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2017-18 NBA Season
We've had eight games and seven blowouts so far. If both series go 7, but 12 of the games are blowouts, the round will have been a bore and a huge disappointment.

This game showed why getting Paul was so huge for Houston. Harden carried them in the first half, then disappeared, but Paul & Co. stepped up and brought it home.

When you see the Warriors lost, you don't even need to have watched the game to know why: it's always when they get lazy on offense, throwing the ball away, going iso and jacking up quick + contested shots. In this game, I tend to think Iguodala & Thompson's injuries led to a cumulative fatigue in the 4th; the Warriors looked like they were laboring. Houston did too... but that's kind of their style all the time.
Gamertag: Tweakee
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I don't know what the hell that second to last possession was with Klay. It's cool to not call the timeout at first, see if you can catch the Rockets off-guard, but once the Benny Hill theme kicks in you gotta take the T.O. and regroup. 

Still sticking with Warriors in six.
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Enough with this version of Higher Love already.
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As LeBron looked uncharacteristically tired tonight, I was considering the notion of sports conspiracy theories. We all have them from time to time. Can't help but think something doesn't pass the smell test, whether it's as small as a ref's call, or as large as the fate of an entire team's season. So am I crazy to think LeBron doesn't want to win this series? What will he get out of it, besides another finals loss on his record? But, at the same time, it's a little oversimplified to think that the reason the Celtics are winning is purely because LeBron wants them to, instead of the fact that they just play much better at home, and most of the Cavs are hot garbage. So, I dunno... Thoughts?
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I'd think Lebron's just gassed from doing everything short of LITERALLY carrying his teammates up and down the floor each possession.

Plus, I really don't think he's already assuming the Finals would be an automatic L. He's probably confident enough to think he can eek out 4 against GS... and it's not at all crazy to think he could beat a team led by two guys famous for playoff disappearing acts.

Boston's the better team, and Lebron's got a ton of miles on those legs.
Gamertag: Tweakee
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A Mike D'antoni coached team is up 3-2 in the WCF based almost entirely on their DEFENSE.

Wha?
Gamertag: Tweakee
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Still sticking with Warriors in seven.
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Man, oh man the Warriors had their opportunities. If Iguodala comes back, and if Paul is hurt, or limited at least, they should get game 6, but this was uge for Uston. I could totally overreact and say that if Houston wins this, and then title, it could change the course of the entire lig.

(Can you tell I listened to this game with Ubie Brown on the call?)
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Iguodala is a fine player and I would much prefer him to play. That being said the Warriors have four flippin' All-Stars on the court. Someone needs to seize the day.
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That's true. And they certainly should win at home regardless. But losing these two without him is not a coincidence.

Nightmare scenario. Imagine the Rockets eke out game 7, but have lost Paul for the playoffs. Then LeBron goes Superman in game 7 in Boston and it's James vs. Beard for the NBA title. Ugh ugh ugh.
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He's big for them, no doubt, but I hear so much about how the Warriors don't have the depth and the bench isn't performing. Meanwhile the Rockets have won the last 2 playing only 7 guys in each game. These are the games where it comes down to the superstars. That's who you live and die with at this point. Last two games have been all death when it counts. That has gotta change Saturday and Monday.
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The Rockets are playing better defense, and have been more disciplined with the ball.

What has to be really scary for GS is that Harden has completely choked in the last two games... and Houston won anyway. If Houston wins this series and the Finals, it completely changes Paul's legacy, and D'antoni's for that matter. Harden not so much to this point.

I really hope Paul's not hurt. Not only would it suck the last bit of life out of these playoffs, but if the W's come back and win, it'd make the anti-Warriors whiners insufferable for another year.

At this point, sure I want the Warriors to win, but mostly I want a close game 7 in this series, and Boston win in the other. The Celts are a great story this year, while the Cavs are a horror show.
Gamertag: Tweakee
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I think the Warriors can still win this especially with Paul out for Game 6 and probably 50% at most even if he plays Game 7.

That being said, as a Lakers fan here, I remember very clearly the 3-Peat Lakers of the Kobe-Shaq era from 2000-2003. They had a hell of a tough time getting through the WC, but once they did they had an easy Finals against the 76ers, Pacers, and Nets. When they made the playoffs the following year (2003) they looked totally out of gas and lost to SA in the WC semis.

This Warriors team as good as they are, might just be running out of gas. It's a lot to ask a team to make it to 4 straight NBA Finals. Plus, the Warriors, unlike those Lakers teams, have a had a tough time in the Finals against Lebron and co., Lakers never were really tested like they have been.
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KD hasn't been to four straight finals. Dude needs to step up in the fourth quarters and take over. The Warriors had a great team, but if they "needed" Durant for anything it was to have a guy who could do just that. Apart from that one year where Steph was the best player on the planet, he's not going to do that consistently. I know hero ball is overrated and inefficient, but sometimes when the game is on the line it seems to me you can't just trust that running your offense, being patient, and always making the extra pass is going to work. The possessions get tighter, and if the game is close, you start running out of time for one of those patented three-minute offensive runs that seem inevitable when you're down in the second quarter of a game sometime in February. At those moments a team needs a guy who can physically take a game over on the offensive end. LeBron can do that. Kobe could do that. MJ could do that.
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history buff Wrote:This Warriors team as good as they are, might just be running out of gas. It's a lot to ask a team to make it to 4 straight NBA Finals. Plus, the Warriors, unlike those Lakers teams, have a had a tough time in the Finals against Lebron and co., Lakers never were really tested like they have been.

Warriors got through the Cavs fairly easily last year. Game 3 was close and they dropped Game 4 in Cleveland but it was still a dominant showing, especially considering it was against a LeBron-led team with a healthy Kyrie.

One thing I've been reading that has some validity is that since Durant arrived neither Curry or Durant feel the urgency to take the game over in crunch time. During the early part of this Warrior run you always had the feeling that if it was close with a few minutes left they would handle it. Now that feeling is missing.
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I know part of it is the Rockets coming out and shooting great, but if this Warriors team doesn't show me something in the third quarter then I don't know what the hell to think. Maybe instead of rooting against Houston I should start admiring their moxie.
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No matter the outcome, my opinion of D'antoni, Paul, Gordon, and any other Rocket I can think of has gone up significantly....

Except Harden. He has to play lights-out and/or win this series not to add yet another playoff fade to his legacy. The Rockets won the two biggest games of their season so far in spite of him.

I've always thought more of D'antoni than most people (which wasn't hard, as he seemed to be a perpetual punching bag), but getting strong defense out of a team that starts James Harden, while massaging this team into its optimal offensive self, has been truly impressive.
Gamertag: Tweakee
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55-20 so far in the second half. Damn.

The Warriors almost doubled up the Rockets in the final three quarters- 93-47. That's like a girls high school basketball score.
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These two teams are a combined 15-70 so far from 3-point land tonight. Ugly. This was a terrible game. LeBron deserves credit, of course. He's obviously the best player in the league. But even basically solo, winning against a team filled with role players and a star rookie, who collectively came up small under the pressure of game 7, is really not that much to write home about. But people love to throw the term GOAT around, so of course that will be part of the conversation again.
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Lebron -has- to stay in the East next year, right? 8 straight Finals... what would that have likely been if he had been on similar teams in the West... 3? 1?

It has to be weird for Boston. They did so much better than anyone expected... but came up small in game 7. Glass half full or half empty?
Gamertag: Tweakee
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None of the options seem right. If he was resigned to not winning a ring next year, would he rather stay in Cleveland or go to L.A.? I think the latter would be more attractive to him. And maybe he convinces himself he and Paul George will make them strong contenders.

Philly seems like it won't happen. It'd be a weird play that smacks of desperation to find a talented squad to latch onto. The only other alternative would be Houston, if Golden State wins tomorrow.
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