Welcome to another edition of NBA RoundTable. There has been a lot of rumbling thru the locker rooms last weeks. This week are Jeff Van Gundy’s commen right about Golden State, is the Bulls locker room falling apart, that and so much more on NBA RoundTable.
Lets get started:
Agree or Disagree. Last week ESPN commentator Jeff Van Gundy made 2 statements. First statement: Any time time Golden State Warriors step on the court in a regular season game and lose it is an upset. Second statement: If the Warriors fail to win the Championship this year it will be like if one of the Jordan lead Bulls teams didn’t win a Championship.
Todd: While the Warriors are still one of the best teams in the NBA I have to disagree with both statements. My reason for this is simple, its their bench. Its obvious to acquire Kevin Durant they had to give up several good bench players. Their bench is not what it was last year. I believe that will be their downfall if they fail to win the Championship this year.
Steve: I agree — to a point. In most games if the Warriors fall it is absolutely an upset, but against teams like the Spurs, or even the Rockets this year, I could not say that it would be an upset. Even if they are favored in these games, the Spurs are one of the elites in the NBA over the past 18 years, and the Rockets are a great up and coming team, who really can compete for a championship. Losing to either one of them is no shame. As for his second point, I disagree with that statement. The Warriors set and NBA record with 73 wins last year, and still did not win the championship. While it was an upset, it proves that anything can happen in the NBA, and teams are more on the same level. Back in the 90’s there was not another team that was even close to the talent of the Chicago Bulls with that team from 96-98. The competition is much better in today’s game.
Dan: I have to agree, on both statements. The Warriors are the clear favorites in almost every match-up during the regular season and it’s pretty much against every and any team. When they lose, everyone is shocked. They’re the absolute favorites to win the Finals title. With the acquisition of Kevin Durant, most of the NBA world feared right there that the Warriors just made themselves even more unstoppable. If they don’t win the Finals, I’d definitely agree in the comparison to Jordan and the Bulls in their dominant run.
Chad: They are favorites in most matchups; certain losses however would not be an upset. Them not winning would be like the Bulls not winning in either of their 3-peat runs
Is there trouble in the Bulls locker room after the recent comments of Wade, Butler and Rondo?
Todd: Yes, Absolutely.
Steve: Im sure there is a lot of finger pointing, and undoubtably is causing some controversy within the locker room. It is a distraction, and that can happen when star players go to a team that is in the middle of either advancing to the next level, or a rebuild. Rondo has always caused locker room problems so this is no surprise. Butler said it best, they got to air it out and maybe things will change now that the public and the fans are aware that the players are frustrated.
Dan: Yes, there has to be. There’s no way two players thinking they’re above the rest of the team didn’t cause rifts anywhere in the locker room. Then Rondo making a comment on Instagram about Wade and Butler and comparing them to how great Pierce and Garnett were in Boston? Then Wade firing shots back? And we’re expected to think everything is okay in that locker room? I don’t buy that. It’s a mess. And I’d be worried for Chicago fans. I can’t see it ending well. Somebody will end up leaving the team via trade, cut or just opt-out into free agency. But they can’t keep these three together and expect everything to be fine after this. I wouldn’t.
Chad: Oh lord it’s a dumpster fire in Chicago; Forman, Paxson, and Hoiberg need to go. Reinsdorf needs to get out of his own way and find people who actually interested in making this team great again.
Agree or Disagree. LeBron James recently said that Gregg Popovich is the greatest coach of all time.
Todd: You could make an argument for Jackson and Auerbach also. Popovich has caoched the same team for 20 years and taken them to the playoffs 19 times with 5 NBA titles but the thing that might hurt him is that none of them were back to back. It is hard to say who the greatest coach of all time is but if you go with championship it has to be Phil Jackson.
Steve: I still think Phil Jackson is the greatest coach of all time, but Pops is right up there with the best all time. He is easily top 5, but I would put Phil above him, and maybe even Pat Riley.
Dan: I really can’t make this comparison across eras because of how much the league evolves each era. While I don’t think Popovich is the greatest of all-time, I do think he’s one of the greatest of all-time by how he’s able to coach top notch players and continue to lead the Spurs to greatness every season. Do I think, of this era, is he the best coach? Yes, by far. But I think Phil Jackson, Auerbach, etc are competing with him for all-time. And it’s impossible to make that comparisons due to the eras, since stuff coaches are doing now won’t work back in the 60s and 70s and vice versa.
Chad: Easily Top 5 maybe even top 3 I think you still have to consider Phil Jackson, Red Auerbach, and Pat Riley in that area.
What are your thoughts about LeBron James’ comments about the Cavaliers needing another playmaker?
Todd: What more does James need? He has Irving and Love. He has JR Smith who is injured right now, they got Kyle Korver from Atlanta. I mean he gets whatever he wants whenever he wants. He needs to quit crying and whining like a little baby. Well here is the reason why James wants another play maker, it is because so he don’t have to play so hard every night. Its like Charles Barkley said he don’t want to compete. He just thinks the Championship should be handed to him. Think about it, He went to Miami and aligned himself with Wade and Bosh and then when Cleveland got Irving and were talking about trading for Loving miraculously he wanted to come home an be a hero. What piece of shit! Now he wants some one else. Give me a break. He has never won a championship without a big 3. Kobe has won 5 championship with a big 2. Someone please tell LeBron James to quit crying like a bitch!
Steve: My thoughts are that LeBron is panicking and he is concerned that they dont have what it takes to win another championship with the players that they have right now. Looking at this team up and down, I don’t know where they are weak. Dellavedova was obviously more of a loss than they originally thought.
Dan: I’m not sure what else he needs, he’s been given everything and delivered. He was given nothing and almost won the Finals. He had the same team last season, for the most part, and won the Finals. What other playmaker do they need? They have Love, Kyrie and LeBron. Instead of complaining about more playmakers or need something else, why not just step up your own game to make sure your team wins?
Chad: They are still my favorites to win the East but in order to beat Golden State fully healthy you may need more firepower than you have resources to go get.
Who was left off the All-Star roster that you thought should have made it? (East or West)
Todd: Well i thought maybe Damian Lillard and Cj McCullum should have made the All-Star Game both of them had great first half of the season. Why not have 15 roster spots for the All-Star game after all each team is allowed 15 players.
Steve: I feel like I should be an All Star in the NBA. I mean if Ben Simmons can get a vote without playing a single game, why cant I? Seriously though, I think the rosters are good, and everyone deserves to be there. I gave my critique on what I thought about Westbrook not starting, but that is the only thing I would change. I think that moving forward, the players should have zero say in who goes to the All Star game.
Dan: The biggest All-Star Game snubs are Rookie of the Year candidate Joel Embiid as well as Chris Paul, who’s Clippers have been doing a great job this season. I understand the injury concern to leaving Chris Paul off the All-Star Game roster, but he should’ve had that on his record regardless. Paul is averaging 17.5 points per game and 9.7 assists per game. The Clippers have been without Blake Griffin for weeks and just got him back and Chris Paul got hurt. And they’ve been playing exceptionally well without Griffin and Paul leading the way. Joel Embiid is having a great season and is the top player on an improving 76ers’ roster who has some notable wins this season and have played teams like Houston and Cleveland very tough this season. Joel Embiid is on Philly and averaging 20.2 points per game, 7.8 rebounds per game and 2.5 blocks per game. He’s the reason the 76ers have 17 wins this season. They both were extremely deserving and needed to be on the All-Star squad.
Chad: I think that the rosters are good as is; but I think arguments could be made for Embiid and Lillard to make the rosters. But there is still time before the All-Star game and there are usually a couple of guys that bow out medical reasons.
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