December 25th, 2012
After a long period of difficulties the Lakers got back in the victories this last week. Finally resurrection time may have come for LA, who last Thursday was at a tough position with a 9-14 record. 10 days and four wins after, the team has finally broken out of the slump and is happy to welcome Steve Nash back.
Nash, who missed 24 games with a broken leg returned in the starting lineup at Saturday’s match against the surprising Warriors. It has been a really long wait for the two-time MPV but his impact on the team’s playing style was obvious right from the start. He finished with 12 points to go along with many assists. But the truth is that the numbers don’t tell the whole story. The whole style changes on offense with Nash on the floor who does what he knows best, creating plays for his teammates and the Lakers in fact do have some of the greatest finishers in the league in Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard.
The victories started even before Nash’s return. The Lakers survived in late game situations in most of their last wins. First one against the Wizards last Friday when they won 102-96 holding off a 27 point fourth quarter from their opponents. Lakers scored only 19 during the last 12 minutes. Next stop was Philadelphia against the Sixers, when LA broke out and won easily 111-98. Bryant finished had another high scoring game with 34 and Metta World Piece had a career high 16 rebounds to go along with 19 points, quite a performance for him. Then it was a comeback in the last quarter that saved the day for the Lakers, who took 101-100 the Bobcats at a game with a dramatic finale. The Bobcats had the chance to win the game but missed on 3 consecutive tries in the last 10 seconds thus throwing the victory to their opponents. Last game of the week came on Saturday night for the Lakers. It came down to the overtime but the Lakers escaped with a 118-115 win against the Warriors. It was another good game from Kobe Bryant who led all scorers with 34 points and of course noticeable for the night, Steve Nash’s return to the team.
The encouraging fact for Lakers fans is that things may actually get better for the team. Now, with Nash and also Gasol back from injuries, the team may show its real capabilities. Now it’s time for them to prove that the expectations during the off-season, when all the stars met in LA, were not too high. They are just one win behind the psychological border of 0.500 that could trigger a burst of momentum for the Lakers. They will surely need that going in 2013 and as playoff time is approaching. Of course there is a lot of work ahead and the road will not be easy for them.
Next up for the Lakers they play on Christmas day against the New York Knicks at home and then travel to Denver to face the Nuggets. Last game of the year is Friday night in front of the Staples Center crowd against the Portland Trailblazers.
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July 8th, 2012
As of July 6, last season’s NBA sensation Jeremy Lin has verbally agreed to sign a four year offer sheet with the Houston Rockets. The New York Knicks have until July 11th to make a counteroffer.
You can see the 2012-2013 Houston Rockets Schedule or the New York Knicks Schedule.
The purported deal is said to be approximately worth $28.8 million. Of that 28.8 million, 10.2 million would come in Lin’s first two seasons with the Rockets, and over $9 million in each of the last two years of the deal.
Lin, a restricted free agent, can still be retained by the New York Knicks if they decide to match Houston’s offer. Likewise, the Knicks have been adamant that they intend to do everything they can to keep the star player.
A source within the league stated that the Rockets intended to offer Lin a back worthy deal worth roughly $30 million. Currently, it is estimated that the best deal the Knicks can offer Lin is a four year contract worth $24.5 million.
Ironically, the Rockets had Lin in their own training camp last season, but waived him due to roster space. Now Houston is doing everything within their powers to get him back.
Lin, who was undrafted out of Harvard, averaged 14.6 points, 6.2 assists and 3.1 rebounds in 35 games with 25 starts last season for the Knicks.
The Houston Rockets already are extremely popular in Asia due to the playing career of their former star Yao Ming, who retired in 2011. Jeremy Lin could certainly add to their appeal in the region as the first American-born player of Chinese or Taiwanese decent.
February 27th, 2012
Recap: NBA All-Star Saturday Night
NBA All-Star game is the biggest event of All-Star Weekend, but as we all know, some of the best competitions and sneaker surprises happen on NBA All-Star Saturday Night.
On the docket was the Haier Shooting Stars, Taco Bell Skills Challenge, Footlocker 3-Point Shooting Contest, and the crowd favorite Sprite Slam Dunk Contest.
The night seemed to evaporate rather quickly, as is the weekend, and it will be back to business much too soon for most of us here in Orlando for the festivities.
Here are the results from the four events:
1. Haier Shooting Stars Winner: Team New York
With a time of 37.3 seconds in the final round Team New York Knicks defeated Team Houston’s (Chandler Parsons, Kenny Smith & Sophia Young) time of 47.6 seconds. The competition is far from the best of the evening but it does provide some interest watching players hoist up half court shots to closeout their attempt. It also incorporates a female from the WNBA on each team which brings that league a tad bit more attention. Team New York had the two fastest times of the night and Houston said the trio had practiced “a little bit”.
