers’ resume in his tenure with the Celtics includes a 416-305 regular-season record, seven playoff appearances, and a 66-16 record in their 2007-08 championship year in which he led the Celtics to their 17th World title.

 

Rivers also led the Celtics to a seventh-game in the 2010 championship in which they lost to the Lakers and last year were eliminated in six games in the first round by the New York Knicks.

 

After last season’s playoff departure, Rivers, who still had three years left on his contract, would not commit to returning back to the Celtics as head coach.

 

Honestly, I just can’t even think about that right now. So I don’t know,” he said. “I need to just detox, and we’ll find that out.”

 

Boston management decided a different direction was needed to rebuild the organization and do away with its aging players, which Rivers was reluctant to be part of. On June 25th, Rivers was traded to the Clippers for a 2015 first-round draft pick.

 

Doc Rivers has the Clippers (14-8) in first-place in the Pacific Division after a 94-83 win at Philadelphia on Monday night, as they are in the midst of a season-high tying seven-game road trip.

 

Boston’s new coach Brad Stevens has the Celtics at 10-13 and in first-place as well in a weak Atlantic Division, although their three game win streak came to end to the Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce-led Brooklyn Nets 96-104 on Monday night.

 

They played great tonight. Played really hard, really together,” Stevens said. “They took us out of what we wanted to do.”

 

The new look Celtics only have seven of their 14 players left on the team Rivers coached last year, with point guard Rajon Rondo still recovering from ligament surgery on his left knee.

 

It’s been Jeff Green (16.7 points per game), Jordan Crawford (14.0) and Avery Bradley (13.5) who are leading the much younger Celtics team.

 

Despite injuries on the Clippers side with J.J Redick, Matt Barnes and Reggie Bullock, early lines have made Los Angeles a big (minus) -6.0 point favorite on the road, but expect to line to maybe move as game time approaches, which you can get here at Wonder Punter.

 

I see Clippers’ point guard Chris Paul who is averaging only 8.7 points on 18.8 percent shooting against the Celtics in his last three games to have a big night and even though Boston has won four of five against the Clips at home, I predict Los Angeles making Doc Rivers return to Boston a successful one.

 

Prediction/Pick: Los Angeles Clippers

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter

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NBA Prediction Thunder vs Grizzlies Week 6 Wednesday Night Game Preview & Pick

nba prediction thunder vs grizzlies

NBA Prediction Week 6 Wednesday Night Game Preview/Pick- Oklahoma City vs. Memphis

 

Oklahoma City Thunder (16-4) @ Memphis Grizzles (10-10) 12/11- 8:00PM EST

Lines and Odds:

Line: OKC -5.5

Over/Under: 191.5

 

In their first meeting since last year’s playoffs, the Oklahoma City Thunder will try to keep rolling against the short-handed Memphis Grizzles on Wednesday night.

 

Last year in the Western Conference semifinals, the Thunder couldn’t keep pace against the Grizzles without their star Russell Westbrook… this time around, it will be the injury-plagued Grizzles without their star center Marc Gasol (sprained MCL) who is still out, as well as forward Ed Davis (ankle), guard Tony Allen (hip) and now swingman Quincy Pondexter, who will be out indefinitely with a stress facture in his right foot.

 

For Oklahoma City (16-4), winners of three straight and 11 of 12 games, are close to full strength and are now once again one of the best in the NBA as they head into Memphis after pulling out a 101-92 victory Tuesday night in Atlanta.

 

We finally got a couple of stops in a row at the end,” said Thunder coach Scott Brooks, whose team limited the Hawks to 35.6 percent shooting. “Any time you hold an NBA team in the 30s percent-wise in field goals, then you’re doing a good job defensively.”

 

Kevin Durant stayed hot scoring 30 points along with 10 boards. Serge Ibaka added 19 and 10, while Westbrook struggled shooting just 6 of 21 for 14 points, 11 assists and nine boards.

 

You have nights when you don’t make shots, but you can’t have nights when you don’t play defense,” said Westbrook, who was credited with four steals. “I take pride in defending every single night and trying to help my team win games.”

 

Durant since the 2008-09 season, is averaging 29.0 points in 29 meetings against the Grizzles, including the playoffs and will need all they can get as the Thunder have lost three in a row and eight of their last 11 games in Memphis.

 

The Grizzles are 2-3 in their last five games and are trying to keep it together until they can get some key players healthy.

 

Guys are stepping up. That’s what we need. We need everybody now, said forward Zach Randolph. “It’s tough. It’s real tough. We’ve just got to come out and play. Everyone has to step up like they’ve been doing.”

 

Jon Leuer is one of those players who has stepped-up, averaging 15.0 points over his last four games, doubling his season mark of 7.3.

 

We’ve had a lot of guys go down,” he said. It obviously makes it tough, but it opens up other opportunities for guys to come in and contribute.”

 

And an all-around contribution is what it’s going to take to beat the hot OKC Thunder who are a (minus) -5.5 point favorite on the road, but get the latest odds up until game time right here at Wonder Punter.

 

The Thunder are amongst the best in the league with 104.6 points per average, while Memphis as dropped off from last years mark of 89.3 to allowing 96.0 points per game this year.

 

With a depleted Grizzles team, I predict the Thunder covering the spread and leaving Memphis with a victory.

 

Prediction/Pick: Oklahoma City

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter

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NBA Prediction Week 6 Wednesday Night Game Preview/Pick- Dallas vs. Golden State

nba picks

NBA Free Pick & Prediction Mavericks vs. Warriors

 

Dallas Mavericks (13-9) @ Golden State Warriors (12-10) 12/11- 10:30PM EST

 

Line: GSW -6.0

Over/Under: 209

 

As the Golden State Warriors prepare for a stretch of a home-heavy schedule that they want to take full advantage of, they first must improve on the defensive side of the ball while riding a hot Stephen Curry.

