Initial Reaction: Chris Paul traded to Houston

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The Los Angeles Clippers will send All-Star PG, Chris Paul, to the Houston Rockets for Lou Williams, Sam Dekker, Patrick Beverley and 2018 1st-round pick.

Highway Robbery.

Look, we all know the Clippers have not lived up to the expectations that were set upon them, mainly due to injuries. Whether it was Chris Paul or Blake Griffin, one of them would get hurt at the wrong time. We also can’t forget the 2015 playoffs, when the Clippers needed to win 1 more game vs Houston to advance to the conference finals, but blew a 3-1 lead.

It was likely that Chris Paul would leave the Clippers, and sign elsewhere. Elsewhere being in San Antonio, which was obviously the best fit. Paul would get to play under the best coach in the NBA, the best two-way player in the NBA and have solid pieces around him that ultimately would have led Paul to his first NBA Finals appearance, in my opinion.

The trade to Houston makes zero sense to me. It is clear that James Harden is the PG for the Rockets, but now comes to join is the best POINT GUARD in the NBA. Outside of Harden and CP3, what other pieces does Houston have? Word is that CP3 wants to play with James Harden. I guess we will see how that works.

Bad move, CP3.

 

2017 NBA Finals Preview and Prediction

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It’s finally here: the NBA Finals matchup that we all knew would happen. The Cleveland Cavaliers vs the Golden State Warriors, part III. This has the potential to go down as one of the best NBA Finals matchups in NBA history. Although, my favorite is the 2013 Heat-Spurs back and forth matchup.

How did we get here? Let’s quickly took a look at Cleveland’s path to the NBA Finals:

LeBron James.

No, really, I could leave it at that.

The Cavaliers finished the regular season with a 51-31 record, securing the 2nd seed, behind the Boston Celtics (53-29). Some were concerned with the Cavaliers entering the playoffs. In my Skip Bayless voice impression, the Cavaliers finished the season 23-23 over the last 46 games. Well, the thought of them struggling through a “weak” Eastern Conference was quickly put to rest, as an Avery Bradley game winner was the Cavs only playoff loss.

Now, let’s quickly look at Golden State’s path to the NBA Finals:

The signing of Kevin Durant made Golden State an essential lock to make the NBA Finals. The Warriors had no problems in the regular season, securing the 1st seed in the Western Conference, with a 67-15 record. Portland and Utah had no chance of knocking the Warriors out of the playoffs. Then came Gregg Popovich and his San Antonio Spurs. Long story short, the Zaza Pachulia dirty play knocked out Kawhi Leonard for the rest of the series. Spurs were up 23 AT Golden State before Pachulia’s reckless play. I really believed that the Spurs would have won in 7. Anyway, the Warriors made it to the NBA Finals with a perfect 12-0 record in the playoffs.

So, what happens starting June 1st?

The Warriors are heavy favorites over the best player in the league, LeBron James, who is making his SEVENTH consecutive NBA Finals appearance. And, honestly, I do not see how, and I’ll explain:

  1. I don’t watch Golden State much, but I only see them run 3 or 4 plays. They have some great players, but, in a simple offense.
  2. The Cavaliers are much deeper, and the case can be made that the Cavs have the advantage at PG, SF, PF and C.
  3.  The bench. The Cavaliers have Deron Williams, Kyle Korver, Iman Shumpert, Richard Jefferson and Channing Frye. The Warriors? The only factor I see is Andre Iguodala. No disrespect to the other bench players.
  4. I think LeBron James wants this more than ever, and more than any other player in this year’s Finals.

Prediction time:

My heart says Cavs in 5, but I’ll play it safe, and pick the Cavs in 6.

Game 1: Cavaliers 103, Warriors 93

Game 2: Warriors 107, Cavaliers 96

Game 3: Cavaliers 110, Warriors 95

Game 4: Cavaliers 96, Warriors 92

Game 5: Warriors 113, Cavaliers 100

Game 6: Cavaliers 105, Warriors 99

NBA Finals MVP: The King. Putting up numbers along the lines of 38ppg, 9rpg and 8apg.

Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat Cut Ties After 13 Seasons

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“With the fifth pick in the 2003 NBA Draft, the Miami Heat select Dwyane Wade from Marquette University” – Former NBA Commissioner, David Stern.

Dwyane Tyrone Wade, Jr., a kid from Robbins, Illinois has just made it to the big stage. The 6’4 guard out of Marquette averaged 19.7ppg, 6.5rpg and 3.9apg, and was ready to take on the NBA at the age of 22. The 2003 NBA Draft, known as one of the best draft classes in NBA History, wasn’t all about D-Wade, though. The draft featured future teammates LeBron James and Chris Bosh, as well as superstar, Carmelo Anthony. The main focus was on James and Anthony, respectively.

