Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Let's Talk Hoops

Now that the defending champs have bee eliminated, let us now settle in and discuss the remaining 4 teams and what to expect these next few weeks.

Western Conference:

Clearly, atleast from an offensive standpoint, the better of the two matchups.

Playoff PPG: 101.8 Mavs 109.8 Suns

Seeing that right there I expect a high scoring affair of run and gun. On paper, the Suns have more athleticism inthe starting line up. But anytime that Steve Nash has a subpar game, that can cause problems for the well oiled machine in Phoenix. This series promises to go atleast 6 games and most liekly 7. That means that the key to the whole series may be ingame adjustments made by the coaching staff and as it stands right now, my money will be on Avery Johnson. Every single move that this guy has made has been gold thus far. Will the Suns have anybody who can truly body up to Dirk Nowitzki on the defensive end? Anyone that I see slated to body him up will get abused inside and if he ends up with a smaller man on him then he will have no problems raining jumpers all night. This could be Dirk's coming out party as a true superstar on thenational stage.

Prediction: Mavs in 6

Eastern Conference:

I need to clear my head now that I am totally shocked that the matchup is Miami and Detroit. From day one of the season it was pretty much understood that these two teams would end up meeting in the Eastern Conference Finals. The way that the Pistons had to go the full 7 against the Cavs, one would think that maybe that whole "team ball" concept may be a thing of the past. Anyone that thinks that is in for a rude awakening. Of course Dwayne Wade and Shaq will get theirs, but with the rest of Pat Riley's tinkering could very well lead to the downfall of the Heat. Sure, Antoine Walker wll have one solid game that the Heat will win. But the rest of the series he will run and hide and without that 3rd scoring threat the Heat are doomed. Expect the "complete team" to win out in the end.

Prediction: Pistons in 7

I'll be back for the Finals breakdown when the Mavs meet the Pistons...

Monday, May 15, 2006

Monday Random Thoughts...

The Cubs are looking to get a lift with the recent call up of Jae-Kuk Ryu to help bolster up their bullpen. Many people are just hearing of Ryu for the first time, and I thought that I was one of them until a story was brought to my attention about his nefarious exploits while with the Single-A Daytona squad. Jae-Kuk is the nature hater who was arrested and fined for throwing a baseball at an osprey that was sitting atop a foul pole during practice. Apparently over in Korea they do not understand that it is frown upon to throw a baseball at a living thing. Just another solid callup for the franchise that is becoming the 2nd team in the second city.

Sad news for the football world as Doug Flutie has officially decided to hang up the spikes and retire to the booth to broadcast college football games for ESPN and ABC. Even sadder than that is the fact that his one lasting NFL defining moment was a 2 point drop kick conversion in his last regular season game.

So much for the Rasheed "guarantee" tonight...that's the last time that I take anything that he has to say at face value. Seven point in 3-13 shooting is one hell of a way to put your money where your mouth is.

And finally, a nice little message from everybodies friend, Robert Montgomery Knight:

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Top 10 Sports Movies

I am running into a little bit of writers block tonight so I decided to pen down my ranking of top 10 sports movies of all time. Please feel free to praise/degrade me for my selections...

10) Tin Cup - Just kidding.....

10) Rounders - Somehow the writers were ahead of their time with the Poker craze

9) Blue Chips - Would have loved to see a Hoosiers squad of Bobby Hurley, Eric Anderson, Keith Smart, Chris Reynolds, and Jamal Meeks

8) Breaking Away - The sentimental pick for my Hoosier background

7) Rocky 3 - Just for the mention of Clubber Lang

6) Bull Durham - Classic movie highlighting life in the minor leagues with a quality cast

5) Field of Dreams - Anything with the 1919 White Sox and Shoeless Joe works for me

4) Slapshot - Just a cult classic all around

3) Rudy - Ruuuuuuudy Ruuuuuuuudy Ruuuuuuuuudy

2) Hoosiers - Jimmy Chitwood working off the picket fence is sweet as sugar

1) Caddyshack - I don't know a single golf fanatic that can't quote this entire movie line for line

Monday, May 08, 2006

Bulls offseason checklist

I read a top notch article today from Sam Smith in the Tribune and he dropped in a few nuggets of possible changes for the Bulls this off season...namely a couple of free agents not named Przybilla that can have an impact on the Bulls in the future.

First priority of course will be to sign Kirk Hinrich to a longterm deal. He showed flashes of being a solid, if not above average, point guard in the league of late. Kirk is one of the few untouchables that I see on the team currently. The Bulls can look to the draft get a decent tall SG in the draft the likes of Ronnie Brewer from Arkansas or Brandon Roy out of Washington if they are lucky. That will allow Kirk to concentrate on his main roll as being the primary ballhandler to set up the offense.

But I digress. Time to get to a couple of names that may draw some interest from the Bulls this offseason...

The first name dropped by Sam was that of Nazr Mohammed. A Chicago native who apparently is a bit miffed about being replaced by Robert Horry in the starting lineup during the first game of the 2nd round matchup with a speedier Mavs team. He is an unrestricted free agent and by common logic (or just wishful thinking) I can see him wanting to come join in with what the Bulls are doing to bring them back to where they used to be in the 90s.

The second name, and just as intriguing, Drew Gooden. He also is on the outs with his team due to this being the LeBron show. I can't blame #23 for trying to take over games and he has the skill to do it. Gooden is all the inside presence on offense that Tyson Chandler is not and he can contribute onthe defensive side when needed. Rock Chalk Jayhawk in Chicago if they can land him to play along with former KU teammate Hinrich. The only sticking point will be that Drew is a resticted free agent, and with the pending signing of James to an extension the Cavs need to show him that they are serious about winning.

Either way that they go on each guy there are 2 things that I really like to see...

1) They are the big guys that the Bulls need who are not afraid to mix it up inside.

2) Both guys are hungry and would have something to prove to their former teams if they leave. That fits well into the direction that the Bulls are looking to go.

That of course is all speculation and we will have to wait until the end of the playoffs to see which direction the Bulls go in. The pawns are in place and it's time for the Bulls to make their move.