 

Warriors coach Mark Jackson believes Curry is playing his best basketball where he is averaging 30.1 points while hitting 26 3s in his last seven games. The fifth-year guard is averaging career highs of 23.6 points to go along with 8.9 assists.

 

In Monday night’s game against Charlotte, Curry finished had a season-high 43 points, including five 3-pointers along with nine assists in a 115-11 loss.

 

He’s been playing at a whole different level,” Jackson said. “He’s playing and acting like he’s the best player on the floor night in and night out, carrying us down the stretch, making plays, choosing when to take over offensively and he know when to facilitate.”

 

But, it’s the defensive play that has Mark Jackson worried as his Warriors (12-10) get set to take on two of the highest-scoring teams in the league, Dallas (103.4) and the Houston Rockets (107.5) on Friday.

 

But, first up is the Mavericks (13-9), who look to win their second-straight over the Warriors after winning 103-99 in Dallas on November 27th.

 

Curry had a game-high 29 points and went 6 of 10 from behind the arc in that contest.

 

Golden State survived a tough stretch in which they played seven of eight on the road, going 4-4, but will now play seven of their next nine games in Oakland, where they are 6-2.

 

And it’s that home record that has made the Warriors a big (minus) -6.0 point favorite over the Mavs. With the line likely to move, get the latest up to the minute spread up until tip off right here at Wonder Punter.

 

In the past 11 games, the Warriors allowed teams to hit the 100 mark nine times, whereas in their first 11 games, opponents hit the century mark only three times.

 

Dallas, who had won three-straight, looks to rebound after losing to the Sacramento Kings 112-97 on Monday night, but with a win against the Warriors can wrap a four-game swing with three victories.

 

We’re doing great on the road,” guard Jose Calderon said. “It was two (wins) in a row, so we wanted to go four out of four. … We’ve got to try to put that one out (of our minds) and just try to forget about it.

 

Much of Dallas’ success this season can be attributed the off season signing of ex-Warrior Monta Ellis, who is averaging a team-high 21.5 points per game to compliment Dirk Nowitski, who is averaging 21.1 points per contest.

 

The Warriors have won the last two overall meetings over the Mavericks and three of four at home against them and it’s with their recent home success that I predict the Warriors winning Wednesday night.

 

Prediction/Pick: Golden State

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter

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Askia Booker Hit a Deep Three at the Buzzer in Colorado Upset Over No. 6 Kansas

Askia Booker, a junior guard at Colorado, hit a deep three on the buzzer because the Buffaloes upset the no. 6 Kansas Jayhawks 75-72 and the Boulder faithful mobbed the court docket.

Colorado celebrationg upset over Kansas

Booker and fellow guard Spencer Dinwiddle were the main scorers for Colorado, each contributing 15 points. For Kansas, presumed 2014 NBA Draft first total decide Andrew Wiggins scored 22 points on 7-11 taking pictures, notching 5 rebounds.

Related: 2014 NBA Mock Draft: Thanksgiving Week Edition
Related: Andrew Wiggins Soared For a Dunk Whereas Cole Aldrich Watched, Not Eager to Get Posterized [Video]
Associated: Andrew Wiggins is Going to Kansas

Askia Booker 3-pointer against Kansas

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Nets at Rockets final score: Houston runs past Brooklyn, 114-95

Nov 29, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets taking pictures guard Francisco Garcia (32) blocks a shot by Brooklyn Nets point guard Tyshawn Taylor (10) in the course of the fourth quarter at Toyota Middle. The Rockets received 114-ninety five. Necessary Credit score: Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports activities

The 2013-2014 season has been a struggle for the Brooklyn Nets, and Friday night wasn’t any completely different. Brooklyn fell by the hands of the Houston Rockets by a 114-95 margin, and the way in which wherein they lost was extremely troubling.

Houston’s offense soared from the opening tip, and the 114 points (impressive as they were) represented just the tip of the iceberg. The Rockets absolutely shot the lights out in this one, posted a 52.7% clip from the sphere and a staggering fifty nine.four% (19 for 32) mark from past the 3-point arc. For good measure, the Rockets assisted on 31 of their 39 baskets against the defense-less resistance of the Nets, they usually had been even in a position to get to the free throw line for a powerful 17-of-20 exhibiting.

Maybe the most damning of statistics was the fact that Houston absolutely called the dogs off in this one. No member of the Rockets performed more than 28 minutes, and solely a 33-22 “win” by the Nets in the 4th quarter kept this from being an absolute disaster on the scoreboard.

Should you’re looking for a “vivid” spot for the Nets, it has to be the play of the bench. As a gaggle, they mixed for seventy two of the 95 points, and that’s usually an outstanding sign for the success of a team. Nonetheless, the starters have been used so sparingly (and were so ineffective) that the bench was helpless to beat what was a big deficit from the early going.

Consequently, the Nets now sit at four-12 on the younger season, while Houston is flying excessive at 12-5. It’s straightforward to overreact to a one night time sample measurement within the NBA, but it will be troublesome for two NBA teams to look farther apart while occupying the same floor.

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BT Sport buys rights to broadcast NBA games in Britain

Nov 2, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; Charlotte Bobcats shooting guard Gerald Henderson (9) is guarded bt New Orleans Pelicans shooting guard Anthony Morrow (three) through the second half of a recreation at New Orleans Arena. The Pelicans defeated the Bobcats 105-eighty four. Necessary Credit score: Derick E. Hingle-USA IMMEDIATELY Sports

BT Sport has signed an settlement to change into the United Kingdom’s foremost broadcaster of NBA games. The first game to be shown on the community will by Sunday’s contest between the Indiana Pacers and the Los Angeles Clippers.

Simon Inexperienced, the pinnacle of BT Sport, talked in regards to the thrilling broadcasting alternative:

BT Sport would be the new house of the NBA in the UK and Eire. The NBA is solely the most effective basketball on this planet; it’s fast moving, excessive scoring and consists of some the world’s most recognisable global sporting icons. Existing NBA followers will love our coverage, and we stay up for converting many extra (MVP Magazine).