Fast forward to Wade’s rookie season. He played in 61 of the 82 games, while starting 56 of them. He finished the season with averages of 16.2ppg, 4.0rpg and 4.5apg. He didn’t win rookie of the year, thanks to LeBron James, but it was a solid rookie season as he led the Miami Heat (42-40) to the playoffs. Wade led the Heat to the Eastern Conference Semifinals, in which they were defeated by the Indiana Pacers. The series before that featured a Dwyane Wade game-winner vs the formerly known, New Orleans Hornets.

Fast forward to the 2005-2006 season. Wade’s third season in the league featured a Miami Heat team with Shaquille O’Neal and Gary Payton. The Heat finished 52-30 and reached the NBA Finals. If you did not believe Dwyane Wade was a star at this point, then I am 99% sure your mind changed after the 2005-06 NBA Finals. The Heat faced a Dirk Nowitzki led Dallas Mavericks, who quickly jumped out to a 2-0 series lead over the Heat.

It is hard to put into words how incredible Wade was, especially after falling down 0-2. In what is known as one of the most controversial NBA Finals ever, due to the amount of free throw attempts Wade shot, the Heat rallied to win the series 4-2 to capture Miami’s first NBA Championship. Wade posted averages of 34.7ppg, 7.8rpg and 3.8apg.

At this point, Dwyane Wade was Miami. With Wade on the court, the Heat were always a threat. D-Wade stuck with this team through the 5 NBA Finals appearance and also the rough patches, including the 2007-08 season where the Heat only won 15 games. Granted, Wade only played in 51 games as he dealt with injury, but the season was hideous, to say the least.

The Decision. Arguably the NBA’s best player at the time, LeBron James announces that he will leave the Cleveland Cavaliers, and join Wade and the Miami Heat. That’s not all. Chris Bosh, who averaged 24 and 10 the season prior, joined the Heat, too. Uh-oh. This shook the NBA. We all remember LeBron saying that the Heat will win “Not 1, Not 2, Not 3, etc” championships, right? That only made the other 29 NBA teams want to take them out even more. The trio, along with role players such as Ray Allen, Shane Battier, Mike Miller, Udonis Haslem, Mario Chalmers, etc. would go on to play in 4 straight NBA Finals, winning 2 of them.

2011: Loses to Dallas, 4-2

2012: Defeats Oklahoma City, 4-1

2013: Defeats San Antonio, 4-3

2014: Loses to San Antonio, 4-1

The 2014 loss to the Spurs prompted a LeBron James return back home to Cleveland. This left Wade and Bosh.

Then came the 2015 off-season. I wrote about it, and you can read it here.

Then comes the 2016 off-season. I’m pretty sure all Heat fans, including myself, thought that Pat Riley had this under control. As a matter of fact, we were so confident, we thought Riley would re-sign Dwyane Wade, emerging Center, Hassan Whiteside AND bring in Thunder superstar, Kevin Durant.

Boy, were we wrong.

Days go by, still no Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat deal. Rumors swirl that Wade was growing frustrated with the organization, and would meet with other teams such as the Bucks and Nuggets.

July 6, 2016, 9:29pm ET: Breaking: Dwyane Wade expected to leave Heat and sign with Bulls – sources; 12-time All-Star won 3 NBA titles with Miami. (ESPN)

My heart dropped. I was in such shock and disbelief. The player who made me a Miami Heat fan is leaving the franchise that he made HIS. How could he? Better yet, how could Pat Riley let him walk?

As tears ran from my eyes, I started to question if I even wanted to watch the NBA anymore. I even slept in my D. Wade “shirsey” that night, and told myself I would not wear it again. The text messages came, and the notifications about Dwyane Wade’s decision kept coming to my phone. It only upset me even more.

Dwyane Wade is my favorite player, and is the reason I am a Heat fan. He is who I try to model my game after when I go to the gym to play a pick-up game of basketball. He was a role model. When I got into an argument about who was the best NBA player, LeBron, Kobe, KD, Steph, etc, I always said it was Dwyane Wade.

I was 100% sure he was going to retire with the Miami Heat.

So, I sat and thought to myself about what I was going to do. Stop watching the NBA? I mean, there is no reason to watch the team that I love now, is there?  Then, my dad texts me and says “Are you going to root for the Bulls?” I said, “No. Just football and baseball for me.” Then I realized, there was no way I was going to stop watching the NBA.

I will continue to be a Miami Heat fan, but Dwyane Wade is still, and will always be my favorite player, and I wish him nothing but the best in Chicago; because that is what he deserves.

As for the Miami Heat, what’s next?

  • 3x NBA Champion (2006, 2012, 2013)
  • 2006 Finals MVP
  • 12x NBA All-Star
  • 2x All-NBA First Team
  • NBA Scoring Champion
  • 3x All-NBA Second Team
  • 3x All-NBA Third Team
  • Miami Heat Franchise leader in points, assists, steals, and games played.

Just to name a few accolades.

You will always be the Miami Heat in my eyes.

Thank you, Dwyane Wade.

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(P.S: I could have made this a lot longer, but did not want to waste your day)

 

 

 

Better Sport: Football, Basketball or Baseball

We just can’t go wrong with sports. Whether it is football, basketball or baseball. No disrespect to soccer, tennis, hockey or other sports; they just aren’ t on the same level as the first three I listed, in my opinion.

To start things off, my favorite sport is football, with basketball a close second, followed by baseball.

Just the excitement that both, professional and college football brings, is just unmatched. Every weekend is something new and fun.

Too look at the NFL first, we all know that the Seahawks, Patriots, Packers, Broncos, Ravens and the fast emerging Colts will most likely be in the 2015 NFL Playoffs. But, there is always 1 or 2 teams that come out of the blue and surprise the league.

In College Football, there are like 20+ legit teams that can win the National Championship any season. Then comes the 5-10 teams that come and surprise the nation.

With the NBA, it is pretty much the same teams that are competing for the Larry O’Brien trophy: Spurs, Cavs, Warriors, Heat, Clippers and a few others.

MLB hands down has the better playoffs year in and year out, in my opinion. I guess the season being so long kind of makes it lose points in this.

In the MLB, it’s a new team every season  it seems like. Take a look at the Kansas City Royals, they were 1 win away from winning the World Series, after being  a no show in the playoffs in the previous couple of seasons.

To recap, I think that football is the best sport, and is definitely my favorite.

COMMENT BELOW WHAT YOU THINK!!!nba-mlb-nfl

Should Fans Be Allowed To Vote Player’s into All-Star Games?

Fan voting is something that has been added into sports the last couple of seasons. The NBA, NFL and MLB allows fans to vote players into All-Star games. This is a good thing, but also could be an unfair thing. I will discuss the pros and cons of All-Star fan voting; starting with the positives.

Who wouldn’t want to see players from his/her favorite team not be in the All-Star game? Didn’t think so.

What Yankees fan wants to see a Red Sox player having an incredible season start for the American League? Well, I would not.

Having fans vote players into the All-Star game was a smart thing to add to the game. It makes sports even more fun.  Allowing fans the option to vote let’s us decide who we want to see start in the All-Star game. It also allows us to be able to not vote for someone deserving.

I like the idea of allowing fans to vote, but I think that it should ultimately be up to the players in the league to vote.

For example, the Baltimore Ravens and the Pittsburgh Steelers are hated NFL rivals and do not like each other. But, Joe Flacco, QB for the Ravens, had a remarkable season throwing for 4,500 yards and 40TD’s. Those numbers are certainly Pro Bowl(NFL All-Star game) worthy.

He doesn’t get voted in, but instead Ben Roethlisberger, QB for the Steelers, gets voted in because Steelers fans’ voted for him millions of times, although he had a pedestrian season.

The point of this blog is to say this: Sports leagues allowing fans to vote was and is a great idea, but shouldn’t be factored in heavily at all.
COMMENT WHAT YOU THINKallstarblog BELOW!!

Dwyane Wade, Heat Agree to New, One-Year Contract

And a sigh of relief is heard by the Miami Heat fans across the world, including myself. It is almost a guarantee that every Miami Heat fan is a fan because of Dwyane Wade, unless you have lived longer, and have been a fan since before 2003, the year Wade was drafted 5th overall by the Miami Heat.

Dwyane has done a lot for this organization, such as winning the Heat’s first NBA Championship in 2006, and winning 2 more in 2012 and 2013.

He was also the main reason LeBron James took his talents to South Beach, along with Chris Bosh.

The personality and character that Wade has is very hard to find in a player, so NBA front offices need to keep and appreciate a player that has those qualities.

For someone with an impressive resume as Wade, he has never been the highest paid player on the team. But now it is time for Dwyane Wade to get the money he wants AND deserves.

Dwyane Wade opted out of the final year of his $16.1 million dollar contract to test the NBA free agent market-something that sent Heat fans into shock and into question.

Wade can’t leave Miami, right? Where else would he want to play? What happened to the “Heat Lyfer” slogan? More and more questions piled up. This led to twitter users, such as myself, to tweet Miami Heat/NBA beat writers question upon question about Dwyane Wade. It also led to Miami Heat Center, Hassan Whiteside, saying that he is not answering anymore questions about Wade’s free agency: “Man if another person ask me if d wade staying in Miami I’m going to lose it! I DONT KNOW!!! I just catch LOBS from the man..”

As each day passes without a word from Wade, the stress level in Heat fans continues to rise.

Then came July 2nd. It’s reported that Dwyane Wade and the Miami Heat agree to a one year contact worth $20M.

Heat fans across the world exhale, until next July when Pat Riley, Dwyane Wade, and the Heat fans have to go through this again.dwadefinals