Heat will be dangerous in the playoffs

The Miami Heat could be a dangerous opponent for a first round opponent. Head coach Erik Spoelstra lucked out when his management team signed Hassan Whiteside from the D-League. Whiteside got his first triple double of his career with 14 points, 13 rebounds and 12 blocks against the Chicago Bulls Sunday afternoon. The Sacramento Kings and Toronto Raptors gave up on him.
The Heat team now have two centers that can protect the rim with Whiteside and Chris Andersen, which gives their defenders an opportunity to take away the three point line and force opposition shooters to drive instead. Coach Spoelstra has very good wing defenders in Dwayne Wade, Luol Deng and Norris Cole. The Heat defense will be a stingy one.
The Heat offensively have two twenty point a game scorers in Wade and Chris Bosh. Deng scores 14.3 point a game and plays great defense. The Heat has two point guards who have made big shots and have many playoff games under their belt in Mario Chalmers and Norris Coles. Shabazz Napier was the MVP for the 2014 NCAA champions University of Connecticut. The center tandem of Whiteside and Andersen will provide offensive rebounds and easy put backs. This gives Miami a very good eight man rotation.
The Heat should pass the Milwaukee Bucks and most probably be the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference. They could send the number three seed home early if they are healthy going into the playoffs especially Wade. Coach Spoelstra will motivate his team by reminding them that they can win one or more playoff series without LeBron James.
Beware of the Miami Heat in the first round.
Could the Heat win a playoff round?
Have a great day!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

Raptors shoot too many threes

The Toronto Raptors are 27 – 15 with a .643 winning percentage. They survived the absence of DeMar DeRozan and need to regain their winning ways. Raptors were 12 – 9 without their all-star.
The Raptors offense depends too much on the three point shot to score. They are seventh in the NBA with 25.3 attempts a game. The Houston Rockets are number one with 33.5 and Portland Trailblazers are second with 27.3. Toronto is ranked 13th in Raptors three point percentage made with .353 and are fifth in the NBA in scoring with a 106.4 average.  http://espn.go.com/nba/statistics/team/_/stat/offense-per-game/sort/avgThreePointFieldGoalsAttempted
Raptors general manager Masai Ujiri will need to add a big man who can play over 20 minutes a game. They need to prepare for the Eastern Conference playoffs because the Washington Wizards (Marcin Gortat, Nene Hilario, Kris Humphries and Kevin Seraphin), Chicago Bulls (Pau Gasol, Joakim Noah, Taj Gibson and Nikola Miotic) and Cleveland Cavailiers (Timofey Mozgov, Kevin Love and Tristan Thompson) all have multiple big men who can play either center or power forward.
The Raptors have only one 7”0”who plays many minutes it’s Jonas Valanciuanas . Amir Johnson, Patrick Patterson and Tyler Hansbrough are 6’9”, while Chuck Hayes is 6’6’’. Toronto doesn’t have enough size to compete with opponents that play two big men over 6’11” on the court at the same time for the majority of the game.
The Raptors three point shooting in their last three losses was 5 for 28 (17.9%) Grizzlies, Pelicans 7 for 25 (28%) and 6 for 25 (24%) Hawks shows the Raptors dependence on the three point shot. The lack of size prevents the extra possessions in terms of offensive and defensive rebounds.
Head coach Dwayne Casey’s favourite line-up with 4 shooters and 1 big on the court can’t physically compete in a long series. The Raptors have a 10 game lead on the Brooklyn Nets and should be able to win their division title again, which guarantee them a minimum third seed.
Do the Raptors need to trade for a big man?
Have a great day!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

NBA Bulls Rose needs to relax

The Chicago Bulls should take a page from the Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers with a relax comment to their fans and media. The Bulls have lost twice to the Washington Wizards, once to each the Atlanta Hawks and Cleveland Cavaliers. They are 5 out of their last 7 games. Chicago are still in fourth place in the Eastern Conference.
The Bulls losing to the teams they may face in the second round of the playoffs is a psychological victory for their opponents when they meet in the playoffs. Personally, I don’t see any team in the Eastern Conference beating a healthy Chicago team four times in a playoff series.
Coach Tom Thibodeau needs to convince Derrick Rose that the Bulls don’t need their point guard to be the NBA MVP. Rose leads the Bulls in shot attempts with 16.2 despite having much better offensive players on his team. He has to learn how to pick and choose when he wants to take over a game and when to be a facilitator?
The Bulls have added Pau Gasol (18.7), Nikola Mirotic (7.9) and Aaron Brooks (11.0) who have combined for 37.6 points per game. Jimmy Butler has improved dramatically in the absence Rose and now leads the team in scoring with 20.6 points.
Chicago doesn’t need a ball dominate point guard to lead them in shot attempts instead they need a player to understand his limitations, acknowledge the improvements made to the roster and long-time teammates. Former NBA MVP Rose attempts 5.4 three point shots a game and shots a terrible 31%. He can either dribble inside the arc to make shot shorter or make an extra pass to one of the Bulls 40% behind the arc shooters Brooks (43%) and Mike Dunleavy (41.7%).  Derrick has to put his pride aside and admit he is not a good three point shooter.
It will be hard for Coach Thibodeau to change how Rose plays the game because he is a ball dominate player who had success at every level he has played at in his career. This adaption could be the key for the Bulls to make it to the NBA Finals.
Can Rose make necessary change?
Have a great day!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

