Saturday, April 16, 2016

NBA First Round Playoff Predictions

Western Conference

Houston Rockets Vs Golden State Warriors

Warriors. Win. Easy. Nuff. Said!

Warriors over Rockets 4 games

Portland Trailblazers  Vs Los Angeles Clippers

This will probably be the only competitive matchup in the Western Conference from the First Round. Damian Lillard has been playing very well this season and for the most part it has gone unnoticed because the West is full of a lot of great players and it’s easy to get lost in the shuffle. The Clippers have had their moments this season, but I don’t know if I think they can actually be a threat to any team in the playoffs this season. The Clippers on occasions tend to be their own worst enemy, they play great team ball when they win, but when they lose I often question their mental toughness. That is why I don’t think this will be a cake walk at all for them against the Trailblazers. I give the edge to the Clippers in this matchup because they have more depth on the bench, but I expect the Trailblazers to give them everything they’ve got!

Clippers over Trailblazers 6 games

Dallas Mavericks Vs Oklahoma City Thunder

This will be a boring matchup overall. The Thunder are quietly having a very good season. Since there is so much competition in the Western Conference it’s easy to get overlooked, especially when the Warriors have been so dominant! Russell Westbrook is having the best season of his career and Kevin Durant has bounced back strong from the foot injury last season. The Mavericks are old and won’t be able to keep up with the Thunder for an entire series.

Thunder over Mavericks 5 games

Memphis Grizzlies Vs San Antonio Spurs

This has been a great a matchup over the years in the playoffs, fierce battles, fought until the end. Not this year though. The Grizzlies have had a tough time trying to work through injuries this season. Twenty eight players have been cycled through this roster and that’s never a good thing for any team. The Spurs on the other hand have a lot of depth on their bench and Coach Popovich has his squad ready for a playoff run! This should be a nice warm up for the Spurs to get them ready for the next opponent they end up facing in the following round!

Spurs over Grizzlies 5 games

Eastern Conference

Detroit Pistons Vs Cleveland Cavaliers

This will not even be close….therefore, no analysis on this matchup is necessary!

Cavaliers over Pistons 4 games

Boston Celtics Vs Atlanta Hawks

This could possibly be the only intriguing matchup in the Eastern Conference! The Celtics have surged the second half of the season and unexpectedly made the playoffs led by the nobody squad! They’re a scrappy team with some good shooters so I expect them to put up a good fight against the Hawks! The Hawks are a pretty boring team overall which is why this should end up being a decent series. Both teams matchup well against each other and neither team is expected to make any strides in the post season! I think the Celtics have the edge in this matchup because they’ve steam rolled their way into the playoffs and I believe they can continue to ride that wave for at least one round in the playoffs!

Celtics over Hawks 7 games

Charlotte Hornets Vs Miami Heat

You know the Eastern Conference sucks as soon as you see a mediocre team like the Hornets are actually participating in the post season. The Heat are actually a good team this season and Dwayne Wade has managed to stay healthy for the most part which is a big reason why they are playing so well. They’ve even managed to continue to play well through the absence of Chris Bosh! The only hope for the Hornets is that Michael Jordan just gets so fed up with his mediocre team and comes out of retirement to try and get them a win!

Heat over Hornets 4 games

Indiana Pacers Vs Toronto Raptors

I don’t expect this to be much of a series. The Pacers are mediocre and the Raptors are one of the few teams that could actually challenge the Cavaliers this post season. This should be a nice little warm up for the Raptors!

Raptors over Pacers 5 games

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Thanks For The Memories

Dear Kobe,

                You don’t know me, but I know you. Well, not personally, but I’ve been privileged enough to be able to witness your entire twenty year career. I became a Laker fan when I was a kid back in the early 90’s. I was not an avid fan during those times, just more of a casual fan. That all changed when you were drafted by the Charlotte Hornets and traded to the Lakers in 1996. This was one of the greatest moves by the GM at the time Jerry West who realized that you were a once in a lifetime player and over the years you have put in the hard work to prove that this is true. I was only 11 years old at the time and from then on I’ve been one of your biggest fans!

                I have many memories over the past twenty years that will be absolutely unforgettable. The five Championships were obviously some of the greatest memories, but the one I enjoyed the most was the 2010 Championship against the Boston Celtics. That series had everything any real basketball fan would want in a Championship matchup! A hard fought seven game series that came all the way down to the end. Every game a back and forth battle. This was unlike any of the prior Championships you won because the previous Championships were won in dominating fashion. I feel like this was your greatest Championship because this was YOUR team and you were able to shutup every single idiot who hopped on the hate train during the feud between you and Shaq.

                The night you scored 81 points in one game was magical and I didn’t even get to see it, but I was listening on the radio. I grew up in Reno, NV so we got Laker games, but not every game and since you were playing Toronto and this was not a national TV game it was nowhere to be found on cable. I remember watching ESPNews and watching the ticker and noticing that every time it scrolled past the games score I noticed how many points you were scoring was rising at an insane rate and I had to at least hear what was going on! I have satellite radio and luckily they play every NBA games radio broadcast so I immediately tuned into the game and was literally jumping up and down with every basket you scored. It is so hard to enjoy a basketball game on the radio, but this was a game unlike any other in the history of the NBA. When it was all said and done you scored the second most points in one game in NBA history…81 points!

                When you’re a Laker fan you expect the haters, but you Mr. Bryant brought on the haters like no other! I cannot tell you how many arguments I have been in over the years about you!! I have your back for life and will NEVER back down from a Kobe Bryant argument no matter who you are!! One of my favorite arguments was when I was at work I was decked out in all Lakers wearing a Kobe jersey. I worked at the mall and it was in the afternoon on a weekday so no one else was in the store besides this customer and me. He notices my jersey and scoffs “Pfff Kobe he ain’t the best player in the NBA!” I look at him and laugh and respond with “please oh great one enlighten me with who the best player in the league is today?” His response of course was every haters response at the time with “LeBron!” Now mind you at this time LeBron had ZERO rings and just got swept out of the NBA Finals the previous season so I look at him and just start laughing in the most condescending bitch way I possibly could and this fat fuck got a little upset by that. So eventually our argument gets so heated we are like inches from eachothers face arguing back and forth about Kobe Vs. LeBron. Side note I am a 5’2’’ one hundred pound girl. This guy is about 6’3’’ and three hundred pounds (or more). Once the argument was over I think he felt kind of stupid and eventually he left. So like I said before I don’t care who you are I’ll get in your face if you don’t show the Mamba respect!

                I could go on forever about the numerous memories you have provided myself and many others over the past twenty years, but there isn’t enough time!  Your final season has been tough to watch because of how awful the team is in general, but it also has been great to see you get your respect from the league, the fans and even your haters. This is the first year EVER I have not been in a major Kobe fight with a hater! It’s been odd to not see you as the villain this season, but it’s because we all know the imprint you have left behind on this game was great to watch and even the haters can’t continue lying to themselves about it! You are a legend and I am so happy to have been able to come along for the ride and watch you play your entire twenty year career on my favorite team, the Lakers. Our paths may never cross and we may never even have so much as a hand shake, but I do really want to thank you for all of memories over the past twenty years. They were great and amazing and there will never be another Kobe Bean Bryant!

                                Katie Tropp