The settlement is the latest tactical maneuver in the battle between BT Sport and BSkyB. BT Sport began broadcasting English Premier League video games in August, and the company adopted that up by shockingly outbidding BSkyB for the Champions League contract.

[Source: MVP Magazine]

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2014 NBA Mock Draft: Thanksgiving Week Edition

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It’s 2014 NBA Mock draft time! Probably the greatest drafts in years! As many groups traded to get into this first round, there are lots of moves that also are to be decided. This site is a good useful resource recapping a whole lot of the trades. My guess on the order under isn’t based mostly on the place issues are now – but slightly how I assume it can end up. Things taken into account: Salaries, potential free brokers, wants, and evaluation from a number of NBA scouts. This is not a rating of greatest players in the draft.

1. Utah Jazz - Andrew Wiggins, F, Kansas. You may hear some Jabari Parker chatter (he’s Mormon!) but proper now, it’s Wiggins. Upside, upside, upside. The place does he match if you happen to maintain Hayward? You may play each.

2. Milwaukee BucksJulius Randle, F, Kentucky. Will instantly be their finest participant. Randle and Sanders shall be a pleasant tandem inside. They’ll re-form the backcourt within the 2015 lottery – Antetokounmpo continues to be a number of years away from being a factor.

Jabari Parker shows off NBA moves against Kansas-a

three. Boston CelticsJabari Parker, F, Duke. Rumors Parker could keep. Fun storyline, I’m not buying it. In the event you’re a kind of conspiracy sorts, how about the Celtics winning the lottery? Brad Stevens, Lakers and Celtics both down … yeah, yeah, I do know, it’s not rigged.

four. Philadelphia 76ersJoel Embiid, C, Kansas. Raw 7-footer who picked up a basketball for the first time three years ago. An Embiid/Noel frontline blocks quite a lot of photographs, gives little offense. They’d must let Spencer Hawes stroll in free company. Why not Marcus Smart? As a result of MCW looks like a keeper. Smart’s an improved shooter, but a greater match at PG.

5. Sacramento Kings – Marcus Smart, PG, Oklahoma State. Good’s a scorer and distributor in the mold of Russell Westbrook, with nearly as good athleticism. Smart, Cousins and McLemore? You’ve received something good. I’m positive the Isaiah Thomas groupies received’t like this move.

6. Charlotte BobcatsDante Exum, PG, Australia – A lithe 6-foot-6 and solely 18. Shouldn’t take long to turn out to be an influence player. I like Kemba Walker (16.5 ppg but only 38% FGs), and he generally is a priceless reserve on this crew. The Bobcats, once more, are one of the worst scoring teams in the league, and dead last in FG capturing (forty one.1%).

Arizona v San Diego State

7. LA LakersAaron Gordon, F, Arizona. Typically compared to a younger Blake Griffin. Insane athlete. Kobe will whip him into form quickly.

eight. Phoenix Suns – Gary Harris, SG, Michigan State. Prolific scorer, above-common defender. Sixth man for a 12 months, then takes over after they unload Dragic’s expiring? Or is it price stashing Croatian Dario Saric right here, and getting function gamers later? Major wants now seem like SF/SG, assuming Bledsoe is their future at PG.

gary harris michigan state

9. Philadelphia 76ers (by way of New Orleans) – Rodney Hood, SF, Duke. What turns into of Evan Turner? There are trade rumors (Cleveland?) which would depart Philly with a scoring void at SF. While Duke’s Parker has the hype, Hood is quietly averaging 21 ppg, sixty six FG% and 68% 3FG, though it’s obviously early.

10. Orlando Magic – Noah Vonleh, F, Indiana – Magic have been higher than anticipated. Rank in the course of the pack in lots of NBA categories after being the worst team within the league final year. Wants: Future PG, inside scorer, SF. Vonleh’s off to a nice begin (12 ppg, 10 ppg) and would fit properly next to Vucevic.

mcgary-dunk1

11. Dallas Mavericks – Mitch McGary, PF, Michigan. Terrific all-round abilities. Can be 22 in June. Learns how you can be a professional from Dirk, presumably turns into a 18-10 man for maybe a decade? A less athletic Chris Webber?

12. Denver Nuggets – James Young, SG, Kentucky. Brian Shaw remains to be tinkering, so it’s tough to tell what they want. Will they unload JaVale McGee? What happens when Danilo Gallinari returns? Don’t love Young but, and the all of a sudden-defensive Nuggets won’t touch him except the protection improves. But he can score.

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thirteen. Toronto Raptors – Montrezl Harrell, PF, Louisville. Only guy they’ve gone long on to this point is DeMar DeRozan. The dangerous information: DeRozan and Rudy Homosexual hog all of the shots, but shoot forty one% and 38% respectively. I feel they’ll groom Harrell subsequent year, then let Amir Johnson stroll.

14. Phoenix Suns (through Washington) Dario Saric, F, Croatia – Yup, I’ve bought the Wizards missing the playoffs. With three first spherical picks, sure, the Suns can afford to stash someone for a couple years. They aren’t a playoff staff within the loaded West subsequent 12 months, anyway.

15. Cleveland Cavaliers – Willie Cauley-Stein, C, Kentucky. Varejao has one other year left, then the Cavs could or may not choose up his choice (plus, he’s 32 in September and may’t stay healthy); Bynum reveals up briefly as soon as a week. WCS will provide a superb final line of defense.

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16. Atlanta Hawks – Glenn Robinson III, F, Michigan. Rebounding has been their early weakness, but their bench lacks pop, no less than with Lou Williams not fully healthy. Robinson has struggled this year at Michigan, however solely because the Wolverines don’t have a PG. Could start as a rookie.