Great Seahawks comeback or

The one common denominator about every great comeback is the loser’s mental and coaching mistakes that lead to the outcome. The Packers list of errors is inexplicably long.
The Green Bay Packers coaching staff had its worst day ever under the Mike McCarthy leadership. The opening drive Green Bay had a fourth and inches at the goal line with a chance to go to the Super Bowl on the line. If Coach McCarthy was at home; he would have went for it. Can someone please explain to me how the game in regulation with the Packers having all three timeouts remaining? After the completion to Randall Cobb for a first down there was 53 seconds remaining and Coach McCarthy didn’t call a timeout.
Aaron Rodgers the player who will most probably win the NFL league MVP throws a floater towards the end zone that the best cornerback in the NFL, Richard Sherman intercepts, which cost the Packers a minimum of three points. The score was 16 – 0 at the time interception.
The Packers defensive coordinator Dom Capers made two monumental mistakes. The first one came with Seahawks facing a third and 29. He decides to rush three players and put everybody else in coverage. Russell Wilson completed a 32 yard pass that eventually lead to a field goal. The second one was in overtime on the touchdown pass. The Packers played man-to-man with no safety in the middle of the field. He should have played the bend, but don’t break defense. Seahawks kicks a field goal the overtime continues and the Packers offense get the ball back.
Tight-end Brandon Bostick had the biggest brain cramp on the Packers side because he mishandled the onside kick, which lead to Seattle’s last touchdown before the overtime. The general rule for the hands team for a ball in the air is Bostick should have went to block a Seattle player and Jordy Nelson would have recovered the ball. Bostick tried to recover the ball instead and the results were disastrous. The Packers still had a chance to win the game.
Ha Ha Clinton-Dix missed played an alley-oop pass by Wilson to tight-end Luke Willson for a two-point convert must have been painful for Packers fans to watch.
Bostick didn’t cost the Packers the victory by himself.
The Seahawks secondary Earl Thomas left game and came back to play rest of the game with a shoulder brace. Richard Sherman played with one arm from third quarter onward. Wilson to Jermaine Kearse didn’t play well, but finished great. Marshawn Lynch for being himself. Great call by Head Coach Pete Carrol for calling the fake field goal, punter Jon Ryan for completing the TD pass to offensive lineman Garry Gilliam.
Congratulations to the Seahawks for making it back to the Super Bowl.
Have a great day!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

The Leafs must make a decision

The Toronto Maple Leafs must feel like the Tom Cruise character in the Edge of Tomorrow with the same thing happening over and over to him. The Maple Leafs made the playoffs in 2004 didn’t make it again until 2013. This organization seems to be in the state again this year with them either barely making or missing the playoffs and hope for next year.
The MLSE is charging crazy prices for tickets, food and beers because the rabid Toronto fans have money to burn and corporate boxes to write off. Brendan Shanahan is the new saviour for the Leafs Nation. He did Randy Carlyle a favour by firing him before the mid-point of the season. The former head coach will be paid the remaining of the season and next year without having to coach a mediocre team and tough media scrums.
This season would have been a great season to tank for Connor McDavid. The Leafs start to the season was too good not to end up in the bottom and not good enough to keep them in a playoff spot.
The Leafs have played 46 games with 36 remaining. There are two wild card spots and they are presently fourth in the group fighting for them. Most likely the Boston Bruins and New York Rangers will earn those spots. The Florida Panthers have played 42 games and accumulated 49 points compared to the Leafs 46 games with 47. The Rangers and Panthers have games in hand on the Leafs and Bruins have seven more points.
The Leafs next five games are against teams below them in the standings: Hurricanes, Senators, Devils, Coyotes and Flyers if they win four out of five. Toronto will be back in the playoff hunt giving their fans an illusion that they can make it. The Leafs will talk about as long as they are in the playoffs anybody can win, really.
Once again the Leafs will barely miss the playoffs. Shanahan may need to take a lesson from New York Knicks President Phil Jackson who is sacrificing this season and maybe next year with the hopes to be strong contenders within three years.
An NHL team could take up to three to five years to move up to the contender ranking. The New York Islanders John Tavares is now in his sixth season and this year there was no doubt they would make the playoffs. The question for the Islanders this year is how deep they will go in the playoffs.
Leafs are just hoping to make the playoffs.
Should the Leafs roster be blow-up?
Enjoy your weekend!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

