Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Uncle Drew

A couple of guys from work forwarded me this ad the other day. I think it's unreal and very well done. Pepsi Max have come up with a great ad which these days is hard to come by.

I wonder if the people at the court watching had any clue.

Enjoy and tell me what you think.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Boomers Destroy Greece B Team

The Australian Boomers have opened up their pre Olympic campaign with a lop sided victory over the Greek B National Team. The 87-60 score line probably flatters the Greek side. 

The side that Greece has chosen to represent them at the Farewell Series is disgraceful. They are young, soft and tiny. They have no interior size whatsoever and their ability from the perimeter has nothing going for it. How on earth does this prepare us for what the Olympics is going to offer?

Last night Aleks Maric, Australian Centre, could do no wrong as there was nobody who could deal with his size. Many people are praising him after his efforts last night. I don't believe it just yet. I'll wait until he matches up with Anderson Varejao of Brazil or Marc Gasol of Spain before I make my judgement. In this series however he should be racking up numbers for fun and it will do his confidence no harm. We will need a strong inside presence to free up our outside guys. 

I thought our point guards were great. Patty and Delly both showed great vision and leadership. Mills was on fire throughout the contest and showed why the Boomers will be relying heavily on him during their campaign. There aren't too many point guards around the world who will be able to stay in front of him on the break. If he can continue to be hot from outside the three point line through July/August the Boomers will be in great shape. 

I was appalled by our inability to secure the defensive rebound. There were times when the Greeks were racking up consecutive offensive rebounds. The size in which we possess over this Greek B team is scary. Brett Brown's timeout early in the third said it all. He looked disgusted and had every right to be. I think the big's in game two, which is on tonight, will be making sure the Greeks only get one look at the basket. 

I think we have the pieces there to be really competitive come London. I just believe that we could have found a more competitive team to help us out. Last night there were calls from Andrew Bogut to maybe have played games against an Australian B Team instead. I totally agree with this. They could have easily formed another team and even added an import or two to help out. I think this is something to think about in the future especially knowing Greece have their Qualifiers next week. 

I think the Aussies start to click into gear tonight and we may see an even bigger margin than what we did last night. However basketball is a funny game!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Heat Steal 1 Away From The Thunder

What a way to start the NBA Finals. Everything that everyone had hoped for is happening before our eyes. Kev and LBJ have been amazing, Rusty and Wade have been good and you couldn't ask for more from Harden and Battier. The best thing about it is we're going to definitely have five plus games. No sweep here as Miami pull off a big win away from home 100-96 (stats here).

Game 1 was all about KD and Rusty. Miami got off to a flyer but couldn't hold off a scorching hot Durant and Westbrook. Durant was amazing with 36 points and Rusty chipped in with 27. LeBron again put together a nice 30 points but seemed to struggle from outside the paint. With help from his bench in the form of Battier and Chalmers, Miami couldn't get anything from Wade which in the end proved costly as the Thunder went on to win 105-94 (stats here).

With their backs to the wall in game two Miami again came out flying, leading 25-8 at one stage. The Thunder opened up 1-12 from the field. Westbrook started atrociously and was only looking for himself. It wasn't until James Harden came into the game where the Thunder got going. He was aggressive and played with a lot of confidence. He got the crowd going and it gave them a little burst of energy.

Miami continued to repel any type of run the Thunder produced with deep threes by Battier and LBJ getting to the rim. With Durant in foul trouble the Heat capitalised. They continued to lead by double figures throughout the third quarter and took a strong 11 point lead into the final break.

However as they have always done in the past the Thunder found form and took an almighty chunk off the lead. KD had fire in his eyes and made some massive plays hitting three's and a fat driving dunk on Battier which got the crowd going. Westbrook fed off the energy with a nice score and foul. Shane Battier as he has done all series so far hit a bank three from the top of the three point line to silence the crowd. LBJ then hit a tough floater going left and then Bosh followed up with a two handed slam which pushed the lead back to seven with 53 seconds remaining.

Game over right? No chance.

After a Durant layup Wade lost the ball which led to a wide open KD three cutting the lead to two with 37 seconds to go. Westbrook was so close to shooting that three. Imagine if he did and missed and didn't pass to a red hot Durant. I don't think he would have got out of there alive. Can you ever count this team out of a game?

After LeBron missed a three the ball ended up with KD in the post. Is there anyone that doesn't think that was foul? I mean there was more than one foul that could have been called on James. I understand that it may not have been called if it was in Miami, because the refs just wouldn't do that, but at home, it's a given!

The Thunder definitely did not deserve to win game two but it was an almighty comeback that was robbed of two game tying free throws to one of the best shooters in the game. LBJ's bank shot was incredible and may give him some confidence in hitting the big shot in the games to come.

In the last two NBA final series the away side has won game two and then gone home to lose game three. What do you think happens?

What a series I can't believe we have to wait until Sunday for the next one!