2. Taco Bell Skills Challenge Winner: Tony Parker, San Antonio Spurs
Parker won the skills challenge with a time of 32.8 seconds in the final round defeating Rajon Rondo (34.6 seconds) and defending champion, Deron Williams (41.4 seconds). Rondo probably could have gotten the W if his bounce passes didn’t continue to rattle in and out. It took him 4 attempts to complete that challenge and was inevitably his downfall. Parker has competed in the competition twice previously and was at ease coming in he said the following afterwards.
3. Foot Locker 3-Point Contest Winner: Kevin Love, Minnesota Timberwolves
Love squeaked into the finals and then pulled an upset win over Kevin Durant and defending champion James Jones. Love survived 2 overtimes or shootouts to take home the title with 17 points in the final shootout.
Love certainly wasn’t the favorite as “Bigs” don’t usually do well in the competition. James Jones had the competition high 22 in the first round and certainly looked like he was primed to repeat. He just got cold and was unable to keep up with Love and Durant.
4. Sprite Slam Dunk Contest Winner: Jeremy Evans, Utah Jazz
Evans might be the happiest player at All-Star weekend capturing 29% of the (reported) 3 million votes for the contest. (I would really like to see that tally) Just being given the opportunity to attend the event would have been enough for the humble forward but winning it might just make a difference in his play the rest of the season. He is that appreciative.
Remember he was a last minute replacement for Iman Shumpert.
Unfortunately his win is mired in the dubious distinction that the event field was more boring than vanilla.
Paul George had two of the better dunks of the evening but lamented that the competition does indeed lack star power. The dunk contest needs the league’s “faces” he said, mentioning (Miami Heat) LeBron, (Chicago Bulls) Rose, even Westbrook by name.
Evans did have the most original dunk of the night and it probably carried him to the win. He jumped over a seated Gordon Hayward then caught and dunked two balls thrown in the air by Hayward.
Unfortunately, the humility of Evans was not enough to save the lackluster evening. The NBA will have to look at ways of keeping the format fresh and potentially getting bigger names to commit to the event in the future.
February 24th, 2012
NBA All-Star Weekend 2012 officially kicks off Friday in Orlando. Here’s a schedule of all the top-tier All-Star Weekend events.
Usually known as the Rookie/Sophomore Game, the 2012 edition of the Rising Stars Challenge is different because TNT analysts Shaquille O’Neal and Charles Barkley selected the rosters from a pool of the top first- and second-year players. Reigning Rookie of the Year winner Blake Griffin of the Los Angeles Clippers and New York Knicks sensation Jeremy Lin headline Team Shaq. Top overall draft choice Kyrie Irving of the Cleveland Cavaliers and versatile big-man DeMarcus Cousins of the Sacramento Kings anchor Team Chuck.
All-Star Saturday Night opens with the Haier Shooting Stars, which pits the defending champion Team Atlanta against Team Orlando, Team New York, and Team Texas.
The next event is the Taco Bell Skills Challenge, in which six of the league’s top point guards battle to complete an obstacle course that tests their dribbling, passing, and shooting ability. Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors, the defending champion, will take on Irving, Tony Parker of the San Antonio Spurs, John Wall of the Washington Wizards, Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder, and Deron Williams of the New Jersey Nets.
The Foot Locker Three-Point Contest follows the Skills Challenge in which Magic forward Ryan Anderson will challenge the defending champion James Jones of the Miami Heat. Other competitors include Mario Chalmers of the Miami Heat, Kevin Durant of Oklahoma City, Kevin Love of the Minnesota Timberwolves, and Anthony Morrow of the New Jersey Nets. Durant replaces Atlanta Hawks swingman Joe Johnson, who will sit out the contest due to injury.
The Sprite Slam Dunk Contest concludes All-Star Saturday Night. This year’s dunk showdown features four players who have never before competed; it’s all fresh faces. In addition, the dunk contest will debut a new, one-round format in which each competitor has the opportunity to execute three dunks. The field is Chase Budinger of the Houston Rockets, Jeremy Evans of the Utah Jazz, Paul George of the Indiana Pacers, and Derrick Williams of Minnesota. Evans replaces Knicks rookie Iman Shumpert, who had to bow out of the competition due to injury.
The main event of the weekend finally tips Sunday evening. Magic center Dwight Howard, the leading vote-getter among all players, will start for the East, while Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant will tie a record for consecutive All-Star appearances with 14.
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February 10th, 2012
Jeremy Lin New York Knicks
Odds are if you are a casual basketball fan you have heard the name Jeremy Lin a lot in the last week or so. Let’s be honest though the first time you heard about the new Knicks upstart point guard you had to do a quick Google search on him so you could actively participate in any conversation in regards to him. It is well chronicled by now that Lin came to the New York Knicks by way of Harvard and more recently by way of being cut by the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets. All he has done in his 3 games in a Knicks uniform is score 25.3 points per game, dish out 8 assists a game, while logging over 40 minutes in those contests. Jeremy Lin is the perfect blend of basketball talent, guts, and personality that the Knicks and their fan base have been thirsting for going on 10 plus years now. Not to mention that the style of play his coach preaches fits his skill set perfectly. All of these combine to make up the perfect storm that is the Jeremy Lin phenomenon.
Let’s establish one thing, this kid has staying power. He is not a flash in the pan type player. I am by no means saying he is going to average 25 and 8 every night, but he has the talent to be an everyday starter in the NBA. His skill set is such where he will be able to contribute on a consistent basis because his ability to pass, create for others, and shoot make his game much more than someone who may be one dimensional.
To come in and burst on the scene like he has it takes a serious amount of guts as well. It takes a huge amount of confidence in your ability to come onto maybe the biggest stage in the world, New York City, and not back down from the challenge that comes with being the point guard for the New York Knicks. In the short time he has been active he makes players around him better and his love of the game is infectious as evident by the overall energy level increase by the team as a whole.
Lin comes to the Knicks when their loyal fan base needs something to latch onto and to have hope in. They hired a coach whose system heavily revolves around a point guard and the ability of that point guard to penetrate, but were building their team with personnel that did have this essential piece. This was the sort of great frustration for Knicks fans who have been waiting for over 10 years for something to hope for on the court. Overnight it seems as the interest in the Knicks on a local and national level is back again thanks to Jeremy Lin.
Another aspect of the Lin phenomenon that cannot be ignored is the valuable vehicle he has the potential to be for the NBA as a whole. With the retirement of Yao Ming the NBA is desperately seeking another face to promote their product in China and all over Southeast Asia and Lin fits that bill perfectly given he is of Taiwanese decent.
Do yourself a favor if you get the chance and the Knicks are on TV sit down and watch this kid play. He is someone that old school and new school NBA fans can watch and enjoy alike. Hopefully for the sake of the Knicks organization, their fans, and the NBA as a whole the Jeremy Lin phenomenon continues to grip us all.
Lakers Vs Knicks Tickets are still available for tonights game. You can purchase Lakers Tickets for all home and away game 24 hours a day on BarrysTickets.com.
January 29th, 2012
First meeting of the season. The teams split four games last season, with each winning on their home court.
- November 5th, 2010 in Denver – Denver 111 – Clippers 94
- December 3rd, 2010 in Denver – Denver 109 – Clippers 104
- January 5th, 2011 in Los Angeles – Clippers 106 – Denver 93
- March 5th, 2011 in Los Angeles – Clippers 100 – Denver 94
The Clippers are 10-6 on the season. But of those 16 games, only five of them have been on the road (and one of those was in Los Angeles against the Lakers). Five road games is the fewest of any team in the NBA, and more importantly, the 28 they have yet to play is the most. So there’s that. The fact that the team is 1-4 in those five games is not good, but it’s not a huge concern, given the quality of the opponents in those losses. Unfortunately, that logic doesn’t bode well for tonight, against the 14-5 Nuggets, who are 7-2 in the mile high altitude. There is some good news though. The Clippers should be well rested for this game, coming off two days of rest. There is also reason to believe that the team will be hitting peak form at some point in the near future — they looked great in wins over the Heat and Lakers two weeks ago, before Chris was injured his hamstring. In the two games since his return, Paul has not shot well. Hopefully after a couple of games and two more days of practice, he’s getting the rust off and the team will start firing on all cylinders again. They looked great for a quarter against Memphis on Thursday, but even that was more about hot shooting than super shard execution. So the team’s best basketball is still ahead of them, but hopefully not too far away.
A year ago, the Nuggets starters featured Kenyon Martin, Carmelo Anthony and Chauncey Billups, and J.R. Smith was the sixth man. Now Anthony is in New York with the New York Knicks, Billups is with the Clippers, Smith is in China and Martin is waiting until February 15th to be a free agent after signing with and then leaving a Chinese team. The Nuggets were built around Anthony for years, and while the made the playoffs in each of the seven seasons he was in Denver, they also lost in the first round in six of those seasons.