17. Orlando Magic (by way of NY through Denver) – Jahii Carson, PG, Arizona State. I’m an unlimited fan, and assume he’s got Nate Robinson’s athletic capability with Brandon Jennings abilities. Heir apparent to Jameer Nelson?

Jahii Carson eurostep vs UNLV-b

18. Charlotte Bobcats (via Detroit) – Nik Stauskas, SG, Michigan. Too excessive, proper? As noted earlier, the Bobcats can’t shoot, and Stauskas is without doubt one of the greatest shooters within the draft. Last year he seemed like a Kyle Korver; this yr, he feels closer to a more explosive JJ Redick. Apologies for the white-man comparisons.

Nik Stauskas slam against Florida State-a

19. Memphis Grizzlies – Doug McDermott, F, Creighton. Probably concentrating on a SG, or a backup at SF. How about a shooter for the postseason when groups double Gasol or Randolph? McDermott doesn’t have the dimensions (6-foot-eight) to play the stretch four, but man is he a deadly shooter past the arc.

20. Charlotte Bobcats (via Portland) - Adreian Payne, F, Michigan State. A third pick within the High 20 might imply a Euro, or perhaps frontcourt help. Their 2013 choose, Cody Zeller, is taking pictures a woeful 34% so far. Payne, an elite athlete for 6-foot-10, 250, can be going a lot higher if he weren’t 23 on the time of the draft.

payne michigan state nba

21. Phoenix Suns (via Minnesota) - Sam Dekker, F, Wisconsin. Such an excellent all-round participant. I’m trying ahead to when he’s free from the Bo Ryan system. Will we see Gordon Hayward-type progress?

22. Houston RocketsAndrew Harrison, PG, Kentucky. Hasn’t looked nice early – fouls have been a problem, so has working the offense – nevertheless it’s an extended season, and he could easily leap into the lottery. Capturing 47% on FGs and forty six% on 3FG. Jeremy Lin has improved his shot, however he received’t come low cost, which is why I believe he strikes on.

23. LA Clippers – Wayne Selden, G, Kansas. Very sluggish begin for the Jayhawks, but a extremely-touted shooter popping out of highschool. At this price, he most likely stays in Lawrence for a yr, turns into the man if Wiggins, Embiid, Ellis transfer on.

24. Boston Celtics (through Brooklyn) – Spencer Dinwiddie, G, Colorado. Yeah, this is bullish on the Nets, but they will’t remain this unhealthy in the lowly East. Dinwiddie was a late-bloomer who is capturing forty four% on 3FGs this season. The larger focus than this decide would be the Celtics on the buying and selling deadline.

25. Oklahoma MetropolisCorey Jefferson, F, Baylor. Powerful participant. Offensively limited, but a terrific athlete. Perkins is sort of executed, Collison may be out of their worth vary, and Jefferson could possibly be a strong function player in two seasons.

26. Chicago Bulls – Aaron Craft, PG, Ohio State. Toughest staff to peg. Still have them making a run a minimum of by means of one round of the playoffs (barring further injuries). The East is that dangerous. However the draft? Heck, this crew could be blown up by the draft. Craft is a 1st round choose, that’s for certain.

27. San Antonio Spurs – Jordan Bachynski, C, Arizona State. Very agile, underrated 7-foot-2 senior who has made huge strides in 4 seasons. His 14-11-7 blocks against Marquette this week might have been the most effective recreation of his profession.

28. Phoenix Suns (via Indiana) - Dakari Johnson, C, Kentucky. Four picks? Yup. Johnson is a challenge with upside, probably alongside the strains of Daniel Orton, who got here out too early, was drafted, and is now on his third crew in three years.

29. Utah Jazz (via Golden State) – Chris Walker, F, Florida. He’s ineligible till subsequent month, however by all accounts, the 6-foot-eleven McDonald’s All-American may be very talented.

30. Miami Heat – Shabazz Napier, PG, Connecticut. Chalmers is a free agent, and if they’re pondering of sliding Cole right into a starting role, Napier can be an outstanding backup.

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NBA Predictions and picks for wed

Necessary Credit score: Eric P. Mull-USA RIGHT NOW Sports

Prediction tracker: 25 for forty seven (capturing 53%)

Part one: Wednesday evening NBA sport predictions (Nov. 27)

Indiana @ Charlotte – The thirteen-1 Pacers are the safe wager, but the Bobcats have so much to show each night time. The Bobcats may stun the Pacers, but it is unlikely. Pacers win ninety nine-ninety eight.

Philadelphia @ Orlando – Nice matchup between 76er rookie point guard Michael Carter-Williams and Magic veteran level guard Jameer Nelson. Nelson’s stats aren’t mesmerizing, however he gets the job executed. Magic win a hundred-ninety five.

Memphis @ Boston – The Grizz misplaced two games at home after sweeping their California highway journey. The Celtics have won their final two video games after going on a six sport losing streak. Who’s hungrier? Grizzlies win 103-ninety two.

LA Lakers @ Brooklyn – Last evening, Brooklyn received its first game in 11 days towards the Raptors. The Nets scored one level in the remaining five minutes to win by two, however a win is a win. Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett will not let the Lakers beat them at house. Nets win 96-91.

Miami @ Cleveland – I ponder how many Cleveland fans shall be feeling the holiday cheer with LeBron James in town. This sport is on ESPN at 7:30 pm ET for a cause. Kyrie Irving is great, but it will likely be a small miracle to beat the Warmth with Dwyane Wade and James enjoying effectively. Warmth win a hundred and ten-ninety seven.

Chicago @ Detroit – The Pistons are higher than their 6-8 record suggests. With out Derrick Rose within the lineup for the Bulls, the Pistons have the upper hand. Pistons win 104-ninety eight.

Atlanta @ HoustonJames Harden is a recreation time resolution, however Jeremy Lin is an effective substitute if Harden stays out. The Rockets are first in scoring and third in rebounding, which offsets their poor defense. Rockets win 115-110.