Monday, June 11, 2012

It's NBA Finals Preview Time

This is the series the NBA was hoping for as soon as the lockout was over. Two teams who will make up for the lost two months in November/December. Two teams in which have some of the most marketable players the NBA has seen in a long time. A team that has promised so much and has yet to deliver and on the other hand a team that has taken their talents to a whole new level over the last two seasons. The Oklahoma City Thunder will host the Miami Heat in a best of seven NBA Final Series beginning on Wednesday.

It couldn't get any bigger. Kevin Durant v LeBron James, two of the best players in the NBA over the last three or four seasons. For any basketball fan this is going to be fun! Mouthwatering, frothing, exciting are some of the words I've heard around town already. Facebook and twitter blew up as soon as the Heat won the East. There was instant excitement for the upcoming final series. This is what the NBA wanted and needed. Congratulations David Stern you can now relax again. I can't wait to see how many (if any) technical fouls are called on the Thunder this series.

As I've done with previous series I'm going to preview the match-ups and give my verdict.

Point Guard: Russell Westbrook v Mario Chalmers.
As I said with the last series, Chalmers can't stop any good point guard and this is no different. His confidence will be riding low as Rondo ran rings around him all series. Rusty does the same here. Westbrook is too quick and also has a jumpshot that Rondo doesn't have. LeBron may have to take turns with Chalmers in guarding him. There is no harm in putting Chalmers on Sefolosha. I can see this happening a fair bit actually. Westbrook needs to be smarter in this series and really limit turnovers and bad shots as Miami are lethal on the fastbreak.
VERDICT: Westbrook no question and is a massive contender for MVP.

Shooting Guard: Thabo Sefolosha v Dwayne Wade
This should be a great contest if they guard each other. We saw that Wade struggled in the Boston Series against the length of Pietrus and Ray Allen hassling him all game long. Thabo has that length which could trouble Wade. If Wade does guard Thabo he could be saving energy for the offensive end. Thabo isn't a massive offensive threat unless connecting on open three's. Wade is going to have to be much better in this series against the Thunder. He also needs to stop bitching to the refs. All series against the Celtics he was seen complaining to the refs while Boston scored in transition.
VERDICT: Wade just for his god given talent. He isn't playing his best basketball at the moment and he will need to for the Heat to steal an away game.

Small Forward: Kevin Durant v LeBron James
What a match up! Kevin Durant is playing some of his best basketball these playoffs. He is virtually unstoppable. On the other hand so is LBJ. You could not ask for a better matchup. Everyone will have their opinion on who is the better player obviously, but you could not look past James. He is on fire at the moment on both ends of the floor and is literally carrying his team through these playoffs. He will have to work very hard on the defensive end this series trying to stay in front of KD. Durant has also been lights out these playoffs. One of many things going for KD is his ability in the crunch. He has been big time finding the bottom of the net in the 4th quarter when the going has got tough. Look for LBJ to put his hand up especially in the fourth quarter to put a stop to the Durantula.
VERDICT: LBJ just for his ability to be brilliant on both ends of the floor. In no means am I saying he is better as I love KD's game. I would have the ball in KD's hands in the last five minutes any day of the week over LBJ.

Power Forward: Serge Ibaka v Chris Bosh
Yes Chris Bosh will be starting from now on after that game seven performance. He will have a much more athletic defender guarding him now though. Ibaka can defend out to the three point line with no problems. He will force Bosh to shoot over a hand at all times. He will also be a major deterrent to LBJ and Wade getting to the rim. Ibaka must not get into foul trouble in this series. It could hurt the Thunder big time. They do have Collison coming off the bench who is also very good at defending his opponent. Bosh will have to make his outside shot and continue to bring that passion to the court every night for the Heat to win away from home.
VERDICT: Serge Ibaka is a big key to the Thunders defence and keeping LBJ and Wade outside of the paint.

Centre: Kendrick Perkins v Udonis Haslem
I have no idea who starts in this position for the Heat. Perkins may even be defending Bosh at some point. I think Perkins is like Ibaka, the rock in the Thunders defence. He will also use his size in the post on offence. This could free up their outside shooters if his baby hook is falling. I think the Thunder need to make his presence felt on offence early. If it's not working then Brooks will have to make a decision if to keep him in the game or get Collison in. Haslem has been a little all over the place in these playoffs. His outside jumpshot hasn't been as reliable as it's been in the past and his defence has been garbage. Haslem is going to have to pull his finger out for the Thunder big man to respect his jumpshot and not be a target for the Thunder's offence.
VERDICT: Perkins. His strength on both offence and defence could be a telling story in this Finals.

Sixth Man: James Harden v Shane Battier
Harden has been amazing for the Thunder for the past two seasons. The Heat are going to have to work really hard to stop him. Wade or James could put their hand up. If they do they are going to have to spend a lot of energy running around after him. If Spoelstra puts Mike Miller or James Jones on him they will get torched. His ability in crunch time has been phenomenal. Shane Battier was phenomenal on the offensive end against the Celtics. He was underdone on defence as Garnett was just too big and too strong. He hit some monster threes when Miami needed them most. He also surprised me with his ability to put the ball on the floor and find an open man. I wonder how long this is going to keep up. If he does it will help LBJ and Wade enormously.
VERDICT: James Harden's ability to tear a game apart is enough for me. However Battier's ability to lock up Durant could also be a telling tale in this series.

