NBA playoffs 2018

johnmd20

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74 for Lebron and Love. That's a winning combo. This game was, by far, the easiest Cavs win thus far in the playoffs. Every other win was down to the last shot.
 

Kliq

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The way Toronto lost game one; it isn’t surprising they lost this way tonight. That combined with the fact they don’t have anyone to guard LeBron and they were basically cooked. They NEEDED to win that first game.
 

Sam Ray Not

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I'm actively rooting for a sweep now. I don't care if that leads to GSW/CL series for a millionth time.

Cluck off, Raps.

Also, fuck off Drake.
+1 to all of the above.

I'm all for skepticism about the predictive value of regular season net rating, but man, the Choking Raps are taking it to a new level. They finished the season #2 in the NBA (just a point behind Houston) with a +7.3 SRS, where the Cavs were #14 at +0.6. Even giving massive brownie points to the Cavs for intangibles like "mental toughness" and "proven playoff mettle” and “LeBron,” the Raps should not be crapping the bed nearly this badly. And they don't even have an injury or fatigue excuse. Blehhh.

Ah well, the Raps actually had HCA v. the Warriors in the finals if they both made it that far, so I guess I should be happy. If it's Warriors/Cavs again (zzzz), I feel pretty confident the Ws won't stand around slack-jacked and watch LeBron abuse them the way the Raps just did. Heck, I don't think any of the remaining playoff teams would allow themselves to be bent over to the same degree, at least not without trying to change things up. Trap him or hack him or caress his nuts or blow in his ear or something.

TLDR:

 
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JCizzle

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What are you supposed to do when LeBron is hitting fadeaway mid-range twos? I mean. Cmon.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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I don't get it with Toronto. They have such depth and the right pieces in terms of their starters. Yet they are letting LeBron and Love have their way with them.

Again, I know the easy take is that its because they are the Raptors but that doesn't work for me. Is it coaching? Lowry is having a decent offensive game and DeRozan isn't horrible though his regular season 3p% looks to have been a mirage. But the team just looks sluggish and resigned to the fact that Cleveland deserves to win. Its frustrating AF because from a personnel perspective, they are the one team from the East that seemed to have the pieces to exploit Cleveland.
It's not coaching. It's that TOR really doesn't have any wings. They have good guards and good bigs but they donlt have anyone who can guard LBJ and that's a huge problem.
 

benhogan

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It's not coaching. It's that TOR really doesn't have any wings. They have good guards and good bigs but they donlt have anyone who can guard LBJ and that's a huge problem.
Precisely why I loved the MaMo/Bradley deal at the time (even though MaMo has been maddening over the last month). MaMo had some decent historical numbers guarding Lebron.

1 year of Avery for 2 cheaper years of Morris worked for cap purposes in order to sign Hayward. BUT we also got a 4 that could guard Lebron, Simmons or Giannis and back up Al.

People can make the argument all they want about Bradley being the better player but in terms of salary cap/roster construction/contract control, this was another kick ass deal by Danny & Co.
 

Infield Infidel

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Jul 15, 2005
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With 2 away wins it would be interesting if the Cavs pull off a sweep and Celts-sixers goes 6 or 7. LeBron plays a ton of minutes and could use the rest and maybe steal ECF game 1 on the road.
 

Sam Ray Not

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It's not coaching. It's that TOR really doesn't have any wings. They have good guards and good bigs but they donlt have anyone who can guard LBJ and that's a huge problem.
I still don’t get it, though: wasn’t one of the biggest selling points of these Raps relative to previous iterations that in Anunoby and Siakam they finally had the type of long, athletic wing who could bother LeBron? Heck, even DeRozan though nominally a guard is a long 6’-7” and an elite athlete.

I still think “choking” (broadly speaking) is at least as compelling an argument as “poorly constructed roster.” If DeRozan had the mental makeup of a legit superstar, maybe he takes it on himself to go harder at LeBron on both ends. If Siakam and Anunoby weren’t deer in the headlights, maybe they get into his body more and lay some lumber on him occasionally. Etc.

By way of contrast: the ace in the hole of the Warriors where LeBron is concerned is not only that they have 5-6 guys with the combo of length and athleticism to throw at LeBron (Durant, Green, Iguodala, Thompson, Livingston, plus now Looney) but also that all those guys except Looney have been going at and often beating LeBron for years, so aren’t psychologically broken by him from the opening tap.

On the bright side for the Raps: to the extent that being “psychologically broken” is a real thing, if they can suck it up and win the next one, maybe they can shed some of the emotional baggage and get to a point where they’re playing talent v. talent.

Or I dunno, maybe the Raps just suck and the Cavs have been sandbagging all year.
 