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2014 NBA Mock Draft: Thanksgiving Week Edition

Image (1) basketball-top-5-594x396.png for post 296209

It’s 2014 NBA Mock draft time! One of the best drafts in years! As many teams traded to get into this first round, there are a number of strikes that still are to be decided. This site is a good resource recapping plenty of the trades. My guess on the order beneath isn’t based on where issues are now – but relatively how I assume it would end up. Issues taken into consideration: Salaries, potential free agents, needs, and evaluation from several NBA scouts. That is not a ranking of greatest gamers within the draft.

1. Utah Jazz - Andrew Wiggins, F, Kansas. You would possibly hear some Jabari Parker chatter (he’s Mormon!) however right now, it’s Wiggins. Upside, upside, upside. The place does he match in the event you preserve Hayward? You can play each.

2. Milwaukee BucksJulius Randle, F, Kentucky. Will instantly be their best participant. Randle and Sanders will be a pleasant tandem inside. They’ll re-shape the backcourt in the 2015 lottery – Antetokounmpo continues to be a couple of years away from being a factor.

Jabari Parker shows off NBA moves against Kansas-a

three. Boston CelticsJabari Parker, F, Duke. Rumors Parker may stay. Fun storyline, I’m not buying it. If you’re a kind of conspiracy types, how about the Celtics successful the lottery? Brad Stevens, Lakers and Celtics both down … yeah, yeah, I know, it’s not rigged.

4. Philadelphia 76ersJoel Embiid, C, Kansas. Uncooked 7-footer who picked up a basketball for the first time three years ago. An Embiid/Noel frontline blocks a whole lot of shots, provides little offense. They’d must let Spencer Hawes walk in free agency. Why not Marcus Sensible? Because MCW seems to be like a keeper. Good’s an improved shooter, however a greater match at PG.

5. Sacramento Kings – Marcus Good, PG, Oklahoma State. Smart’s a scorer and distributor within the mildew of Russell Westbrook, with practically pretty much as good athleticism. Sensible, Cousins and McLemore? You’ve obtained something good. I’m positive the Isaiah Thomas groupies won’t like this move.

6. Charlotte BobcatsDante Exum, PG, Australia – A lithe 6-foot-6 and only 18. Shouldn’t take lengthy to turn out to be an impression player. I like Kemba Walker (sixteen.5 ppg however solely 38% FGs), and he could be a precious reserve on this staff. The Bobcats, once more, are one of many worst scoring teams in the league, and dead final in FG shooting (forty one.1%).

Arizona v San Diego State

7. LA LakersAaron Gordon, F, Arizona. Typically in comparison with a young Blake Griffin. Insane athlete. Kobe will whip him into shape quickly.

eight. Phoenix Suns – Gary Harris, SG, Michigan State. Prolific scorer, above-average defender. Sixth man for a 12 months, then takes over after they unload Dragic’s expiring? Or is it price stashing Croatian Dario Saric right here, and getting function players later? Primary wants now look like SF/SG, assuming Bledsoe is their future at PG.

gary harris michigan state

9. Philadelphia 76ers (via New Orleans) – Rodney Hood, SF, Duke. What turns into of Evan Turner? There are commerce rumors (Cleveland?) which would leave Philly with a scoring void at SF. While Duke’s Parker has the hype, Hood is quietly averaging 21 ppg, sixty six FG% and 68% 3FG, although it’s clearly early.

10. Orlando Magic – Noah Vonleh, F, Indiana – Magic have been better than anticipated. Rank in the middle of the pack in lots of NBA classes after being the worst team in the league last yr. Needs: Future PG, inside scorer, SF. Vonleh’s off to a nice begin (12 ppg, 10 ppg) and would match nicely next to Vucevic.

mcgary-dunk1

eleven. Dallas Mavericks – Mitch McGary, PF, Michigan. Terrific all-around expertise. Might be 22 in June. Learns how you can be a pro from Dirk, probably turns into a 18-10 man for perhaps a decade? A less athletic Chris Webber?

12. Denver Nuggets – James Young, SG, Kentucky. Brian Shaw remains to be tinkering, so it’s difficult to inform what they want. Will they unload JaVale McGee? What occurs when Danilo Gallinari returns? Don’t love Younger but, and the all of a sudden-defensive Nuggets won’t contact him until the defense improves. But he can rating.

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thirteen. Toronto Raptors – Montrezl Harrell, PF, Louisville. Solely guy they’ve gone long on to this point is DeMar DeRozan. The dangerous news: DeRozan and Rudy Gay hog all of the pictures, but shoot 41% and 38% respectively. I think they’ll groom Harrell subsequent 12 months, then let Amir Johnson walk.

14. Phoenix Suns (through Washington) Dario Saric, F, Croatia – Yup, I’ve bought the Wizards missing the playoffs. With three first round picks, certain, the Suns can afford to stash somebody for a couple years. They aren’t a playoff crew in the loaded West next yr, anyway.

15. Cleveland Cavaliers – Willie Cauley-Stein, C, Kentucky. Varejao has another year left, then the Cavs could or may not pick up his possibility (plus, he’s 32 in September and can’t keep wholesome); Bynum exhibits up briefly once a week. WCS will present a good last line of protection.

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sixteen. Atlanta Hawks – Glenn Robinson III, F, Michigan. Rebounding has been their early weakness, however their bench lacks pop, not less than with Lou Williams not absolutely healthy. Robinson has struggled this 12 months at Michigan, however only as a result of the Wolverines don’t have a PG. May begin as a rookie.

17. Orlando Magic (by way of NY by way of Denver) – Jahii Carson, PG, Arizona State. I’m an unlimited fan, and think he’s acquired Nate Robinson’s athletic capacity with Brandon Jennings abilities. Heir obvious to Jameer Nelson?