I can't wait to see how this series pans out. The Thunder fans are amazing and I can't see Miami stealing one of the first two games. Miami will have have to go home and hold court for all three games. I can't see that happening unless LeBron goes for 40 a night!

VERDICT: OKC win this series in Six and Westbrook gets MVP.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Miami Heat Win The East

Well we are all set for one of the most mouth watering contests in years as the Miami Heat beat Boston in Game 7 today. It was an extremely tight game until the Heat pulled away in the last quarter.

It was all about LeBron pre match! His big game in game six was the reason the Heat were still alive. However I believe it was all about Chris Bosh today. His 19 points on 8-10 shooting was critical in their win. He was lethal from the outside and came up with some big baskets in the fourth quarter. Who would have thought Bosh was so important to that Miami big three. I think many people who in the past have cursed on him will be eating their words as they eat dinner tonight.

I think Boston fought hard all game long but I felt their strategy on LeBron James wasn't the right one. They guarded him too tightly and allowed him to get to the rim which led to dunks or free throws. James was 1-10 outside the paint and that one shot was 2 metres behind the 3 point line on the shot clock buzzer. However they persisted with Bass guarding him at the top of the three point line. It killed them massively.

The Heat will take some confidence into the NBA Finals especially with their big road win in Boston. I will have my match up preview on the blog tomorrow. Hope you have a chance to check it out.

Here are the highlights from todays big game:

Thursday, June 7, 2012


What an incredible game six that was in Oklahoma! It looked as if they were playing the game at the Cameron Indoor in front of the Crazies. The crowd was phenomenal and why wouldn't they be when they witnessed some of the most entertaining basketball they've seen all year.

OKC came out victors at home and take great confidence into the NBA Finals knowing they have home court advantage. They will meet either Miami or Boston beginning on Wednesday the 13th June Australian time.

San Antonio had one of the best first halves you will see from an NBA team. They started red hot and continued that form up until half time. They scored 63 points away from home and led by 15. They simply could not miss. Tony Parker was amazing, he could't put a foot wrong. It wasn't as if OKC were playing terrible, the Spurs were making some incredible threes. Stephen Jackson was unreal all night from beyond the arc hitting 6 from 7.

However in the second half a new OKC team came out. They were hungrier on defence and KD went to work on the offensive end along with his pals Rusty and Beard man Harden. Tony Parker was woeful in the second half. He seemed to lose his rhythm and way allowing OKC to get in on the fast break and do damage on the scoreboard. I disagree with Pop's coaching strategy at the beginning of the second half. He did not call a time out until the Thunder had gone on an 11-2 run. That is insane, especially with the way the crowd was screaming and clapping. The first five minutes of a quarter is most crucial when trying to stave off a comeback. Personally I would have called a time out after OKC went on a 4-0 run. I know it sounds like nothing but it is huge when it's over a 2:30 minute period and you haven't scored.

I thought Derek Fischer was key in the last few minutes when the Spurs kept on coming at them. He made a big three to put them up five with 4:30 to go and a bank shot with 2 minutes left to put them up six. James Harden's fearlessness in the clutch is amazing for someone his age and inexperience in big matches. I can't imagine what it's going to be like if this team sticks around when they are actually in the prime of their careers. It's scary!

I'm thinking OKC wants to play Boston. They will rip them apart in the big man department. Boston will struggle to get that easy lob pass in which they are having their way with Miami at the moment. That is a big part of their offence in their series against the Heat. OKC will shut that down and they will have to make big plays from the perimeter. Westbrook will also be able to contain Rondo much better than what Chalmers is capable of. Miami match up a little better but I still don't think they have enough depth to match the Thunder.

Check out game highlights below courtesy of www.NBA.com

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Miami v Boston Game 5 extravaganza

Well how about Game Five in Miami. One of the all time greats. There was great offence, excellent defence and big time shots. Miami started incredibly well and then Boston even though shooting terribly stayed within two points at the half time break. The Celtics continued to mount comeback after comeback until they hit the lead during the fourth quarter on some crafty moves by Rondo and some brilliant shooting by Pietrus and Garnett. They weren't to look back as Pietrus and Pierce hit huge threes to bury any chance of Miami holding court. Boston take a shock 3-2 lead heading back to the Garden on Friday.

Boston proved that experience matters come the crunch. Paul Pierce's three ball over a stretched LeBron James was amazing. It felt like he took an eternity to shoot that. Even though he was playing poorly Pierce stepped up in the fourth taking the ball strongly to the hoop and hitting some key perimeter jumpers.

On the other hand it was the same old story for LeBron James. He hit a wide open three and a uncontested layup in the fourth quarter. In the final 8 minutes of the game LeBron had four shots. Eric Spoelstra should have his contract ripped up no matter what happens in this series or even if they win the final. This is outrageous. He can't coach basketball to save his life let alone his career. He has been handed two of the best players ever to play the game and he shits himself in the final quarter every time.

The highlights of this awesome game can be viewed here (check out Wade's block and then Rondo's pass. Incredible from both guys).

Here are some awesome pics going around from today's game.