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wade boggs chicken dinner

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I still don’t get it, though: wasn’t one of the biggest selling points of these Raps relative to previous iterations that in Anunoby and Siakam they finally had the type of long, athletic wing who could bother LeBron? Heck, even DeRozan though nominally a guard is a long 6’-7” and an elite athlete.

I still think “choking” (broadly speaking) is at least as compelling an argument as “poorly constructed roster.” If DeRozan had the mental makeup of a legit superstar, maybe he takes it on himself to go harder at LeBron on both ends. If Siakam and Anunoby weren’t deer in the headlights, maybe they get into his body more and lay some lumber on him occasionally. Etc.

By way of contrast: the ace in the hole of the Warriors where LeBron is concerned is not only that they have 5-6 guys with the combo of length and athleticism to throw at LeBron (Durant, Green, Iguodala, Thompson, Livingston, plus now Looney) but also that all those guys except Looney have been going at and often beating LeBron for years, so aren’t psychologically broken by him from the opening tap.

On the bright side for the Raps: to the extent that being “psychologically broken” is a real thing, if they can suck it up and win the next one, maybe they can shed some of the emotional baggage and get to a point where they’re playing talent v. talent.

Or I dunno, maybe the Raps just suck and the Cavs have been sandbagging all year.
I don't think it's anything mental - it's really physical. Think about your comparison: Green, and Iguodala versus Siakam and Anunoby. One group of guys is not like the other. Long and athletic doesn't do it against LBJ since he's 260 or 270 or whatever. TOR needs someone with size, bulk/strength, and athleticism. I mean when JB stands next to LBJ, he kind of looks like TJ McConnell. Durant can guard virtually everyone but put in the post against LBJ for an entire game, and he's going to get completely beat up.

Anunoby might get there but he's a rookie and he's not going to stop LBJ consistently. Siakam isn't strong enough. And LBJ is so good, if you send a second guy at him, he knows how to find the open man.
 

Sam Ray Not

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Yeah, you could be right. I’m not gonna die on the psychological hill, since those hills are often built of BS. But I have seen Shaun Livingston — who could be blown away by stiff breeze — attack LeBron defensively, both as a Net and a Warrior, with a little more gusto, toughness, and vet wiliness than these Raptors guys have shown.

Psychological and physical profiles aside: I wouldn’t underestimate the “wily vet” angle with respect to the Warrior guys (plus guys like Marcus Morris, Horford, Thad Young, Lance Stevenson, Kawhi, Danny Green, et al). They may have some requisite physical tools, but they’re also high IQ defenders who have been playing against LeBron for years and have at least a semblance of a book on him. Heck, legend has it that Iguodala has written an *actual* book on him.

I guess I’m just noting that of the three guys in the Raptors’ rotation with the physical profiles to be (occasional) LeBron stoppers, two are babies and the third is a PPG “star” who has never been willing to get his hands dirty defensively. Put the brain of Draymond or Iguodala or Kawhi into any of those guys, and I think we see them compete a bit better than they have been.
 
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DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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I don't think it's anything mental - it's really physical. Think about your comparison: Green, and Iguodala versus Siakam and Anunoby. One group of guys is not like the other. Long and athletic doesn't do it against LBJ since he's 260 or 270 or whatever. TOR needs someone with size, bulk/strength, and athleticism. I mean when JB stands next to LBJ, he kind of looks like TJ McConnell. Durant can guard virtually everyone but put in the post against LBJ for an entire game, and he's going to get completely beat up.

Anunoby might get there but he's a rookie and he's not going to stop LBJ consistently. Siakam isn't strong enough. And LBJ is so good, if you send a second guy at him, he knows how to find the open man.
I agree with you that the Raptors issue is personnel and it's clear that young players like OG or Siakam maybe aren't ready. But Miles and DeRozan dont have that excuse and they each have the length/size to at least bother LeBron. Maybe Wright too.

What is more remarkable is how the Cavs, who are ostensibly less well coached, have adjusted to Toronto. Perhaps some people have underestimated Lue or, more likely, player-coach James is running lineups out there that exploit the Raptors weaknesses.
 
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wade boggs chicken dinner

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I agree with you that the Raptors issue is personnel and it's clear that young players like OG or Siakam maybe aren't ready. But Miles and DeRozan dont have that excuse and they each have the length/size to at least bother LeBron. Maybe Wright too.

What is more remarkable is how the Cavs, who are ostensibly less well coached, have adjusted to Toronto. Perhaps some people have underestimated Lue or, more likely, player-coach James is running lineups out there that exploit the Raptors weaknesses.
Neither Miles nor DeRozen are known to be great defenders. Even if DeRozen was a good defender ordinarily (though I've seen nothing that would suggest that) he's like 210-215 pounds, right? He's giving up way too much size and strength to LBJ to be effective on him.