Jahii Carson eurostep vs UNLV-b

18. Charlotte Bobcats (through Detroit) – Nik Stauskas, SG, Michigan. Too high, proper? As famous earlier, the Bobcats can’t shoot, and Stauskas is likely one of the best shooters in the draft. Final 12 months he looked like a Kyle Korver; this yr, he feels nearer to a more explosive JJ Redick. Apologies for the white-guy comparisons.

Nik Stauskas slam against Florida State-a

19. Memphis Grizzlies – Doug McDermott, F, Creighton. Most likely concentrating on a SG, or a backup at SF. How a couple of shooter for the postseason when groups double Gasol or Randolph? McDermott doesn’t have the scale (6-foot-8) to play the stretch four, but man is he a lethal shooter past the arc.

20. Charlotte Bobcats (via Portland) - Adreian Payne, F, Michigan State. A third pick in the Prime 20 may imply a Euro, or maybe frontcourt assist. Their 2013 decide, Cody Zeller, is shooting a woeful 34% so far. Payne, an elite athlete for six-foot-10, 250, can be going a lot greater if he weren’t 23 at the time of the draft.

payne michigan state nba

21. Phoenix Suns (via Minnesota) - Sam Dekker, F, Wisconsin. Such a very good all-round player. I’m trying ahead to when he’s free from the Bo Ryan system. Will we see Gordon Hayward-sort development?

22. Houston RocketsAndrew Harrison, PG, Kentucky. Hasn’t appeared great early – fouls have been a problem, so has working the offense – but it surely’s an extended season, and he may simply leap into the lottery. Shooting forty seven% on FGs and 46% on 3FG. Jeremy Lin has improved his shot, but he gained’t come low-cost, which is why I feel he strikes on.

23. LA Clippers – Wayne Selden, G, Kansas. Very sluggish start for the Jayhawks, but a highly-touted shooter coming out of highschool. At this price, he probably stays in Lawrence for a yr, turns into the man if Wiggins, Embiid, Ellis transfer on.

24. Boston Celtics (by way of Brooklyn) – Spencer Dinwiddie, G, Colorado. Yeah, this is bullish on the Nets, but they’ll’t remain this dangerous in the lowly East. Dinwiddie was a late-bloomer who’s taking pictures 44% on 3FGs this season. The bigger focus than this choose will be the Celtics on the buying and selling deadline.

25. Oklahoma MetropolisCorey Jefferson, F, Baylor. Robust participant. Offensively restricted, however a terrific athlete. Perkins is sort of carried out, Collison may be out of their value range, and Jefferson could possibly be a strong function participant in two seasons.

26. Chicago Bulls – Aaron Craft, PG, Ohio State. Hardest workforce to peg. Still have them making a run at the least by one spherical of the playoffs (barring further accidents). The East is that bad. However the draft? Heck, this team could possibly be blown up by the draft. Craft is a 1st round choose, that’s for sure.

27. San Antonio Spurs – Jordan Bachynski, C, Arizona State. Very agile, underrated 7-foot-2 senior who has made large strides in 4 seasons. His 14-11-7 blocks in opposition to Marquette this week might have been the very best sport of his career.

28. Phoenix Suns (by way of Indiana) - Dakari Johnson, C, Kentucky. 4 picks? Yup. Johnson is a undertaking with upside, probably along the traces of Daniel Orton, who came out too early, was drafted, and is now on his third workforce in three years.

29. Utah Jazz (through Golden State) – Chris Walker, F, Florida. He’s ineligible until subsequent month, however by all accounts, the 6-foot-eleven McDonald’s All-American could be very talented.

30. Miami Warmth – Shabazz Napier, PG, Connecticut. Chalmers is a free agent, and if they’re pondering of sliding Cole right into a beginning role, Napier could be an excellent backup.

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NBA Power rankings Week 4

NBA power rankings

NBA Power rankings and standings for week 4

Sad ending for week 3 of the young NBA season for both the Chicago Bulls and Memphis Grizzles.

 

The swift announcement Monday morning that Derrick Rose is indeed out for the season after another major knee injury, even if you were expecting Rose’s surgery to produce such a dire diagnosis, hit the league hard. And seeing the Memphis Grizzlies lose Marc Gasol indefinitely to a knee injury of his own certainly didn’t help, even though Gasol’s will not require surgery.

The resulting hunt for something (anything) resembling a pick-me-up could take us only to Portland, where the Blazers have extended their improbable winning streak to a whopping 10 games, with three of the victories in a 4-0 week coming on the road.

 

The defending champs from Miami did nothing terribly wrong in the past seven days besides flirting Saturday night with a home loss to Orlando … but your NBA Power Rankings committee (of one), in the circumstances, couldn’t resist. The Blazers have been bumped up four spots to No. 3 in this week’s most significant move in the top 10 — one spot ahead of No. 4 Miami. This is partly a reward for giving us at least one upbeat headline to stack up against all the bad injury news, and also a result of the rampantly bad basketball coming from two-thirds of the Eastern Conference.

 

Meanwhile, the Grizzlies remain at No. 14 despite the loss of Gasol and the Bulls have tumbled to No. 18, as a result of the huge Derrick Rose loss. The Nuggets with their recent play jumped six spots to No. 11.

 

NBA Teams standings 1-30 with records and last week’s rankings in parenthesis are as followed:

 

1 San Antonio Spurs (13-1 LW: 2)- The Spurs continue to roll as Tim Duncan continues to put up less than average numbers and three of their wins have come against teams without winning records, but yet they sport the leagues only double-digit nightly average point margin.

 

2 Indiana Pacers (13-1 LW: 1)- Cleary the class of the East as of now and they are getting it done with defense as Paul George and Roy Hibbert who already has blocked at least five shots in seven of the 13 games this season are getting it done early.

 

3 Portland Trailblazers (13-2 LW: 7)- Jumping four spots in our top 10 are the Blazers who despite beating up on the sub-.500 teams to get to 13-2 on their 11-game win streak, let’s not forget six of the Blazers 10-straight wins were on the road.

 

4 Miami Heat (11-3 LW: 3)- With the only hiccup in the week being that they had to claw back from a 16-point deficit to the Orlando Magic and losses to Philly and Boston in the rear view mirror, they seem to be getting back to the team that we all know.

nba power rankings

5 Los Angeles Clippers (10-5 LW: 4)- The Clips survived a tough five-game stretch in which they lost a tough home game against the Grizzles and ended it by beating the Bulls by 39 points.

 

6 Oklahoma City Thunder (9-3 LW: 8)- The Thunder are just one of five teams that have not lost at home, joining Indy, San Antonio, Dallas and Chicago. Sitting down Russell Westbrook against the hapless Jazz was a good move in light of what the Thunder are asking him to do on a nightly basis.

 

7 Golden State Warriors (8-6 LW: 5)- Warriors are 8-2 when their complement of players are on the court, but they will be challenged as they get set to play seven of the next eight on the road.

 

8 Houston Rockets (10-5 LW: 9)- The Rockets let James Harden rest his nagging foot that has been a nuisance since Mid-October. The key when he gets back is letting Chandler Parsons get enough touches of the rock behind Dwight and Harden.

 

9 Dallas Mavericks (9-6 LW: 11)- Monta Ellis leads the Mavs in scoring to finally get the much needed help to Dirk Nowitski who has led Dallas in scoring every year since the 2000-01 season. A welcome relief finally.

 

10 Minnesota Timberwolves (8-8 LW: 6)- Beating Brooklyn helped the T’Wolves avoid going 0-4, however they were no match for the Pacers on the road on Monday night.

 

11 Denver Nuggets (7-6 LW: 17)- The recent Nuggets success can be attributed to winning at home again and Kenneth Faried scoring six double-doubles in seven games after having just one in his first five games.

 

12 Phoenix Suns (7-7, LW: 12)- Electric Eric Bledsoe has been slowed by a bruised shin, but responded with road wins in Charlotte and Orlando. The Suns did suffer a lopsided defeat in Miami on Monday night.

 

13 Atlanta Hawks (8-6 LW: 13)- Hawks are only one of three teams with a winning record in the East. They did lose a bad home game to the Celtics… but they are in the East and winning in a weak conference.

 

14 Memphis Grizzles (7-7 LW: 14)- The Grizzles were just starting to heat up sweeping all four of the California teams in a span of six days…. Then Marc Gasol goes down on Friday night with a knee sprain and news is no surgery required, but will be sidelined around 2 months.

 

15 Los Angeles Lakers (7-7 LW: 19)- The Lakers to this point have silenced the nay-sayers with their .500 record.. and all without Kobe Bryant who is expected to return soon. Pau Gasol is heating up in Kobe’s absence having racked up eight double-doubles.

 

16 New Orleans Pelicans (6-7 LW: 18)- Pelicans big man Anthony Davis is the only player close to Hibbert in terms of games (five) with at least five blocks. They were no match on the road Monday night against the Spurs.

 

17 Charlotte Bobcats (7-8)- The Bobcats are 4-3 on the road, which is good news considering they were 9-65 over the previous two seasons. Al Jefferson has been in and out of the lineup with ankle issues. The lost at home Monday night against Boston.

 

18 Chicago Bulls (6-7 LW: 10)- Just sad news all-around for the Chicago Bulls who now realize they will once again have to play the rest of the season without their star Derrick Rose who suffered a major knee injury at Portland. Sad, sad, sad.

 

nba power rankings

19 Toronto Raptors (6-7 LW: 22)- Liken the NFL’s NFC East, the NBA’s Atlantic Division is just the same…. Bad! One game under .500 and they are in first place. Go figure?

 

20 Philadelphia Sixers (6-9 LW: 16)- Still playing better then expected and despite their record… are in second place in the Atlantic Division at only one game back… huh?

 

21 Washington Wizards (5-8)- Still struggling early on… but G John Wall scored 30 points in consecutive games. It’s safe to say the Wizards go as John Wall goes.

 

22 Detroit Pistons (6-8 LW: 27)- Josh Smith… the new ‘face’ of the franchise is finding it difficult being ‘the man’ as he has been benched more then once and was booed on his return to Atlanta.

 

23 Orlando Magic (4-9 LW: 21)- Victor Oladipo has been inserted into the starting lineup… and as the face of the Magic future… seems like a good move.

 

24 Boston Celtics (6-10 LW: 25)- Celts halted their six-game skid at Atlanta and the good news is that the schedule will lighten up after facing Portland, San Antonio and Indiana in a space of a week.

 

25 Sacramento Kings (4-9)- With the ‘one-man show’ of DeMarcus Cousins not getting any support, talk around Kings camp is some possible moves coming up.

 

26 Cleveland Cavaliers (4-10 LW: 20)- Kyrie Irving is frustrated as the Cavs along with Andrew Bynum are underachieving in a weak Eastern Conference. LeBron will be making his return visit to Cleveland on Wednesday.

 

27 New York Knicks (3-10 LW: 24)- The Knicks just went winless at home in November with a relatively easy schedule, now must pack their bags and head West where it won’t get any easier as they already lost on Monday night in Portland.

 

28 Brooklyn Nets (3-10 LW: 23)- Just a horrible start to a Nets team that came in having great promise, but an ailing D. Williams is not helping.

 

29 Milwaukee Bucks (2-11 LW: 28)- If it weren’t for the Utah Jazz, the Bucks would be at the bottom… but an array of early season injuries isn’t helping their cause.

 

30 Utah Jazz (2-14 LW: 30)- As if losing Derrick Rose wasn’t bad enough… the Chicago Bulls lost to the Jazz on Monday night. Ouch!
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NBA Power rankings By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter visit NBA for more Basketball news

 

 

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NBA Predictions Week 4 Monday Night Games/Picks

nba picks

Monday night in the NBA kicks off Week 4 of the young NBA season with 9 games to choose from… here are the latest lines and picks with my game predictions. Be up to date with all the latest lines here at Wonder Punter up until tip-off.

 

Boston Celtics (5-10) @ Charlotte Bobcats (7-7) 11/25- 7:00PM EST

 

Line: CHA -4.0

Over/Under: 184.5

 

The Celtics snapped a five game losing streak with a big win at Atlanta. Bobcats are 2-3 in their last five.

 

PICK: Charlotte

 

Minnesota Timberwolves (8-7) @ Indiana Pacers (10-1) 11/25- 7:00PM EST

 

Line: IND -6.5

Over/Under: 194.5

 

Pacers have stayed hot whereas the T’Wolves have struggled of late. I like the Pacers to continue their streak.

 

PICK: Indiana

 

Milwaukee Bucks (2-10) @ Detroit Pistons (4-8) 11/25- 7:30PM EST

 

Line: DET -8.0

Over/Under: 192

 

No reason to think the Bucks will snap their five game losing streak on the road…. Favor the Pistons at home despite playing in a second of a back-to-back.

 

PICK: Detroit

 

Phoenix Suns (6-6) @ Miami Heat (10-3) 11/25- 7:30PM EST

 

Line: MIA -12.0

Over/Under: 201.5

 

The Suns started hot early but are just 1-4 in their last five. Heat unbeaten in the same stretch. With the Suns playing in as many nights.. I like the Heat to win.

 

PICK: Miami
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Houston Rockets (9-5) @ Memphis Grizzles (7-6) 11/25- 8:00PM EST

 

Line: HOU -1.5

Over/Under: 196.5

 

Both teams playing well and are 4-1 in their last five… Grizzles at home.

 

PICK: Memphis

 

Denver Nuggets (6-6) @ Dallas Mavericks (9-5) 11/25- 8:30PM EST

 

Line: DAL -5.0

Over/Under: 214

 

Nuggets beat Dallas at home on Saturday night but expect the Mavs to return the favor in their own arena.

 

PICK: Dallas

 

New Orleans Pelicans (6-6) @ San Antonio Spurs (12-1) 11/25- 8:30PM EST

 

Line: SAS -10.0

Over/Under: 198.5

 

The Spurs are at the top of their game right now.. and at home for this one.

 

PICK: San Antonio

 

Chicago Bulls (6-5) @ Utah Jazz (1-13) 11/25- 9:00PM EST

 

Line: CHI -2.5

Over/Under: 183

 

The Bulls are in a second of a back-to-back and now no Derrick Rose for an extended period of time… but they should still have enough to beat the lowly Jazz.

 

PICK: Chicago

 

New York Knicks (3-9) @ Portland Trailblazers (12-2) 11/25- 10:00PM EST

 

Line: POR -8.0

Over/Under: 196.5

 

Clearly two teams headed in opposite directions. Knicks winless in five and a total mess right now… Blazers unbeaten in five and play extremely well at home.

 

PICK: Portland

 

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter

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NBA Pick Week 3 Saturday Night Games Preview & Prediction

NBA-sports-betting1

NBA Prediction and free picks for full line up

NBA Saturday night will bring us 10 big games to choose from. Here is the latest lines with my preview and predictions for each game. Get all the up to the minute spreads here at Wonder Punter.

 

Sacramento Kings (4-7) @ Los Angeles Clippers (8-5) 11/23- 3:30 PM EST

 

Line: LAC -10.5

Over/Under: 207.5

Bet on the NBA Here!

Kings have won their last two games but the Clippers have too much talent to lose this one at home.

 

PICK: LAC

 

Philadelphia 76ers (6-8) @ Indiana Pacers (11-1) 11/23- 7:00PM EST

 

Line: IND -14.5

Over/Under: 193

 

Pacers will handle the 76ers easily at home.

 

PICK: Indiana

 

New York Knicks (3-8) @ Washington Wizards (4-8) 11/23- 7:00PM EST

 

Line: WASH -2.5

Over/Under: 192.5

 

Both teams are struggling but Knicks are falling apart early.

 

PICK: Washington

 

Boston Celtics (4-10) @ Atlanta Hawks (8-5) 11/23- 7:30PM EST

 

Line: ATL -8.5

Over/Under: 195.5

 

Hawks are an early season surprise and Celts have lost five straight.

 

PICK: Atlanta

 

Orlando Magic (4-7) @ Miami Heat (9-3) 11/23- 7:30PM EST

 

Line: MIA -13.5

Over/Under: 203.5

 

The Heat is an easy one at home.

 

PICK: Miami

 

Minnesota Timberwolves (8-6) @ Houston Rockets (8-5) 11/23- 8:00PM EST

 

Line: HOU -6.5

Over/Under: 216

 

With the T’Wolves playing the second of a back-to-back… Rockets should win big.

 

PICK: Houston

 

Charlotte Bobcats (6-7) @ Milwaukee Bucks (2-9) 11/23- 8:30PM EST

 

Line: MIL -2.5

Over/Under: 181.5

 

Both teams coming losses in the first of back-to-backs… but Bobcats still the better team.

 

PICK: Charlotte

NBA betting right here!!

Cleveland Cavaliers (4-9) @ San Antonio Spurs (11-1) 11/23- 8:30PM EST

 

Line: SAS -11.5

Over/Under: 191

 

Both teams is a second of back-to-backs… Spurs too strong.

 

PICK: San Antonio

 

Dallas Mavericks (9-4) @ Denver Nuggets (5-6) 11/23- 9:00PM EST

 

Line: DEN -5.0

Over/Under: 215

 

Mavs is a second of a back-to-back. Nuggets play well as of late.

 

PICK: Denver

 

Portland Trailblazers (11-2) @ Golden State Warriors (8-5) 11/23- 10:30PM EST

 

Line: GSW -8.5

Over/Under: 209.5

 

Both teams playing their second straight… should be a good one but like the Warriors at home.

 

PICK: Golden State

 

 

 

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter