I might win vs LV but I'm far from calling it now...Nurkic and Harrel down 13 points,16 rebounds, 3 blocks and I only have Gallo and Bradley to hold it. Nailbiter. LV needs two of those 3 categories and you never know with turnovers (it's only +4 for C's).
The West won 3 of the 4 match-ups this week against the East, extending their lead to 4 games (16-12). However, the biggest games of the week happened within the conferences where multiple teams kept their seasons alive, and others are dangerously close to the edge.
Portland (3-3) over Utah (2-4), 5-4 Despite both teams suffering from numerous injuries, this was easily our game of the week. It was a back-and-forth affair all week, and that was the case going into the final day. The Blazers held onto the slimmest of leads going into the final day, but the Jazz wrested control going into the final game. There couldn't possibly be anymore riding on this game. Both teams struggled to 2-3 records, and losing another game, particularly to a conference foe, could be a death knell. Well, in the final minutes, of the final game, on the final day, Tobias Harris tossed in a three, flipping it from a Utah win on tiebreaker to a 5-4 Portland win. It's a crushing loss for Utah, who has now lost to Houston, Seattle, Kansas City and Portland. A loss this week against GS would, for all intents and purposes, end their playoff hopes. That's not to say the would be eliminated, but climbing out of a 2-5 hole without those 5 tiebreakers would be insanely difficult. Portland vaults back into the playoff picture, for now, but the road only gets harder before it gets easier with a finals rematch against Brooklyn coming up next.
Orlando (2-4) over Tampa Bay (2-4), 6-3 Speaking of teams teetering on the brink, Orlando and Tampa Bay basically switched spots after the Magic's come-from-behind victory. The Magic flipped 3 categories on the final day, turning a 3-6 deficit into a 6-3 win. It was easily a season-saving win for Orlando, as a loss would have dropped them to 1-5 and made the playoffs highly unlikely. Instead, they get a massive division win and have some momentum going into their game against Boston. Things are a little more complicated now for Tampa Bay. 2-4 isn't the end of the season in the East by any means, but this was the stretch that will define the season. Three straight match-ups against division opponents, and now they have to beat both Colorado and Atlanta in consecutive weeks to come out of it 2-1. That's a lot to ask of any team, but the Swannies are dealing with some nagging injuries, so maybe Tampa Bay can pull it off.
Seattle (3-3) over Minnesota (3-3), 5-3-1 For a little while on Sunday, it looked like the Wolves were going to pull out the win on the back of JaVale McGee's 7 blocks... and then Malik Monk went out and knocked down 7 threes after not playing a second in the previous game. Seattle flipped points and threes, and tied steals, to pull out a much needed victory over a conference opponent. We're not going to project playoff spots this early, as we're not even halfway through the season yet, but make no mistake, this was a massive win. Seattle's next 3 opponents, starting with Toronto, are all Eastern Conference teams. That means Markannen and Dunn are going to be back for the stretch run of conference opponents. At 3-3, in a three-way tie for first and a win over Utah already in the bank, we are going to have to start looking at Seattle as a potential division winner. Minnesota is in an interesting position. They've suffered some really tough beats the last two weeks, and they could easily be 5-1 (or even 6-0). They haven't played any division opponents yet, but that changes this week against OKC. It seems too early to sound the alarms, but, lose this week, and all of that changes. Luckily for Minnesota, two of OKC's better players, Paul Millsap and Jamal Murray, are slated for just 2 games this week.
Oklahoma City (2-4) over Golden State (3-3), 8-1 A week ago in this space we said that the season was not yet over for OKC. All they had to do was take down Golden State and Minnesota in order to set up a game against Cleveland to get back to .500. Well, they accomplished the first goal rather easily. Murray, Millsap, Doncic and Butler were all-around monsters for the Thunder, and Tristan Thompson continues to be a double-double machine. But the most heartening sign for the Thunder might just be Harry Giles' 10-8-6-4-2 game on Sunday. If he can start getting minutes, and produce like that, it gives OKC an even better chance to recover from this slow start. The Warriors had some absolute clunkers from Fournier, Whiteside and Covington. For a team short on depth, that's tough to overcome. Up next is a massive game against Utah.
Kansas City (4-2) over Washington (3-3), 6-3 The Wizards followed up their upset win over Houston with losses to Las Vegas and Kansas City. That is likely the first thought most people had upon seeing this result, but maybe we're focusing on the wrong part of this result. The Kings are now 4-2, firmly in the playoff hunt, and they've been far more consistent than a lot of the other Western Conference playoff hopefuls. Kemba Walker and Kevin Durant continue to play like superstars, and it's allowed the other guys to just fill a role. Marvin Bagley averaged a double-double, and if he starts doing that consistently, KC is trouble. Pull off an upset of Houston this week, and things get very interesting for the Kings. The Wizards, on the other hand, continue to confound. Coming off their win over Houston, it looked likely that they could get to 5-1 and set up a big time game against the Hawks. Instead, they dropped the ball, and now must beat the Hawks to avoid three straight losses.
Memphis (5-1) over Atlanta (5-1), 5-3-1 Speaking of the Hawks, they looked primed to beat the Grizzlies and cement themselves as the team to beat... then Bogdan Bogdanovic scored 20 points on Sunday, saving the Grizz and keeping them on pace with the Rockets. It was a tough loss for the Hawks, but not a crushing blow as they still lead the Southeast by two games. Win their next two against Washington and Tampa Bay, and they can basically wrap up the division. They may have found something in Richaun Holmes. This was an impressive win for the Grizzlies without Victor Oladipo, and they may have to win against Chicago without him as well. The Grizz won't match last year's unbeaten record, but if they can get to 14 wins, it may be more impressive, all things considered. And despite the injuries, Otto Porter and Marvin Williams are finally showing signs of life. Get healthy, and this team will be there at the end of the season once again.
Houston (5-1) over Colorado (3-3), 5-4 The Swannies fought to the bitter end but just didn't have enough to take down the Rockets. Jabari Parker put up 23-10-4-2 for the Rockets, and when their 8th best player is putting up that kind of line, they're going to be tough to beat. It's possible that the Swannies could have won if AD, Turner and DSJ didn't miss games, but they would have needed monster performances from all three to pull it off. Houston chugs right along to 5-1 and sets up a very interesting match-up with the 4-2 Kings. The Swannies have a golden opportunity to pick up a key division win against Tampa.
Boston (5-1) over Las Vegas (2-4), 6-3 Things looked like they could get interesting late in this one, but Boston ultimately pulled away thanks to some huge stat lines. Joel Embiid capped off a 30-15 week with a 32-12-4-2 line, while DJ Augustin, Gallo and Kuzma all put up solid all-around numbers. Brook Lopez has cooled off of late, but it didn't matter in this one. And so here we are, the Boston Celtics are now 5-1 with a game coming up against Orlando before they enter their toughest stretch of the season. Win this week, and it seems highly unlikely that they will miss the playoffs. For the Gamblers, this was kind of a game they had to win. They get Cleveland next, but then it's an absolute gauntlet to end the season. Things are looking bleak for Vegas.
Brooklyn (4-2) over Cleveland (0-6), 7-2 We won't spend much time here as this one was never really in doubt. The Nets got good weeks from their young guns. Cedi Osman put up two 20-point efforts, JJJ averaged 3.5 blocks, and both Malcolm Brogdon and Pascal Siakam were highly efficient. It was a game the Nets needed to win with the banged-up Trailblazers coming to town for a finals rematch. The Nets may be 4-2, but two of those wins came against the Raptors and Cavaliers, so things only get tougher from here. Cleveland had some good games from Buddy Hield and Trae Young (25-17 early in the week), but it was another loss in a season that will see many of them. Vegas is next.
Chicago (4-2) over Toronto (0-6), 7-2 Despite the score, Toronto actually put up a decent fight, and, in another week, could have won this one. De'Aaron Fox wasn't nearly as good as he'd been in the past, and that was a big difference. The big news is Chicago getting improved games out of Russell, Bembry and Burke. Drummond, Vuc and Mitchell have been fairly consistent to this point. If they can get anything from the supporting cast, they'll be tough to beat. It'll be tough sledding against Memphis this week though; Donovan Mitchell has already been ruled out tonight.
Last Edit: Nov 26, 2018 15:56:01 GMT -5 by Miege22
Miege22: Had to start spending my own money on them haha
Jul 28, 2018 13:58:53 GMT -5
teefbe: Since Minny decided quickly on re=signs and player options are we going to move up free agency like last year or it stays on 12th?
Jul 30, 2018 16:15:50 GMT -5
Miege22: I've created a poll on the topic. Moving up FA is harder to do than the draft because it impacts everyone. If even one owner is not on board with moving it up, we'll leave it to start on the 12t
Jul 30, 2018 16:34:19 GMT -5
Cleveland Cavaliers: Are you a contender? Do you need another solid contributor for your squad on literally the cheapest deal possible? Well you're in luck, Allen Crabbe is your man! For the low cost of a 2019 draft pick that won't be high cuz you're a contender
Aug 1, 2018 12:45:56 GMT -5
Cleveland Cavaliers: This offer will only be available for like the next 8 hours or some shit so act now!
Aug 1, 2018 12:46:29 GMT -5
Cleveland Cavaliers: Also Dewayne Dedmon $250,000 ('20) available for a pick
Aug 1, 2018 15:20:04 GMT -5
HawkEye: Free Boban!!!
Oct 18, 2018 7:13:03 GMT -5
teefbe: crazy week1 matchup between me and Seattle
Oct 21, 2018 18:52:56 GMT -5
HawkEye: I won 5-4 vs Colorado by only .02% of FT%
Oct 22, 2018 7:13:22 GMT -5
HawkEye: Correction, it's .2% or .002 of FT%
Oct 22, 2018 7:21:25 GMT -5
zephyr: does anyone know when espn is going to add position eligibility?
Nov 12, 2018 17:22:43 GMT -5
Miege22: They added PG eligibility for Bryn Forbes last week. I think they just kind of do it gradually
Nov 12, 2018 19:07:31 GMT -5
zephyr: great -- thanks!
Nov 13, 2018 8:41:24 GMT -5
zephyr: landry shamet's at 21.1 mpg for the season -- does that mean toronto has to make a decision on activating him from d-league?
Nov 27, 2018 11:30:31 GMT -5
Miege22: I think we need to go a little longer on the d-league signees, all of them, this year. 20 games isnt' a huge sample size, and a few low or no minute games can drastically impact those averages.
Nov 27, 2018 11:38:06 GMT -5
Miege22: I don't think a decision needs to be made until the last week of our season.
Nov 27, 2018 11:38:18 GMT -5