GSW has two perfect guys to play LBJ - both of whom are big, strong, mobile, and have great defensive reps. TOR doesn't have one guy who is nearly the defender as Green or Iguodala, much less two.

PHI would have been a much better matchup for TOR.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Neither Miles nor DeRozen are known to be great defenders. Even if DeRozen was a good defender ordinarily (though I've seen nothing that would suggest that) he's like 210-215 pounds, right? He's giving up way too much size and strength to LBJ to be effective on him.

GSW has two perfect guys to play LBJ - both of whom are big, strong, mobile, and have great defensive reps. TOR doesn't have one guy who is nearly the defender as Green or Iguodala, much less two.

PHI would have been a much better matchup for TOR.
Agreed. And I know neither Miles nor DeRozan are good defenders but they absolutely can do better. They have been turnstiles this series.
 

Soxfan in Fla

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+1 to all of the above.

I'm all for skepticism about the predictive value of regular season net rating, but man, the Choking Raps are taking it to a new level. They finished the season #2 in the NBA (just a point behind Houston) with a +7.3 SRS, where the Cavs were #14 at +0.6. Even giving massive brownie points to the Cavs for intangibles like "mental toughness" and "proven playoff mettle” and “LeBron,” the Raps should not be crapping the bed nearly this badly. And they don't even have an injury or fatigue excuse. Blehhh.

Ah well, the Raps actually had HCA v. the Warriors in the finals if they both made it that far, so I guess I should be happy. If it's Warriors/Cavs again (zzzz), I feel pretty confident the Ws won't stand around slack-jacked and watch LeBron abuse them the way the Raps just did. Heck, I don't think any of the remaining playoff teams would allow themselves to be bent over to the same degree, at least not without trying to change things up. Trap him or hack him or caress his nuts or blow in his ear or something.

TLDR:

Wanted to quote this because the TL DR is hilarious and deserves more love.
 

tims4wins

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Jul 15, 2005
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+1 to all of the above.

I'm all for skepticism about the predictive value of regular season net rating, but man, the Choking Raps are taking it to a new level. They finished the season #2 in the NBA (just a point behind Houston) with a +7.3 SRS, where the Cavs were #14 at +0.6. Even giving massive brownie points to the Cavs for intangibles like "mental toughness" and "proven playoff mettle” and “LeBron,” the Raps should not be crapping the bed nearly this badly. And they don't even have an injury or fatigue excuse. Blehhh.

Ah well, the Raps actually had HCA v. the Warriors in the finals if they both made it that far, so I guess I should be happy. If it's Warriors/Cavs again (zzzz), I feel pretty confident the Ws won't stand around slack-jacked and watch LeBron abuse them the way the Raps just did. Heck, I don't think any of the remaining playoff teams would allow themselves to be bent over to the same degree, at least not without trying to change things up. Trap him or hack him or caress his nuts or blow in his ear or something.

TLDR:

I think they need to try this

 

Kliq

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The issue with Toronto imo isn't that LeBron is killing them; LeBron has amazing games against most teams. The issue is not being able to contain the Cavs three point shooting on one end and their star players under-performing on offense.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Dec 22, 2002
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Aren't the Raptors just a slightly better (regular season) version of last years Celtics? Their bench advantage isn't as big come the playoffs.
 

benhogan

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Rondo with 4/10/21 in a blowout against the Dubs. Playoff Rondo is real, and he’s spectacular.
I think that's what is called a Rondo double-double:

4 points, 10 rebounds, 21 assists

The pre-game interview with AD, Jrue and Rondo was funny/bazaar. In a lighter moment, AD said he wasn't sure how to pronounce Rajon's first name so he just calls him "Rondo". Rondo doesn't crack a smile or laugh, just a creepy/awkward intensity.
 

JShams

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I thought lebron just got beat with a tire iron, turns out derozan grazed him with the inside of his arm. What a warrior.
 

Jed Zeppelin

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Damn, Van Vleet goes straight at Lebron and hits it.

If he can hit shots like that he will not have to resort to the backup career path a buddy of mine had laid out for him—owner of a small moving business called Fred Van Vleet’s Van Fleet.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Damn, Van Vleet goes straight at Lebron and hits it.

If he can hit shots like that he will not have to resort to the backup career path a buddy of mine had laid out for him—owner of a small moving business called Fred Van Vleet’s Van Fleet.
But then misses the FT. And he may have both an NBA and moving career yet!
 

johnmd20

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Damn, Van Vleet goes straight at Lebron and hits it.

If he can hit shots like that he will not have to resort to the backup career path a buddy of mine had laid out for him—owner of a small moving business called Fred Van Vleet’s Van Fleet.
I like this joke.