Stiverne losses WBC heavyweight title

Showtime showed Haitian born Bermane Stiverne versus Deontay Wilder for the WBC Heavyweight title. Wilder fought a very smart fight by using his six inch advantage and jabbed his way to a title. The 12 rounds was a Wilder domination 10 – 2 with a knockdown after the second round bell. Stiverne only won the fourth and sixth round.
Showtime had an excellent boxing card with three title fights, but they had to show the fight for free. Wilder despite being the challenger was paid more than the Champion Stiverne. The UFC rarely shows a championship fight for free.
Wilder is not a great fighter and would not have a chance to beat Wladimir Klitschko who is the IBF and WBO Heavyweight Champion. It would be nice to see Wilder face Klitschko for the unification of the titles.
I hope there was a clause for Stiverne to get a rematch if he loses the fight since he was being paid less than Wilder. It was a good fight; therefore, the next fight could be better with the winner winning by knockout.
Boxing will dominate the news if the one fight that every fight fan would like to see happens. Manny Pacquiao versus Flyod Mayweather Jr. would be the highest grossing fight in the history of boxing. The fighters who fight on the under card would get enormous exposure that could elevate them to superstar status.
Pacquiao has signed the contract, which means he has agreed to all the terms. Hopefully Mayweather signs soon and a date will be announced for the most watched fight in the history. Everyone from the Philippines will watch their hero Pacquiao, every person who wants to see Mayweather lose and his fans will watch.
UFC has taken over the pay-per-view for fight cards dominance. They would not be able to compete with the Super fight between Pacquiao and Mayweather Jr., which could make boxing relevant again for one weekend.
Can Pacquiao versus Mayweather Jr. bring back boxing?
Have a great day!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

What is Hawks secret? (NBA)

The Atlanta Hawks have the second best winning percentage in the NBA right now with an outstanding .800. This team is doing it without a true recognizable face for any casual NBA fan, which means multiple times all-star, has a big shoe deal or shows up in commercials on a regular basis. No not one so called franchise player who is the face of the organization.
The Hawks team top three scorers all take less than 12.6 shots a game: Jeff Teague 12.3, Paul Millsap and Al Horford are tied for lead with 12.6. How many teams can you say that every player on an NBA team attempts less than 13 shots? The Hawks still average 103 point for a game. No one on the team scores more than 20 points a game on a team that has a .800 winning percentage.
Kyle Korver leads the NBA in three point shots made (118) and shots an astonishing .527 shooting percentages. He is only attempting 8.1 shots per game and of those 5.8 are three point shots. He is the only Hawks player in the top 40.
The other two 30 win teams have a standard roster where a few stars shot more than others and have more than one 20 point scorer.
The Golden State Warriors top two field goal attempts leaders (FGA) are slightly above 16 and each is averaging over 20 points a game. (Stephen Curry 23.2 and Klay Thompson 21.6) No one else on the Warriors attempts more than 9.8. Marreese Speights averages 12.9 points a game as the third scoring leader. They have five players who score more than double digits nightly, which match the Hawks number.
The Portland Trailblazers top two FGA leaders are LaMarcus Aldridge 20.3 (22.3 PPG) and Damain Lillard 16.4 (22.1 PPG) with each player scoring more than 20 points per game. Third option attempts 12.4 shots and Wesley Mathews scores 16.1 per game. The Trailblazers only have three players who score more than 10 points a night.
The question in the NBA that arises when a team has balance scoring; can they win in the playoffs without a true number one and two option? Head coach Mike Budenholzer has brought his San Antonio Spurs lesson to Atlanta with great success so far.
Will the Hawks success continue?
Enjoy your weekend!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