Losing streak in Denver. The Clippers haven’t won in Denver in five full seasons. The last time they won a regular season game there was in January of 2006. They also won a playoff game a few months later. But it’s been one empty trip to the Mile High City after another since then.
Hot team. In their last game the Clippers played a Grizzlies team that had won seven of eight coming in. The Nuggets have won six straight and eight of nine. The Clippers just can’t get a break in terms of opponents. Oh, and their next three games after this are against Oklahoma City, at Utah and against these Nuggets again. Sheesh.
Twice in a week. The Clippers and Nuggets face each other twice this week, tonight and then again on Thursday. The Clippers have two games in the interim, the Nuggets just one.
Balance. About that balance: the Denver Nuggets have six players averaging double figures, with the highest being Gallinari at less than 18 a game. In fact, they have 8 players averaging between 8 and 18. Philadelphia has eight players between 9 and 16. Hat tip to citizen d2s4ui1 for catching my mistake there.
Lawson hurting. Nuggets point guard Ty Lawson, their second leading scorer, missed Friday’s win against Toronto with a sprained left ankle. Lawson told Chris Dempsey of the Denver Post that he plans to play tonight.
Billups in Denver. Chauncey Billups will be playing in Denver tonight for the first time since being traded away as part of the Carmelo Anthony deal. Billups is a Colorado native, who played his college ball in Boulder and had wanted to retire as a Nugget. He’ll no doubt receive a very warm welcome upon his return to Denver, where he played four seasons in two different stints. Billups was part of the Denver team that went to the Western Conference finals, they’re deepest playoff run since the mid 80s.
Matchups. It’s hard to figure how the matchups will go tonight. For one thing, you never quite know how George Karl will distribute minutes among the 10 or 11 guys in his rotation. Nene will begin the game defending Blake Griffin, which could give Blake trouble. Caron Butler will need to take the very talented Gallinari as seriously as he would Kobe Bryant. Afflalo is a big guard who will be a handful for Billups, But the key matchup will be Lawson versus Chris Paul. CP3 probably needs to dominate that matchup for the Clippers to win tonight.
Not counting the NBA All Star Game break, they’ll get one more such break the entire remainder of the season, and that one comes in April, between games 63 and 64. Great news for fans who don’t like to wait too long between games. Bad news for tired players and coaches who need time to prep for opponents.
We stock Clippers Vs Nuggets Tickets for all games at the Staples Center and Pepsi Center.
January 25th, 2012
The Super Bowl is the final contest of the NFL professional football season and determines the league’s annual champion. Currently the Super Bowl routinely finishes among the all-time top 50 programs in television ratings, and the 2011 game was no exception, setting a new record for the biggest American TV audience for a single broadcast, some 111 million viewers.
Now probably the most important single-day sporting event in the United States, the Super Bowl had more modest beginnings, as did the sport itself. Football in America had its start in a game November 6, 1869, when Rutgers and Princeton played a college soccer football game. The game used modified London Football Association rules. During the next seven years, rugby gained favor with the major eastern schools over soccer, and modern football began to develop from rugby. At the Massasoit convention, of 1876, the first rules for American football were written. It was here that Walter Camp, who would become known as the father of American football, first became involved with the game.
In 1902, baseball’s Philadelphia Athletics, managed by Connie Mack, and the Philadelphia Phillies formed professional football teams, joining the Pittsburgh Stars in the first attempt at a pro football league, named the National Football League. The Athletics won the first night football game ever played, 39-0 over Kanaweola AC at Elmira, New York, November 21.
All three teams claimed the pro championship for the year, but the league president, Dave Berry, named the Stars the champions. Pitcher Rube Waddell was with the Athletics, and pitcher Christy Mathewson a fullback for Pittsburgh. The first World Series of pro football, actually a five-team tournament, was played among a team made up of players from both the Athletics and the Phillies, but simply named New York; the New York Knickerbockers; the Syracuse AC; the Warlow AC; and the Orange (New Jersey) AC at New York’s original Madison Square Garden. New York and Syracuse played the first indoor football game before 3,000, December 28. Syracuse, with Glen (Pop) Warner at guard, won 6-0 and went on to win the tournament.
In 1903, the Franklin (PA) Athletic Club won the second and last World Series of pro football over the Oreos AC of Asbury Park, New Jersey; the Watertown Red and Blacks; and the Orange AC. Changes ensued over the next 6 decades — with names, teams, players, and conference alignments coming and going. And in 1967, Congress approved the AFL-NFL merger, passing legislation exempting the agreement itself from antitrust action, October 21.
That same year, the champions of the American Football League (which merged with the NFL in 1970) and the NFL met in what was called the AFL-NFL World Championship Game. The name was later shortened to Super Bowl, named after a child’s toy, the Super Ball. In this first game, the Green Bay Packers beat the Kansas City Chiefs, 35-10. The Los Angeles Coliseum, site of the game, fell far short of a sellout, although tickets were only $10 each.
The National Football League’s Super Bowl XLVI will take place on February 5, 2012 in Lucas Oil Stadium in Downtown Indianapolis, Indiana. It will be the NFL’s 46th annual Super Bowl.
Kick-off is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Eastern, 5:30 p.m. Central, 4:30 p.m. Mountain and 3:30 p.m. Pacific time.
Lucas Oil Stadium
Lucas Oil Stadium opened in August 2008. The normal seating for the stadium is 63,000 but will be increased to more than 70,000 for Super Bowl XLVI. The stadium cost approximately $720 million to construct and features a retractable roof and a unique large window at one end of the field.
Now’s the time to get your 2012 Super Bowl tickets! Super Bowl XLVI takes place at the Lucas Oil Stadium, and it marks the first time that Indianapolis has played host. Super Bowl tickets are never around for long, so score yours now and watch NFL history in the making!
Super Bowl Tickets for the Giants Vs Patriots rematch on Feb 05, 2012 are on sale now.
January 23rd, 2012
The long-hyped sophomore Point Guard monster for the Washington Wizards, John Wall, is finally coming into his own this season. Through the first 11 games of the season, he averaged 13 points on an atrocious 34% shooting. In the last 5 games, Wall is shooting 41% (only marginally better), but stuffing the stat sheet with 24 points, 8 rebounds, 8 assists, 1 steal and 1 block. Except for the bad shooting, those stats are among the elite of basketball. If he keeps it up, and eventually gets his shot to fall, John Wall could be looking at his ascension into the conversation for best Point Guard sooner rather than later. The effects of the lockout seem to be wearing off finally for Wall and others who have had a historically slow start to their seasons.
On January 20th, Portland Trail Blazers LaMarcus Aldridge went off for 33 points, 23 boards and 5 assists, making it a candidate for performance of the year so far. Orlando Magic Dwight Howard may have something to say about that, especially in light of recent rumors saying that Los Angeles Lakers Andrew Bynum was the best Center in today’s NBA. The same night that Aldridge went off for what may have been the best game of his career; “Superman” Dwight Howard annihilated Bynum in a showdown in L.A. Howard posted 21 points and 23 boards of his own and held the injury-prone Bynum to just 10 points and 12 boards in a victory over Bynum’s Lakers. If Howard continues to travel around the league and routinely slaying opposing Centers, Howard will not only solidify himself as the best Center without debate, but he may play himself out of being traded. Therefore, it would be a double-edged sword for Howard. On the season, he is averaging 20 points and 16 boards with 2.3 blocks. Over the past two weeks, though, he has upped those numbers to 23 point and nearly 19 boards, which is simply uncanny. The only other player who compares in the post-lockout NBA is Minnesota Timberwolves Kevin Love. On the season, Love is putting up 24 points, 14 boards, 2 threes, but all on 41% shooting, which is extremely low for a big man. Over the past two weeks, Love is shooting even worse: 36%, meaning the effects of the lockout are still lingering for Love, who was pimped by Yahoo Sports incessantly at the beginning of the season for losing weight and staying healthy during the lockout.
Other top big men with absurd shooting problems include Amar’e Stoudemire (41%), Chicago Bulls Joakim Noah (42%), Dirk Nowitzki (45%), David West (45%), DeMarcus Cousins (44%), and ex Los Angeles Clippers Chris Kaman (44%). Owners of any of these players in fantasy basketball are probably pulling their hair out right now, especially those who drafted Dallas Mavericks Dirk Nowitzki or Amar’e Stoudemire in the 1st round of their drafts. In real life, neither player has really contributed many wins for their respective teams to go along with their low shooting percentages. The New York Knicks are just 5-12, good for 10th place overall in the Eastern Conference, which is not an enviable position for a team consisting of Amar’e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony. Similarly, the defending champs are also struggling. They at least have a winning record at 10-7, good for 7th place in the West. The story of the young season so far might be how under the radar the Philadelphia 76ers have flown. They are 11-5 and getting quiet contributions from their whole roster. John Wall’s Wizards team is easily the worst team in the league right now, sitting at 2-14. However, if Wall’s recent statistical uptick is any indication, the Wizards have no place to go but up.