Bowles: new head coach of the Jets

Former Arizona defensive coordinator Todd Bowles was hire as the New York Jets new Head coach. He will inherit a young and talented defense, which played a similar system to the one that he used in Arizona. Bowles will be one five Black and sixth non-white head coaches (Panthers coach Ron Rivera is Latin heritage) when the NFL season begins next season.
The one problem with hiring an excellent former defensive coordinator is their inability to hire an offensive coordinator that is not too conservative. The downfall of Lovie Smith and Rex Ryan was they never got an offensive coordinator that could score enough points despite having great defenses.
Bowles hired former offensive coordinator and head coach Chan Gailey as his offensive coordinator. Gailey’s key player to his success as a Jets coordinator is to incorporate Percy Harvin into the offense. Harvin is a dynamic player who can catch pass screens or deep throws and he can run the ball from the backfield or reverses. How he uses Percy will determine the team’s offensive success next season.
Next Gailey will need to pick a quarterback: Michael Vick or Geno Smith? Both were a disaster last year and don’t inspire confidence. The Jets may go out and get a veteran that knows his offense to be the back-up.
The Jets fans once again won’t have to worry about the defense. The team will only go as far as the offense will take them. The special teams return game will depend on Harvin’s health. It would be wise in the middle rounds to find a dynamic returner who can also help the offense.
The press conferences will not be on every sports news station. Bowles has played and coached for many years and should be able to handle the New York press. He will have to deal with the comparisons to Rex Ryan on a regular basis because they will face each other twice a year.
Will Bowles have a winning season next year?
Enjoy your weekend!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

Rex Ryan loves to coach in AFC East

The Buffalo Bills were smart not to hire Bills defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz as their new head coach. Schwartz career head coaching record is 29 – 51 and his Detroit Lions teams were undisciplined.
New Buffalo Bills head coach Rex Ryan will maintain his rivalry with New England Patriots Bill Belichick and create a new one with New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles (he who inherited Ryan’s old job). Ryan super confidence and his ability to get his players to play hard every game will bode well for the Buffalo Bills fans.
The Bills defense is already considered a very good one with three of the four starting defensive linemen making the Pro Bowl. Ryan will improve the play of the linebackers and defensive backs in order to take the unit to the next level.
Ryan’s biggest problem when he worked for the New York Jets was his inability to find an offensive coordinator, which prevented him from having more wins. His career record is an average 46 wins and 50 losses with some playoff success in his first 2 seasons with Jets. This time he has hired former San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman who will run the ball just like Ryan likes to do. No throwing the ball 40 times by the Bills next season.
Roman will utilize the running ability of E.J. Manuel combined with the running back by committee. C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson will share the job again next year with Jackson providing the power and Spiller the speed. Romain has worked with mobile quarterbacks: Alex Smith and Colin Kaepernick.
The person that will be the biggest key to the Bills success offensively is C.J. Spiller who is a multi-tool football player that can score in so many different ways. Sammy Watkins is a very good wide receiver. The offense has the skilled players to do well.
Ryan will bring energy, big ego and early success. Was Ryan the right hire?
Enjoy your weekend!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

NFL Conference weekend point spread picks

I am 5 – 3 after the first two playoff rounds with a 3 – 1 record last week. The Conference Championship games will be both one-sided. The Colts were my only loss last week; therefore I have to pick against them again this week.
Green Bay Packers versus the Seattle Seahawks (-7)
The Packers run defense wasn’t good against the Dallas Cowboys last week. DeMarcus Murray carried the ball 25 times for 123 yards, which resulted in a 4.9 yards a carry average. The Seahawks running is much better and more powerful with Marshawn Lynch than the Cowboys also Russell Wilson’s running will cause a problem for Packers.
Aaron Rodgers is supposedly moving better than he did last week and hasn’t missed practice this week. Seattle’s defense is playing better than they did last year; therefore it will be a long day for Rodgers and Eddie Lacy.
Seattle’s offense is good and should be able to get some short drives because of turnovers caused by defense.
Take the Seahawks – 7
Indianapolis Colts against the New England Patriots (-7)
The one dimensional Colts offense is the type that Head coach Bill Belichick is great at designing a defense to stop it. Andrew Luck has no running attack to speak of right now and Colts depend solely on the pass to beat the opponents’ defense. The Patriots defense will be free to blitz Luck.
The Patriots offense abandoned the run last week. This week the offense will be balanced again with LaGarrette Blount and Jonas Gray pounding away at the smaller Colts defense. The Denver Broncos averaged 4 yards a carry against the Colts last week. Patriots will look to exploit the Colts run defense. Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski will be able to get big chunks of yards of the play action pass after establishing the run. Brady will not miss the open wide receivers like Peyton Manning did last week.
Take the Pats – 7
Good luck this weekend!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

Powered by WordPress | Designed by: All Premium Themes Online. | Thanks to Top Bank Free Premium WordPress Themes, wordpress themes 2012 and Premium Themes
%d bloggers like this: